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.

Standard
A to Z of Making It, Copyright, Derivative Works, Influenced, Music, My Stories

Progress Is Derivative – The Welcome Home (Sanitarium) Debate

Remember my definition of Progress Is Derivative – taking the best things of what has come before and merging those things all together to come up with something unique, original and innovative.

Case Study for today is Metallica and their song Welcome Home (Sanitarium) from the album Master of Puppets released in 1986.

INTRO (0.00 to 0.20)
Let’s start with the natural harmonics intro. Back in 1971, a certain progressive rock band called Yes released Roundabout. The intro is more or less a droning note, with some harmonics and a hammer on/pull off lick on the E string. Remember Progress is Derivative. Take something from the past and make it better.

INTRO 2 and VERSE (0.21 to 1.48) and (2.10 to 3.10)
Anyone heard of a New Wave of British Heavy Metal (NWOBHM) band called Bleak House? If the answer is NO, then you are in the majority. However, a certain person called Lars Ulrich has heard of this band. James Hetfield has even said in an interview that the band shall remain anonymous. So Bleak House release a song called “Rainbow Warrior” as a seven-inch single in 1980 via Buzzard Records. By 1982, the band called it a day. The intro riff of Rainbow Warrior is catchy. It was so good that James Hetfield and Lars Ulrich are influenced by it. They start to jam on it and they start to tweak it into Welcome Home (Sanitarium). Remember Progress is Derivative. Take something from the past and make it better. Hetfield and Ulrich made this riff the centrepiece of Sanitarium.

OUTRO (4.05 to 4.26) and (04.48 to end)
Remember a little three piece band from Canada called Rush and a song called Tom Sawyer. Metallica have taken the intro from Tom Sawyer and used it as their outro. The feel and the phrasing of the two songs are almost identical. The note selection are just a touch different. Remember Progress is Derivative. Take something from the past and make it unique, innovative and original.

Welcome Home (Sanitarium) is a derivative version of three different songs accumulated into one song. This is what music is all about. Should Metallica have credited Graham Killin, the guitarist and main songwriter of the band Bleak House and the writer of Rainbow Warrior. My answer is No.

The final say goes to Graham Killin. The quote below is from an interview he did with John Tucker in November 2012, on the website http://www.hrrecords.de

‘Dad! You’ve got to go after them for this. They’re using your stuff and you’re not getting royalties for it!’ Killin can’t hide his amusement at the thought. The irony of the situation is that ‘Bleak House’, the novel from which the band took their name, has at its heart a lengthy legal argument that consumes everyone and everything. “So every now and then it’s a little topic that crops up in conversation, y’know? And I think ‘would it actually be worth approaching a music solicitor and saying that as it’s my intellectual property would I stand any chance of getting anything?’” he laughs again. “Who knows?”

Standard