Album 0091: Dream Theater – A Dramatic Turn Of Events

Release Date: 2011
Genre: Progressive Metal

Tracklisting:

1. On The Backs Of Angels (08:43)
2. Build Me Up, Break Me Down (06:59)
3. Lost Not Forgotten (10:12)
4. This Is The Life (06:57)
5. Bridges In The Sky (11:01)
6. Outcry (11:24)
7. Far From Heaven (03:56)
8. Breaking All Illusions (12:26)
9. Beneath The Surface (05:26)

Total Length: 01:17:04

Note: There is also a second disc with the entire album in instrumental form. Track times are the same, bringing the total length of both discs to 02:34:09. I will comment on these at the end.

On The Backs Of Angels has a slow build to the main riff, and it’s a highly enjoyable song. Everything about it is well placed, I enjoy the chorus and the instrumental sections aren’t entirely overbearing. Just a great starting song, and a great song to show off that the band hasn’t lost it touch when it lost Mike Portnoy. Build Me Up, Break Me Down really didn’t gel with me at first. It took a few listens to get into it, and while I’m still not fond of certain vocals in the chorus, I do enjoy the overall dark feeling in the song.

Lost Not Forgotten is a fantastic track. I really like the piano intro, and the chorus is incredible. I just love this song from start to finish. This Is The Life is a song I legitimately don’t understand. It straggles the line between rock and metal, ballad and rock track. The song baffles me and I just can’t get into it. It’s not bad, just confusing and a tad too long. LaBrie’s vocals are also a bit odd at points.

Bridges In The Sky has a very odd intro combining some different things unexpectedly, and the main song is pretty great. I love the main riff and the chorus, and the lyrics are vague and fit the mood well. Outcry is a song that took me a while to understand. It’s a big song with some interesting lyrics, and the instrumental section, while sort of jarring as always, still keeps the same mood as the rest of the song. Good song overall, but the ending feels unnecessary.

Far From Heaven is pretty good, but I have a very big, easily solvable issue with it. The string patches Jordan uses on this song are unbelievably cheesy. I wish he had fixed them up a bit, or just brought in a small string section. It really does take me out of this beautiful little song. Breaking All Illusions is the big highlight of the album. There is a lot of creative effort here, from really cool instrumental stuff, to the return of John Myung lyrics, just pretty much a brilliant song all around. Doesn’t even feel like twelve-and-a-half minutes going by.

Beneath The Surface was kind of an unexpected track, both in terms of album closers and because John Petrucci brought this song in completed after the band had finished the main album. A much better ballad than Far From Heaven, and while Jordan has another synth that feels out of place, it still fits the mood here and the cheesiness of the track and doesn’t bother me as much. As far as the instrumental tracks go, they are fun to listen to and I actually enjoyed BMU,BMD and This Is The Life a bit more honestly. These songs work well in this format because they are written like that, very rarely is a Dream Theater song written with vocals/lyrics in mind already. I do enjoy this album a lot, but as I’ve mentioned a few songs feel a bit flat, or could be better. It’s still a top notch album though, and I look forward to the next one when Mike Mangini gets to help in the writing process.

Final Rating: 8.5/10

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