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Dream Theater - Octavarium CD (album) cover

OCTAVARIUM

Dream Theater

 

Progressive Metal

3.66 | 1518 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

imoeng
Prog Reviewer
5 stars In every album, Dream Theater presents different style and genre. As for example, in Images and Words, they made a very progressive album, odd time signature, long composition songs and so on. While in Train of Thought, the style of the album is very heavy metal, although there is also some progressive element in the album. In this 8th studio album, Octavarium, Dream Theater brings more Dream Theater sound, progressive, metal and some pop rock songs. If you notice, Octavarium comes from the word, Octave, which is 8, and you will see many 8 numbers in this album, whether it's on the cover or in the songs itself. In every song lyrics, there is a time signature on top of it. These time signatures represent the time signature in the song below it. For instance, The Root of all evil, has F time signature, therefore it played in F time signature. Moreover, these 8 songs will create an octave. From track 1 to 8, the octave notations are F G A B C D E F. This is one of the things that made Dream Theater is a true progressive band, although they can produce many different styles of music.

The Root of All Evil A great song for the opening song, which Dream Theater always does in almost every album. The important aspect in this song is that the key is the same with the piano key in the last song in the last album. In The Name Of God from the album Train Of Thought. The style of the song is considered as a heavy song with lots of drums and guitar licks. As for the lyrics, there are some parts that were taken from the song This Dying Soul, "I can feel my body breaking." One thing to look at is in the end of the song, there are notes that are also used in the song "Octavarium", which is the last song.

The Answers Lies Within After a metal and heavy song composition in the previous song, Dream Theater presented a cool and relaxing song. The song has the same style as Hollow Years in the album Falling Into Infinity, which is very slow and "peaceful". Two thumbs up for James LaBrie, which sang the song very different with previous songs. LaBrie which somewhat identical with heavy and metal songs, sang very deep and beautiful help from Mike Portnoy and John Petrucci.

These Walls Another heavy song from Dream Theater, you can see from the very beginning of the song, a very heavy guitar riff and mixed with Jordan Rudess's amazing keyboard riff. One thing that I admire from this song is Mike Portnoy's drum sounds, which very identical with his playing, lots of splash cymbals to create certain effects of sound.

I Walk Beside You This song I think is the most commercial song in this album, I can say that because I have listen this song more than any Dream Theater songs in the radio. The style of this song is very pop-rock.

Panic Attack You can tell from the bass licks in the beginning of the song and expect metal song when the drum begins to play. And yes, this is the heaviest song in the album for me. The lyrics also represent the metal side of the song, which tells about the stream of panic. The guitar and keyboard solos are just the same with almost every Dream Theater songs, required virtuosity.

Never Enough For me, this song is pretty much influenced by Muse, just by looking at the bass licks in the beginning of the song, pretty much the same with Muse's song, Hysteria. Moreover, LaBrie uses sound effects for the first lyrics, which is very Muse. The coolest part of the song is the guitar solo, which consists of hard and complex arpeggios.

Sacrificed Sons In the beginning of the song, there are sounds of human talking about politics regarding the 9/11 tragedy. This concept is pretty much the same with one of Pink Floyd song. After metal style in the previous songs, more relaxing and peaceful song presented. One thing to look at is the lyrics, which is very deep and meaningful regarding the connection of human to the God.

Octavarium This is the most complex and progressive song in the album, Octavarium was divided in to five sub-songs, Someone Like Him, Medicate, Full Circle, Intervals and Razor's Edge. The song begins with complex sound effects from Jordan Rudess and continued with John Petrucci's relaxing guitar riffs. Don't expect the same style for the whole of the song, because in the first minutes of the song, especially in the "Someone Like Him", the style is pop-ish in slow beat. The best part for me is in the "Razor's Edge" part, where the lyrics explain all about the album. "We move in circle, Balanced all the while, On a gleaming razor's edge, A perfect sphere, Colliding with the fate, This story ends where it began." And continued with a very classy and beautiful ending solo.

Well actually, the concept of the album is about thing being repeated. Octavarium, comes from the word, Octave, in musical terms, it means one full notation, C D E F G A B C'. But in Octavarium, the keys used are F G A B C D E F, that's why the birds between the pendulum and the piano keys on the back of the cover represents F G A B C D E F piano keys.

Some people think it's the worst Dream Theater album, but when I look into it very deeply and recognize every section of the songs, I found out that this is one of the best Dream Theater albums and is a masterpiece of progressive music.

imoeng | 5/5 |

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