I remember the first time I ever heard Dream Theater. It was back in 1989 and they had just released their debut album When Dream And Day Unite and it was in the middle of melodic hard rock’s heyday and it was catchy choruses, ballads, big hairdos and glammy looks and I loved that era, still do, but Dream Theater was something completely different – and they floored me right on the spot. I bought the album right after listening to it at a friend’s house and since then I have played it to death. I still love that album. But after that release we didn’t hear anything at all from Dream Theater until one day back in 1992, their new album Images And Words was on the shelves and I didn’t even know that the band was still around. Singer Charlie Dominci had been replaced by James LaBrie and the album was a masterpiece. Right there and then I decided that Dream Theater was my new favourite band and that they should always stay that way.
Well, it didn’t exactly happen like that because after the brilliant follow up Awake (1994) my interest in the band vanished a bit because of the disappointing Falling Into Infinity (1997). Only sporadically have Dream Theater rocked my world since then, but it must be said that they never ever made a bad album. Metropolis Pt 2: Scenes From A Memory (1999) was a killer but it shouldn’t take them eight years to release something brilliant and magnificent again and we were writing 2007 when Dream Theater totally knocked me on all fours with the brilliant Systematic Chaos and its follow up, 2009’s Black Clouds And Silver Linings.