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Dream Theater - A Dramatic Turn of Events CD (album) cover

A DRAMATIC TURN OF EVENTS

Dream Theater

 

Progressive Metal

3.84 | 1628 ratings

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senor_velasco
5 stars Consider this musical lease renewed.

For Dream Theater, there's a lot riding on their first album without Mike Portnoy. The leading up to the release, the questions loomed large: Can they hold to a cohesive vision? Will the production quality be up to snuff? Can Mike Mangini handle the material - let alone offer his own contributions?

When I finally was able to listen to the album for myself, the answer was an enthusiastic "YES" on all accounts! Any worries that the band would follow in the footsteps of the post-Neal Morse Spock's Beard are completely assuaged.

The band certainly has stepped it up in this release, with material that reflects the reality that their careers are riding on its success. The clear creative forces behind the music are John Petrucci and Jordan Rudess, who have a long history together of weaving complex and compelling musical storytelling. Both also offer a strong ear for great production value, which is evident from the very first listen.

Of course, the wild card was Mike Mangini. In this reviewer's opinion, that card turns out to be an ace. He does way more than mimic Mike Portnoy's meticulous and frenetic drumming, bringing a sound that he owns. His chops don't just keep up, but blaze new territory with some of the most original and intricate drumming we've ever heard from Dream Theater.

Every song on the album is strong, with my personal favorite being the anthemic Outcry. All the music is at once accessible and deeply complex, offering something for every level of prog-appreciation.

Dream Theater has turned over a new leaf. Is it because Portnoy left, or just because they had to renew themselves in his absence? Whatever the answer, the result speaks for itself--and bodes well for the future of the band.

senor_velasco | 5/5 |

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