Dream Theater...

A few more tracks for you to research.

I am not going to write much about any of them, as I am trying not to list too many from the same artist all at once.

I will give the info as to what album they were on though, so you can double check your metadata and/or ID3 tags.

A score and a URL will also be listed. Qualities will vary from track to track.

(Information is in the following format: TRACK, ALBUM, URL, SCORE)

All tracks by DT:

Give 'em a slap:

Hollow Years (Acoustic) -- Falling Into Infinity  -- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HUAJnBaXtwM -- 8.5☆/10★

Hell's Kitchen -- Falling Into Infinity -- (I lied partially about not adding comments, this one features some spectacular slow paced drumming) -- http://video.libero.it/app/play?id=cd82712b4341a100ddb26daa1581a52b -- 8.5

Learning To Live -- Images And Words -- (Listen out for the F# by James Labrie and for the ending which is one of the best endings of the genre.. ever) -- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wWwnTMOQ9HA -- 9.0

Answer Lies Within, The -- Octavarium -- (Listen out for the phenomenal vocals and "wonnaful" lyrics) -- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sfLd6dUS-8I -- (A very rare!) 10

I Walk Beside You -- Octavarium -- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F5bdxfPK46E -- 9

Panic Attack -- Octavarium -- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t7b_DaILYiQ -- 8.5

Fatal Tragedy -- Scenes From A Memory -- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Vq6NevcLOQ --

Home -- Scenes From A Memory -- http://video.libero.it/app/play?id=729ba91b25ffe227997ff682e2ef5fc8 -- 

Glass Prison, The -- Six Degrees Of Inner Turbulence -- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8h81PggfE8I (Live in Japan) -- 9

Ten Albums, Ten Minutes -- A chronological round up of DT's work, at least the first ten albums worth, who knows what else is hidden away?! -- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PdOH7MvlKn4 -- 8.0☆/10★

Dream Theater -- Root Of All Evil

An excellent offering again from DT.

The track in question is the first track on Octavarium, DT's eighth full-length album.

There were two versions to this song, both of which we're very common at one point, but these days it tends to lean more towards the cleaner version.

There are also many covers and affectionate playalongs of the song. Do your own research for those, they aren't hard to come by.

Things to listen out for: Excellent drumming, those very famous riffs which are so often covered.

Give it a slam:



(As always quality was as high as I could source within a given amount of search time)

Dream Theater -- Hono(u)r Thy Father

A dark, angry and powerful piece this one.

The track is on the fantastic "Train Of Thought" album, for those collectors out there.

This offering from the legendary progressive metal band was written entirely by Mike Portnoy (the lyrics at any rate)

Directed towards and indeed about Mike Portnoy's stepfather "I'm not very good at writing love songs, so I thought I would write a HATE song!".

Things to listen out for: Hefty double bassing on the kick drums, excellent lyrics and visciously brilliant guitar playing.

Give it a dunt:



(Apologies for the poor overall quality, a good quality track is damn near impossible to find either legally and/or on a reliable hosting site, this one is on the excellent and now sadly dead (no more uploads) video.google.com)


Subra -- Enchanter Of The Dunes

A hefty dose of electronic, with a few REAL (probably 8-bit) chiptunes to be had in this track. Vintage hardware has it's uses. 8-)

Not to everybody's taste, but it's truly excellent for tuning a sound system whilst dialling in all the equaliser settings.

I believe you can obtain the album legally for free from Ekoplazm.com Don't quote me on that though, i'm not so sure it's legal, hence the youtube link instead of a cool for cats flac.

Whack with a sledgehammer, then repeat:



(Video seems to be of a good quality, I expect that the file came from Ektoplazm, hence it's good tonal quality and high dynamic gain.)

Stratovarius (Again!) -- Stratosphere

This is the last Stratovarius post for a wee while, I couldn't have a 'Stratov section without Stratosphere!

Listen to find out why.

Tan this things hide:



(Not much to say about this one, i'll let you form your own opinions. Video is a little bland as it's just the 'Stratov logo, but the sound quality isn't toooo shabby.)

Stratovarius -- Eagleheart

Eagleheart, a compelling track to listen to, telling a story of a young man.

Smash this up:



(Just listen, the lyrics are plenty clear enough to hear on a decent flac of the album, you may struggle with them in the video though, I didn't however. I think the video is a little bit camp for my taste.)

Stratovarius -- SOS

Another excellent riff from Stratovarius here, needs little explanation to a power metal fan.

This is on the Destiny album, set free in September '98.

(There is more electronica and such on the way, I just need to write these down, for the sake of my memory!)

Go baby go: 



(The video sound and visual quality isn't fabulous, but it's got some excellent photography and good overall style to it, well mixed I suppose the correct term is.)

Stratovarius -- Hunting High And Low

Another fine offering from Stratovarius.

Go kick it hard:



(The video is as always the best quality I could quickly source, apologies if it's not upto scratch, my equipment has a habit of making things sound better than they actually are. (Can't say I mind that!))

Stratovarius -- Black Diamond

Power metal at it's finest, this was released in 97, which isn't the typical era for power metal.

That happens to be the 80's, THE era for now-antiquated power metal. Speedy yet clear, not trashy.

There is phenomenal skill to be had in 80's power metal, though after a period of time, it does tend to sound samey, thus I will add only a few more Stratovarius tracks to the list today. Only the finest ones.

Give it a smack in the teeth:





(Fantastic riff in the beginning, which isn't phased out and repeats softly for most of the track, with the occasional volume spike, but you wouldn't notice it unless you were told so.. whoops.)

Robert Plant -- 29 Palms

Perhaps not Plant's best known track, but a seriously easy going track none the less. Released back in '93 by Led Zeppelin's front man.

Robert "Percy" Plant was born in West Bromwich going a while back.. 1948.

During the 60's Plant did many jobs alongside his music career, one of which was laying tarmac on ol' Englands roads.

Tragically in July 1977 his oldest son "Karac" died at the age of five from a fatal stomach infection, worse still, Plant was touring with Led Zep in the 'states. This left "Percy" in great shock and he recluded for a fair time, mourning the loss of his eldest son.

Given time, young Karac's passing inspired Plant to write "All My Love" in tribute, which incidentally featured on Led Zep's last studio LP, "In Through the Out Door" which was let loose during '79.

Do some research and find it yourself. 8-)

For now, 29 Palms:



(I used to play this track a lot, it's lost a little of it's appeal, but it still worms it's way into the playlist now and then. Video: MBR, GC, visual quality not so hot. I actually found the sound quality to be superior when not in HQ mode, but I am running different audio gear to the average listener.)


Dire Straits -- Money For Nothing

"Money for nothing and chicks for free, we've got to move these refrigerators, we've got to move these colour tv's..."

It's a very high energy video containing flashing colours in a semi-neon hand-drawn overlay style.

The song has been noted as controversial on the grounds of containing supposedly sexist, racist and homophobic lyrics. You can blame Knopfler and Sting for this as they both share the credit for writing the track.

On a side note: Rolling Stone listed it *94 on the "greatest guitar song of all time" list.

Another plus for the video is that it contains then-groundbreaking computer animation where the polygon count enters the hundreds, dated by todays standards, but it's plenty clear enough to be visually appealing.

The animation was mastered and created by Ian Pearson and Gavin Blair utilizing a Bosch FGS-4000 CGI system.

Give it a crash:



(Things to watch for in the video: An enourmous drumkit, Knopfler doing a little leap off stage, perfectly timed with the beat and two other music videos.)

Dire Straits -- Brothers In Arms

A slow and calm rendition from the Dire Straits, and oldie, but a goldie.

Released before my time back in '85.

Opening with the line "These mist covered mountains..."

Which generally sets the pace for the wonderful solitude the track can bring, even at the most hectic of times.

Interestingly enough, Mark Knopfler (Vocals and lead guitar) was voted to be *27 on Rolling Stone's top 100 guitarists and is well known for his "fingerstyle" playing.

Give it a belt:



(The video is of a medium quality and was originally presented in the charcoal drawing style.)

Mark Knopfler -- What It Is

Performed (lead guitar and vocals) by Dire Straits frontman Mark Knopfler, OBE.

Born: London, 1949.

Strangely for a slow track, it doesn't have a depressing theme to it which is good for a calm wind down without feeling crummy afterwards.

Give it a whack:



(I personally think the video to the song is pants, but the song itself is a marvel)

Free -- Wishing Well

A beaut of a track this one, endlessly playable.

Also from the same band: All Right Now...

(Baby it's all right now... Going round your head yet? hahaha)

Give this beasty a play:



(Don't forget to click the HQ option on the flash vid-e-ho player.)

Shania Twain -- That Don't Impress Me Much

Another old track, perhaps 'Twains only playable track too.

Irritatingly catchy and it was also extremely popular back in the day.

Give it a smash:



(As always, it's the best quality source video I could find. With regards to dynamic gain, overall clarity, depth, lack of clipping and visual appearance.)

Shamen -- Ebeneezer Goode

Belter of a club classic this track, turn up the volume, boost the bass and get your epic high energy vibe on.

By Scottish group The Shamen, heavily remixed by Beatmasters and then released, it became quite a hit, but a very controversial one at that.

A song promoting the use (but warning against the ABuse) of ecstasy, genius.

Also containing references to dope smoking:

Vera-lynne -- skin (rollin' papers you idiots!)

"Got any salmon... salmon and trout -- snout ('baccy)

A timeless track that still stands up to modern abuse from all-powerful sound systems and wasted teens.

Give it a bash:



(The video is the best quality one that I could find)


Igor Kluin -- Like We Were Before

Slow and soft, with acoustical roundness.

Who'd have thought? A live singer who doesn't sound like a five year old girl singing into a hairbrush.

Give it a play, then play the next post in this blog, repeat:


(Sound could be better, but's it's a live recording afterall and I don't believe the camera's audio feed is tied into the post-mix/preamp.)


Astrix -- Crystal Sequence

An exciting and fast-paced electronic soup this, sure to get feet tapping with the heavy underbeat, particularly if subwoofers are set a little on the dangerous side of safety.

A medium song, good for bulking up an archive and like most multi-synchronous music, excellent for exercising lazy driver units. Worth keeping, with some exciting speed, but is fairly middle-ground with electronic music, it won't blow your mind, but it'll get your feet and fingers going.



Blondie -- Denis

Last old song for a couple of posts, I promise.

It's an epic one too...

Wonderfully sung, light-hearted and with enough pace to get everybody singing along and possibly jumping if played at the right volume.

Give it a clonk:



Blondie -- Maria

Most excellent song this one.

If you've never heard it there's a fair chance that you have bits of flesh in your head where your ear canal should be.

I know every word, now you can to so get learning!

Give it a bash, then one for your forehead:



Sheryl Crow -- If It Makes You Happy

Yes, I know it's another old song, but there is far too much semi-manufactured stuff at the moment, cutting through it is like trying to slice granite with a pallette knife MADE of butter.

Whilst there is good stuff, it's just not as easy to catalog, easy to go with files I have onboard that I can refer to while doing this.

Sheryl's singing in this track lends itself to very nearly being a breakup song, a nicely loud, partly-angry song that's really easy to sing along to whether your good or bad at it.

"You can't spell gold without OLD."

Give it a play:


(Apologies for the crappy dynamic gain in the video and lack of general "oomph" but I wanted the original video to illustrate that you can be a complete mong and still sell cds by the bakers dozen)


Gabrielle -- Out Of Reach

Lovely track this one, maybe not entirely warming, but it's an emotional piece all the same and like much of Gabrielle's moo-sick it's easy to listen to.

Some Interesting facts about Gabrielle:

A: She (Louisa Gabrielle Bobb) is from Hackney, London.

B: Wears eyegear (including a cool-looking eyepatch) to cover a ptosis on one of her eyes (essentially a droopy eyelid). Most celebs cover their eyes to hide the drug use and to look cool (even though they don't look cool at all. Not naming any names.. BONO!)

Give it a bash:



Gabrielle -- Sunshine

A pleasant track this one, very light-hearted and seriously easy listening.


(Sorry about the low gain on the video's soundtrack, NOT my fault however)


Gabrielle -- Every Little Teardrop

Interesting track this one, a little condescending perhaps. Rather melancholy, but with a medium pace to balance it all out.

Fairly smooth to listen to either actively or just as background music...




Well, here goes nothing, i'm starting a purely music blog. With either tags to search for, (or other queries), links to file or links to videos.

Obviously i'll fish around to get the best clarity sources, but I can't change original files without hacking everything I connect to -- I just plain can't be arsed to rewrite everything on the web properly. 8-)