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Dream Theater - October 10, 2009 - Wembley Arena, London, England

By: Ken McGrath

The outside of Wembley Arena is surprisingly quiet as Blistering.com approaches and once inside, after spending about ten minutes trying to find out where the fuck it’s going, and realises why: Opeth have been on for ages. The last few minutes of “Hex Omega” are like a kick in the balls, driving home the point of what’s just been missed. Guess that last “Sure we’ve time for another beer” before heading to the show was a bad idea.

Still though, once Dream Theater come out to a jam-packed crowd, all disappointment is laid firmly to one side, least it’s knocked over by this massive, rolling prog juggernaut. Sure, you may scoff at Dream Theater, and probably have done so in the past, but since signing to Roadrunner Records a few years back, their star has once again been on the up. They may never be cool, but they can pack the crowds in, and inspire devotion. Some may be here tonight to watch closely and make sure that there are no bum notes, but they’re bound to be in the minority, especially since DT are intent on banging out a rocking set.

Sure their behaviour is sometimes ridiculous, at one stage keyboardist Jordan Rudess begins playing a keyboard solo/battle against a computerised version of himself, but that’s part of the charm. It’s a step into the slightly insane. Drumming powerhouse Mike ‘The Port’ Portnoy even admit it at one stage, saying his drum kit is “stupid” and far too big for one man. So what does he do? He brings out each of the three support band’s sticksmen leading to a four-man drum solo. An absolute high point that has eyes boggling. Fuck, even “Withered,” which is a terrible ballad on record, comes across brilliantly. All in all, a cracker of a show, if only Opeth had started a little bit later (sigh).


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