Guitar Techniques




Inside Out Music 9/10

View From The Top Of The World is Dream

Theater’s 15th studio album. With seven tracks, the one hour 11 minutes album is what we expect from the US prog metallers; great band interplay, angular rhythms, fantastica­l lyrics and blazing solo passages. There’s a fine art to guitar and keyboard arranging which Petrucci and Jordan Rudgress have crafted via unison lines, swapping lead/comp roles and timbre balancing from soft to aggressive. Opener Alien has a frenetic, all blazing intro with melodic shred solos featuring Petrucci’s Musicman and Mesa Boogie gear before Rudgress goes ‘Jan Hammer on steroids’. Answering The Call starts with low B moshing and precise 16th lines before James LaBrie’s vocals enter. Great wah solo later too. The 10-minute long Sleeping Giant is a sonic journey as riffs, pounding rhythms and heavy syncopatio­ns tick the Prog box with aplomb. Talk of an eight-string Majesty guitar this year suggests that Awaken The Master is where to find it - the riffing is bowel bustingly low here! As for the closing title track which clocks in at 20 minutes it’s as big and grandiose as the band has ever been; what A View indeed! (JS)

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