REVIEW: Dream Theater @ Roseland Theater (Portland, OR – 6/21/10)
FYI… PHOTOS of the SHOW at the BOTTOM
Progressive metal powerhouse Dream Theater is quite possibly one of the most technically superb group of musicians ever assembled. They’ve also weathered over 20 years in the dog-eat-dog music industry and remained a challenging force in the progressive rock/metal landscape. One might say that they’ve risen to icon status amongst their peers. When I think about drummer Mike Portnoy, guitarist John Petrucci, and bassist John Myung – I can’t really think of many other musicians in any genre that baffle me with their prowess so profoundly.
Singer James LaBrie and keyboardist Jordan Rudess round out the quintet. They are both very talented in their own right, and while I won’t dwell on it, LaBrie and Rudess sometimes make Dream Theater’s sound a throwback to the 80s… which I suppose is an unfortunate consequence of shrieking singers and ax-blade keytars (come on, guys, this is 2010!). Thankfully, the rhythm from Myung & Portnoy and the shred from Petrucci prevailed for most of the over two hour set. Sorry, but in the everlong, ever-subjective DT-fan keyboardist debate I rank Kevin Moore > Derek Sherinian > Jordan Rudess. Just laying it out there now… sorry if it’s offensive to some. Again, I don’t want to dwell… so back to the positive – all five guys in Dream Theater now run circles around the notes, making them fit in a pretty incredible sonic package.
This show was one of the handful of one-off in between dates as Dream Theater tour the U.S. with metal legends Iron Maiden. If you hit one of the Maiden shows, make sure you show up early, as Dream Theater doesn’t have much input on when they go on, and sometimes it has been before the advertised time.
Luckily, this Portland show was Dream Theater’s to shine. I showed up a little late, and unfortunately missed the opener. Dream Theater started right around 8:45pm and ripped into A Nightmare To Remember from their latest record, Black Clouds and Silver Linings. The 16-minute song (on the record) showcases all five guys’ talents and set the stage for what was to come…
Some of my favorite parts of the set were their earlier tunes… the “puppies on acid” intro to the “The Mirror / Lie” seamless prog-metal fest and the switch-up “Pull Me Under” that converts into “Metropolis Part 1” during the middle of the solos. Wow! The newer tunes, which I consider anything from Scenes from a Memory and on (i.e.- since Jordan joined), were also full of amazing musicianship… led by the “balls and chunk” in “Home” and the instrumental opening to “Count of Tuscany.” Another new era song, “As I Am,” ranks for me due to John Myung’s bass harmonics’ opening and some of my favorite Dream Theater word play (justify / just defy)…
Setlist: 2 hours 15 minutes
- A Nightmare To Remember
- Constant Motion
- Hollow Years
- The Mirror / Lie
- A Rite Of Passage
- Panic Attack
- As I Am
- Pull Me Under / Metropolis Pt. 1
- Encore: The Count Of Tuscany
Brilliant showmanship, technical skill with an air of ease, stellar solos, and only a touch of keytar… Dream Theater is yet again showing up the competition. They are truly the kings of the progressive scene.
(and one from MikePortnoyDT’s twitter…)
many more photos below
The Appropriate Linkage:
Check them out on tour with Iron Maiden now…
DREAM THEATER PHOTOS
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