Prog Metal Giants Dream Theater are back once again after their eleventh studio album A Dramatic Turn of Events which was released in 2011 with a notable personnel change and that was of course Mike Mangini replacing Mike Portnoy on the drums. Personally I've got no problem with Mangini's playing and he fits this band but no matter which way you slice it, Mike Portnoy is probably the greatest metal drummer of all time so any replacement would have not been widely accepted by the cult Dream Theater following. A Dramatic Turn of Events was rather ordinary and nothing special musically. The problem with this these guys having been around since 1985 is that they have pretty much been everywhere musically and although there is always room for innovation, Dream Theater really seem to be dabbling with the same musical tendencies that they have been using for the past few decades and that is still the case with this new single for their self-titled release, "The Enemy Inside".
Not much can be really said for this track. Everything is the same as it has always been with Dream Theater for the past ten years or so. With Scenes From a Memory they seemed to find their comfort zone and their niche audience and they really haven't strayed far from that due to the loyalty of their very specific fan base. The guitars are crunchy and heavy and the drums are loud and in your face and overall the band sounds better than ever but it really feels like the same old song and dance at this point. Even with the change of drummers, Dream Theater is still sticking to the same formula. I understand they want to keep their fanbase intact but I wonder if they ever get bored. Clearly it is still working because they still sell out shows all over the world but there will always be those Dream Theater fans who will like any new Dream Theater material no matter what it sounds like. I personally think that the artist is never above their own music and that the songs dictate how well an artist is doing. In this case, with their latest single it is clear to me that Dream Theater are powering through the same way they have been for the last 20 years and although I'm sure it will work and a grand number of fans will buy their self titled release in September, something in the creativity department has really gone stale with this band.