dream theater the gift of music

Single Review: Dream Theater – The Gift Of Music

The greatest tease to be released this year, we all have been given the first taste of Dream Theater’s extravagant upcoming album “The Astonishing.” I’ve been nerding over this over my social media pages because of the sheer amount of information and detail going into this album. With a steady release of characters, maps, track titles, and more, “The Astonishing” is starting to piece together. Although the album will not be released until early next year, Dream Theater has released the first official single for the album, titled “The Gift Of Music.”

“The Gift Of Music” portrays the differing eras and sounds of Dream Theater in a four minute track. With glimpses of their previous self-titled album, I love the lightheartedness of the guitar rhythms and keyboards, provided by John Petrucci and Jordan Rudess respectively. Imagining tracks like “The Looking Glass” and “Behind The Veil,” the phased out sound of the rhythm section grabs the listeners attention. Another layer is added with the forceful drum beats reminiscent of Dream Theater’s earlier material. Songs like “Erotomania” and “Lie” off their album “Awake” jump up in my mind, something that has been lacking in their last couple albums. Finally, the vocal approach by singer James Labrie reminds me of the second part of the album “Six Degrees Of Inner Turbulence,” an album which also utilizes different vocal deliveries depending on the themes of each song. If the quality of “The Astonishing” matches “The Gift Of Music,” the sky is the limit for what could potentially be one of the most sophisticated albums in their discography, better yet the progressive metal genre.

After reading over John Petrucci’s interview with Rolling Stone magazine, I become more aware of the choral presence in the song. Learning that Dream Theater has recruited Beck’s father to conduct choirs and symphonies in this album, I audibly gasped. Recalling the fantastic and original performance of their live album “Score,” which too used the help of conductor Jamshied Sharifi and the “Octavarium Orchstra” to provide symphonic touches to reimaginations of their most popular songs at the time, I could only imagine their usage in this album. I am now most interested in hearing not only their incorporation in this album, but also their inclusion in a live setting. Dream Theater will be performing “The Astonishing” over several dates in Europe using these same orchestral musicians, something I only hope they will recreate in the United States.

So without further wait, enjoy “The Gift Of Music” by Dream Theater. It truly is a gift.


Concert Review: TesseracT / The Contortionist / Erra / Skyharbor

When news hit that TesseracT would be touring across North America in support of their newest album “Polaris,” I did everything in my power to leave my night open for them. My anticipation intensified when I found out that The Contortionist, Erra, and Skyharbor were supporting them. For those who don’t know of these bands, this is a massive lineup, containing some of the brightest, up-and-coming bands in the progressive metal genre. I was lucky enough to have been given an opportunity from Entertainment One Group to write about TesseracT’s latest stop at the House of Blues in San Diego on Monday. With so much enthusiasm going into this concert, I made sure to listen to every band’s discography a week before the show. Although I may have not remembered all of the lyrics or powerful moments of every band’s songs, I did enter through the venue doors with an idea of what to expect.Read More »

the contortionist language

Album Review: The Contortionist – Language

I’m excited to write about this one. I’ve been meaning to share with you all my experiences listening to this absolutely beautiful album after I first heard them live earlier this year. But as most things in my life, time gets the better of me, and months later I’m left asking myself “Why haven’t I gotten around to this yet?” Now that I’ve seen The Contortionist for the second time in a few months, I will not let their latest album “Language” slip through the cracks again. It deserves so much more.Read More »

Top 5: Best Rush Albums

What is there to say about Rush? These Canadians are some of the most eccentric yet talented musicians in progressive rock. With a career lasting over forty years, and having released 20 albums over that span, Rush has completed what some have deemed their last major tour. Their discography has gone through so many changes in sounds and influences, ranking them is a difficult task. But leave it to Crash And Ride Music to share with you their greatest albums.

So here it is: Crash And Ride Music’s Top 5 Best Rush albums:

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tesseract tour

Concert Preview: TesseracT

Their first tour in the United States in years, English prog metal band TesseracT will be playing at the House of Blues in San Diego next Monday.

This will be my first time seeing a concert at the House of Blues in several months, but the first time I’ve ever seen TesseracT live. Having conversed with drummer Jay Postones over the weeks, I look forward to his live performance on the stage. The House of Blues is a staple in the San Diego music scene, having hosted hundreds of bands large and small over the years. There’s always room to see, whether you’re in the pit or on the second floor balcony.

Formed in 2007, TesseracT have released three albums, their latest “Polaris” released earlier this year. After parting with the band for their previous album “Altered State,” singer Daniel Tompkins returns better than ever. They are supported by The Contortionist (who I’ve seen earlier this year), Erra, and Skyharbor, concert-goers will be aware of the long night ahead of them.

Buy tickets

When: Monday, November 23rd, 2015
Doors: 6:00pm

Where: The House of Blues San Diego
1055 5th Avenue
San Diego, CA 92101

Cost: $20