Dream Theater - SECC, Glasgow, Sun 11 Oct (4 stars)

Dream Theater - SECC, Glasgow, Sun 11 Oct

Progressive metal godfathers Dream Theater are here tonight for their Progressive Nation tour, and they bring with them some buddies who share their insatiable love for odd-timings and guitar wankery. Sub-headliners Opeth impress with their melancholic, melodic yet extremely metal set, but tonight is really all about the headliners from New York.

The stage bubbles with the sound of thunder before the curtain drops and ‘A Nightmare to Remember’ careers through the speakers. The crowd bop – then settle into zombie-like awe – as this virtuosic band slay and also sway through the 16-minute opener.

And they manage to preserve the soft and heavy dichotomy throughout, from ‘Solitary Shell’, a lilting prog-rock jaunt and a true sing-a-long, to the earthy stomper ‘A Rite of Passage’.

Thankfully these five men don’t take themselves too seriously, with drummer Mike Portnoy playing up to the on-stage cameras and comedic animations on the gargantuan screens. Their personalities seep through, something not always associated with this type of complex music, giving those who are a little overwhelmed by the noodling something to take home on an evening of 13/8 timings and keytars.


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