Classic Songs to Be Discovered, Derivative Works, Influenced, Music, My Stories

Trial Of Tears – Dream Theater

Trial of Tears is from the Falling Into Infinity album released in 1997.

The Falling Into Infinity album is a controversial subject for Dream Theater fans. Some say it is incredible, others cry that it was a sell out and others say it’s crap. Mike Portnoy said he hated it, and that by releasing the Official Bootleg of the album in a Double CD format, he felt that he has corrected that hate and given the album its due justice. If the other members agree with that statement is an entirely different matter.

Trial of Tears is a three movement song. John Myung owns this song. His groovy bass lines are all over it and for any aspiring bass player, this is a song that should be in your bible of bass songs to learn.

I: It’s Raining

The vocal melody on the chorus below is George Harrison’s While My Guitar Gently Weeps. It comes back again in the third movement.

It’s raining
It’s raining
On the streets of New York City
It’s raining
It’s raining
Raining deep in heaven

I can picture myself in New York City and allowing the rain to fall on me. That is the connection that the melody makes with me.

As I walk through all my myths
Rising and sinking like the waves
With my thoughts wrapped around me
Through a trial of tears

Wow, what a verse. How many different masks do we wear in life? How many myths do we create around us? Are these myths there to make us feel better about ourselves or do we create these myths just to fit in. In the end it all ends with a trial of tears.

Hidden by disguise, stumbling in a world
Feeling uninspired, he gets into his car
Not within his eyes to see, open up, open up
Not much better than the man you hate

James LaBrie’s voice has been a topic of many discussions I have had about Dream Theater however in Trial of Tears he nails this bridge part. He is barking it out, pushing his throat until it blows. It fits with the music to a tee.

II: Deep In Heaven

The instrumental section of the song is a mash up of influences. Coming into it, at the 5.58 mark, Dream Theater is referencing Metropolis I: The Miracle and The Sleeper from the Images and Words album, and then during the guitar lead break from 6.12 to 8.10 the bass groove is reminiscent to Learning To Live (again from Images and Words) and also Yes – Heart Of The Sunrise.

Then from 8.11 to 10.04 the bass line lays a funky groove in a style very similar to the verse riff in Take The Time which is also from Images and Words.

Overall it is a great jam session and it reminds me of the Kevin Moore era of Dream Theater. Derek Sherinian and Kevin Moore had similar abilities on the keys, however the big difference between them is that Kevin Moore brought songs to the table, with lyrics and vocal melodies.

III. The Wasteland

When The Wasteland section kicks in at the 10.05 mark, I am immediately reminded of George Harrison’s, While My Guitar Gently Weeps. It’s perfect. A sense of familiarity and also something that is new.

Welcome to the wasteland
Where you’ll find ashes, nothing but ashes

I remember hearing this back in 1997 and my mind picturing this great garbage dump where peoples’ dreams, possessions, hopes and memories end up and that there is a massive machine that is churning it out into massive piles of ash. Again LaBrie is firing on all cylinders.

Rising, sinking, raining deep inside me
Nowhere to turn,
I look for a way back home

I took the above to mean that the rain was never physical rain outside. It was always a storm inside the persons soul. For a long time, the person controlled it and then one day the rain/storm exploded. Now the rain falls as a metaphor for the tears that fall when someone passes away.

It’s raining, raining, raining deep in heaven

How effective is the above line, done over and over again? The way the music picks up around it, it gives me a sense of hope and that everything will be okay.

Trial of Tears is another John Myung’s masterpiece. This song is not the heaviest Dream Theater song however it is one song that has heaps of melody around it. Words can’t describe the emotions this song stirs, so let your ears do the listening and give it the time of day.

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A to Z of Making It, Music, My Stories

Dream Theater has a listening party and invites the fans this time around – That’s what I’m talking about.

The Dream Theater post on the band having a listening party and forgetting to invite their fans was the most viewed post on the Destroyer of Harmony blog. It even started The Great Debate on a Dream Theater forum. Knee jerk reactions from forum members Misunderstood the intentions of the post.

As a fan, it is with a sense of renewed optimism to see Dream Theater rewarding London fans with a chance to listen to the album with John Petrucci and James LaBrie. Did the post on this blog cause this change of heart? Maybe it did. I will own it.

So what does this new listening party mean?

Dream Theater will give ten fans a chance to hear the new album. Casual fans will not be queuing up for this. It will be their super fans that will Take The Time to email. These same fans will have walked the Rite Of Passage and purchased the Lifting Shadows book each time it has been released.

They will have seen the band live every time they have visited and they will have purchased all of the Official album releases, DVD releases, Official Bootleg releases and merchandise. This is a chance for Dream Theater to form an everlasting connection with these super fans. Studies released have shown that super fans are worth about $700 to a band on a yearly basis. These same studies have shown that these super fans once enabled are better than any marketing PR firm. Just Google, “Hypebot Superfans”.

When Dream Theater started off back in the late 1980’s, the marketing was the actual narrative that would sell the product. Fast forward to 2013 and Dream Theater started off their marketing campaign in the same way as 1988. It’s good to see that the marketing plan has switched to the actual product, as the current day marketing is the actual product itself. Otherwise, the product will end up like Megadeth’s Supercollider, outsold by the Metallica Black album that is 22 years old regardless of the narrative that Dave Mustaine puts on it about being his best work as it is an album that has come from his heart, not his mind.

Perception is all that matters these days. If people start to believe that a band doesn’t care about their fans or if they have lost control of their career, then they are done, regardless of what the numbers say in relation to sales, tour and merchandise grosses.

Kudo’s to Petrucci and Co.

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