My first live experience of Dream Theater was in Las Vegas in 2006, that gig I went in 'blind' not a fan and not that bothered about going to be honest…. that soon changed three hours after entering 'The House Of Blues'. It must have been the best twenty-five bucks I've ever spent, three hours watching masters of their art displaying their work for all to see.
Tonight is no exception; I've travelled by car, tram & train to get here, once again a sold out venue. With the release of the new album 'Black Clouds & Silver Linings' imminent and only four shows so far planned for the U.K this gig sold out weeks ago and within the first thirty seconds you can see why. 'In The Presence Of Enemies' sets the mood for the rest of the set. James LaBrie often criticised for his hot and cold performances is on fire tonight and seems to be having a blast. Dream Theater are the perfect blend of Rush style overtures combined with Metallica heavy riffs, to many of their fans a perfect blend. Tonight we get an airing of 'A Rite of Passage' from the forthcoming album, with John Petrucci riffing like a man possessed and Mike Portnoy giving Neil Peart a run for his money, this is all about the stripped down musicianship. With no backdrops or projection screens what we witness is raw Dream Theater. They must be doing something right judging by the female attendance tonight, for a moment I thought I was at a Motley Crue gig. With a limited time on stage they dispense with any virtuoso solo spots, however, with so many epics to choose from Jordan Rudess and John Myung get plenty of airtime.
I always thought Dream Theater were on the cusp of something big and since signing to Roadrunner things have moved on at an incredible pace. Tonight Dream Theater delivered with interest… it cost me a little more than twenty-five bucks though!
In The Presence Of Enemies
Beyond This Life
A Rite Of Passage
Caught In A Web
As I Am
Metropolis Pt. 1 / Learning to Live / A Change of Seasons