Tuesday, December 28, 1993

The Original Dream Theater FAQ & Discography: My Oldest Surviving Publication

[This article was posted on this blog in December 2009, but is backdated to the date it was originally published.  That date predates this blog, which began in 2005.  This document was originally published on Usenet alt.rock-and-roll.metal.progressive on December 28, 1993. It is thus my oldest surviving publication! I have linked to this article from another article in which I discuss my earliest writing, surviving or otherwise, and provide additional context. I share authorship of this document with Jason Hough, who did most of the research and left the writing to me.  The writing is, admittedly, not good, but hey, I was 19 years old -- it is what it is. The original document is in Courier font, as it was originally composed in MS-DOS Q-edit, reformatted for correct viewing in modern browsers. My present-day comments on the text are bracketed and in normal typeface.]

The Dream Theater Frequently Asked Questions & Discography
by Jason Hough and Michael Bahr

Original Google Usenet Archive Link

[DREAM THEATER] logo in ascii-text
FAQ/Discography: Dream Theater (Current to 1/1/94)
Compiled by: Jason Hough & Mike Bahr
(jho...@qualcomm.com) and (gar...@indirect.com)
Beta-tested by Michael Burstin and Randall Haskin (address below)


Welcome to the official, spiced with Vindaloo, Dream Theater FAQ, presented by us and the members of the Ytsejam mailing list!


We're not perfect. But we're trying to be as accurate as we can. If you can help us to that end with this FAQ/discography, we appreciate it.

The Ytsejam mailing list can be joined by doing the following:
Send email to ytsejam-requ...@bnf.com
No subject!
Text should read, exactly:
subscribe ytsejam firstname lastname
(replace the names with your own.)
You will be added automatically! To unsubscribe, please do the following:
Send email to ytsejam-requ...@bnf.com
No Subject!
Text should read, exactly:
unsubscribe ytsejam
It will take you off the list that very day. If you have any problems
please email jho...@qualcomm.com (ytsejam-ow...@bnf.com).

[The Ytsejam mailing list no longer exists, having been made obsolete by internet message boards such as the one at Mike Portnoy's website.]


I've shortened the credits section because of all the people who have been a part of it, but I wish to slight nobody; you ALL have helped a hell of a lot and a lot of kudos go to the people listed below.  Many thanks to the following for their additions and corrections:
* Randall Haskin (str...@stien1.u.washington.edu)
* Brent Nuttall (el...@indirect.com)
* Dave (dl...@quts.ccc.amdahl.com)
* Michael Burstin (Mi...@cs.brandeis.edu)
* Todd Henson (then...@mason1.gmu.edu)
* Bill Buckley (buck...@powdml.enet.dec.com)
* Jennifer Albert (cc p.terr...@genie.geis.com)
* Lars "ORION" Karlsson ()
* Tim (spa...@hardy.u.washington.edu)
* Aaron (asil...@umiami.edu)
* Jeremy A. Smith (js0...@uhura.cc.rochester.edu)


Abbreviations you should know:
------------------------------
DT - Dream Theater
WDADU - When Dream And Day Unite
IAW - Images And Words
LATM - Live At The Marquee
LIT - Live in Tokyo (video)
ACOS - A Change of Seasons
YML - Ytsejam mailing list
PMU - Pull Me Under
TTT - Take The Time
LTL - Learning To Live


CONTENTS
--------
0. New Questions/Frequently Changing Recent Information
1. Questions about the members of DT/DT History
2. Questions about DT performances/appearances/miscellany
3. Questions about the songs themselves
4. Brief discography
5. Extended discography


New Stuff
---------
0.1 What do we know about Dream Theater's new (third studio) album?

We know a few things. Here's what we've been able to glean from the band members:
* It's not yet titled. (soon as you hear info on this mail us FAST!)
* It started recording in early December 1993.
* (To Live) Forever and A Change of Seasons are slated for inclusion.
* Their producer will be Terry Brown. Source: Metal Shop syndicated radio show
* It's still on the Atlantic label, with a five-month budget.
* No other pre-LaBrie songs will be re-done or re-recorded.
* Bombay Vindaloo is not slated for inclusion.
* It will not be the concept album that Moore and Portnoy keep putting off, that they really want to do "one of these days"
* LaBrie will be the first DT vocalist with a hand in the songwriting process before production.

[And here is what we know now: It was titled Awake; the producers were Duane Barron and John Purdell; neither To Live Forever nor A Change of Seasons was included, though both were indeed recorded and released during the Awake album cycle -- the former as the B-side of the Lie single, the latter as an EP in 1995; Moore left the band in 1994, mooting the question of his and Portnoy's grand concept album project; and LaBrie did indeed have lyric credits on Awake, but has never been included in the songwriting process otherwise as he has no training in music theory.]

1. Questions about the members of DT
------------------------------------


1.1 Who are the current members of Dream Theater?


They are Kevin James LaBrie (vocals), John Petrucci (guitar), Michael Portnoy (drums), Kevin Moore (keyboards), and John Myung (bass). Petrucci, Moore, and Myung grew up together in New York. Portnoy joined them later when they caught him playing at a club. LaBrie joined them in late 1990.


1.2 Has anyone been a member of Dream Theater that is not in it now?


Yes. Charlie Dominici was their vocalist from 1988 to 1989, approximately. He did the vocals on "When Dream And Day Unite" and on part of the bootleg "Consciously Unreal". Chris Collins was their vocalist before 1988 on the Majesty demos.


1.3 What are the Majesty demos?


Before they were Dream Theater, they were Majesty. However, there was already a band called Majesty, so they could not release the demos. They wound up on bootlegs and evaluation tapes, and a list of known songs is in the extended discography in this file.


1.4 Who inspired the band members the most?


In an interview, Mike Portnoy cited Neil Peart of Rush as his greatest influence and favourite drummer. His other influences include Terry Bozzio and Vinnie Colorata, but Portnoy says Peart was his drum "God" for years when Rush was all he listened to.


Petrucci has two groups of influences, he said in an interview. The Steves and the Als. The Steves are Steve Morse, Steve Howe, Steve Vai, and Stevie Ray Vaughan. The Als are Alex Lifeson, Al Dimeola, and Alan Holdsworth.


John Myung's bass idols are Steve Harris and Geddy Lee. Kevin Moore's ivory inspiration comes from Rick Wakeman, Jens Johansen, and Michelle Camillo, among others.


As a band, they are influenced most (according to Portnoy) by Rush, Queensryche, Yes, Marillion, Genesis, and Kansas. Those groups make a few appearances here in this FAQ forasmuch as they relate to DT.


Petrucci individually likes Pantera.


1.5 Andrea Held Leone and Ralph R. Dominici Sr. are mentioned in the liner notes to WDADU as the dedicants. What relation to the band are they?


Anyone?

[They are Portnoy's late mother and Dominici's late father, respectively.]

1.6 Marillion is thanked in the liners in IAW, whats the relation?


Dream Theater opened for Marillion in New York (anyone have the exact date?). Mike Portnoy also said to me, "We're all really big fans. I really dig 'Misplaced Childhood'."


1.7 What is DT's address?


Their mail address is PO BOX 166, Long Beach, NY, 11561.

[Not any more, of course.  Their mailing address is now through their current label, Roadrunner Records.]

1.8 What musical instrument sponsorships does DT have?


Ibanez sponsors John Petrucci, and Tama Drums sponsors Mike Portnoy. His current drum kit was designed by Neil Peart in 1984 (see the Rush/Grace Under Pressure tourbook for more on this).


1.9 Is there a Dream Theater fan club?


Yes. Write to the address below:
Dream Theater Fan Club
Dept.A
11 Penn Plaza Suite 910
New York, NY 10001-2006


1.10 Why did Charlie Dominici leave DT?


According to Mike Portnoy and John Petrucci, he was released because of several things, but most importantly because he didn't fit in with the band in a few important ways. He was far older than the rest of them, had a different idea of what DT should be, and lacked ability as a frontman when performing live. There were apparently a few personality conflicts at work. The band and Dominici are not currently in contact with each other.

[We know now that the last bit was bad information.  Portnoy and Dominici remained friends, and Dominici appeared on the When Dream and Day Re-Unite live CD and DVD in 2004 performing To Live Forever and Metropolis part 1 with the band.]


1.11 Why did Chris Collins leave Majesty/DT?


According to Petrucci, he just didn't have what it took. Apparently they had to record his vocals on the demos one sentence at a time and sometimes even less. Furthermore, he found he could not perform live adequately.


1.12 What was James LaBrie doing before he joined the band?


Kevin James LaBrie (they drop the Kevin because they would otherwise confuse him with Kevin Moore, and two Johns are already hard enough to deal with, says Petrucci) sang for a Canadian band by the name of Winter Rose. He was selected from among 20 auditions and over 200 tapes by DT during the making of IAW.


1.13 What does the "symbol" DT uses mean?


The "symbol" can be seen on the IAW disc, on the IAW cover on top of the bed, on the WDADU cover, etc. It is the letter "M" of "MAJESTY" in a stylized font, says Portnoy. It was once used by Mary Queen of Scots.


1.14 What does the burning heart symbolize?


According to Portnoy, it was Moore's idea and essentially a copy of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. The barbed wire represented obstacles and difficulties, the heart endurance and strength, and the fire their energy and passion.

1.15 Who thought up the name for the band?


Mike Portnoy's father Howard thought they should name it after the moviehouse near where they grew up. It was called The Dream Theater. Initially, they recorded a demo by that name, then named the band after it.


1.16 Where did DT go to school?


The Johns and Kevin Moore went to the Berklee (sic) school of music in Boston, MA, not Berkeley as has been erroneously mentioned on rec.music.progressive. Berklee is a music-dedicated school that has produced the likes of Steve Vai and Chris DeGarmo.


2. Questions about DT performances/appearances/miscellany
---------------------------------------------------------


2.1 Who has toured with Dream Theater?


Psychotic Waltz, the Galactic Cowboys, Saigon Kick, Meanstreak (with guitarist Rena Sands, Petrucci's wife) and others among a slew of local acts the band likes to use for openers.

[Dream Theater has since worked with hundreds of other major acts, of course, including Iron Maiden, Yes, Spock's Beard, Queensryche, Deep Purple, Zappa Plays Zappa, Joe Satriani, Opeth, and more.  Dream Theater has appeared at the Download Festival, associating them with an even broader range of other contemporary acts.  Dream Theater also frequently headlines Portnoy's Progressive Nation touring music festival, most recently in the summer of 2009.]


2.2 What producers has Dream Theater worked with?


Terry Date produced WDADU. Terry Brown (Broon), the producer who took Rush through their first eleven albums, produced the promotional discs from WDADU. David Prater produced IAW. Prater was the ex-drummer/producer of Santana. Doug Oeberkircher produced and mixed Live At The Marquee. According to Z-Rock Metal Shop, the syndicated weekly metal radio magazine, Terry Brown is producing DT's new album while Prater has been promoted.


2.3 What songs has Dream Theater made videos for?


Pull Me Under, Take The Time, and Another Day. Another Day did not make MTV's playlist, even though DT felt it had the most MTV potential. Pull Me Under was shot live and has received the most airplay. Take The Time was shot as a video production, however the song had to be shortened a lot and many unexpected jumps in the song throw the video off pace.


2.4 What songs has Dream Theater played live?


A better question would probably be which ones have they NOT played live, since they play just about all of them. First of all, anything from the Majesty demos from 1986 or 1987 has either not been played live, or has been played live rarely enough never to be recorded on any known release or bootleg. Beyond that, here are the songs that either don't get played live, or have never been recorded live at any known show.


The Ones Who Help to Set The Sun
(formerly "Death of Spock" in the Majesty/DT demo era)
(this will be added to when they release another album no doubt)


Here are a few songs that have ONLY been performed live, and never recorded in any studio (yet):


A Change of Seasons (except it was demo'ed)
Eve
Bombay Vindaloo (which is actually an improv based off ACOS)
Moon Bubbles
Pup
Freewill (a cover)


As well as numerous improvised "shorts" like 'barfbag' and 'trounce'.

[Obviously, this information is badly dated.  Dream Theater plays pretty much everything they have ever recorded in a live setlist eventually.  Unless I miss my guess, the only studio songs they have never played live to date are Don't Look Past Me, Space Dye Vest, and Where Are You Now?, pending 2010-2011's new Evening With tour that is expected to see the entire Twelve-Step Suite played.]

2.5 Who plays the saxophone on "Another Day"?


Jay Beckenstein of Spiro Gyra, who owned the studio where IAW was put to tape (Bear Trax).


2.6 Will DT ever release production versions of the old Majesty demos?


In some cases, they did just that (see the discog further on). Portnoy was asked about this, and said that while they might be fun to play live, it really wouldn't get the band anywhere to release new recordings of them. Since DT is concerned with moving forward, he said, it will likely not happen any more than it already has. Half the first album was production from the demos, but the remaining demos are "just too old."

[This information, too, is dated.  Dream Theater released in 1999 a fanclub CD called Cleaning Out the Closet that presented clean copies of most of the unused demos from the decade or so prior.  The CD included a new recording of Don't Look Past Me.  The Ytsejam Records bootleg CD series that the band sells with permission of their record label has added huge swaths of additional demo material and old live recordings to circulation.]


3. Questions about the songs themselves
---------------------------------------


3.1 What is the header for "A Fortune In Lies?"


As written by Petrucci, it is:
"For the first time in a long time... everything was right in my world...and then I woke up."


3.2 What does "The Ytse' Jam" mean?


YTSEJAM is MAJESTY written backwards, and it probably refers to their original band name in that ambiguous way instrumentals refer to things.

3.3 What is "The Killing Hand" about?


John does not comment on it often, but Mike Portnoy opened up in an interview about why it was written and what he "thinks" it's about. In the interview Portnoy is very careful to remind the reader that he Could be all wrong, but that it's not likely. Petrucci wrote it as a sort of "Twilight Zone" story about war, in which he witnesses all these atrocities, and sees the names of the dead on a wall, and then realizes it's been him this whole time causing all the atrocities... then he sees his name on the wall, very Rod Serling-type of stuff.

[Wow.  This is terrible writing.  If I were writing this document today, I would either quote Portnoy directly, ask Petrucci and quote him directly, or strike the entire entry.]

3.4 Is "Afterlife" a Christian song? Is "Eve"?


While the band admits Afterlife has Christian overtones, it is not a religious tune in the same spirit as the music of King's X or Parallax. Eve, the piano/guitar intro sequence used live for both Pull Me Under and Learning To Live at different times, includes a lot of voice samples including "Guide us on to our Lord Jesus, guide us home." Kevin Moore and John Myung are the more religious members of the band (compared to the secular Portnoy) and Moore wrote it, so while it is certainly not a Stryper-style preach jam, it can be classified as a Christian song. Mike indicated in an interview that Kevin Moore was aiming at that, but that (like in the Killing Hand case) he didn't write it himself so he couldn't guarantee the meaning was exactly right.

[Coulda, shoulda, seems like, maybe.  Again, terrible writing by me.  If I am writing an analysis, I need to make my argument and back it up with evidence.  If I'm stating a band member's opinion, I either need to quote them or paraphrase and cite.  This document is the kind of writing you get when the writer has enthusiasm and loves the subject matter but has no technique or training.]

3.5 What is "Pull Me Under" about?


The current explanation goes that it was inspired by Shakespeare's "Hamlet". Prince Hamlet swore vengeance on King Claudius for murdering his father, the former King, and then marrying his mother, still Queen. Hamlet's famous Soliloquy was the passage in which the conflict in Hamlet's mind is detailed, and the second verse of "Pull Me Under" coincides pretty thoroughly with it. The very end of the song James can be heard singing this line from Hamlet: "Oh that this too, too solid flesh would melt."


Furthermore, after seeing the video, in an interview, Portnoy said "Who the hell was that wolfman guy in the video anyway? We had written it based on something else entirely." Portnoy noted that while Moore did not write PMU about Hamlet specifically, he DID write PMU about what Hamlet was ABOUT. Same themes, ideas, etc.


Here's the no-brainer explanation:
Here's a post from YTSEJAM #42 that shows the Pull Me Under/Hamlet connection.
Date: Tue, 6 Apr 1993 05:47:59 -0400 (EDT)
From: en...@uunet.uu.net (Pete "Ender" Walsh)
Subject: Pull Me Under / Hamlet


PULL ME UNDER
Images: Dream Theater
Words: Moore


Lost in the sky
Clouds roll by and I roll with them


KING CLAUDIUS [to Hamlet] How is it that the clouds still hang on you?


Arrows fly
Seas increase and then fall again


HAMLET To be, or not to be: that is the question:
Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer
The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune,
Or to take arms against a sea of troubles,
And by opposing end them? To die: to sleep;
[and so on...]


This world is spinning around me
This world is spinning without me
Every day sends future to past
Every breath leaves one less to my last


Watch the sparrow falling
Gives new meaning to it all
If not today nor yet tomorrow then some other day


HAMLET Not a whit, we defy augury: there's a special
providence in the fall of a sparrow. If it be now,
'tis not to come; if it be not to come, it will be
now; if it be not now, yet it will come: the
readiness is all: since no man has aught of what he
leaves, what is't to leave betimes?


I'll take seven lives for one


There are seven deaths in Hamlet.


And then my only father's son
As sure as I did ever love him
I am not afraid


Ghost I am thy father's spirit,
Doom'd for a certain term to walk the night,
And for the day confined to fast in fires,
Till the foul crimes done in my days of nature
Are burnt and purged away. But that I am forbid
[etc...]
But this eternal blazon must not be
To ears of flesh and blood. List, list, O, list!
If thou didst ever thy dear father love--


HAMLET O God!


Ghost Revenge his foul and most unnatural murder.


HAMLET Murder!


Ghost Murder most foul, as in the best it is;
But this most foul, strange and unnatural.


HAMLET Haste me to know't, that I, with wings as swift
As meditation or the thoughts of love,
May sweep to my revenge.


 - AND -


HAMLET Ay, so, God be wi' ye;
[Exeunt ROSENCRANTZ and GUILDENSTERN]
Now I am alone.
[...etc, etc...]


O, vengeance!
Why, what an ass am I! This is most brave,
That I, the son of a dear father murder'd,
[...etc, etc...]


This world is spinning around me
The whole world keeps spinning around me
All life is future to past
Every breath leaves me one less to my last


Pull me under Pull me under
Pull me under I'm not afraid
All that I feel in honor and spite
All I can do is set it right


HAMLET Rest, rest, perturbed spirit!
[They swear]
So, gentlemen,
With all my love I do commend me to you:
[etc.]
The time is out of joint: O cursed spite,
That ever I was born to set it right!


- AND -


HAMLET [...]
When honour's at the stake. How stand I then,
That have a father kill'd, a mother stain'd,
Excitements of my reason and my blood,
[etc.]


Dust fills my eyes
Clouds roll by and I roll with them
Centuries cry
Orders fly and I fall again


This world is spinning inside me
The whole world is spinning inside of me
Every day sends future to past
Every step brings me closer to my last


Pull me under Pull me under
Pull me under I'm not afraid
Living my life too much in in the sun
Only until your will is done


HAMLET Not so, my lord; I am too much i' the sun.
[in response to Claudius's comment on clouds, above.]


Oh that this too
Too solid flesh
Would melt


[Direct quote]
HAMLET O, that this too too solid flesh would melt
Thaw and resolve itself into a dew!

[Yep.  There it is.  The best literary comparison in the entire document, and I didn't even write it.  Ladies and Gentlemen, your literary tour guide for the day, Mike Bahr!]

3.6 What is "Another Day" about?


We get help from the video here: it is about autism or some other form of psychological communicative disorder. There are a few theories being bounced around YML (and any that can be backed up will be included here) but they generally connect on the psychological meaning.

["We get help?"  Who did I think I was, Victor Hugo?  "And now, dear reader, we turn to the matter of the progressive metal composition Another Day..."]


3.7 What is "Surrounded" about?


During the IAW tour they dedicated the song to Arthur Ashe, the tennis player who died of AIDS. However, the song seems more about enlightenment (in several forms) than death. The fact that Ashe was the first African-American tennis player to succeed in the sport supports this hypothesis.


3.8 What story is "Metropolis part I: The Miracle and the Sleeper" based on?


It is based on the story of two twins from the Iliad (? or is it the Odyssey?) who are telepathically linked. It has no relation to the movie "Metropolis". Petrucci wrote it as a sort of fantasy epic, inspired by the likes of, you guessed it, Yes and Rush. The story itself is original (the twins are named Miracle and Sleeper and do not appear in literature) but the story type was Homeric.


3.9 What is "Wait For Sleep" about? Who is the girl/woman in "Wait For Sleep"?


Kevin Moore has said she was a friend of his who had a spiritual void and a hard time filling it, reaching for something to believe in. It dealt with her fears about belief and her grief over a loved one's death. His explanation is longer, but that about says it.

[I will now bang my head on my desk.]


3.10 What is "Learning to Live" about?


This has been the bigger topic of discussion on the YML because Myung has commented briefly on it and Portnoy has, while not wanting to confirm it, indicated that the premise is correct in an interview. Learning to Live was inspired by the AIDS epidemic. Patricularly, the "From a common fear ... reach for life" passage, but the rest fits very snugly with the AIDS theme.

[Wow.  How afraid were we to just say "it's about AIDS" back in '93?  It seems impossible today to imagine AIDS being a hot-button political issue as it was then.  Hopefully, this evolution in the discourse has come about due to the prevalence of excellent information teaching that AIDS is a medical issue, a disease that could strike anyone, and not the mark of a dirty, wicked sinner.  Incidentally, the lyrics I should have quoted there are absolutely fantastic, and evoke the despair and isolation of the AIDS sufferer like nothing else I've ever heard:
Once again, we dance in the crowd
At times a step away
From a common fear that's all spread out
It won't listen to what you say
Once you're touched, you stand alone
To face the bitter fight
Once I reached for love
And now I reach for life.
Maybe now that Mike Portnoy has hung up his lyric-writing pen, John Myung will have another go at it.  Dream Theater could certainly do a lot worse than publishing more of the above.]


3.11 What is a "Vindaloo"?


A Bombay Vindaloo is a hot spicy herb/pepper served on Indian food, usually chicken. It is also taken after drinks. My guess is DT got blasted in Europe and got to try this most interesting spice.


3.12 What was the original title of "Surrounded"?


Promotional cassettes for Images And Words had Surrounded labeled as "The Longest Night" on the sleeve.


3.13 What is Take The Time about?


The band wrote this as a joint effort just before LaBrie joined them, so the meanings are many and esoteric. However, in an interview, Portnoy has said it is just what it implies. You'll find all you need in your mind if you take the time.


One of the YML subscribers had a very good correlation going on with part of TTT and J.R.R. Tolkien's Lord of the Rings. Since those parts of the song are heavy in the relation and the rest are not, it is safe to assume that only one of the four used a Tolkien influence in penning their part of the lyrics. The middle passage (Unbroken spirit, obscured in disquiet... must turn to hope) was the clincher. Mike Portnoy indicated that TTT is definitely NOT a concept song in the way that Pull Me Under is about what Hamlet is about (which is obvious) or Learning to Live is about AIDS (also rather clear), but that it has a spectrum of influence and that since Petrucci wrote the section in question, the influence could very well have been conceptual. Nobody has asked Mike if LotR is in there, though.

[That's some good police work there, Lou.]

3.14 Where is the sampled voice in "A Fortune In Lies" from?


Mike Portnoy recorded it off a television documentary about the prison system.


3.15 What are the sampled passages at the beginning of "Take The Time"?


They are samples of Beastie Boys and Public Enemy and read as follows: "Hold it now (medium)" "Wait a minute (low)" "Come on (high pitch)" The middle voice is actually Frank Zappa.


3.16 What is being said in Italian in "Take the Time" and where is it from?


It's Italian for "Now that I'm blind, I can see much clearer." It was from the film "Cinema Paradiso" as the following:


"Adesso che ho
perso la vista,
ci vedo meglio
e di piu"


It's Not a coincidence that LaBrie sings "I can see much clearer now I'm blind" right before the sample.


3.17 What are the lyrics to "Eve" and where are they from?


They are from "Portrait of an Artist as a Young Man" by James Joyce. The "moo cow" part is from somewhere else, the "ivory tower" part from somewhere else still, and the "Our Father" part from the Lord's Prayer. The transcription is as follows.


[soft piano]
Chapter One. Once upon a time, and a very good time it was,
There was a moo cow coming along down the road.


[instrumental]
So He came Himself in weakness, not in power,
And He sent thee, the creature, in His stead.
With the creature's comeliness, and luster,
Suited to our state.


[brief break]
And now, thy very face and form dear mother
Speak to us of the eternal.
Not like earthly beauty, dangerous to look upon;
But like the morning star, which is thy heirloom,
Bright, and musical, breathing purity,
Telling of Heaven and its easing peace.


[brief break]
O harbinger of day! O light of the pilgrim!
Lead us still, as thou hast led,
In the dark night, across the bleak wilderness;
Guide us on to our Lord Jesus; guide us home.


[instrumental]
"Tower of Ivory?" they used to say, "House of Gold?"
"How could a woman be a tower of ivory or a house of gold?"


[instrumental]
Our Father, who art in Heaven, hallowed be thy name,
Lead us not into temptation, and deliver us from evil.


[fadeout]


This has been used live as an intro to both Pull Me Under (on the Dance of Eternity bootleg, which is also the most complete version) and Learning to Live (at any number of shows, including both Phoenix shows of March and May 1993, among others, and skips the Tower of Ivory part) The above is the composite transcription. At times, it has been performed without the voice samples altogether.


3.18 What is unique about the song "A Change of Seasons"?


Several things. First of all, it's the only lyric work Mike Portnoy has ever done. (of course, it is not the only vocal work Mike has done... Mike had the dubious priviledge of singing the end of "Surrounded" after James walked off the stage at one of the England shows) Second of all, it's the longest DT song at 20:42. It barely misses matching the longest Rush song on CD (2112, which is 20:47) and the longest Rush song on LP (2112, which was 21:12). This is a distinction because it's very rare to find bands comfortable with lengthy formats. Third of all, it's the only song that had LaBrie singing in it that has ONLY been recorded live, as in, not for any album. The other four songs that hold the live distinction are instrumentals.

[More dated information.  Portnoy wrote many songs between then and 2009.  The longest Dream Theater song is the Six Degrees of Inner Turbulence suite, at almost 45 minutes, or, if you prefer standalones, In the Presence of Enemies at 26 minutes.  Seasons has been released as a studio track, and the band has played many, many songs live that have not been released in the studio, mostly covers.]


3.19 Has anybody noticed the re-usable riff phenomenon?


Yes. Pull Me Under and Take The Time share a melody, which is not quite a riff but is identical if juxtapositioned on a corresponding major/minor scale, and Wait For Sleep and Learning to Live also share a main riff. Thematically, none of the songs interconnect. Mike Portnoy has said that the music is written out before the lyrics are written and set to melody. It is possible (any interviews mention this?) that they were intended to be counterparts and that the relation was either scrapped or made more subtle. The PMU-TTT connection is not as direct as the WFS-LTL connection. The melody from PMU's "This World is spinning around me, this world is spinning without me" in a minor scale sung by LaBrie is reproduced at 4:18 of the TTT instrumental section in a major scale played by Petrucci. Thus, the remaining question is whether or not 16-note melodies are reproduced completely in coincidence on the same album by the same band.


3.20 Has anybody noticed the Another Song phenomenon?


Yes. DT has a knack, it would seem, for Another Song titles. Another Won (from the Majesty demos), Another Day (from Images And Words) and Another Hand (prologue to The Killing Hand live and on LATM) are the factors of this phenomenon. At this rate, the leadoff track from DT's next album will be called "Another Try" or something like that. Another Hand is mainly just a bridge intro to "The Killing Hand" but it's a titled segment just the same.

[Both complete coincidences, per Mike Portnoy.  Perhaps someone should have just asked him instead of waiting for him to discover it in the FAQ years later and comment on it.]


3.21 Who wrote "(To Live) Forever"?


John Petrucci.


3.22 What is "A Fortune In Lies" about?


According to Mike, it was about a friend of theirs who was busted for stealing, and the experience he gleaned from it.


3.23 Did the demos "Death of Spock" and "Cry For Freedom" ever go anywhere?


Yes. They became "The Ones Who Help to Set the Sun" and the leeward end of "A Change of Seasons".


4. Brief discography

[Omitted because it has no literary value and is merely a list of known material, which has since been not only corrected but far superseded by such sources as Wikipedia.]


[END]

[And that's it!  I can hardly contain my blushing at the poor quality of the writing, but as a historical document, I am actually excited to have unearthed this oldest surviving work.  Perhaps in the distant, imaginary tomorrow, when I have published a dozen best-sellers and am enjoying my solid-gold house and rocket car, people will read this and tremble in reverence at its historic significance.  Or perhaps they will howl with laughter.  I mean, that's certainly what I would do.]