A Dramatic Turn Of Events

Studio Album by released in 2011
A Dramatic Turn Of Events's tracklist:
On The Backs Of Angels
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Build Me Up, Break Me Down
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Lost Not Forgotten
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This Is The Life
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Bridges In The Sky
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Far From Heaven
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Breaking All Illusions
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Beneath The Surface
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A Dramatic Turn Of Events review

Let it always be Mike!

There are no irreplaceable musicians, and Mike Portnoy, as of now Dream Theater’s former drummer, knows it better than anybody. A short-lived affair with Avenged Sevenfold, that never led to anything serious, cost Mike too much. Not welcomed elsewhere, he lost his post here. Meanwhile, Dream Theater pretended that nothing had happened, and even took their time to turn a drummer-searching routine into a fascinating quest documented on-line. They did not think about looking for another Portnoy, but they did find another Mike, Mangini by surname. He was doing fine at concerts after joining the world’s best progressive metal formation, although not everyone was happy to meet him on the stage. Like it or not, Portnoy was much more than just a drummer for Dream Theater; he was a leader without whom many could not then and would not now see the whole band. Mangini will have to turn inside out and do more than he possibly can to become a true man of Dream Theater, a formation not used changing musicians. However, what troubled the audience even more than the adaptation of the fresher was the musical transformation of the band that was forced to part with an essential creative unit. It was clear that the answers would surface with the new album. It came in the autumn 2011, under the expectedly long title A Dramatic Turn Of Events.

Deliberate and smooth A Dramatic Turn Of Events

An unhurried start presented by On The Backs Of Angels encourages with the same top music preparedness of the musicians and philosophical and instructive tone. LaBrie restrains himself from screaming and prefers to keep to his middle range, which gives his vocals extra confidence. The complete evenness, smoothness and steadiness is broken only once, by the track Build Me Up, Break Me Down, featuring too much distorted vocals and alternative beats. As many as three songs off A Dramatic Turn Of Events can be classified as ballads. Each is good in its own way. This Is The Life is crafted in the progressive manner and has a trademark Dream Theater chorus. Far From Heaven is distant from metal in its direct meaning as the whole sound is based on the vocals, keys and strings, but this only makes the anticipation stronger before you finally enter the album’s only true epic song and main highlight, Breaking All Illusions. This is an amazing song lasting over twelve minutes, but no time is wasted on warming up. Instead, right from the start comes a very powerful motif. And at the very end of the album we have the third ballad, Beneath The Surface, with such a bright mood that it easily may be the most optimistic final track in Dream Theater’s entire discography.

In no respect best, in each respect good

Be epic, tough and complicated is not longer a guideline for Dream Theater now that Mike Portnoy is out of business. A Dramatic Turn Of Events has no dark or heaviness of Train Of Thought (2003), nor does it have the speed or drive of Systematic Chaos (2007), nor is there any global conceptuality like in Scenes From A Memory (1999). The band put aside twenty-minute giants. For the first time in many years, Dream Theater do not look like a band who, at any cost, strive to record the most difficult, massive and sophisticated album. At the same time songs like Lost Not Forgotten, Bridges In The Sky, and Outcry are priceless gifts to all those who love progressive metal in general and Dream Theater in particular. Each of these features the band’s easily recognizable style as Petrucci’s polished guitar solos and Rudess unbelievable keyboard focuses twine along the rhythmic lines of bass slave Myung and drum wiz Mangini. The latter, considered one of the fastest drummers seen and heard on today metal scene, so far keeps a hold of himself and rather follows the foot prints left by his glorious predecessor than offers something of his own magic. Although A Dramatic Turn Of Events is almost eighty minutes long, only emergencies may prevent you from listening it from start to end at a time. If this seems surprising to you, you must have never listened to Dream Theater.

Alex Bartholomew (15.09.2011)
Rate review3.93
Total votes - 408