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MIKE PORTNOY On New DREAM THEATER: “It Definitely Sounds Like Classic DREAM THEATER”


In a recent discussion with Brazil’s Marcelo Vieira and Matheus Ribeiro, Dream Theater’s drummer Mike Portnoy shared more insights on the band’s eagerly anticipated 16th studio album. When asked if the new album continues the trajectory of their 2009 release Black Clouds & Silver Linings or ventures into new territory, Portnoy provided an interesting response.

“If I’m being honest, I think it picks up right where Black Clouds left off, to be honest. There’s a certain style that the five of us have when we write together. And if you listen to the album with this lineup from 1999, Metropolis Pt. 2: Scenes From A Memory, through 2009’s Black Clouds & Silver Linings, if you look at that string of five or six albums, that’s the sound and style of these five people. So, I think that’s a good indication of what you can expect with the new Dream Theater album. It definitely sounds like classic Dream Theater.”

Black Clouds & Silver Linings was the band’s 10th studio album, released on June 23, 2009. It was well-received for its blend of technical proficiency, emotional depth, and cohesive storytelling, solidifying Dream Theater‘s reputation as the leaders in the progressive metal genre. It was also the last album to feature Portnoy on drums, a period that will close when the upcoming album arrives.

In a chat with The Prog Report some weeks ago, Portnoy spoke about the album’s recordings and the band old-school approach to it: “It’s a long process. I haven’t spent this much time making an album in a long time, because usually NMB [Neal Morse Band] or Flying Colors or whatever, you kind of get together, do the writing and the tracking, and everybody does it at home. But Dream Theater is still old school where the band is in the studio the whole time. And it’s not like anybody’s doing anything at home separately. We do it all together, coming in one at a time to work and record.”

“So, yeah, it’s a longer process than I’ve had in quite some time. But it’s great… It’s the old way. It’s the way I always made records with Dream Theater. I just hadn’t done it that way in so long, but it is good. And the process is really detailed this way. In all these other bands and projects, everyone kind of just does their own thing on their own time at their own place. But this really gives a real unified kind of band vibe.”

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