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Dream Theater - Six Degrees Of Inner Turbulence CD (album) cover


Dream Theater


Progressive Metal

4.12 | 1932 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars The addition of Jordan Rudess on keys proved to be a rebirth of the band with 1999's masterpiece Scenes from a Memory. The jams and unisons we first saw in Liquid Tension Experiment were now a part of Dream Theater's musical palette, and humor even found it's place in their music: the ragtime section in "The Dance of Eternity" most notably, and then there were even just nutty sunding riffs and solos like the ending portion of "Beyond This Life" showed a new approach and outcome of their writing, which was obviously a by-product of Rudess collaborating with them. About three years later, Dream Theater unveiled their next project, Six Degrees of Inner Turbulence. From the second you pop this one in, you're going to notice a familair static. Yes, that is from the last album! Here is another innovation since this rebirth: connecting albums - you will notice this on every album since Scenes from a Memory. I find it brilliant. Dream Theater never cease to amaze me, and they never will.

Onto the music. This, first off, is the band's first double-disc attempt. The second disc is one 42-minute opus, but before we get to see what that is all about, we have a preceeding disc to hear out. There are a total of six songs, or degrees for the title's sake The first disc contains the first five. As the first track begins, we hear bells a-ringing, these sounds are also among new things the band is implimenting. After a nifty bassline, Dream Theater have returned to the uber-heavy style that we have not heard since Awake, and it's even heavier! While I generally don't like that type of heavy, which is almsot like nu-metal, Dream Theater actually do it well, making it complicated and consequently appreciatable. This song is 13 minutes of relentless rocking. It is also to be made note of that this piece is part of a new series Portnoy started as a tribute to Alcoholics Anonymous. Each part is named after each step of the program; this one has the first three. The song starts to get boring, but is mixed up a bit just enough to let you enjoy or tolerate it (depending on your preferences), and then they explode into an amzing jam section at a little after nine minutes in. They then bring it to a close and move on to "Blind Faith," which starts off softer and quite nice, and then goes into a heavy chorus. Not so pounding as the previous song, but it still has more thick tone than I've ever heard come from them. Petrucci uses a baritone guitar one this one, which may be part of the reason, or most. This one has a great jam too. Overall a very good song also. It seems though, at this point, that it will just be a good, heavy album, but it will not reach the heights of Scenes. This inference proves true through the end of disc one. We have a decent heavy-metal piece in "Misunderstood," another long, heavy, complex piece profiling stem cell research in "The Great Debate" which retains a more melodic chorus, and is interesting because it presents both sides of the arguement. "Disappear" is a great ballad, and is a good way to go out. Now it is time to listen to the second disc, and you a surely rewarded with this one. Throw all that you may have thought about this group out the window for this one. Whether it be from enduring the first disc, or from any album before this. You'll put this one in and go "An orchestra?" Yes, an orchestrated piece is this! Again, contributed by Rudess is an orchestra arrangement. The band always come up with new ways to present their work. This disc is a real gem, which traverses through everything they've done before, adding an orchestra and a few more things to mix. It is brilliant!

If you don't mind heavy, you will get something out of the first disc, though it surely is not a masterpiece by any means, nor is it among their top recordings, save for a huge handful of stellar jams and what not. However, disc two makes up for any disappointment from earlier. I give this 4.5 stars. You must get this, if only for the incredible second disc.

Moatilliatta | 4/5 |


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