Progressive Metal legends Dream Theater have shared a new live performance video, “Fatal Tragedy”, from their upcoming live album Distant Memories – Live In London. Pre-orders are live at the link below. .The video is taken from the second set of the show where James LaBrie, John Petrucci, Jordan Rudess, John Myung and Mike Mangini celebrate the band’s seminal concept album Metropolis Part 2 – Scenes From A Memory. Watch “Fatal Tragedy” now!
Technical Death Metal feels like such an unnecessary term. The cornerstone of Death Metal, outside of the cartoonish violence depicted in lyrical content, is a virtuosic musical ability. How exactly do you make something already technically proficient even more extreme in its dexterity? Fortunately, bands like Aenimus are here to provide the answer. Continue reading
Bands with twenty-five-plus years under their belts often have to wrestle with the temptation to become a nostalgia act or to continue pushing the musical envelope which, in turn, carries its own set of risks. For Dream Theater, the past few years have been particularly difficult for the band: with drummer Mike Portnoy leaving in 2010 and filling the role with Mike Mangini, the band has been trying to reconfigure its soul. Continue reading
Prog metal legends Dream Theater have planned the writing for their new album, due out in 2019. According to singer James LaBrie, the band will get together this June and begin writing songs for their next full-length album. The album will be the follow-up to their last album 2016’s The Astonishing (Roadruner). Last year the band signed a new deal with InsideOut Music, a sub-label of Sony Music. LaBrie was a guest on the Lead Singer Syndrome podcast, which you can read quotes from and hear below. Continue reading
2017 will be seen as a monumental year for both Arjen Anthony Lucassen and for Ayreon; the band and its fanatical fan base. Significantly it will mark the first live performances by Ayreon (and a very rare live appearance by the infamously shy and reclusive Lucassen), but also sees a brand new album that revisits the conceptual narrative of one of the band’s most beloved albums, 01011001 (InsideOut). Showing a return to the sci-fi storyline of said album, The Source (Mascot) in fact acts as a prequel piece, and is the most refined and strongest album they have released for some time. Continue reading
Arjen Lucassen will be releasing his new Ayreon album, The Source, on April 27th via Mascot Label Group, and as promised, this record features a ton of guest appearances from some of the biggest names in heavy metal. Continue reading
Arjen Lucassen recently announced that the new Ayreon album, The Source, will be hitting stores on April 27th via Mascot Label Group. Continue reading
If there is one thing that cannot be denied about Arjen Anthony Lucassen, it’s that he has a very bold vision when it comes to his music and it’s presentation. In Ayreon in particular, he shows intricacy and complexity like very few others when it comes to layering, narrative and bombast. Perhaps less mind-boggling than much of his career, The Human Equation (InsideOut) certainly made up with its operatic feel and storyline. So much so it finally lent itself to a live offering (albeit still without the near reclusive Lucassen), of which The Theater Equation (InsideOut) showcases.
Rather than just a usual offering of a band performing live, The Theater Equation offers the album in a way it was meant to be, as a full performance. Thus much of the original cast reprise their roles, including James Labrie as main protagonist Me; albeit with some exceptions such as Anneke Van Giersbergen replacing Mikael Akerfeldt. Thankfully such replacements are hardly downgrades and perfectly encapsulate the feel of their adoptive characters and roles with aplomb. Alongside the strength of its vocal cast, musically this strikes an impressive balance between studio album quality and consistency with the feel and energy of the live arena. Together these elements give such an immersive and emotional performance through a detailed story that delves into many elements of the human psyche and emotional range, as well as the original album does through its narrative.
With the original album’s sheer length it wasn’t for the faint hearted per se, and as follows the live version will similarly mostly suit those who are already fans of Ayreon, or at least in tune with the world of prog. With the changes in vocal personnel however and the strength of the performance and lore, The Theater Equation makes this more than just a collectible for the diehards, but a piece that many will find worth in, in what is still one of Lucassen’s more accessible works in such a rich and deep catalogue.
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It seemed that fans of Dream Theater were torn between the performance of their two and a half hour opus and new album, The Astonishing (Roadrunner). Fans always want to hear classic songs along side the new ones, but you can’t always get what you want. Call it a concept album or rock opera, whichever you prefer, it was a damn fine night of music.
Aided by an impressive video wall to bring the story of “The Great Northern Empire of the Americas” to life, you felt like as if you were watching a movie with a live soundtrack. Guitarist and story mastermind John Petrucci along with his ever growing beard, played the heaviest mix of acoustic an electric guitar throughout the night I’ve ever seen him do. ‘The Answer’ clearly demonstrates that statement. From ‘The Gift of Music’ to the title track, James LaBrie’s vocals just drew you into the world of Nomacs and musical rebellion. With song a like ‘A New Beginning’, it covers the spectrum of darkness and light that the album portraits. As well as some solid bass grooving from John Myung too.
After a fifteen minute intermission, they returned to the stage for the second half of the this massive album. Drummer, Mike Mangini just makes everything look easy, we get a few flourishes for insanity on ‘Moment of Betrayal’ and on ‘Three Days’. The second half of the creative team Jordan Rudess, brought his atmospheric tones is the bridge from song to song. He carries the themes and regal-ness through ‘Brother, Can You Hear Me’ and ‘Begin Again’. Overall, the show was good if you were prepared just to hear this album. Simple in some parts complex in others, “The Astonishing Live” was the right show for a venue like Radio City Music Hall.
WORDS AND PHOTOS BY OMAR CORDY
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