The Americans would have it that they lost their innocence on September 11th 2001, when the WTC terrorist attack took place. All non-Americans seem to know better, and I personally think the world lost whatever innocence it had left. I don't think the world will really be the same again, but then again my perception of the world had changed drastically due to personal reasons so one thing is for sure as far as I am concerned: 2001 changed my world. Enough about my personal crap, though. Why on earth did I start about it in the first place? You see, there is a reason...

As fate would have it, September 11th was the release date of Dream Theater's much awaited triple live CD, "Live Scenes from New York". As fate would have it, too, the album cover art featured their burning apple image with the New York skyline behind it. Yes, you guessed it, the New York skyline with the former twin towers. Surrounded by flames. So the original artwork was banned, the album retracted, and the version with new artwork should be released around now. I went to Amazon and found myself able to get the original version of the artwork, of which I am now the morbidly proud owner. It doesn't really matter that much, but the fact at least occasionally manages to get a grin on the face of people on parties and stuff.

On to the review...

Granted, three CDs is a bit over the top, a definite overkill factor. New York saw about three hours of music performed on August 30th 2000, from which was made the DVD reviewed elsewhere. However, all music was recorded and put on this CD. The "Once in a Livetime" double CD that was released after "Falling Into Infinity" was to many people not the live album it could have been, and the new one makes up for it. I personally thought the other live album was cool, too, despite there being rather too many tracks from "Falling Into Infinity", definitely my least favourite DT album.

"Live Scenes from New York" features a full performance of the epic "Metropolis Part 2: Scenes from a Memory" album, taking up about a disc and a half. The second disc is filled up with "Metropolis Pt. 1", "The Mirror", "Just Let Me Breathe", "Acid Rain" (without the second half, unfortunately), "Caught in a New Millennium" (with the two tracks intertwined), "Another Day" and the positively amazing Jordan Rudess Keyboard solo. The third disc features the full "A Mind Beside Itself" set, "Learning to Live" and the totally ace "A Change of Seasons". On top of that, the third disc also contains some multimedia ("Another Day" and the keyboard solo), though with rather inferior sound.

The general impression is, um, very impressive. Basically, Dream Theater have committed to disc live versions of their finest tracks. Production is excellent, track choice is great. I would have loved the full "Acid Rain" and I am still waiting for them to do "Scarred" in full (obviously, I think the coolest bit is exactly the part they left off on their previous live effort...).

Obviously I can't wait for the release of their new double CD studio album in early 2002, but this magnificent effort might just keep me satisfied (musically, anyway) until then.

Click here to check out or buy this CD



Written October 2001


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