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Dream Theater - Octavarium CD (album) cover


Dream Theater


Progressive Metal

3.66 | 1996 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
5 stars Quite the contrary to the heavy "Train Of Thought" but I figured on a progressive rock site that this record would be highly praised by prog fans alike.

Guess I was wrong. But why?

An album of a band coming off its period (so to speak) is, to no real surprise, going to be coming downhill in a softer, more sophisticated fashion. It's a bit unusual to hear that off "The Root Of All Evil", which opens on Rudess' low F chord left off on "In The Name Of God". Coincidence. It's part 3 in Mike Portnoy's Twelve-Step Suite, the shortest and probably the most accessible of the five tracks, which reall opens up the album in usual fashion. It segues into a nice bolas in "The Answer Lies Within". Coupled with a wonderful prog track in 'These Walls" and the pop rock wannabe "I Walk Beside You" makes this one of my favorite sequences in all of prog. The quality, the composition. This is far different from most DT albums ever made.

The second half starts with a blistering tune in "Panic Attack" followed by it's brother, "Never Enough". These are two particularly heavy tracks that follow the DT blueprint for prog metal success (whatever that may be). It only gets better with the gripping "Sacrificed Sons" (which contains the most epic ending ever conceived in metal history) and finishing with the incredible epic of "Octavarium".

While some people compare it as a failed "Six Degrees, Pt. 2", others can't compare the two because they can't tell which direction the band was taking with this album. I, however, believes this disc goes in a class of it's own. "Six Degrees" was the ultimate prog metal album at the time, based around the title track and a fascinating concept (the entire disc was very medical/disease related). "Octavarium" goes straight home. This is more of an emotional, gripping album. It tells of stories even average people like us can relate to. While I don't think this disc is absolutely as groundbreaking as "Six Degrees", "Octavarium" is another Dream Theater album that must be heard for fans of prog metal.

Wicket | 5/5 |


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