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DALI'S DILEMMA

Progressive Metal • United States


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Dali's Dilemma biography
This five-piece outfit from California delivers technically demanding, high-velocity prog metal. References include DREAM THEATER, ENCHANT, FATES WARNING and SHADOW GALLERY as well as the more classic rockers such as RUSH and DEEP PURPLE. The band consists of Matthew Bradley on vocals, Patrick Reyes on guitar and brother Steve Reyes on bass, Jeremy Colson on drums, and former ZERO HOUR keyboard player Matt Guillory.

Their cd "Manifesto for Futurism" ('99) is an immaculately constructed ten-piece set that features strong musicianship (you'll notice some elegantly gothic, neo-classical tinges in their guitar lines). Some may bash the band for being another DREAM THEATER clone but they do stand on their own, both from a compositional and lyrical standpoint. Perhaps one aspect they could improve on is in the melodic department; a little more feeling in their play would be welcomed as well. Technically speaking, they are flawless.

Recommended for fans of DREAM THEATER circa "Images and Word" and "Awake".

: : : Lise (HIBOU), CANADA : : :

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Manifesto for FuturismManifesto for Futurism
Magna Carta 1999
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3.20 | 58 ratings
Manifesto For Futurism
1999

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DALI'S DILEMMA Reviews


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 Manifesto For Futurism by DALI'S DILEMMA album cover Studio Album, 1999
3.20 | 58 ratings

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Manifesto For Futurism
Dali's Dilemma Progressive Metal

Review by The Quiet One
Prog Reviewer

3 stars The Missing 90's Dream Theater Album

The Prog Metal genre is known for having plenty of bands that just assimilate the sound 'created' by Dream Theater rather than adventuring themselves through this fairly new genre like Opeth, Devin Townsend, Cynic and others(I'm no metal expert nor serious fan) have done; Dali's Dilemma is pretty much one of those Dream Theater so-called ''clones''.

You can swear that John Petrucci, Kevin Moore, John Myung and Mike Portnoy joined together once again in 1999 and tried a new singer out. The result is obviously technically great from the instrumental side of things. The compositions while far from being bad per se, they totally resemble the style of compositions made by Dream Theater back in the good ol' days of Kevin Moore.

You've got the blasting shred solos, the great atmospheric keyboards, the diverse but powerful drumming and a not very audible bass, but when audible it's superb. The only aspect from Dali's Dilemma that make an easy distinguishment from both bands is clearly the vocals by Matthew Bradley who is far from being the high-pitched vocalist that James LaBrie was back then in the 90's.

To end this short, but hopefully clear review, I'll just add that this is actually my first encounter with these "Dream Theater clones". I for one, enjoy this album because it's as strong as most of Dream Theater's material done back in the 90's, so anybody who misses the ol' Dream Theater like I do, this band right here might comfort you. However, if you have already heard a dozen of these "clones" and are about to burn your speakers the next time you hear another one, you should better avoid this.

3 stars: if it had been released by Dream Theater it would probably have been 4 stars, however the lack of originality takes off a star.

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 Manifesto For Futurism by DALI'S DILEMMA album cover Studio Album, 1999
3.20 | 58 ratings

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Manifesto For Futurism
Dali's Dilemma Progressive Metal

Review by Cesar Inca
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars Looking back at my collector's priorities during the early 90s (and part of the later), I cannot forget how prioritized was the prog metal element in my pursuit for knowledge about the then currents state of affairs in the prog genre - and that always led to enthusiastic purchases. Bands like Shadow Gallery, Altura, Lemur Voice, Enchant, Magellan and Dali's Dilemma soon appealed to me as favorites from the pack of records released by Magna Carta that graced my ever-growing collection. I have reviewed many albums from the aforementioned bands throughout all these years as a PA reviewer: why didn't I review this lovely album by Dali's Dilemma until now? Well, questions aside, now I have some spare time to use for a good deed, which is to praise an album that I haven't listened to for 2 or 3 years, and now I find myself loving it as dearly as I did back then. "Manifesto For Futurism" is one of those gems from the golden era of Magna Carta that should be kept from oblivion. The band's sound forged a sound very much influenced by 89-94 Dream Theater, and collaterally, generating some family airs with Benignuns-era Enchant and Shadow Gallery, only keeping a less epic approach to the compositional framework. The opener 'Within A Stare' kicks off the repertoire as a straightforward statement of what the band is all about: dynamically melodic prog metal that provides a reasonable dose of power and a sensitive use of the instrumental scheme, plus emotional singing by the effective lead vocalist. Regarding the effective style and tone delivered by, he sounds to me like a mixture of Bono and Lou Gramm with an added level of rocking power. As I said earlier, the Dream Theater reference is the most recurrent, and indeed, it will remain so for most part of the album: guitar and keyboard inputs are mostly related to the "Images" era, while the rhythm duo is more inspired by the "Awake" era. The sophomore piece 'Memories Of Yesteryear' is the album's highlight, IMHO: in its 7+ minute span, it comprises an attractive melodic development and polished performances by all parties involved, and it also features the most interesting set of diverse instrumental passages during the interlude. 'Despite The Waves' brings a lighter flair and an optimistic aura, which is convenient after two tracks that bore some shades of reflective nostalgia underneath the muscular sonic framework. 'Whispers' is a lovely, romantic keyboard solo: with only piano and string orchestrated backing, this piece conveys sheer melancholy in a most powerful manner. Track 6 'Andromeda Sunrise' is also a solo piece, only this time performed as a duet of acoustic and electric guitars: the melancholic vibe is similar but a bit more intense, something like a soft acoustic Hackett interlude contaminated by Vai's calculated soloing. Between these two solo pieces is 'Ashen Days', a track that bears a similar rhythmic structure to that of 'Despite The Waves', but its metallic punch and colorfulness are definitely more related to tracks 1-2. At this point, the listener must be quite aware of what one can expect from a Dali's Dilemma song, so they can enjoy the dynamics and well-crafted melodic developments of tracks such as 'This Time Around', 'Can't You See' and 'Living In Fear'. 'Hills Of Memory', on the other hand, departs from the standard and ventures into U2-related realms: they do a great job at it, really. As for the other three aforementioned tracks, 'Can't You See' delivers a fluid alternation of aggressive and constrained passages (the rhythm duo works on the top of its skills), while 'Living In Fear' reshapes the bombastic brilliance that we found in the first two tracks, even straying a bit afar from the DT pattern and getting a bit closer to the FW influence ("Pleasant SDhade"- era). All in all, "Manifesto For Futurism" is an excellent addition to any good prog collection with metal-prog sensibilities: Dali's Dilemma should not be forgotten.

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 Manifesto For Futurism by DALI'S DILEMMA album cover Studio Album, 1999
3.20 | 58 ratings

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Manifesto For Futurism
Dali's Dilemma Progressive Metal

Review by toroddfuglesteg

3 stars I expected some high brow post rock album when I grabbed this album from a record shop before PA even was conceived.

What I got was a progressive metal album with strong references to Dream Theater. The guitars and the keyboards is very much down the Dream Theater alley. Dali's Dilemma is not Dream Theater copies though because their album was recorded and released before Dream Theater developed into this direction you find on this album.The songs also have some added influences from Fates Warning and Symphony X. I am not sure about Rush though. In any case; this album is a middle of the road progressive metal album.

The songs are decent, but nothing more than that. I find the guitars and keyboards pretty attractive and this is the main good point for me. My gripes is the pretty weak vocals and the lack of any memorable tracks. This is a good, but highly forgetable album in my view. I give it three stars because the musicianship is good and there is no serious flaws with this album.

3 stars

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 Manifesto For Futurism by DALI'S DILEMMA album cover Studio Album, 1999
3.20 | 58 ratings

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Manifesto For Futurism
Dali's Dilemma Progressive Metal

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Keyboardist Matt Guillory is probably the most well known member of this band in the Prog world. He played on ZERO HOUR's debut, as well on EXPLORER CLUB's debut, and on the MULLMUZZLER project. By the way vocalist Matthew Bradley also sang on that EXPLORER CLUB album. Brothers Patrick and Steve Reyes play lead guitar and bass respectivly. What freaked me out a little was how much the lead guitarist sounded like Jasun Tipton from ZERO HOUR at times. He has that trade mark guitar sound of Jasuns' down perfectly on several occasions. I really like that the bass is prominant on this album. Each one of these guys play very impressively. By the way Matt thanks among others Jasun and Troy Tipton, Kevin Moore, John Pertucci, Doug Ott and ENCHANT, and Jim Matheos and FATES WARNING.

"Within A Stare" opens with the volume turned down as we can hear synths and drums. It kicks in heavily before a minute. The bass is fantastic and so is the drumming. Vocals arrive after a minute,synths are in the background. That bass / drum show is back before 2 1/2 minutes. There's that Tipton-like guitar 4 minutes in and heavy riffs follow then a guitar solo. Nice. That bass / drum show returns 5 minutes in. Tipton-like guitar ends it. "Miracles In Yesteryears" opens with this amazing drum / guitar section. It calms down as reserved vocals arrive. It picks back up to a solid soundscape. The guitar sounds cool with background synths and vocals. An excellent bass / synth interlude 3 minutes in. Heaviness follows. Some amazing complex guitar work in this one around 4 minutes. Tipton-like guitar 5 minutes in. "Despite The Waves" hits the ground running with high pitched guitar and some more incredible drumming. Synths are in the background as vocals arrive. A nice heavy sound comes and goes. Tipton-like guitar 3 1/2 minutes in. Take away the heaviness and i'm thinking ENCHANT.

"Whispers" is a short instrumental of piano and synths throughout. "Ashen Days" is heavy with synths to begin with as vocals come in. Nice bass as the guitar comes grinding in. Guitar solo 2 1/2 minutes in with a calm a minute later. The intro section is back 4 minutes in as themes are repeated. "Andromeda Sunrise" opens with acoustic guitar with electric guitar coming in and playing lazy melodies over top. This sounds really good. "This Time Around" is an accessible and melodic tune. Drumming stands out early. The chorus sounds terrific. Nice heavy guitar sounds during the verses. Good tune. "Hills Of Memory" is a mid paced, straight forward track. Reserved vocals, acoustic guitar and synths start things off. The highlight is the bass after 4 minutes. "Can't You See" is better.Heavy with powerful drums as the guitar starts to make some noise. Vocals are reserved at first, then riffs come in. I love the guitar 3 minutes in and then after 3 1/2 minutes. Nice. "Living In Fear" blows me away with that intro. The complex drumming and guitar are killer. Then the synths sounds come in and they're are off the charts ! The bass is huge. This is unreal ! Vocals come in as the song levels out unfortunately. A RUSH moment 4 minutes in and after 7 minutes. Complex guitar 4 1/2 minutes in and 6 minutes in and to end it.

I can see why some aren't too thrilled with this album, but I also see why there are so many raving reviews on the internet about this recording. The playing is beyond outstanding but the vocals are average. 3.5 stars.

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 Manifesto For Futurism by DALI'S DILEMMA album cover Studio Album, 1999
3.20 | 58 ratings

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Manifesto For Futurism
Dali's Dilemma Progressive Metal

Review by Moatilliatta
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Dali's Dilemma is a one album prog-metal band with symphonic and neo-prog tendencies. That pretty much sums them up right there. They aren't original at all, but they are very talented and capable musicians.

Top notch musicianship and fine songwriting grace us from the start. The first two tracks, "Within a Stare" and "Miracles in Yesteryear," are the two highlights of the album. Unfortunately, from this point on, it goes downhill. Not that the upcoming songs are bad, but they don't exactly keep up with the first two. In actuality, the reason is probably just because the music is a little too typical and the further in you get, the less interested you become. I think if I started from the end of the album, I would give the last track more credit. "Living in Fear" is the other keeper off this album, but you won't get much out of it after enduring the first nine tracks.

The guys play their music well. The vocals are mediocre: not much of a range (sometimes it sounds like he's straining to get the higher notes out), and a fitting, but sometimes irritating tone. It's not bad by any means, but with a couple exceptions, it's a hardly memorable release. Maybe if they put out a second album they could have gone somewhere, but that didn't happen. The three mentioned tracks are still worth checking out.

2 1/2 stars

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 Manifesto For Futurism by DALI'S DILEMMA album cover Studio Album, 1999
3.20 | 58 ratings

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Manifesto For Futurism
Dali's Dilemma Progressive Metal

Review by adigitaldan

3 stars They're not a bad band nor are they a direct copy of Dream Theater as some have accused them of being. However, it is a debut release and it lacks some in direction. But that's not uncommon, the debut releases for Symphony X and Shadow Gallery were also less than stellar when compared to their later output.

The vocals are a little lacking given the potential shown by the rest of the band. Then again, I thought James Labrie was a suspect singer back in the day. When my friends and I saw DT a few times during the Images and Words tour, he just didn't understand how to sing live with the aid of a PA system. He tried to sing as if he was unamplified and his voice often cracked in the process. I'm glad he addressed that problem.

All in all, nothing incredible and yet it's still a good listen. If you can pick the album up on-the-cheap like I did, it's definitely worth $7. Too bad they are more than likely defunct as a band, would have been interesting to see if they could have evolved into something.....

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 Manifesto For Futurism by DALI'S DILEMMA album cover Studio Album, 1999
3.20 | 58 ratings

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Manifesto For Futurism
Dali's Dilemma Progressive Metal

Review by azacamis

3 stars I got this CD (which I have to order from the internet) based on their demo. Back then they called themselves chaos something, I can't really remember. The demo blow me away. But upon receiving the album, I was very dissapointed. Songs on the demo were rearranged and it sounded bad. And Bradley's vocal was not as good as on the demo. Seriously, the guy can sing, you have to listen to the demo. Skill wise, they're all good, no doubt and the production was forgiveable but I just could not help thinking someone must have dip their fingers in where they should not have and caused this aweful change. I would love to hear their second album because I love Matt's keys. He should have been in Dream Theater.

If anyone has that demo, please contact me. I lost it when my PC crashed.

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 Manifesto For Futurism by DALI'S DILEMMA album cover Studio Album, 1999
3.20 | 58 ratings

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Manifesto For Futurism
Dali's Dilemma Progressive Metal

Review by Drew

3 stars 3.5 stars- This album has been steadily growing on me over the past couple of months..the talent this band has is incredible- its a shame that they may no longer BE a band- given this album was released about 6 years ago- and they havnt done anything since...this album is compared to Images and Wrods...well, because it sounds a lot like that album..no joke. If you like that album..then pick this one up- these guys can play!

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 Manifesto For Futurism by DALI'S DILEMMA album cover Studio Album, 1999
3.20 | 58 ratings

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Manifesto For Futurism
Dali's Dilemma Progressive Metal

Review by CGH Tompkins

1 stars uffff...., another DT copy, and a bad one, an uninspired band trying, so hard, to be DT, but they didn't get the message about prog: "progression", not "regression", not trying so hard to be another band, like Fish trying to be Gabriel, it's so boring to listen old stuff with the name of new.

This album is just a copy, a band one, of DT, and one of those copies that you are not whiling to listen again, poor performance, and no ideas, just a waste of time

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 Manifesto For Futurism by DALI'S DILEMMA album cover Studio Album, 1999
3.20 | 58 ratings

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Manifesto For Futurism
Dali's Dilemma Progressive Metal

Review by kwp02

4 stars Excellent addition to any prog music collection - I think this says it all. It is not essential- but it sure will make your collection all the better. Most compare this album to "Scenes From a Memory" and I agree- at times you are saying- "What the hell? This is not Scenes?" Greet musicianship- decent vocals- but one problem- this album was released in 1999- and they have not done a thing since. Are they done? I sure hope not- this is for sure a prog album to pick up!!!!!!

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