Register Forgot login?

© 2002-2014
Encyclopaedia Metallum

Best viewed
without Internet Explorer,
in 1280 x 960 resolution
or higher.

They just get better every time. - 100%

Kyshioku, October 11th, 2008

If you haven't seen Dream Theater live, this is as close as you will get to the real concert experience.

I gave Dream Theater's last DVD, Score, a perfect 100, too, because it was one of the most remarkable concert performances I have ever seen. Despite being as flawless and fluid on stage as they've ever been, Dream Theater somehow manage to make every new release better and more exciting than before. They just get better every time.

Of course, that applies to Chaos In Motion, their fourth DVD. Unlike their previous three releases, Chaos In Motion is not a recording of a single concert performance purposely recorded for DVD. This is a collection of performances over a year (and a day) of the entire Chaos 07-08 tour, and the setlist is amazing, with newer, instant classics like Forsaken and Constant Motion, as well as the massive, epic In The Presence of Enemies, all the way back to the Images and Words days with songs such as Surrounded and Take the Time. The band plays the songs almost flawlessly, with a bunch of added solo work that Dream Theater is famous for (extended solos all throughout Surrounded, for example).

There is a lot of backstage footage on the main DVD, too. Every now and then, between songs, you will get to see a few minutes of the band behind the scenes preparing for a show, relaxing after the performance, signing things for fans, or just hanging out. There's always something exciting about watching a band you love having fun like normal people; it's very humanizing to watch them laugh at dumb jokes and play around before hitting the stage. It's no different for Dream Theater - Portnoy is a pretty big goof on film, and there's a lot of stuff that will make you laugh. It's very entertaining and also acts as an intermission between songs so you don't get bored.

Dream Theater certainly loves their fans. I picked this up off the shelf immediately, and it was only $20, but you get a shitload of stuff in this release. You're getting three hours of performances on the main disc alone. Obviously that's not enough, so you're also getting a second DVD with almost as much bonus footage. Promo videos (music videos and in-studio videos), a 90-minute documentary that gives you great insight behind the scenes, and even the special effects videos they use on the giant screens for their performances for certain songs. And then there's MORE backstage footage, and even a photo gallery. They've always been good about giving a lot to the fans, so I'm not complaining at all. Everything they've put into this is solid, entertaining stuff. Even if you don't like long DVDs, you'll find a way to watch this whole thing, guaranteed.

As for the performances themselves, you can't expect perfection every time - that's what comes with a live performance. Every now and then you might hear a slight technical problem, so something may sound a little quiet, but you won't notice it if you aren't looking for it. The visual quality isn't always up to par with their past releases, but that's because most of these were recorded with normal cameras. I like it, though, because it gives you a grittier vision of the bands at the performance, as opposed to the polished lighting and fixed camera movement of their extraordinary DVD concerts. The sound quality is perfect, in my opinion. I don't have any problems with it. James LaBrie seems to strain on some of the songs (Surrounded definitely seems to push him), but because these were normal concerts, it's not a big deal. He still does an amazing job and he gives it his all. The other members have their moments, too, but you'll obviously notice the frontman before the others.

There's no question that any Dream Theater fan should purchase this. This is definitely something the diehards like myself will drool over (and probably already have). I can't imagine what more anybody could want from this release. It's cheap, it's incredible, and it gives you more bonus material than you could imagine. Pick this up immediately and you won't regret it. Diehard or not, you're going to find a lot of stuff to enjoy with Chaos In Motion. Dream Theater made sure of it.