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Dream Theater - Octavarium CD (album) cover


Dream Theater


Progressive Metal

3.68 | 2213 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

2 stars Compared to "Train of Thought", this is album is way softer and lighter, the furious metal riffage being substituted by mellow guitar work and the double-bass driven drumming by a calmer drum performance. Some songs are also notably shorter and more compact, like "I Walk Beside You" and "The Answer Lies Within". Unfortunately, the songwriting is really bad if we judge this record by a Dream Theater standard. I mean, "Awake" contained several short songs which, despite being short, were absolutely deserving of the "progressive metal" label. They had tempo changes, complex rhythms, etc. A song like "I Walk Beside You" is NOTHING like, say, "Caught in a Web". Despite sharing the same length (more or less), "I Walk" is just too simple and pop-ish to be even considered a progressive work. Sure, the drumming is stellar and complex as hell, but, as a whole, the song sounds like U2 or something. I know bands must explore other musical realms, but as pop rock is definitely not my cup of tea, this record leaves a sour taste in my taste. "These Walls" represents another problem, with a very cheesy chorus and some really muddy riffs that wouldn't sound out of place on a Disturbed album (not a good thing in my books).

Thankfully, there are still some quality progressive stuff here. The opener and "Panic Attack" are both solid progressive metal cuts, but the two gems of "Octavarium" are the two last tunes, "Sacrificed Sons" and the title track. "Sacrificed Sons" is an excellent progressive rock song with mellow guitar work and an excellent solo. The middle section also contains some heavier parts, and the song comfortably flows well, definitely sounding like a pearl compared to some other tracks. The title track is the real masterpiece of this work though: awesome intro, a heartfelt and very well composed calm part, followed by heavier sections bringing us to the monumental climax. Really, this is one of the best Dream Theater songs ever.

So, 2 and a half stars, mainly because four of the tracks rock and the other ones kinda plod along, boring me to tears.

Nhorf | 2/5 |


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