Artist: Dream Theater
Title: “Score: 20th Anniversary Celebration”
Label: Rhino Records
Release Date: 8/29/2006
Genre: Progressive Rock
20 years, I cannot believe that it’s been twenty years since the band Dream Theater started out and brought the world a wondrous mixture of Progressive Rock and Heavy Metal. This DVD release helps the band commemorate the special occasion where they closed out the “Octavarium” tour at New York City’s venerated Radio City Music Hall in front of a completely sold-out audience. The show, which ran close to three hours found the group delivering a solid set of material that included some classic numbers as well as complete renditions of their longer compositions such as “Six Degrees Of Inner Turbulence” and “Octavarium”. If you were one of the lucky people who attended the concert, you will remember being blown away by the presentation of the “Octavarium” album especially since it was done with the accompaniment of a full orchestra. There are many bands have used this idea in the past but there are few who have been able to pull it off as effectively. Dream Theater is one of those bands that does it with an outstanding result and makes it look easier to accomplish than it possibly could be. As the band plays there are visual images shown behind them on screens which are a little easier to enjoy on the DVD for depending on where you sat during the show stuff like this is sometimes difficult to see. The whole of DVD one contains the concert while the second features all the bonus footage and content.
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Artist: Glenn Tipton, John Entwistle & Cozy Powell
Title: “Edge Of The World”
Label: Rhino Records
Release Date: 3/7/2006
Genre: Hard Rock
Glenn Tipton’s first solo recordings are finally seeing the light of day. While the guitarist released his first solo album in 1996 he mentions in his liner notes that he had earlier recordings that featured legendary players John Entwistle and Cozy Powell. The record company decided this music’s fate and as a result a different solo record “Baptizm Of Fire” would be released. Fast forward a few years and now courtesy of Rhino Records fans of the axe slinger will finally get to hear the music he wanted to present in the first place. Overall this is a solid Hard Rock album with nothing too over the top by the rhythm section except their expected level of skill and professional sound. It’s my guess that they took this as a studio project more than a band and that’s why they merely did what was necessary and not filled this with wild displays. Let’s face it the music listener world would have to agree with you on Entwistle having the title as one of the greatest Rock bassists ever. The same can be said for Cozy Powell who was one of Rocks more accomplished drummers and with recordings by Rainbow, Black Sabbath, and Whitesnake under his belt who can question. These two forces combined with Glenn’s guitar work and vocals gave a sound that that was different enough from his work in Judas Priest to be easily enjoyed for it would still Rock. Touring was debated but would never come to pass as Fate’s ever cruel hand ended any plans of this by taking both Powell and Entwistle from us far too soon. As a result instead of looking forward to shows with this music we can find this a fitting memorial of their great contributions to music.
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Artist: Judas Priest
Title: “Rising In The East”
Label: Rhino Music
Release Date: 11/15/2005
Genre: Heavy Metal
If you were a smart Metal head then you made sure that you caught one of the performances done by Judas Priest when they toured earlier this year. The band was supporting their newest epic entitled “Angel Of Retribution” and had partnered up with both Queensryche and Anthrax on various legs of this tour. Truly this was a high mark on music as both of these events (album and tour) were very anticipated since Priest had reunited with singer Rob Halford. The band gave us a teaser set when they were one of the main bands on the 2004 Ozzfest Stage. If you ask anyone who attended that festival you will probably find them agreeing that the reunited Judas Priest was perhaps the best part of the show. Filmed at the legendary Budokan theatre this DVD Film captures the entire 2 hour show and not one track seems to have been cut. In America, we did not have all of these songs and perhaps this was due to venue restrictions. With this film we now have the chance to enjoy the songs we did not get to see. Overall the quality of the video and sound are superb and done in such a manner that you feel as if you were front stage while the band performed. I enjoyed reliving this as I had attended a couple of the appearances and I truly felt that the whole show was a major highlight with little room for disappointment. The music of Judas Priest is something that I have enjoyed since I was about 16 and watching this DVD clearly helps to affirm their status as Legends or “Metal Gods”. The band is the “Painkiller” lineup with Halford, Downing, Tipton, Hill and Travis. 1980’s drummer Dave Holland had not returned and thankfully so when you consider his replacement is Scott Travis. He is a superb drummer who brings a new life to the radio “hits” that the band had as well as performing admirably on the classic tracks like “Exciter” and “Beyond The Realms Of Death”.
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