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Dream Theater - Dream Theater - Score: 20th Anniversary World Tour Live with the Octavarium Orchestra CD (album) cover


Dream Theater


Progressive Metal

4.41 | 450 ratings

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5 stars Finally got my hands on SCORE!

And, dude, is it a hell of a show...

The image and sound are better than on the Live at Budokan. The setlist is flawless and historical (at least one song from every album they released this far), its execution is flawless too. James Labrie shines like he never did before, and, well, you know what the four others can do!Well, the first half of the show is quite classical, well done and all, but the real treat is the second half of it.

And YES, they did it. A full 30-people symphonic orchestra, led by Jamshied Sharifi, to wander with the band in the Dream Theater universe. Many will be disappointed, as the rock+orchestra formula has already been tried, and most of the time, failed. But beware, you guys, Dream Theater's not the average band, and whatever they intended to perform here, the result is simply overwhelming.

First, we have the longest DT epic to date, Six Degrees of Inner Turbulence, perform as a whole (the 8 original tracks aren't even separated on the dvd, it's just ONE song). Once again : AWESOME. Just listen to what Rudess, Portnoy and Sharifi did to Overture, and you'll understand : this is not just about performing DT's music with some orchestra things in the background. THIS IS PURE OSMOSIS. The arrangements are over the top, the playing is great, and moreover, the band, which could have been terrified by this, seems actually to have a great time, all smiling and looking at the crowd or at each other.

The tension goes off for a bit after this 40+ min long epic, with two smooth and relaxing songs, Vacant and The Answer Lies Within. Note that TALW was nearly never played live during the tour, so to have it played here, on dvd, along with the orchestra, is a beautiful surprise. Sacrificed Sons is played then, with some footage from 9/11 displayed on the screens to accompany the samples that introduce the song. Once again it's the real deal : the song is done perfectly, with its wonderful instrumental part rendered very nicely. The audience screams loudly at the end, knowing that the MONSTER ONE is coming right next.

Octavarium. The pinnacle of DT's music, the one epic that truly shows the variety, the technical proficiency and songwriting ability of the band. Truly a great moment on the moment, and a awesome performing live (I saw the band when they toured in France last October). But here, in this 30-minute, intense and explosive version, the song blows your head off like nothing else. I can't say enough about this true masterpiece of progressive metal - just watch it, just watch this splendid Royal City Music Hall, NY, watch the crowd and the band having one of the most incredible moment of their lives. Passionate, true and memorable.

The encore consists solely of a lone song, but what song : Metropolis pt.I, THE DT classic par excellence! Nothing to add here, as everybody here already know this prog metal anthem from Images and Words. The orchestra is, as ever, perfectly accompanying the band during the instrumental part, never too much, never too less, it fits just nicely to the music.

Just a word over the bonuses : the three bonus tracks are IMHO quite unnecessary at this point, but will surely please the hardcore, never-enough fan of DT. Then we have the One- hour long documentary, explaining mostly ALL of DT's history, a really nice piece of musical history is told here, and the rare footages from the Majesty era are really fun to discover.

At this point, I guess I just have to conclude this long review, by rating (finally!) the SCORE dvd.

I understand that some may just "like" DT once in a while, or even hate them. In this case, retain one or two stars from the 5 STARS RATING I'm giving to what is to me the best band in the world nowadays.

A long wait it has been since April 1st, but it was worth it. 5/5.


PS : sorry to have already put this all for the cd review... Just been a bit carried on ^^

ValhallFR | 5/5 |


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