Author Topic: - " The Astonishing " - One Year -- er, FIVE YEARS On.  (Read 98355 times)

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Offline Ben_Jamin

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Re: - " The Astonishing " - One Year -- er, FIVE YEARS On.
« Reply #1295 on: April 02, 2021, 05:00:02 PM »
Well, I don't think the ending of Game of Thrones was as awful as the internet mob thinks it was (it wasn't great, but still enjoyable for the most part, and the final sequence was marvelous), but I am not going to fight that fight again.  :lol :lol

I will still submit that Our New World would have been the perfect end to The Astonishing.  I do not mind the the-less title track, but it feels like a bit of overkill.  Hymn... has that perfect penultimate feel and then Our New World is the great ender. And then there is another song at the end for some reason (preceded by the seemingly pointless Power Down NOMAC track).

I hear ya...The Astonishing song, It's the end of the Opera, the resolve of the epic climax. It's meant to summarize and bring the story to a conclusion, as it resolves all the conflicts of the characters. And the Power Down track symbolizes that after what occurred, there is now no need for NOMACS. Thus...PEACE HAS BEEN RESTORED, MUSIC REIGNS FOREVERMORE!!!
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Offline KevShmev

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Re: - " The Astonishing " - One Year -- er, FIVE YEARS On.
« Reply #1296 on: April 02, 2021, 09:56:21 PM »
I guess. I suppose, for me, since I do not give a darn about the story (I love the record, yet have still never sat down and read the lyrics), I am thinking of it strictly from a musical standpoint, and while Astonishing is a nice enough song, it just has that "we have to have this crazy epic ending" last song, when Our New World felt like a more natural and less contrived album closer, IMO.

Offline gzarruk

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Re: - " The Astonishing " - One Year -- er, FIVE YEARS On.
« Reply #1297 on: April 02, 2021, 11:07:57 PM »
I guess. I suppose, for me, since I do not give a darn about the story (I love the record, yet have still never sat down and read the lyrics), I am thinking of it strictly from a musical standpoint, and while Astonishing is a nice enough song, it just has that "we have to have this crazy epic ending" last song, when Our New World felt like a more natural and less contrived album closer, IMO.

Completely agree with you on this one. PD + Astonishing work well for the context of the story/opera format, but musically ONW is the perfect closer. If I could finish my abridged TA playlist, ONW would be the closer for sure.
It sounds like, "ruk, ruk, ruk, ruk, ruk." Instead of the more pleasing kick drum sound of, "gzarruk, gzarruk, gzarruk, gzarruk."

Offline Mladen

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Re: - " The Astonishing " - One Year -- er, FIVE YEARS On.
« Reply #1298 on: April 03, 2021, 04:01:36 AM »
I agree with the title track tying up the loose ends. It's a good way to finish off the album.  :tup

Offline Enigmachine

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Re: - " The Astonishing " - One Year -- er, FIVE YEARS On.
« Reply #1299 on: April 03, 2021, 04:11:19 AM »
I think even musically, it would feel very strange to finish off such a musically eclectic album with what's a fairly straightforward tune (one that I was never really impressed by in terms of its hook either, with the whole repeat the title over and over again with small variations thing as the chorus) rather than the all encompassing grandeur of the title track. If the album was much more brief in scope, then maybe I could see it.

Offline Lupton

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Re: - " The Astonishing " - One Year -- er, FIVE YEARS On.
« Reply #1300 on: April 03, 2021, 01:40:08 PM »
tbh I think Power Down and Astonishing are prob necessary for the story as it was written. If it was just Our New World as a closer, it'd all feel a bit too sudden, whereas the title track kinda wraps everything up nicely.

I think: Hymn -> Astonishing -> Our New World -> Power Down 

This works slightly better to wrap things up for me. 

Offline Ben_Jamin

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Re: - " The Astonishing " - One Year -- er, FIVE YEARS On.
« Reply #1301 on: April 03, 2021, 01:46:52 PM »
Our New World is the track that lets everyone know, Faythe lives and together with Gabriel and Xander, will now build the new world....and it starts with shutting down the NOMACS.

Also, forgot to mention The Astonishing song ties up the loose ends by it being an end summarization of the themes. As each character speaks, the music plays their theme. Then we have the epic, ending full cast ensemble all singing together the theme of The Astonishing, which is introduced in the intro of this song, which is Faythes, Gabriel's, Ahrys, and Nefaryus themes all woven into one.

All those themes are what drive this album and each time each character speaks it's either this theme or a variation of their theme. A great example is in The Walking Shadow when you know it's Faythe because when the music comes to a calm, it's playing Faythes Theme, before the drums and guitars come in signifying Daryus' theme.
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Offline IDontNotDoThings

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Re: - " The Astonishing " - One Year -- er, FIVE YEARS On.
« Reply #1302 on: April 04, 2021, 02:38:53 AM »
The Astonishing is already so littered with reprises that the title track feels less like "tying up loose ends" & more like "yeah, I get it already; please end". The Answer reprise is the only one that really engages me, because it actually feels like a development from the original & it's the only time (as far as I know) that the theme repeated in the album.

I prefer the more simplistic ending of Our New World, because I find it so much more memorable, & I'd rather have some things left open to interpretation than add another scene of exposition.

Offline Ben_Jamin

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Re: - " The Astonishing " - One Year -- er, FIVE YEARS On.
« Reply #1303 on: April 04, 2021, 08:37:18 AM »
The Astonishing is already so littered with reprises that the title track feels less like "tying up loose ends" & more like "yeah, I get it already; please end". The Answer reprise is the only one that really engages me, because it actually feels like a development from the original & it's the only time (as far as I know) that the theme repeated in the album.

I prefer the more simplistic ending of Our New World, because I find it so much more memorable, & I'd rather have some things left open to interpretation than add another scene of exposition.

Those reprises are called Themes. And The Answer is Gabriel's theme as it's the first time we get to hear Gabriel. Which it expands, in When Your Time Has Come, and its in Chosen. "I don't pretend to have the answer, Never said I held the key" is similar too "And there's a reason now I see, The reason I've been chosen"

Also, "But I can't climb this mountain without you
No I can't face this on my own
With you by my side we will open his eyes
And the truth will deliver us home" The piano here as Gabriel's Theme which is similar to the guitar of The Answer.

It's not littered with Reprises. It's littered with repeated themes, as all these themes are what make up The Astonishing.
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Offline IDontNotDoThings

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Re: - " The Astonishing " - One Year -- er, FIVE YEARS On.
« Reply #1304 on: April 04, 2021, 04:52:55 PM »
You know what I meant. :yeahright

The point is that I felt they were done in a very un-subtle way in the title track that I don't think is very engaging. It is cool that The Answer theme is repeated in a few different subtle ways that don't feel like carbon copies, because that allows it to do its job without having such diminishing returns.

I love a good noticeable reprise/theme in a prog album, but if it's done as many times as the brother theme in TA, it does start to feel a bit tedious, & I'd rather have it be done is a less obvious way.

Offline Ben_Jamin

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Re: - " The Astonishing " - One Year -- er, FIVE YEARS On.
« Reply #1305 on: April 04, 2021, 11:39:58 PM »
You know what I meant. :yeahright

The point is that I felt they were done in a very un-subtle way in the title track that I don't think is very engaging. It is cool that The Answer theme is repeated in a few different subtle ways that don't feel like carbon copies, because that allows it to do its job without having such diminishing returns.

I love a good noticeable reprise/theme in a prog album, but if it's done as many times as the brother theme in TA, it does start to feel a bit tedious, & I'd rather have it be done is a less obvious way.

I hear ya. For as much as I like Brother Can You Hear Me, just having that as a standalone song for the Brother Theme, is a bit too much. But even at that, It holds a significance to the overall story. It's where Ahrys sits with Gabriel and they show their brotherhood as Gabriel fights with his music as his weapon, Ahrys' stands beside him alongside his brother.

All I am saying and going with I am saying, is that each song has it's significance to the story. And to me, I don't mind it. It's also one reason why I really want this expanded into a full musical play, it could also expand and make these themes more intricate than what they are. Like how the Lion "Reworks" the arrangements of the original songs, while still keeping them close enough to the original from the Disney Film. My disappointment with the musical is how they didn't incorporate Be Prepared, but I understand why they didn't include that part in the play.

It's actually kind of funny actually, because The Astonishing could have been way, way better executed and done. Mainly Lyrically, and a bit story wise. And yet, I've heard people describe Dream Theater the same way, "Dream Theater could've been the best band ever, if they would've implemented better vocals and lyrics", I think the way the vocals were on Images and Words alongside the Lyrics are why it's considered their best and a reason for it being highly received (this is disregarding them hitting the scene at the right moment and time with Pull Me Under), Pull Me Under actually has that, The Vocals and The Lyrics. SFAM has the same thing as well, The Vocals and The Lyrics are executed and done extremely well, and I think giving the lyric duties to each member whom wanted to do lyrics was a great decision. It would've been neat if JP would've asked the others to do this with a character, like each one gets a character to write their lyrics for. OR a song again like they did with SFAM.

But, in the end, I really enjoy that JP decided to go with this alone and trusting in the band to take the task at hand. It being a straight up Dream Theater album is one thing I like about this album as well. That it is a Dream Theater Album. I will keep repeating this, but I do hope one day, it will be done in a way that we all agree could make it just that much more better.
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Offline bosk1

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Re: - " The Astonishing " - One Year -- er, FIVE YEARS On.
« Reply #1306 on: April 07, 2021, 06:25:35 PM »
Yea, this is true. They have said before that when they do sound checks they sometimes come up with riffs and will record them or write them down.

No, that's not really accurate either.  At least in the Mangini era, their soundchecks are always very short, and are almost always just rehearsing the start of the show, and or particular songs (or parts of songs) that they feel they need to go over to prep for the show.  The only deviation I have seen from that is the first D/T show I saw where MM started messing around with the drum beat from 137, and the rest of the band (minus James) joined in.
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Offline Max Kuehnau

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Re: - " The Astonishing " - One Year -- er, FIVE YEARS On.
« Reply #1307 on: April 08, 2021, 03:36:15 AM »
Yea, this is true. They have said before that when they do sound checks they sometimes come up with riffs and will record them or write them down.

No, that's not really accurate either.  At least in the Mangini era, their soundchecks are always very short, and are almost always just rehearsing the start of the show, and or particular songs (or parts of songs) that they feel they need to go over to prep for the show.  The only deviation I have seen from that is the first D/T show I saw where MM started messing around with the drum beat from 137, and the rest of the band (minus James) joined in.
and (IIRC that is) the main groove for PBD (in 19/16) was worked on during soundchecks as well (according to Mike's tutorial on YT, where he mentions it in the beginning)
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Offline hefdaddy42

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Re: - " The Astonishing " - One Year -- er, FIVE YEARS On.
« Reply #1308 on: April 08, 2021, 06:30:01 AM »
In other words, it has HAPPENED, but it is definitely not STANDARD OPERATING PROCEDURE.
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Offline Max Kuehnau

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Re: - " The Astonishing " - One Year -- er, FIVE YEARS On.
« Reply #1309 on: April 08, 2021, 06:43:57 AM »
Yes, I'm sorry.
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Offline hefdaddy42

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Re: - " The Astonishing " - One Year -- er, FIVE YEARS On.
« Reply #1310 on: April 08, 2021, 06:52:17 AM »
Yes, I'm sorry.
Don't be sorry.

Be Max.
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Offline TAC

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Re: - " The Astonishing " - One Year -- er, FIVE YEARS On.
« Reply #1311 on: April 08, 2021, 06:53:51 AM »
He's sorry to the Max.
would have thought the same thing but seeing the OP was TAC i immediately thought Maiden or DT related
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Offline Max Kuehnau

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Re: - " The Astonishing " - One Year -- er, FIVE YEARS On.
« Reply #1312 on: April 08, 2021, 07:05:01 AM »
Thanks for the laughs everyone.
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Re: - " The Astonishing " - One Year -- er, FIVE YEARS On.
« Reply #1313 on: April 08, 2021, 10:11:50 AM »
Twice! I think the ending to Illumination Theory was written during a soundcheck too.

Offline Lupton

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Re: - " The Astonishing " - One Year -- er, FIVE YEARS On.
« Reply #1314 on: April 08, 2021, 01:42:00 PM »
Twice! I think the ending to Illumination Theory was written during a soundcheck too.

Are you referring to the unnamed bonus track AFTER the end or the ending of the song proper itself?

Regarding that: I've always been meaning to break that little Jordan/John doodle off as a separate track, but never got around to ripping the S/T album. It's a nice contemplative, peaceful mood. I'd title it "True Slumbering"* as a bookend to the "False Awakening Suite" which starts the album. 

*I couldn't think of a better word that was the opposite of "awakening" but I'm sure someone else could come up with something more apt.

Offline gzarruk

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Re: - " The Astonishing " - One Year -- er, FIVE YEARS On.
« Reply #1315 on: April 08, 2021, 02:07:06 PM »
IIRC, it wasn't the ending for IT, but that main theme that appears on the intro. I remember JP saying it was something he came up with during a soundcheck.

They never write full songs or try to do it on soundchecks though.
It sounds like, "ruk, ruk, ruk, ruk, ruk." Instead of the more pleasing kick drum sound of, "gzarruk, gzarruk, gzarruk, gzarruk."

Offline jonny108

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Re: - " The Astonishing " - One Year -- er, FIVE YEARS On.
« Reply #1316 on: April 08, 2021, 03:03:34 PM »
IIRC, it wasn't the ending for IT, but that main theme that appears on the intro. I remember JP saying it was something he came up with during a soundcheck.

They never write full songs or try to do it on soundchecks though.

Yes, you are right, the main theme was done at soundchecks but I think they did the ending/outro too. 

@Lupton The ending of the actual song, not the easter egg. 

Offline Lupton

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Re: - " The Astonishing " - One Year -- er, FIVE YEARS On.
« Reply #1317 on: April 08, 2021, 06:40:52 PM »
IIRC, it wasn't the ending for IT, but that main theme that appears on the intro. I remember JP saying it was something he came up with during a soundcheck.

They never write full songs or try to do it on soundchecks though.

Yes, you are right, the main theme was done at soundchecks but I think they did the ending/outro too. 

@Lupton The ending of the actual song, not the easter egg.

 :facepalm:  :D

Alright. I get it now. Thanks for clearing that up!

Offline IDontNotDoThings

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Re: - " The Astonishing " - One Year -- er, FIVE YEARS On.
« Reply #1318 on: April 08, 2021, 08:23:54 PM »
Regarding that: I've always been meaning to break that little Jordan/John doodle off as a separate track, but never got around to ripping the S/T album. It's a nice contemplative, peaceful mood. I'd title it "True Slumbering"* as a bookend to the "False Awakening Suite" which starts the album. 

*I couldn't think of a better word that was the opposite of "awakening" but I'm sure someone else could come up with something more apt.

We're getting a bit off-topic, but I've always called that song "True Awakening", because I imagine that with the album starting with False Awakening Suite, the main content of the album is inside some kind of elaborate dream with different phases (a "dream theater" if you will). Then the calm after the storm is when the dream is over & the person returns to their normal life.

It's not really backed by anything else in the album, but I think it's a nice little headcanon. :D

Offline bosk1

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Re: - " The Astonishing " - One Year -- er, FIVE YEARS On.
« Reply #1319 on: April 08, 2021, 09:01:05 PM »
Regarding that: I've always been meaning to break that little Jordan/John doodle off as a separate track, but never got around to ripping the S/T album. It's a nice contemplative, peaceful mood. I'd title it "True Slumbering"* as a bookend to the "False Awakening Suite" which starts the album. 

*I couldn't think of a better word that was the opposite of "awakening" but I'm sure someone else could come up with something more apt.

We're getting a bit off-topic, but I've always called that song "True Awakening", because I imagine that with the album starting with False Awakening Suite, the main content of the album is inside some kind of elaborate dream with different phases (a "dream theater" if you will). Then the calm after the storm is when the dream is over & the person returns to their normal life.

It's not really backed by anything else in the album, but I think it's a nice little headcanon. :D

Huh.  That's actually pretty cool.  MUCH better than calling it Easter Egg.  I would bet a large sum of money that if you mentioned that to JP, his response would be something like, "Man, I so wish I had thought of that!"  And I say that because of comments I have made to him about music/lyrics where I have been like, "Hey, I just noticed this cool little tie in between X and Y" or "I just noticed this double meaning" or something like that, and he has said, basically, "Oh, that was totally unintentional, but I really wish I had thought of that!"  If fact, to steer back toward the actual thread topic, I found a really cool one in The Astonishing that I was dead sure was intentional, and that was his response.
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Offline KevShmev

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Re: - " The Astonishing " - One Year -- er, FIVE YEARS On.
« Reply #1320 on: April 08, 2021, 09:14:44 PM »
I used Audacity to break the end of the self-titled album into its own mp3 track in my iTunes and have it labeled as "End Credits."   It is nice to have it as its own track, not to mention that I hate it when bands feel the need to have a bunch of silence before some hidden track.  It's not clever or original; it's just aggravating.

Offline Ben_Jamin

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Re: - " The Astonishing " - One Year -- er, FIVE YEARS On.
« Reply #1321 on: April 08, 2021, 09:20:56 PM »
Regarding that: I've always been meaning to break that little Jordan/John doodle off as a separate track, but never got around to ripping the S/T album. It's a nice contemplative, peaceful mood. I'd title it "True Slumbering"* as a bookend to the "False Awakening Suite" which starts the album. 

*I couldn't think of a better word that was the opposite of "awakening" but I'm sure someone else could come up with something more apt.

We're getting a bit off-topic, but I've always called that song "True Awakening", because I imagine that with the album starting with False Awakening Suite, the main content of the album is inside some kind of elaborate dream with different phases (a "dream theater" if you will). Then the calm after the storm is when the dream is over & the person returns to their normal life.

It's not really backed by anything else in the album, but I think it's a nice little headcanon. :D

Huh.  That's actually pretty cool.  MUCH better than calling it Easter Egg.  I would bet a large sum of money that if you mentioned that to JP, his response would be something like, "Man, I so wish I had thought of that!"  And I say that because of comments I have made to him about music/lyrics where I have been like, "Hey, I just noticed this cool little tie in between X and Y" or "I just noticed this double meaning" or something like that, and he has said, basically, "Oh, that was totally unintentional, but I really wish I had thought of that!"  If fact, to steer back toward the actual thread topic, I found a really cool one in The Astonishing that I was dead sure was intentional, and that was his response.

 :rollin :rollin

I believe it too. It's why I wonder if Artists really intended things, and they just go along with whatever fan theory because it's better than what they actually intended.

Also, what part was this?
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Offline bosk1

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Re: - " The Astonishing " - One Year -- er, FIVE YEARS On.
« Reply #1322 on: April 08, 2021, 10:37:05 PM »
Also, what part was this?

It wasn't a musical part.  It was the title of Savior in the Square.  I commented to him that, from a literary analysis standpoint, it was a really cool double meaning.  On the surface, it appears to refer to Gabriel.  He is expressly called the savior, and the song focuses on him.  But at the same time, it marks the first real appearance of Faythe, and her arrival in the square changes everything.  And from a literary perspective, she is a "Christ figure" in that she ends up not only being sort of the catalyst for everyone's "salvation," but also dies and is "resurrected."  So, really cool double meaning how, upon digging deeper, it also actually refers to her.  JP stared at me for a second, and then laughed and said that that was really cool and he wished he thought of that, but it was actually unintentional.
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Offline Ben_Jamin

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Re: - " The Astonishing " - One Year -- er, FIVE YEARS On.
« Reply #1323 on: April 08, 2021, 10:44:45 PM »
Also, what part was this?

It wasn't a musical part.  It was the title of Savior in the Square.  I commented to him that, from a literary analysis standpoint, it was a really cool double meaning.  On the surface, it appears to refer to Gabriel.  He is expressly called the savior, and the song focuses on him.  But at the same time, it marks the first real appearance of Faythe, and her arrival in the square changes everything.  And from a literary perspective, she is a "Christ figure" in that she ends up not only being sort of the catalyst for everyone's "salvation," but also dies and is "resurrected."  So, really cool double meaning how, upon digging deeper, it also actually refers to her.  JP stared at me for a second, and then laughed and said that that was really cool and he wished he thought of that, but it was actually unintentional.

That is interesting.  :lol

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Offline Lupton

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Re: - " The Astonishing " - One Year -- er, FIVE YEARS On.
« Reply #1324 on: April 09, 2021, 03:41:31 AM »
Regarding that: I've always been meaning to break that little Jordan/John doodle off as a separate track, but never got around to ripping the S/T album. It's a nice contemplative, peaceful mood. I'd title it "True Slumbering"* as a bookend to the "False Awakening Suite" which starts the album. 

*I couldn't think of a better word that was the opposite of "awakening" but I'm sure someone else could come up with something more apt.

We're getting a bit off-topic, but I've always called that song "True Awakening", because I imagine that with the album starting with False Awakening Suite, the main content of the album is inside some kind of elaborate dream with different phases (a "dream theater" if you will). Then the calm after the storm is when the dream is over & the person returns to their normal life.

It's not really backed by anything else in the album, but I think it's a nice little headcanon. :D

That's an awesome interpretation, and I can totally feel it! I've officially renamed it thus. Tahnks!!  :metal

Offline JPX

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Re: - " The Astonishing " - One Year -- er, FIVE YEARS On.
« Reply #1325 on: April 20, 2021, 10:46:39 AM »
I remember this album so distinctly because it came out the same week as The Witness and I consumed both together. If anything The Witness makes me think more fondly of The Astonishing because the game is one of the greatest creations of all time IMO. However when I revisit the album now in an isolated capacity, I find myself just skipping to Ravenskill and The Road to Revolution. I've also never been a fan of albums being broken into that many songs, I realize it a concept record, but still, 34 is too many for me.

Like others have said, the story means little to me but I should really commit to full re-listen of the record to see how I feel about it now.
« Last Edit: April 20, 2021, 02:14:57 PM by JPX »

Offline Ben_Jamin

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Re: - " The Astonishing " - One Year -- er, FIVE YEARS On.
« Reply #1326 on: April 20, 2021, 01:07:55 PM »
I remember this album so distinctly because it came out the same week as The Witness and Iconsumed both together. If anything The Witness makes me think more fondly of The Astonishing because the game is one of the greatest creations of all time IMO. However when I revisit the album now in an isolated capacity, I find myself just skipping to Ravenskill and The Road to Revolution. I've also never been a fan of albums being broken into that many songs, I realize it a concept record, but still, 34 is too many for me.

Like others have said, the story means little to me but I should really commit to full re-listen of the record to see how I feel about it now.

It's always good to revisit things, to get a newer perception and to see just how much you have grown and changed since hearing that album.

The funny thing regarding the type of album The Astonishing is, is it's one where it requires an intricate amount of time. The phrase "People just don't have the time for music anymore" is what got JP to make the album, and the focus is on the music telling the story, using it as an emotional aspect. Taking the time to hear the emotions of each character through the music. And that is not for everyone because people just don't have the time for music anymore. And in The Astonishing world, this "time for music" evolved into where music isn't made by humans, it is made my Noise Machines, because their is no "time for music" anymore.

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Offline Lupton

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Re: - " The Astonishing " - One Year -- er, FIVE YEARS On.
« Reply #1327 on: April 20, 2021, 02:35:23 PM »
I remember this album so distinctly because it came out the same week as The Witness and I consumed both together. If anything The Witness makes me think more fondly of The Astonishing because the game is one of the greatest creations of all time IMO. However when I revisit the album now in an isolated capacity, I find myself just skipping to Ravenskill and The Road to Revolution. I've also never been a fan of albums being broken into that many songs, I realize it a concept record, but still, 34 is too many for me.

Like others have said, the story means little to me but I should really commit to full re-listen of the record to see how I feel about it now.

Actually, I do something a similar thing. I listen to Gift of Music through The Answer then skip ahead and listen to Ravenskill through to the end of Act I (even though there are some wonderful bits in the intervening skipped material). And I find there's not much carrot on that stick in Act II to keep going on, but I still think much of the music is amazing (Moment of Betrayal is killer!). Oh and I've tried to make it through the entire record so many times until eventually I realized that I only have so much time for this music. I just had to give up even trying. Hell, the only way I was eventually able to remember most of this record I had to break it up into micro-acts (i-xi) and give plenty of musical palette cleansing time. That is eleven seperate listens (or story installments if you will). And now I enjoy this record better for it; at least I know what I mostly like on this album. I'll revisit individual tracks I normally skip like A Life Left Behind or Three Days as standalone cuts now and then. Indeed there's top notch music here (and of course the world-class playing!). Just to give an example why I find it so difficult: OK. So...the intro to Begin Again is probably one of the more interesting things I've heard from Jordan/John, just stunning! But then I find the rest of the tune a cringing chore. It's like really annoying modern Christian worship stuff. I feel momentarily trapped in church youth group hell (bad memories!). But then the ending picks up a cool driving beat in attempted redemption and there's some lovely bells! Totally dig that ending! But ya see, it's stuff like this which why I just can't stomach listening to the WHOLE thing in one go. Too many "Doh!" slap-the-forehead moments for me. Too much time consumed. Not enough payoff.  And I'll to add to the echo...the "brother" theme does get beaten to death. Just another example why this thing is probably more palatable in mercifully sparing doses.

Re: - " The Astonishing " - One Year -- er, FIVE YEARS On.
« Reply #1328 on: April 21, 2021, 09:50:36 AM »


...
 So...the intro to Begin Again is probably one of the more interesting things I've heard from Jordan/John, just stunning! But then I find the rest of the tune a cringing chore.
...

That's why, for my abridged version, I cut that intro off of Begin Again and paisted it to Whispers on the Wind  ;D (a pretty brutal thing to do with an artists work, but, well...). One could argue how WOTW is less cringy than BA, but for some reason I like it. But the point being: That intro is beautiful.

I only listen to the whole thing on long train rides, to kill time. When you're through it, 2+ hours have passed by.