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Black Clouds & Silver Linings (3 CD Special Edition)

4.1 out of 5 stars 191 customer reviews

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Audio CD, June 23, 2009
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Editorial Reviews

Special Edition includes the Black Clouds & Silver Linings CD, plus a CD of 6 cover songs, and a CD of instrumental mixes of the entire Black Clouds & Silver Linings album. 'This album's a musical and emotional rollercoaster, but most of our albums are,' Mike Portnoy says of
Black Clouds & Silver Linings, Dream Theater's tenth studio album and second Roadrunner release. Black Clouds & Silver Linings marks another milestone on Dream Theater's iconoclastic musical journey,
which began two and a half decades ago and now encompasses a hugely impressive body of music that's established the durable progressive metal outfit as a one-of-a-kind creative force with a fiercely devoted international fan base. The new album - produced by band members Mike Portnoy and John Petrucci, who also serve as the group's main lyricists - offers a vibrant manifestation of the world-class musicianship, vivid lyrical scenarios and ambitious, multi-leveled
compositions that have established Dream Theater as a uniquely compelling creative force.

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. A Nightmare To Remember
  2. A Rite Of Passage
  3. Wither
  4. The Shattered Fortress
  5. The Best Of Times
  6. The Count Of Tuscany

Disc: 2

  1. 6 Cover Songs

Disc: 3

  1. A Nightmare To Remember (Instrumental)
  2. A Rite Of Passage (Instrumental)
  3. Wither (Instrumental)
  4. The Shattered Fortress (Instrumental)
  5. The Best Of Times (Instrumental)
  6. The Count Of Tuscany (Instrumental)


Product Details

  • Audio CD (June 23, 2009)
  • Number of Discs: 3
  • Label: Roadrunner Records
  • ASIN: B0026J8LHW
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (191 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #73,590 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
As a longtime Dream Theater fan, I was very much looking forward to the release of Black Clouds & Silver Linings, especially after feeling just a bit underwhelmed by Systematic Chaos. Not that SC is by any stretch a bad album, but unlike previous DT albums there were elements about it that I simply didn't enjoy. Unfortunately, those elements return in force for a second tour of duty on BC&SL...

A couple years ago I bought the Systematic Chaos special edition release that included a DVD featuring the making of the album in the studio with the band. Right away I was a little disappointed by what I saw - Mike Portnoy flipping through a calendar that had all of the "writing" days, all of the "recording" days, and the "end of sessions" marked off and decided in advance. I got the sense that they only permitted so much time for writing each song in the studio, and whatever they had at that point is what got laid down during the "recording days" to follow. Of course, even stock DT material is impressive, but I couldn't help feeling that they seemingly shortchanged their creative writing process. My understanding is that the band followed the same blueprint for the BC&SL sessions, and I think this is apparent in the end results.

Dream Theater lyrics are typically a mixed bag - past albums have featured some very strong verses mixed with some weaker lines, but the whole was always more than the sum of its parts. SC was the first Dream Theater album that I thought had consistently weak, if not downright juvenile, lyrics (I defy anyone to tell me that 'The Dark Eternal Night' lyrics are written by professional musicians of DT's talent and capability). Unfortunately, BC&SL continues down this same road at breakneck speed.
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Format: Audio CD
Twenty-five years into their career, Dream Theater are sounding more energetic and inspired than they have since 2003's "Train of Thought."

And that's a good thing, because while most great bands have capsized by that point (just look at the careers of Led Zeppelin, Yes, Metallica, and so on), more is being expected from Dream Theater by the fans and, presumably, the label than ever before. Fortunately, "Black Clouds & Silver Linings" does not disappoint, and actually works as a great starting point for most newcomers.

"A Nightmare to Remember," the opening track, is a good example of everything Dream Theater are doing right on this one. It begins with a crash, followed by what is uncontestedly the heaviest introduction in Dream Theater history- it's the type of Progressive Metal fireworks that we've heard before on songs like Honor Thy Father and This Dying Soul. Though the song takes a drastic Pink Floyd inspired turn at the five minute mark, about three minutes later the band quite violently pulls us from the eye of the storm, and delivers the obligatory back-and-forth soloing from Mr. Petrucci and Mr. Rudess, which is followed by a genuinely "creepy" unison, and then some instrumental stuff which calls to mind the type of thing you'd hear at the end of an old silent film- one of those parts that means to say, "it's over, but there's still something lurking behind that corner."

"Wither," and "A Rite of Passage" are great songs in their own right, too. Both are the singles, and both are arguably stronger than any singles the band have put out since Pull Me Under.

The central song on the album is probably the weakest, and that is "The Shattered Fortress.
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Format: Audio CD
The new Dream theater album has arrived!
This album blew my mind, and has become one of my all time fav albums to come out in a very long time. Its also my opinion the strongest Dream Theater album out there with scenes from a memory right besides it. It has everything you'd want from a Dream theater album. Great songwriting, Great musicianship, melodic great vocals!, Crazy solos, Memorable melody's, Progressive arrangements, and Heavy Crunching riffs!

1 - A nightmare to remember
A Nightmare To Remember is the best Dream theater album opener sinse A Glass Prison. This song starts off with a piano intro and than leads into one of the heavyest songs dream theater ever composed. Its a 16 min prog metal journey. Lots of catchy riffs. Lots of double Bass! There is also a mellow section that is really beautiful in this song. it has very catchy vocal melodys. This song is like systematic/Train of Thought meets Scenes from a memory.

2- a right of passage
a right of passage is one of the catchiest songs on the album. Its a classic 8 min long prog metal song. Heavy riffs, and a very catchy melodic chorus. there is a great thrash metal sounding solo section in this song! petrucci and rudess rip some killer solos! great high energy song!

3-Wither
Wither is your classic heavy metal band's ballad. Its a catchy mellow rock tune and its a nice breather from the first 2 heavy tracks. a nice classic dt ballad. very images and works meets scenes

4-the shattered fortress
Shattered fortress is the last part of mike portnoys AA sage (glass prison, this dying soul, root of all evil, repentance)It brings back a few memorable riffs from those songs played a bit differently. There is also new riffs added too.
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