Rating:
6.5
Dream Theater - Train Of Thought
11 September 2003


01. As I Am
02. This Dying Soul
    1 - IV. Reflections of Reality (Revisited)
    2 - V. Release
03. Endless Sacrifice
04. Honor Thy Father
05. Vacant
06. Stream Of Consciousness
07. In The Name Of God


In my opinion, 2003 seems to have brought many albums with awful titles and covers. This release is just one of those. The gray eye at the end of tunnel might have been the ideal subject for Evergrey, but not for Dream Theater. The sticker on the cover quotes "The new progressive metal masterpiece", but it's hard to call it a masterpiece. But let's push play.

Once again, the album starts just when the previous stopped. But after a few seconds, the delicate reminiscences of "Six Degrees Of Inner Turbulence" suddenly break: a gloomy bass intro brings us into this new heavy chapter. Since the first track, it's easy to understand that the band has chosen the heavy way. The whole album sounds like "The Glass Prison".

John Petrucci plays 7-string guitars on almost every track; Mike Portnoy seems to play drum solos instead of keeping the rhythm; Jordan Rudess plays only keyboard solos (yeah, always with the same sound effects) and almost every trail of rhythm piano or atmospheric strings seems now buried in the past.

The opening track, "As I Am", has a catchy riff and it will probably be the only single of this album. The second track is the follow-up to "The Glass Prison": it shares some lyrics and a riff with its predecessor. And there's an obvious vocal reminiscence of Metallica's "Blackened". The third song, "Endless Sacrifice", reminds me of Voices. It is one of the best songs of the album: it features a good alternation of beautiful clean sounds and powerful distortions, dressed with amazing light-speed solos.

"Honor Thy Father" has shocked me because of the nu-metal influences, really absurd. It's the only song I don't like. The fifth track brings us back to the golden age. It's something like "Through My Words" or "Wait For Sleep": only vocals, clean bass, bright warm piano and a beautiful cello, which fits in very well. It's the most emotional song on the album. Unfortunately it lasts less then 3 minutes. The instrumental "Stream Of Consciousness" is a bit disappointing: too long, filled with too much improvisation, lacks expression. It reminds of "The Dance Of Eternity", probably because I didn's like that song.

The last song is, in my opinion, the true masterpiece: a clean guitar leads you into 14 minutes of glorious composition and classic Dream Theater melodies revisited in a more modern key. The lyrics deal with Bin Laden and Islamic fanatics.

"Train Of Thought" is the heaviest album Dream Theater has ever recorded. Heavy, unusual, excessive, pretentious. The songwriting is not exacting as in the past. Once again, too much improvisation and absurd lengths: 7 tracks clock in at about 70 minutes! I love long tracks, but only if they are various, exacting and exciting (I mean "A Change Of Seasons", "Learning To Live", "Scarred", "Trial Of Tears"?). Heavy riffs and cold fast lead parts have buried almost all the expression and the emotional warmth of "Scenes From A Memory" and "Images And Words". Just a glimmer shines through "Vacant": a meager consolation. Forget all the emotional solos of "Lines In The Sand", "About To Crash", "Learning To Live"?

I don't consider this album as a flop, but I want to warn you: if you didn't like "Six Degrees Of Inner Turbulence", don't even think to buy "Train Of Thought".


Band profile: Dream Theater
Album: Train Of Thought


 


written by The Silent Man | 13.11.2003


Guest review disclaimer:
This is a guest review, which means it does not necessarily represent the point of view of the MS Staff.

Guest review by
Arian Totalis

Rating:
8.5
You know, I fail to see what the problem is that everyone has with this album. Most people say that it is bad for one reason or other. For example, some might say that the fact they took two weeks to write all the music and lyrics somehow impacted on the sound. While under normal circumstances I might agree, however this is Dream Theater, they can do things like that and actually make it work. For the god's sake, the first track on Liquid Tension Experiment was just a huge improvised jam. Some might also say that Dream Theater don't do the whole angry/heavy thing well. Once more, I disagree, this album does well with both aspects.

Read more ››
published 12.08.2007 | Comments (15)



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Mr.Wilson - 25.07.2006 at 04:22  
in fact this is probably the worst review i have ever seen...obviously you are don´t know anything about music....train of thought is a heavier album...yes...but a incredible album...it´s the follower of six degrees..and it makes sense...what makes this band excelent is the fact that they try to experiment new sounds...and six degrees and train of thought it´s the proove...and very well done...this review is bullshit...get a life..and learn about music first...fucker!!:nono:
Dangerboner - 25.07.2006 at 08:54  
This review didn't make any sense to me. He said that "Honor Thy Father" is the only song he didn't like, and yet he only gave it a 6.5?

This might be my favorite Dream Theater album. I know it's their most accessible album and a lot of hardcore Dream Theater fans that I know dislike this album, but it's still my favorite. There aren't any slow, bullshit songs on this album, unlike their others. It's fuckin heavy and full of great solos.
Taktsekte - 28.07.2006 at 02:51  
The whole album sounds like "The Glass Prison".

What the hell? Did you bother analyze the wonderful Metal sonata called Stream of Consciousness? (yes, it IS a sonata, with the Classical structure and thematization and so on - it has no lack of expression, it just has a STRUCTURE). Did you try to listen to Honor Thy Father more than just once and focus on the harmony instead of pretending it has some nu-metal influences?

Oh, and, by the way, Endless Sacrifice is not just "one of the best songs on Train of Thought" but the best song on it, and one of the best Dream Theater songs ever IMO.

As pyroleprechaun correctly points out, a review by someone who did not like only one song on the album and still gives it a 6.5 cannot make any sense.
Pianoman - 28.07.2006 at 06:00  
Not the best album of DT but it still being good. Just too long and boring.
I like more the direct stuff like in images and words.
dark awakening - 31.07.2006 at 21:33  
I agree with the review, this is only a technical album for me, there isn't feeling at all.
Damnated - 01.08.2006 at 16:22  
One of the worst albums of DT, I say that to, but still it's a good album. Stream Of Consciousness is an awsome song, never thought they will make something like this, though
DLMokoma - 27.08.2006 at 18:06  
This is the best music that I've heard from DT. They have really boring songs, but this had really interesting, and truly progressive.
BurbotsRevenge - 28.08.2006 at 13:17  
This album is one of Dream Theater's best albums, and my favourrite album ever. "honor thy father" is a great song: fast, heavy, brilliant solos (from everyone).

Just brilliant!!!!!!

*****
5 stars
UnholyMenace - 29.08.2006 at 16:44  
Im not saying that Train Of Thought is DT best release, but I surely wouldnt give it only 6,5. I would give it 8,5. The album has some pretty amazing songs like As I Am and Endless Sacrifice.
PRIMAL FEAR - 02.09.2006 at 09:52  
This album went nowhere imo, it failed to work...

my question is: "what the hell went wrong?" after listening to it quite thoroughly.
BurbotsRevenge - 13.09.2006 at 13:11  
This review is nowhere near true to the actual album.

Train of thought is my fav Dream Theater album. with songs like as i am, honor thy father, endless sacrifice, nad stream of conciousness, it is one of the best albums ever.

:banger2::bow:
Doh - 13.09.2006 at 16:29  
This is only Dream Theater album that i really like , all songs are very good .
BreadGod - 22.09.2006 at 00:24  
This was by far the worst and most inconsistent review I have ever read on this site. He said that 'Honor Thy Father' was the only song he didn't like, yet he only gave it a 6.5, which makes me think if he even listened to the album more than once. He should have taken the time to listen to the melodies of 'Honor Thy Father' instead of simply passing it off as having nu metal influences. Seriously, he should have written the review again after listening to the album a couple more times.
Damnated - 22.09.2006 at 00:33  
but what's with his profile? was it deleted? if you click on it, you get an error message.
BreadGod - 24.09.2006 at 04:34  
Written by Damnated on 22.09.2006 at 00:33

but what's with his profile? was it deleted? if you click on it, you get an error message.

I think this might be from two reasons. Either he was not active for a really long time (for example 1 and a half to 2 years) or he requested that his account be deleted. Of course, that's what I think. There might be some other reason as to this which I cannot foresee.
Damnated - 24.09.2006 at 10:44  
Written by BreadGod on 24.09.2006 at 04:34

Written by Damnated on 22.09.2006 at 00:33

but what's with his profile? was it deleted? if you click on it, you get an error message.

I think this might be from two reasons. Either he was not active for a really long time (for example 1 and a half to 2 years) or he requested that his account be deleted. Of course, that's what I think. There might be some other reason as to this which I cannot foresee.


it was like this before the great cleaning that took place afew weeks ago. so I guess he wanted to be deleted.
JohnDoe - 22.10.2006 at 03:37  
I like this album but it has become my least favvourite DT album. Maybe because I "over-abused" listening to it back in 2003. Now I only listen to Endless Sacrifice, Honor thy Father and Vacant/Stream of Consciousness.
Marcel Hubregtse - 22.10.2006 at 10:49  
Very strange review.
Especially the last sentence: "but I want to warn you: if you didn't like "Six Degrees Of Inner Turbulence", don't even think to buy "Train Of Thought".
I for one do NOT like Six Degrees Of Inner Turbulence AT ALL yet I really like Train Of Thought which is a much heavier darker and more focussed album IMO. Less pretentious and meandering than SDoIT.
Dangerboner - 23.10.2006 at 02:55  
^^^ Yeah man. I don't care too much for Six Degrees and I really like Train of Thought. I don't understand why he wrote that because Train of Thought and Six Degrees are completely different albums.
Mr.Wilson - 21.11.2006 at 05:35  
This review should be deleted...this is revolting...the review makes no sense...this album is amazing..the rating is so absurd..:(
Talvi - 21.11.2006 at 21:11  
This is one of their best albums. And no review should be removed because of rating, so stop whining and write a review yourself.
Dark Light - 22.11.2006 at 12:20  
I have heard four of the songs, and i agree that it isn´t their best album, but i liked it!.. dream theatre are allways gonne ba great whatever they do!
Ytse Jam - 22.01.2007 at 17:59  
This album isn't DT's best i agree but this one definitely belongs to their top 3, along with "images and words" and "scenes from a memory".
Mr.Wilson - 07.02.2007 at 01:57  
Written by Talvi on 21.11.2006 at 21:11

This is one of their best albums. And no review should be removed because of rating, so stop whining and write a review yourself.


It´s no the rating that bothers me you dumbass..it´s the review it self...makes no sense...got it?..
NemeniX - 12.02.2007 at 12:21  
Written by Mr.Wilson on 07.02.2007 at 01:57
It´s no the rating that bothers me you dumbass..it´s the review it self...makes no sense...got it?..


+1
This review doesn't ake any sense

A lot of DT fans don't like ToT coz they think it's a pale Metallica cover... wtf ?
They experiment new sounds at every new album, it's normal that everybody can't appreciate it.

To me, this album is one of DT's best after Scenes From A Memory and Images and Words.
RavenLord - 12.02.2007 at 22:04  
This I don't like at all. Train of Thought is one of the most boring, banal albums I've ever heard in my life. The whole thing tries too hard to be progressive, and doesn't flow well at all. Sure, write a 10+ minute song if you want, but don't make it as exruciating as 'In The Name of God'. Rudess' keyboards do nothing for the album at all...his lines sound so pretentious, so artificial...whenever a keyboard section comes on top of a riff, it sounds so goddamn put-on...what happened to the flowing passages of Images and Words? And what about LaBrie? He's whiny at the best of times, but this entire album seems like one long angst rant. Especially the obscenities; he can't pull swearing off at all. Simply put, my least favourite DT album, and I agree with the reviewer's sentiments, although he didn't express them well. I like some of As I Am and Stream of Consciousness, but that's it.
Megadeth_Matt - 05.03.2007 at 00:48  
i would say that scenes from a memory is deffinately better, yet the album is still a wonderful one. this dying soul is the first dream theater song that i ever heard and it brought me into the world of dt. heavier true, but brilliant nonetheless
Arian Totalis - 05.03.2007 at 01:49  
This review pissed me off so bad I couldn't finnish it, this is My favorite DT Album!
Pianoman - 29.04.2007 at 07:21  
Not the best DT album at all. They tried to sound heavier but they took all they good keyboard lines. Jordan Rudess only play solos in this album. Not his best performances I most say. I think that octavarium is much better album than ToT just my opinion. Guitar players maybe will like this album but they i think that Rudess forgot to play chords in this album with the exception of vacant.
graywolf87 - 21.06.2007 at 23:20  
...he likes all songs except 1 and he gives a 6.5? ha...this reviewer might be into more softer music like HIM or Evanecense. for "true" metallers this review makes no sense the technical thrash influence is here but the sound still 100% DT.

...he said blackened...hah
Bitch Boy - 23.06.2007 at 04:35  
Come on, this album isn't that bad. I know that DT has done better albums, but this one is also very good and heavy.
Leper Messiah - 23.06.2007 at 05:13  
I think this is deffinately one of DT´s best albums and is one of the best CD´s iv'e heard.
It´s fukin heresy to not like it!!!:banger:
By the way, nobody even mentioned ´in the name of god´. i thin it´s AT LEAST the best song in the album.
Noel Sonic - 05.07.2007 at 04:33  
I like Train Of Thought which should deserve 9.0(Maybe someone does not like it because it's too heavry?).Endless Sacrifice,This Dying Soul,especially Stream Of Consciousness are great!
Bsquared - 24.07.2007 at 01:45  
Am I the frikkin' only one that loves ALL albums Dream Theater has made up to date?
BloodTears - 30.07.2007 at 22:58  
I definately disagree with the rate here as most of you as well. Above all, I think they have good songs in this album like they have good songs on every album. I like the album, not among my favourites but I'm still able to recognize its high quality. It is different, yes, but that doesn't mean something bad in this case. And the heaviness... yes! Definately worth at least an 8 in my opinion.
IronBlackZepp - 02.10.2008 at 07:41  
This is a great album, at first I didnt really like it all that much, but after the second lision I loved it.
Panterica - 29.07.2009 at 15:07  
The one who wrote the review is totaly idiot! I bet he wrote it after one listening, I mean, Come On! Train of Thought is good, even great! I enjoy this album as much as And Justice for All by Metallica! And just like in Metallica's work, this album is full of anger and brutallity, and the last time I checked, anger is a feeling too! Some might disagree that Train of Thought is DT best album, but they can't denay it's still a very impressive one.
Nicko's Nose - 01.08.2009 at 08:02  
"I don't consider this album as a flop, but I want to warn you: if you didn't like "Six Degrees Of Inner Turbulence", don't even think to buy "Train Of Thought"."

What the fuck? TOT doesn't sound like SDOIT at all!

"Am I the frikkin' only one that loves ALL albums Dream Theater has made up to date?"

No.
terrorist - 05.12.2009 at 22:19  
This album is pure metal.they've shown their best performance in this album by making it fast and agresive.the riffs are amazing,so simple but so heavy.Tha fact is that they are excelent musicians but that doesn't mean that their creativity is on high note.Every band has in its own career high point and my opinion is that they've done it with this album.
Warman - 05.12.2009 at 22:34  
This is an excellent album IMO, although "Honor Thy Father" might be the bands most forgetable song. I just can't seem to remember it or how it goes, and I know every DT song from beginning to start.
Fat & Sassy! - 05.12.2009 at 22:44  
"Good ideas, poor execution."

I think that sums this album nicely. Oh, and btw, I'm not a huge fan of this album, but this review blows dick.

""Honor Thy Father" has shocked me because of the nu-metal influences..."

Really?
FrozenJoy - 05.05.2011 at 21:29  
This review is pure bullshit... Train of Thought is an excellent album, and I've always seen it as one of the best blendings of heavy and progressive music I've ever heard... Please, are you really bashing Stream of Consciousness? I think it's one of the best songs DT ever wrote... Other ones like Endless Sacrifice, This Dying Soul, or In the Name of God blow you instantly away...
Really, you like all the songs except Honor Thy Father and give it a 6.5?

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