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The best band ever playing with a new technical but not entertaining drummer whose style and sound do not fit in.
on 3 June 2014
I encourage anybody to listen to 'The Dark Eternal Night' here, then on 'Chaos in Motion' - the fastest section of it in particular. Where Mike Portnoy kicks bottom big time, his expression blending in with the rest of the band, verve-deficient Mike Mangini only hits that bottom and only occasionally manages to climb up any higher.
As evidenced by the last two albums, the new drummer's style unfortunately has lured John Petrucci into spell after spell of mindless shredding and purely technical swank. Indeed, not that long ago the best soloist in the business, along John Norum and Steve Morse, today John Petrucci appears to do little more than recycling soulless scraps from his personal practice.
Jordan Rudess is not doing much better, but then again, there have always been a number of redundant, song-diluting, long, passionless solos from him.
The exclusion of 'The Count of Tuscany' - to my knowledge the last decent DT song - acts as the last nail to the coffin here.
On the brighter side, John Myung is awesome and cool, even though his bass sounds too quiet on the recording.
James LaBrie's sings fantastically well despite age setting in.
Those who are tired of the boring robotic drums may enjoy acoustically performed 'The Silent Man'.
A person very close to me, and a fantastic drummer btw, summed the whole Mangini thing up:
Emotion = 0.
Power = 0.