August 29, 2006
Pop/Rock, Guitar Virtuoso, Album Rock, Progressive Metal, Heavy Metal

Album Review

Dream Theater has an amazing way of satisfying their many fans with live recordings. Score: XOX is a prime example: there are three discs here. The first one is the band at their live, crackling best, playing tunes from throughout their now-lengthy career -- for a metal band -- and including a pair of smoking unreleased cuts in the mix. First there is "Root of All Evil," and "I Walk Beside You," and rounding that are "Innocence Faded," and "Afterlife." The two new cuts, are both hard, riff heavy, labyrinthine journeys that reveal the best in progressive metal. "Another Won," feels more like a suite in its nearly six-minute length, with more parts than one can count easily; next is the drifting, strange and beautiful "Raise the Knife," that is as closely driven to every edge. The set ends with the gorgeous, nearly spiritual anthem "The Spirit Carries On." Discs two and three are the real treats, though, as they feature the band playing its long compositions -- "Six Degrees of Inner Turbulence," "Sacrificed Sons," "Octavarium" (of course), and the roiling, sci-fi metal of "Metropolis," with the Octavarium orchestra, which is 29-pieces strong, conducted by Jill Dell'Abate. The ability the band has to make the orchestra sound like part of its everyday concert experience is nothing less than thrilling.; the sound is top-notch, and there are no excessive parts -- Dream Theater always take care of that on their own. If you're a fan, then you'll need it. And if you've ever wondered, this is a great place to start.
Thom Jurek, Rovi

Track Listing

  1. The Root of All Evil
  2. I Walk Beside You
  3. Another Won
  4. Afterlife
  5. Under a Glass Moon
  6. Innocence Faded
  7. Raise the Knife
  8. The Spirit Carries On
  9. Six Degrees of Inner Turbulence
  10. Vacant
  11. The Answer Lies Within
  12. Sacrificed Sons
  13. Octavarium
  14. Metropolis
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