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The Human Equation (Special 2CD & DVD) NTSC, Special Edition

4.4 out of 5 stars 25 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Audio CD (24 May 2004)
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Format: NTSC, Special Edition
  • Label: Inside-Out Records
  • ASIN: B00020QZNO
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 227,862 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Day One: Vigil
  2. Day Two: Isolation
  3. Day Three: Pain
  4. Day Four: Mystery
  5. Day Five: Voices
  6. Day Six: Childhood
  7. Day Seven: Hope - Various Artists
  8. Day Eight: School
  9. Day Nine: Playground
  10. Day Ten: Memories
  11. Day Eleven: Love

Disc: 2

  1. Day Twelve: Trauma
  2. Day Thirteen: Sign
  3. Day Fourteen: Pride
  4. Day Fifteen: Betrayal
  5. Day Sixteen: Loser
  6. Day Seventeen: Accident?
  7. Day Eighteen: Realization
  8. Day Nineteen: Disclosure
  9. Day Twenty: Confrontation
  10. Untitled Hidden Track

Disc: 3

  1. Bonus DVD

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
This is quite simply a magnificent opus.
It is a concept album (with the unlikely story of a man in a coma and all who are close to him) that keeps one enthralled from the very first note to the last. In my opinion there is not a weak or unimaginative track on either CD.
If you veer towards prog metal or are an out and out progster (as I am), this double CD will reward you with its superb musicainship, excellent lyrics and music. Above all else is something that you will find yourself playing in full again and again.
The different styles blend together superbly to make what for me has turned from a 'take a chance' purchase, having not heard any Ayreon before, to one of my all-time favourites.
Go on, dip into your pocket and get yourself a classic.
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Format: Audio CD
Apart from his Star One project "Space Metal", I am not familiar with Arjen Lucassen's work as Ayreon. With Star One he fashioned a huge symphonic progressive metal space opera based around classic sci-fi movies. I believe his other projects under the Ayreon moniker are also based on sci-fi based themes. But for his current album, "The Human Equation" he has decided to tackle more down to earth issues, namely basic human emotions. It's clear that Arjen is a master at producing progressive rock opera based concept albums which have become popular over the last few years. Take last years excellent "Music Machine" by Erik Norlander as a case in point.
Arjen has surrounded himself as he did on "Space Metal" with a cast of thousands. He has used vocalists from various bands and backgrounds to help realise his dream. Notable are the contributions of James LaBrie (Dream Theater), Heather Findlay (Mostly Autumn) and Mikael Akerfeldt (Opeth) which indicates the diversity of talent on show. Arjen himself deftly plays guitar and keyboards throughout, ably assisted by a host of talented supporting musicians. He himself has an excellent heavy rock guitar sound, which really gives the album a huge dynamic epic feel and his use of bubbling analogue synths is a joy to hear.
Arjen has created a masterpiece, simple as that. The music is bold and full sounding, using a multitude of styles, from prog rock, metal, celtic folk and classical all melded together gracefully to produce a huge work over it's 2 CD's. The story of a comatose car crash victim struggling in his dream state with various emotional and personal issues is simply, but deftly told. But there is an ingenious twist in the tail which links the album to past projects.
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Format: Audio CD
My first intro to Ayreon was Space Metal stumbling on his name via Dream Theater. That album was spot the sci fi film reference, this is spot the musical influence , nothing wrong in that but maybe just too many.This more "operatic" than Space Metal or Migrator and the overall sound and production are superb.The usual quality guest vocalists and musicians are present with Labrie as the person in a coma and the whole album takes you through his emotions and those of his friend and wife.
There are Floydian guitar and synth solos (reference to 'on the run'from Dark Side Of The Moon, Jethro Tull's choppy flute style
and i'm sure a little Camel and Wishbone Ash dual guitar.
Ayreon's playing is even better and is a master at atmospherics.
My only complaint with him is that he doesn't seem to recognise the piano as a part of prog rock .Too much Hammond and synth for my liking but that is personal.'Loser' one the last tracks is musically confusing with didgeridoos starting off and going into Irish folk rock ,At first I thought it was Gary moore's Over the Hills And Far Away but it wasn't.This is an album for listening to and not background music.The bonus(?) track is a Led Zep cover they must have had some spare studio time left but could have come up with something better.
This album will not be to everyone's taste as it is a little over blown at times although not so much as Spock's 'Snow'
and without the reprise(track one repeat).
An impressive album but not quite 5 stars
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Format: Audio CD
After i originally listened to "Day 14: Pride" off of a sample CD i couldn't help but find out more about the music. I found out about how Arjen Lucassen creates the music and uses many different talents to play each role in his stories and I was seriously interested.
This album is seriously awesome. The story, unlike his usual mystical sci-fi based insanity, is seriously good. Using the different voices to play each different "emotion" within one man (James LaBrie) in a comma. The music varies so much and is hard to define to a particular style but definately doesn't dissapoint. Superb use of a large range of instruments truly makes the story worth following from start to finish. Some awesome synth solo's and impressive drumming give you something to look forward to in each song aswell.
DVD is pretty interesting and takes you into Arjen's crazy world and how he creates his "Rock Operas". A definate good listen and i would recommend it to anyone.
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Format: Audio CD
I have only `discovered' Ayreon comparatively recently, but find the music and style of Arjen Lucassen both intriguing and enjoyable. This double album is no exception. The variety of musical styles and talents involved is so refreshing. He's a busy chap, isn't he?

In common with much of Lucassen's work, the album tells a story. Apparently abandoning his earlier themes of space, quests beyond time and space, and the end of mankind, in this album we find Lucassen exploring the convoluted relationships of relatively down-to-earth human beings. The twist is that one of them is in a coma!

In some ways the album is similar to his earlier `Into the Electric Castle': he has brought together several talented singing and/or instrumental talents, each of whom plays a different character; the musical style never stands still, with an impressive array of instruments being featured; and a journey of self-discovery takes place amid struggles and obstacles along the way.

Yes, indeed, similar but not the same. The cast of guest artists is different, the basic theme is very different and, arguably, the music more complex. This is possibly where, to some extent, the album falls short of its target. At least one reviewer mentions that there are only three tracks that stand out as being memorable. I agree with this. Having listened to the album a few times, I don't really find myself humming the themes or wake with them running through my head as I often do with other works (including those of Lucassen)...except, perhaps, the rather peculiar `Loser' - idiosyncratic but very catchy. There is something of the rock opera to this album; it even puts me in mind of...dare I say...'Jesus Christ Superstar'!

However, the whole concept is to be enjoyed.
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