The T 666
How can I, someone who has declared DT one of his favorite bands in all metal, be giving this Greatest Hits compilation a bad rating? A collection of DT's should be every fan's dream, shouldn't it?
There's absolutely NO reason for a fan who has all the albums to have this other than to presume of a perfect collection. And this compilation doesn't add ONE SONG to the catalogue ("To Live Forever"? Please...). This is also not a good introduction to sell the band to people who haven't heard it previously.
Ok, I forgot: we get a couple of remixes here. Well, if you really crave for that new mix where you can listen to the hi-hat one decibel higher than in the album, rush ahead and go buy this collection. The original albums were all pretty well-produced in the first place so there's really no need for new mixes.
- First off, where is "Ytse Jam"? If there's a song that had to be here is that one. Label issues aside, I'm sure it could be done. And they couldn't even have argued that they didn't want any Dominici-sung track in the compilation, as that one is an instrumental. It's awful that there's not ONE song from the band's first album on this record.
- From one of their masterpieces, "Images and Words", they chose, well, their only actual "hit" ("Pull me Under") which makes the title of this album coherent; they chose a great song like "Take the Time", and "Another Day". I love every song in that record. But I just can't forgive that "Metropolis" isn't here. It's just ridiculous. That's one of the seminal DT songs and one which defines their sound for prospective fans.
- From "Awake" they chose "Lie", which had a video but it's not the best track in the album, they chose "Silent Man" and "Lifting Shadows off a Dream". Where's "The Mirror" or, even more, "Erotomania" and "Voices"? Bad selection. If they wanted to spotlight less-known tracks, they could've gone with the great "Scarred" instead.
- "Falling into Infinity" has no better luck. "Peruvian Skies" is good and "Hollow years" is very pretty, but really, for a true taste of DT, where are "Trial of Tears", or the amazing combo "Hell's Kitchen-Lines in the sand"? Terrible picks (these are not bad songs per se, the're just awful as selections for a greatest hits album).
- "Scenes from a Memory" should never be cut. Period. At least they chose some of the greatest moments of an album that doesn't have many weak moments so it isn't so big an achievement.
- "6 Degrees of Inner Turbulence" receives the usual treatment. They don't include fan-favorite "The Glass Prison" (which I don't like at all, but most people do, so probably it would've been a good hook for new fans) and prefer the good "Misunderstood" and the forgettable "Disappear." And again, they cut the only really great part of that album, the title-track, and utterly kill it. They include the "radio edit" of "Solitary Shell". What "radio" are we talking about? Again, if your band isn't mainstream, please include what the fans love, so that newbies can have a better sample of your music. Not a RADIO EDIT that no radio has ever aired anyway.
- "Train of Thought" is butchered as we expected, with the horrendous "As I Am" and the decent "Endless Sacrifice" as choices.
- They did a good job of choosing the songs of "Octavarium." To include the title-track would've been a good idea, but it's a long song. And time had to be saved for...
...no, there's no "A Change of Seasons" in any of the two discs!
And yes,there is enough room in the discs to include the legendary 23 minute track.
After I've said that, I guess the rating I'm giving this compilation should come as no surprise.
As compilations go, this is atrocious. If this was an album of new songs, it would be a decent one. But knowing every record of the band, and thinking on what they should've chosen to really attract new fans (which I guess is the objective of compilations -other that making money for the record label, which this collection won't do either-, to give people who don't want to buy 9 albums and one EP a good sample of what the band's music is about), these 2 discs are in my view a waste of time and resources.
You know, for a band that has only ONE radio-"kind-of"-hit ("Pull Me Under"), they should've gone with what their fans love the most, not what the band or the label think are their greatest hits, because this kind of band rarely has ANY HIT, so their real "hits" or the closest to that would be those songs that their fans think are a better sample of DT for newcomers. But DREAM THEATER won't gain any new fans with this horrendous song selection.