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Dream Theater - Octavarium CD (album) cover

OCTAVARIUM

Dream Theater

 

Progressive Metal

3.67 | 1982 ratings

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strayfromatlantis
3 stars The return from the dungeons of Train of Thought.

I just listened to Octavarium again after some two years. I don't think the album will stand the test of time. The album seems to be a featherweight, obviously the band wanted to do something light and positive after the dark experience of ToT. Most of the compositions are superficial, nothing you can lend your ear to too often. I still like some parts and a handful of songs, especially the aggressive ones. One bonus of this album is its diversity, and the band still had the spark to come down with some attractive ideas.

The let-downs on this album are the two mellow songs, I'll Walk Beside You (sounds like U2) and The Answer Lies Within (a most boring ballad). From the aggressive stuff especially The Root of All Evil is lacking musical depth, it's a normal formulaic prog metal piece. The other songs are better, have pleasant ideas and are played with some rage. The most mature piece on the disc is Sacrificed Sons, with some good melodies and an exciting instrumental section, some oriental influences being scattered across the whole song.

The title track is a suite of 24 minutes. It starts off with a nice Floydian instrumental intro going on for some minutes. Then the verse part comes and it goes down the train until minute 12. From this minute on the epic changes its face. It starts off with some heavy and fast played parts by Ruddess who shows us that he spent some time listening to ELP. The verse comes in and...it's good! Next we find a tiny stitch to Frank Zappa (only a few seconds) until we come to a section obviously "borrowed" by Marillion's Forgotten Sons!! Then LaBrie gets the fits, Floydian outro, over.

A mixed bag, if you ask me. Good but non-essential, this phrase fits perfectly.

Favourite Tracks: These Walls, Panic Attack, Never Enough, Sacrificed Sons.

strayfromatlantis | 3/5 |

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