Dream Theater to play Images and Words

The art rock band celebrates the 25th anniversary of their breakthrough album

The American progressive-rock band Dream Theater will play in Prague's Forum Karlín on Feb. 6 as part of their European tour called Images, Words & Beyond. The group promises a three-hour show to mark their 25th anniversary of their 1992 sophomore album Images and Words. It is their most commercially and critically successful album to date. The group actually formed in 1985 in Boston, and had a 30th anniversary tour in 2015.

In the upcoming tour, Dream Theater promises to play Images and Words in its entirety, plus popular favorites from across their catalog. Prague will be the sixth stop on the tour, which starts June 30 in Rome and wraps up in May 16 in Poland.

Fans can expect a “smart, fully immersive, experiential journey through otherworldly soundscapes from each and every live performance,” Dream Theater states on their website.

Musically, progressive-hard rock band Dream Theater stands somewhere in between Metallica and Pink Floyd. Their sound draws as much from heavy metal as it does from orchestral and pop music. It has also remained original throughout the band's three decades, which have generated 19 albums that have sold over 12 million copies worldwide.

The band had a bit of a shakeup in 2010 when drummer, Mike Portnoy left to start his own musical projects. He was one of the group's co-founders and also co-produced six of their albums. Portnoy was replaced by Mike Mangini.

The other founding members are John Petrucci on guitar and John Myung on bass. They and Portnoy met at Berklee College of Music in Boston, and dropped out to pursue their musical vision.

The lineup now includes vocalist James LaBrie, who has been with the band since 1990, and keyboard player Jordan Rudess, who has been with them since 1999.

The band was looking for a new singer before they began recording Images and Words, and that drawn-out process resulted in LaBrie joining after a search of more than a year. The band also changed recording labels during that time.

Guitarist Petrucci told music site Metal Insider that the band did not have high expectations for Images and Words, since their first album had not been very successful. They were simply happy to be back recording. “We were just ecstatic to be able to do it again. We didn't even think it was going to amount to anything, we were just incredibly grateful to be back in the studio,” he told the website.

The band recently finished a successful US tour to promote their latest release called The Astonishing, which follows up on the band's zest for concept albums and tells the conflict between the Ravenskill rebel militia and the Great Northern Empire of the Americas in a dystopian future United States. In November last year, American fantasy author Peter Orullian took on the task of writing a novel based on this original story.

For more information, visit www.dreamtheater.net/tour

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