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Dream Theater - Systematic Chaos CD (album) cover


Dream Theater


Progressive Metal

3.31 | 1752 ratings

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Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer
4 stars As usual Mike Portnoy and John Pertucci are the producers while Paul Northfield engineered and mixed it. This record "sounds" amazing ! And while i'm not thrilled that it's almost 80 minutes long, these guys delivered in a big way on this album. For me the song "Forsaken" and the first half of "The Ministry Of Lost Souls" are really the only parts i'd eliminate. And check out the "who's who" of vocalists on the track "Repentence". Oh and I hope you guys like ants.

"In The Presence Of Enemies Part 1" has this killer intro followed by some fantastic bass and drums with synths. I'm thinking LIQUID TENSION EXPERIMENT here. It then settles with some nice guitar leads. Kicks back in before 5 minutes and vocals (for the first time) follow. Just a really good opening track. "Forsaken" as i've already mentioned is one i'm not a fan of. It's ok but it's too bland with the focus on the vocals. The best part is when the piano intro is blown to pieces by a heavy soundscape.Thankyou ! Haha. "Constant Motion" opens with the grinding guitar work of Pertucci as Portnoy pounds it out. Nice. Riffs follow. This is great ! The vocals are aggressive bringing METALLICA to mind. A real headbanger. Huge bass from Myung before 4 minutes then Pertucci takes over. A kick ass tune.

"The Dark Eternal Light" opens with guitar that has a really bad attitude. Love the sounds of the drums here. Even the vocals have attitude when they arrive after a minute.The tempo picks up after 3 minutes then we get this thunderous attack a minute later that comes and goes. Dark and heavy after 7 1/2 minutes. Nice. "Repentence" has vocal guests speaking such as Steven Wilson, Steve Vai, Neal Morse, Jon Anderson, Joe Satriani, Mikael Akerfeldt, Daniel Gildenlow, Steve Hogarth and others. This one is dark and atmospheric to open. I wish they'd do more of this style of music. Steven Wilson comes in vocally before 1 1/2 minutes and I wish he could continue. LaBrie follows though in a reserved manner. Mellotron 3 minutes in ! A tasteful guitar solo before 5 minutes. Then we get all these spoken words as the music continues.This might be my favourite track over "The Dark Eternal Night".

Next up is "Prophets Of War" and it speeds up a minute in and the guitar sounds incredible here. I like the way the vocals sort of "shout out" on and off beginning at 3 minutes as the guitar grinds away. Good song. "The Ministry Of Lost Souls" has this epic intro before LaBrie takes over. Thankfully it changes around 7 1/2 minutes as it kicks into gear. What an instrumental display the rest of the way. Relaxing guitar 13 minutes in to the end. "In The Presence Of Enemies Part 2" opens with some atmosphere as vocals come in slowly. It gets heavier after 2 1/2 minutes then kicks into a higher gear. Great sound 6 1/2 minutes in. Nice and heavy 9 1/2 minutes in with some ripping guitar.

I was pleasantly surprised at some of the things they've brought to the table on this one. Overall a very good release.

Mellotron Storm | 4/5 |


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