Dream Theater – 10 shows in 10 years = Happy Darren!

This is mostly for my own reference than anything but I hope that some other peeps enjoy this.

What is this exactly? Well, last night I got to see the mighty Dream Theater for the 10th time in 10 years (and a month) which is super awesome so I am going to do an analysis of everything I’ve got to see over my time seeing them (including 73 complete full DT songs, 7 parts of DT songs, 2 covers and a drum solo!).

So where do we start? Well let’s start with the songs I’ve seen the MOST live. For this I am only including FULL songs to start with then we’ll add in the parts too.

Number one of the list –happily- is Caught In A Web from Awake. It’s the 20th anniversary of Awake this year so even more awesome it is top of the charts with 5 times seen live. That’s 50% of DT gigs! Unfortunately we go from a personal favourite to two of my most hated DT songs. That’s Constant Motion and Forsakem, also 5 times each. Things get better in the 4 times category; As I Am, In The Presence of Enemies (Pt. 1) and possibly my favourite DT song and fave none Mike Oldfield song ever Metropolis Pt. 1. Those 6 songs I’ve seen a combined 28 times! Crazy numbers!

Let’s add in the parts of songs and see what that does, shall we? Just to clarify the parts are when they’ve thrown a section of another song into a song OR when they’ve done a medley.

The best thing about this is that Metropolis Pt. 1 jumps up to 6 times and means it is the most heard song (YAAAAY!!), Learning to Live jumps up to 5 times which also makes it the most part song heard (with 4!), Finally Free joins the 4 ranks as does Trial of Tears. Good work there I feel!

Now let’s do an album breakdown! How many songs have I seen from each album? I know right now before I even start going though it that I’ve seen the WHOLE of Awake and Images and Words live (YEEEEEES!!) so hoping for a few more surprises! So in Alphabetical order:

AWAKE – 10/10 Yup, I’VE SEEN IT ALL! Last night finally got to see The Mirror, Lie (two of the songs been TRYING to see since the first time saw them. EVERY time I saw them for 6 years they’d play them the night before or the night after…) as well as Lifting Shadows Off A Dream (which was just AMAZING) and Space-Dye Vest. Never thought would see that one live!!

Caught In A Web – 5, Erotomania, Voices – 3, Scarred – 2, 6.00, Lie, Lifting Shadows Off A Dream, Space-Dye Vest, The Mirror, The Silent Man – 1

BLACK CLOUDS AND SILVER LININGS – 3/6 Just the 3 off this one. Granted that is half of the album but unfortunately only 1 of the songs I’ve actually wanted to see.

A Rite of Passage -2, The Count of Tuscany, The Shattered Fortress – 1

A DRAMATIC TURN OF EVENTS – 6/9 Not bad going as it’s an album I very much enjoy! Yet to see my favourite song off the album mind (This Is The Life) but maybe next time!

On The Backs of Angels – 3, Breaking All Illusions – 2, Bridges in the Sky, Build Me Up Break Me Down, Far From Heaven, Outcry – 1

DREAM THEATER – 5/8 Now then, I’m not including False Awakening Suite in this, hence the 8 songs not 9, but either way good work considering this is album they’re currently touring. I’ve actually had The Looking Glass stuck in my head since the show… Not bad considering I am not even a fan of the song!

Along For The Ride, Enigma Machine, Illumination Theory, The Enemy Inside, The Looking Glass – 1

FALLING INTO INFINITY – 3/11 (4/15) Right… This is tough because FII has a story attached where they ended up righting a TON of material but the label got all pissy and changed a load of it so the actual album is heavily diluted.  Technically speaking I’ve only seen Peruvian Skies and Trial of Tears as the album versions. Hollow Years saw the Demo version (or the good version if you prefer!) and Speak to Me (which is one of my fave DT songs!) is not on the album but on the Demos. I massively recommend any DT fans to track down the Demo album as it’s FAR better than the final album.

Hollow Years (Original), Peruvian Skies – 2, Trial of Tears -2 (4), Speak to Me – 1

IMAGES AND WORDS – 8/8 BOOM!  The album that made Dream Theater and got to see the whole album live in Newcastle in June 2007 (the final time saw them as a truly happy fellow too which makes the gig that extra bit special) plus bits of it all over the place.

Metropolis Pt. 1 (The Miracle and the Sleeper) – 4 (6), Another Day, Surrounded, Under A Glass Moon – 3, Wait For Sleep – 2, Learning to Live – 1 (5), Pull Me Under, Take The Time – 1

OCTAVARIUM – 6/8 I’ll be honest. I am not a big fan of this album but I have at least got to see 2 of the 3 songs I REALLY like off the album live so bonus!

Panic Attack – 2, Never Enough, The Root of All Evil, Sacrificed Sons, These Walls – 1, Octavarium – 1 (3)

SCENES FROM A MEMORY – 9/12 Wow! This one has surprised me in a very good way! I think this number will say as 9 unfortunately as the three I am missing aren’t songs that work so well out of context… Here’s hoping they’ll do the whole album for the 20th anniversary!

Beyond This Life, Strange Deja Vu – 3, Finally Free – 2 (4), Home, Overture 1928, The Spirit Carries On – 2, Fatal Tragedy, The Dance of Eternity, Through My Words – 1

SIX DEGREES OF INNER TURBULENCE – 4/5 + 3/8 Annoyingly I am yet to see Disappear from the first disc which is one of my favourite songs , however, I love the first disc so to get 4/5 is very cool! Doubt will get much more from the second disc much to my sadness!

Misunderstood, Solitary Shell, The Great Debate -2, Blind Faith, The Glass Prison, The Test That Stumped Them All, War Inside My Head – 1

SYSTEMATIC CHAOS – 6/8 Another album I am not massively keen on. When it’s good it is Excellent though so got kinda lucky with it!

Constant Motion, Forsaken – 5 (urgh!), In The Presence of Enemies Pt. 1 – 4 (Yay!), The Dark Eternal Night – 3, In The Presence of Enemies Pt. 2 – 2, The Ministry of Lost Souls – 1

TRAIN OF THOUGHT – 5/7 – Phwoar! What an album! Hoping one day to see the missing two as I love them both VERY much! Very happy with these numbers though! They’ve even only played the songs not too keen on once and the ones I like the most lots!

As I Am – 4, Endless Sacrifice – 3, This Dying Soul -2, Honor Thy Father – 1 In The Name of God – 1 (3)

WHEN DREAM AND DAY UNITE – 3/8 + 1. Another slightly funny one as only seen 3 songs off the album live but also saw a song that wasn’t officially on the album –the very first DT song no less!-  although yet to see my fave off this one live. One day maybe!

A Fortune in Lies – 2, Another Won, Only A Matter of Time, The Ytse Jam – 1


A few extra bits they’ve done live including Also Sprach Zarathustra by Strauss (2), Mike Mangini Drum Solo (2), Death on Two Legs by Queen (1) and part of Change of Seasons (2)

Ergo, in total seen Dream Theater perform a total of 153 songs (or parts of songs) over the last 10 years which means an average of 15 songs per gig and a hell of a lot of happiness. I certainly doubt I could have coped with everything that’s happened over the years without their music and especially the live stuff.  The 10th November 2007 gig in particular as that was the night I met the whole band just 11 days after my sister passed away, it was also the night they played The Spirit Carries On for the first time I’d seen it. Needless to say I wept but it really helped me carry on, I guess it’s why the band are still so important to me as a person and why the shows are –to quote James LaBrie- Especially special.

I think it is fitting to finish with some lyrics from Along For The Ride as last night was part of the Along For The Ride tour.

‘I can’t stop the world from turning around or the pull of the moon on the tide. But I don’t believe that we’re in this alone. I believe we’re along for the ride’