January 31st, 2017 was already going to be an eventful day before it was announced that, prior to the Neal Morse show that night, Mike Portnoy would be doing a meet and greet at Steve's Music Store on St. Antoine. I have been following Dream Theater since I discovered the Six Degrees of Inner Turbulene album and got hooked by the song “The Glass Prison”, which blew my mind completely. I finally got the meet Mike Portney, the man behind the giant kit. He was a really nice, outgoing, and friendly guy. I got to tell him about how much of a main influence he is on my music, and how I play in an Opeth tribute band.
Afterwards, I headed to the venue. Even after waiting about four hours to get inside, it was worth it.
The Show opened up with a prologue orchestration that gave me chills down my spine, as if you would hear it off Scenes From A Memory from Dream Theater.
Kicking into “Long Day”, Neal had a flashlight in his hand facing upward toward his face. Neal's performance was outstanding and quite emotional. Going into “Overture” showcased the many different songs that were on the album to be played throughout the night, including “Back To The City” which is one of my personal favourites off the album.
The execution of their performance was out of this world. The amount of things going on at once was mindblowing to see, and this had to have been some of the most talented people I have ever seen perform in concert. I was really impressed on how much chemistry there was on stage with every single one of the band members.
The entire first disc was enjoyable to see live. “City Of Destruction”, “Makes No Sense”,' “Draw The Line”, “The Slough” “Back To The City” and “The Ways Of A Fool”' were all unbelievable.
I was not much of a big fan of disc two but I really enjoyed seeing “The Man In The Iron Cage” live.
Overall, if you were not back in the city to see Neal Morse band, you missed out on a completely amazing rendition of the Similartude of a Dream Tour.
Photo credit: Phil Aveline