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BEST LIVE DVD EVAR. - 98%

f4c30fd34th, October 9th, 2004

Holy shit. This DVD is close to perfection. The selection of songs is perfect- it has the best songs from ToT (seeing as how that's what album the tour was for), and excludes the not so good ones; and the other songs are very well chosen, spanning all of DT's discography. It started with As I Am and This Dying SOul, and then Beyond This Life. The Zappa tribute jam in Beyond This Life features some godly soloage from JP, and an awesome duel between MP and JR; after BYL is Hollow Years, a wonderful FII ballad. The Test That Stumped Them All is played at a shockingly faster pace than the album version (which as already pretty fast). The Instrumedley WILL make you crap your pants. 14 minutes of various sections of DT's various instrumentals, including parts of 2 LTE songs (Paradigm Shift and Universal Mind) bound seamlessly together by The Dance Of Eternity. Some of the transitions bwteen songs are so perfect that it seems like they were meant to be that way. The intro to Trial Of Tears is extended into an amazing ambient section, and the rest of the song is of course awesome, particularly JP's solo. New Millenium is there with JM playing his Chapman Stick- which of course is quite Myung-core. JR has a nice solo section to himself, which starts with some fast (and awesome) wankery, and then a well written piano composition. Next up is Only A Matter Of Time- a classic WDADU song, which sounds awesome with James on vocals. Next up is Goodnight Kiss- holy crap, the feeling of the last solo is incredible live. Solitary Shell provides a brief rest with it's lightheartedness, but that is quickly replaced by more technical perfection with Stream Of Consciousness. Following that is Disappear, and the classic Pull Me Under. For the encore is In The Name Of God, which is way more powerful than the album version, very awe-inspiring.
The video quality is amazing, and looks close to high definition (well, at least on my HD TV). The camera angles are very well done, and provide an atmosphere of a film.There are some very impressive angles, one of my favorite is when the camera shows a view from the side of JM, looking across to JP, while the focus of the camera switches from JM to JP and back to JM. The sound is delivered in some very good Dolby Digital.
The crowd in this show is amazing. Apparently, in Japanese culture, a concetr is a very formal event, such as going to an symphony or opera. Many of the audience members are wearing suits. They are a great audience- they stand sitll when they need to, move around when they should, clap at the right times, and most importantly, stay quiet except at the end of a song, or the end of an awesome solo.
The second DVD contains lots of extra features such as documentaries, a drum solo and a multiangle version of instrumedley- good stuff.

HEIL DREAM THEATER!