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Dream Theater return from critically acclaimed fifth album "Metropolis Part 2: Scenes From A Memory" with a new formula and ideas. With the greatness (but inconsistency) of their last album, how could this new album be bad? Definitely far off-base with that thought.
The album starts out with some impressive instrumentation from the boys and all is looking well, however the riffage soon turns to what could only be described as...nu metal riffs. I can only imagine what they were thinking when they thought using turntable scratching and Korn chugs. I'm sure it seemed quite natural with John Petrucci's TRIPP pants. The album continues with more of the same. The 5 songs presented to us on DISC 1 seem to really hold all the same crummy atmosphere. Not to say they all sound alike, but most of the ideas on this are so downtrodden, as if they were so depressed from being so out of ideas they wrote this. "The Great Debate" however offers something Dream Theater used later in their career, and that's using sound clips in most of a song. Even when the song does kick in with vocals, they are very held back. If I had to pick a favorite track from Disc 1, it would probably be "Misunderstood" even though the song is mostly bland, but the chorus isn't bad.
There are some extremely positive elements to this album, but none of them lie on the first disc. In fact, the only reason this album isn't getting a 10 percent is because of the second disc. The "Song" on the second disc is definitely DREAM THEATER full force. It's amazing that the second disc holds so many moods, landscapes, ideas, and sounds in comparison to the first disc. It's almost like they were written at two different times.
My advice to anyone looking to get into this album is to stay away from the first disc. My overall score is definitely not aimed towards the first cd.