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Dream Theater - Train of Thought CD (album) cover


Dream Theater


Progressive Metal

3.60 | 1858 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars This album seems to be one of the lesser liked in the Dream Theater discog, but I love it. In fact, it's my favorite DT album.

When I first heard "Train of Thought" I only knew the classic DT albums: 6 Degrees, Metropolis, I&W and Awake. So I was pretty shocked by this albums heaviness and profanity, (not that I care at all, but for DT it raised an eyebrow). "Train of Thought" is certainly more "metal" than most DT albums. It's heavier and bit less progressive than most of the band's output, but it is still progressive. A bit more riff based than standard DT, and there are some epic riffs to be found. There are plenty of blazing guitar and keyboard solos, a pretty good drumming display and fine vocals. While they never really wow me (and can sometimes grate), it seems I don't dislike LaBrie nearly as much as I used to.

"As I Am" is a bit straightforward, but a good metal song. Some cool riffs and moments.

"This Dying Soul" is more intense and progressive. Pretty cool song, though I don't like the distorted vocals that are used at times. Second half is pretty crazy and has some classic DT madness.

Then we get to the best 2 songs of the album.

"Endless Sacrifice" is an awesome song, heavy and progressive. The main riff/chorus part makes me rock so hard. The middle section is awesome, and topped off with doses of epic shreddery and technicality. Great song, and it leads into my favorite from the album:

"Honor Thy Father" Now this is some brutal prog metal. Heavy, groovy, intense, progressive, filled with epic riffs and melodies. Hefty doses of technicality, off tempo, solos and even keyboards are thrown around, and some pretty good drumming to boot. The song really moves and is hard to not groove or thrash around to.

"Vacant" gives us a breather with a somber keyboard and bass piece, with some cello too. Pretty but also quite melancholy, especially when taken with the lyrics about LaBrie watching his young daughter fall into a coma...some heavy stuff.

"Stream of Consciousness" is an 11 minute instrumental. Turn the volume up, because I love when the first riff hits you. Like any good prog epic it takes you on quite a journey, and you'll hear a bit of everything. Lots of keyboard, more than the previous songs as well as more of that famed DT wizardry then we've seen thus far. Not the best prog instrumental I've heard but a pretty damn good song for sure.

"In the Name of God" finishes the album with its longest song, at 14 minutes. It drags a bit at times, and for the first time on ToT LaBrie's singing kind of bugs me, (but it's not terrible) and is a good song still. With the rest of the album there are some sweet riffs, grooves and melodies throughout. A good song, but actually could've use a bit of trimming. "Stream of Consciousness" would've been a better finale in my opinion, especially since it fits with "Train of Thought" as an idea but ah well.

So after all these years I still love the more riffy, heavy DT. Some fans seem to be displeased with the more metal, less proggy sound but if you like metal, and if you like prog then I really don't see why you wouldn't like "Train of Thought". It's some heavy, dark and still progressive prog metal, what's not to love?

Four and a Half Stars



JJLehto | 4/5 |


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