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Dream Theater - Awake CD (album) cover


Dream Theater


Progressive Metal

4.12 | 2061 ratings

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4 stars After being disappointed by what I heard on Images And Words it took me another 7 years to regain my courage and give Awake a proper shot. Incidentally, the music video I saw for Lie didn't impress me that much to begin with, which is why I decided to take things slow and borrow this title from a friend before purchasing a copy of my own.

Luckily I was very positively surprised by my first experience and the material continued to grow with repeated listens. To me, this is the first consistent Dream Theater release that fills in the gap between the 80's sound of Images And Words and what we experienced on Scenes From A Memory. Kevin Moore's work really shines through on Awake and gives me a glimpse of what could have been if he would have decided to maintain his position in the band. We also get an unexpected song contribution from John Myung which might give a better understanding of his style, something we don't get to hear enough on the other Dream Theater albums.

The highlight of the album for me is the three song trilogy called A Mind Beside Itself which I immediately recognized from the album Live Scenes From New York. Even though this studio take is much more polished, I actually happen to prefer the live energy that oozes from Dream Theater whenever they perform on stage. This is something that the band definitely got better at with time and could therefore explain why Awake and the other early albums just don't do as much for me as their later releases.

With Awake Dream Theater showed that they were anything but a one trick pony of a collective and depicted the first signs of the things to come. It's not the most polished of their releases but I can definitely recommend it to anyone who still haven't heard the band's early '90s material.

***** star songs: Voices (9:53)

**** star songs: 6:00 (5:31) Caught In A Web (5:28) Innocence Faded (5:43) Erotomania (6:45) The Silent Man (3:48) The Mirror (6:45) Lie (6:34) Scarred (11:00) Space-Dye Vest (7:29)

*** star songs: Lifting Shadows Off A Dream (6:05)

Rune2000 | 4/5 |


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