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I stopped painting in 1990 at the peak of my success just to deny people my beautiful paintings. And I did it out of spite.Vincent Gallo
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Tuesday, October 9 2007, 05:39PM

Symphony X/Dream Theater concert (part 2)!

I just came back from seeing Symphony X and Dream Theater yet again and what an absolutely fucking amazing, mind-blowing show this has been!!!!
I'm still very enthusiastic about the show (writing this at 2:30AM while the show stopped at around 11:30PM should give at  least some hint as to the extent of my excitement)!

I'll tell the story from the beginning: once there was a young mother who gave birth to a very talent— well, maybe I'll skip a bit. :P

We (Michel, Mick and I) arrived at the venue (Ahoy, in the city I live in, which is Rotterdam) at around 5:15PM (45 minutes later than planned due to the small fact of dinner which I didn't take into account :P) at which point it was already very crowded.
Luckily my friend Ralph and a friend of his (also named Mick) kept us some warm spots in the front of the line (:D) so we could still be likely to have good positions in front of the stage.
We'd also already planned to stand on the left side of the stage because we were standing on the right side of the stage last time we saw them so we would be able to see it from another perspective (also being perfectly aligned with Michael Romeo).

As we were getting in when the doors opened at 6:30PM (after having waited almost one-and-a-half hours in T-shirts in the cold for so long) we were frisked by security for weapons and also home-brought foods/drinks (which were not allowed); I knew this was going to happen but I still took two cans of Coca-Cola with me because I knew I'd be getting thirsty once inside.
When I was frisked, however, I took one can out of my pocket and held it in my hand (holding my hands in the air so he could frisk me) and as I had thought, he found the can I was holding in my pocket and threw it away but as stupid as it may seem  he neglected anything I was carrying in my hands, so I was able to bring in with me (in open air in everyone's sight) a can of Coca-Cola. :D

Once inside, I ran to the stage (as previous experience taught me) straight to the spot where we were supposed to meet (left side of the stage) but once there.. I saw no one.. it had seemed the others were just behind me, so I waited and Michel and Mick showed up but Ralph and his friend Mick were nowhere to be seen!
As we waited I got anxious and looked around and sure enough.. the fuckhead was standing right in front of Petrucci again (right side of the stage). :P
After calling (I wasn't about to leave my perfect spot) he explained that Dream Theater (meaning Petrucci in this context) was more his kind of thing so I was just going to stand there.
Anyway, didn't matter much I guess (aside the fact it was considerably more boring).

The show finally started after having waited another hour at 7:40PM (twenty minutes sooner than planned — which made expectations rise even higher) by the Intro to Paradise Lost (just like last time) after which they came out on stage playing the subsequent track of the album (like last time) called Set The World On Fire, after that they played Domination and Serpent's Kiss (like last time) but that's when it happened... Russel informed the crowd they'd play the theme song off their last album and without even processing what he'd said I immediately screamed The Odyssey!!! FUCK!! YEAH!!!!! after saying that (being the only one that really understood what he meant? — no one else reacted to it) I started doubting myself, thinking wait a minute.. they played Paradise Lost last time, shouldn't they mean from the current album? but no! they started playing The Odyssey in its entirety!!!!!!!!!!!!! :D:D:D:D:D:D:D
It fucking BLEW ME AWAY; that I would have the honor of witnessing them play The Odyssey!
Needless to say, I reacted very enthusiastically to the performance, jotting down (in thought) some of the chords he played and some of the riffs I was struggling with and to my absolute amazement I came to realize that one certain part of The Odyssey which I learned to play in the past (called Journey To Ithaca starting at 3:40 into the song until 6:10) matched up EXACTLY with how I figured out how to play it!!
Reason for excitement is that when learning it I was seeking tabs and most tabs were so horribly wrong and unreasonable in their thoughts for outlining a certain part of that piece, I got frustrated and started figuring it out myself!

After that they went off stage and I mourned about it for the remaining minutes leading up to Dream Theater's intro.
Their Intro is very cheesy but effective to say the least (if you've seen 2001: A Space Odyssey you'll probably know what I'm talking about if I mention apes and sticks? Well, that part anyway, but more dramatically.. :P).
Not saying it's bad but a song from one of their albums would have better suited, in my opinion. :P

Anyway, Dream Theater played a lot of songs from Systematic Chaos (as expected and to my slight dismay) but it was still very good to say the least!
They really had fun in performing (which I felt was missing last time) and it really showed!
Dream Theater's highlight (for me) was their performance of Blind Faith (Six Degrees of Inner Turbulence remains my all-time favourite album :P). :D
In all, Dream Theater's setlist was a lot better this time, I feel.

It was also very cool to see Jordan again with his Zen Riffer Keytar; I deeply respect Jordan for his love (and expressing) of real Prog and instruments. :P
John Petrucci really played outstanding and what was also awesome was that he acknowledged Ralph and Mick for their effort in trying to score a guitar pick (they were bowing down to him — like I was last time, together with them — and showing him a piece of paper with Please give guitar pick written on it or something in that sense).
He actually liked it so much (and probably also recognized them from last time) he kept throwing guitar picks at them (something he normally never/rarely does!) until they both had one!! :o
I envy them immensely for that but it's okay, I'll get my chance next time. :P
It's just a guitar pick... right? :D  (Right? :() :P

Also, speaking of acknowledgments: I was acknowledged myself on a couple of occasions by Michael Romeo and Jordan Rudess. :D
(Had to mention that briefly; it's nice to be acknowledged by such respectful musicians. :D)

In closing; this concert has been everything I hoped for and more!!
I can't wait to see them again in the future (especially Symphony X — hopefully separated from Dream Theater so there's more of them to go around :D)! :D


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