Author Topic: my most controversial take: awake is the worst DT album  (Read 5562 times)

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Offline crystalstars17

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Re: my most controversial take: awake is the worst DT album
« Reply #175 on: October 10, 2023, 01:32:46 PM »
sorry for the click bait headline but i think i finally feel comfortable unveiling what i think might be my most controversial take: "awake" is dream theater's weakest album

edit: perhaps most interesting about this all is i think my favorite DT song is space-dyed vest  :rollin

Idk if it's the weakest, but it's definitely one of the weakest.

That said I LOVE Space Dye Vest.
« Last Edit: October 27, 2023, 02:28:47 PM by crystalstars17 »
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Re: my most controversial take: awake is the worst DT album
« Reply #176 on: October 11, 2023, 01:22:25 PM »

EDIT: I want to relate this to DT. I think the instrumentalist in DT have more talent in one hand than she does in her entire body but they probably sell fewer tickets/goods in 5 years than she sells in one night and that is just how it goes in the entertainment business. The average consumer has no f-ing clue who any of them are. It has zero to do with talent.

That's kind of a ridiculous statement though. Being a great instrumentalist is just one skill out of an almost uncountable number of possible skills humans can have.  Elvis Presley couldn't do ANY of the things that Jordan, Mike, John and John can do.  NONE OF IT.  Elvis could barely play guitar.  He has no talent? 

Personally, I think that ability to take a thought in one's head, translate it into melody and lyrics, and then connect with millions of people across all ages, genders, financial backgrounds, and nationalities isn't something to be sneered at as "populist" but rather something to celebrate and applaud.  I have no doubt that if John COULD do that, he would in a heartbeat.

And for the record, by all accounts she writes all or most of her music.  She has cowriters, but again, by all accounts that's her being generous, since most of the frameworks and certainly all the lyrics are hers.

What is ridiculous about it? I think DT is way more talented than TS and the point of the comparison was to say that talent does not always correlate with financial success in this business.

Talent isn't just notes per second.  Talent isn't just writing in 344/11 time signatures.   

Quote
I don't get your reference to John (John Petrucci I assume?). Seems to me he is already doing that. Are you suggesting if he could make Taylor Swift-like songs with Taylor Swift like success, he would? I do not agree if that is what you're implying.

That's not what I'm implying. I'm actually coming out and saying that if John (yes, Petrucci) could write a song - independent of any style; I'm not saying he would write a pop song - that would connect with 1,000,000 people, or more, he would do it in a heartbeat. Artists follow their muse, but I think to a person, artists want their art to be seen/heard/enjoyed.

Quote
The songwriting credit discussion is a large enough topic to warrant its own thread in a different forum. I don't want to get too off track here but I think fair to say a songwriting credit in the legal sense does not necessarily mean person X is solely responsible for a song. Often people who participate in the process do not get credit sometimes depending on how big the act is. I don't know what her arrangement with co-writers, producers, the other musicians etc, but it would be interesting to know if you took some of her most well known songs which parts specifically she was responsible for and which parts were fleshed out by others. I said in my initial post I am open to her having talent but I can see one thinking she doesn't.

She writes almost all of her own material. It's not hard to look up.  This is not, generally, a Beyonce situation where there are 24 writers per song.  She has co-writers, most recently (on the last four records or so) mainly Jack Antonoff or Aaron Dessner, but she has albums where she has written the bulk of the material herself (including Speak Now, where she wrote every song herself).

I can see people thinking it too, which is why I responded.  It's a stereotype.  Young, female, hot, famous, in the tabloids... of course it can't be her!   I think that's unfair.

Quote
I can't comment much on Elvis. I did not live through his heyday and I have not done a lot of digging through the history or his abilities. A statement one way or another does not strike me as unreasonable but again, I am less familiar with him. It strikes me that there was something new about Elvis as an act in the 1950s and a lot of America had never experienced anything like it. That's not necessarily talent but maybe it had something to do with his success. If it's true what you're saying - and I am not doubting you - that he could not sing, write songs, or play guitar then...yeah, he might not have had any talent. Not exactly a ringing endorsement of the contrary lol. It was a cultural phenomenon in the 1950s, so many factors could have been responsible for its impact. Successfully feeding the masses something isn't by itself evidence of any particular aptitude except, well, selling. I guess that is a skill in and of itself so if that is all you mean by talent I guess you have a point. Doesn't always equate with musical talent, which is what I was talking about originally.

I'm not saying Elvis had no talent; I'm saying the opposite.  There are more ways to manifest talent than simple bitchin' quick keyboard lines, or insane guitar solos.  A six string bass and drums hanging from the ceiling are not evidence of talent.  Elvis is probably my vote for the greatest rock'n'roll singer of all time (Freddie and Ann Wilson are the other of the top three).  Ringo Starr was my number 5 drummer on our recent list here of top 25 drummers (Bonham/Collins/Peart/Portnoy is my Mt. Rushmore).   I sat in RCA Studio A in Nashville and heard an isolation tape of Elvis singing Bridge Over Troubled Water and when it was done we were speechless.  You could hear a pin drop.  It was one of the most amazing performances - from beyond the grave, no less - I've ever heard in my life.  I'm paraphrasing here, but "Paul, did the Beatles ever use drum machines or click tracks?"  "No, we didn't have to; we had Ringo."  And none of this is necessarily or fairly reduced to "selling".   

Look, I came to an epiphany when I became a dad.   Yeah, I went through my phases ("only King Crimson is REAL music, because everything is improvisation in real time" and "well, Tony Banks says Sibelius is the most relevant modern composer, so he must be great" and "Duran Duran isn't real music, it's just pop marketing!") and I watched my kids engage in the music they liked - whether it was the Jonas Brothers, or Slipknot! or Lil Wayne - and get the same joy I did growing up.  Reading the liner notes, parsing through the words.   And particularly my stepson and my daughter, they KNOW.   My daughter loves Fleetwood Mac, Queen, Def Leppard, Marillion (I took her to see Fish on his 13th Star solo tour), and The Beatles, but... Taylor Swift touches her heart.  That's her act. Her "Dream Theater" if you will.  And she parse the setlists like many of us here did back in the '90s.  "What did she play tonight? What was the rotating song?  OMG, she STILL hasn't played "xxx" yet!".    It's not selling; no one told her what to listen to. It's not marketing; no one told her how to react to these songs.   She's seen Swift I think five times now, and every time it's a new experience, and some new emotion, some new reaction. We talk and it seems an awful lot like my reactions to seeing Yes back in the late '80s, early '90s, or Page and Plant back in '95.  I think I have more pictures on my phone of her crying at a Taylor Swift show than I do of her college graduation.

I won't quite put her on the level of the greatest (IMO) living musician, Sir Paul McCartney, but she's got the same gift as Springsteen.  I remember not really getting Bruce growing up, and being in a dorm room up at Uconn, and a bunch of guys and girls were going to see Bruce (had to be the Born In The USA tour).  And one girl was going on and on about how he had a vision and that he was a storyteller and that he could touch you with his words.  I hear time and again, not just from "young girls" (as if young girls can't possibly know "good" music, or talent, please) but also people HERE, that presumably know the difference, that she's something special.  I later came to appreciate Bruce, primarily through his interviews and such (his Broadway show was the second best show I've ever seen live, out of close to 400 shows) and I see a lot of similarities.

You don't have to get it, or see it, or acknowledge it.  Not saying any of that.  I can't and won't tell you what to think, what to like or what to say.   But I think it's not unfair to ask that you assess your standard and contemplate whether it's inclusive enough to cover all the bases that something like "music" - or any art that touches individuals - requires.  I still don't get Bob Dylan, but it's silly of me to not recognize that he is a pioneering spirit in music history, and one of the greatest American songwriters and musicians.

Now THAT is a fantastic piece of writing.

Offline TheOutlawXanadu

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Re: my most controversial take: awake is the worst DT album
« Reply #177 on: October 12, 2023, 10:02:02 AM »
There's a bunch of weird shit going on here.

Prog snobs are the funniest.

Taylor Swift is by no means my favorite musician, but her talent and presence can't be denied.
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Offline TheBarstoolWarrior

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Re: my most controversial take: awake is the worst DT album
« Reply #178 on: October 12, 2023, 09:09:56 PM »

EDIT: I want to relate this to DT. I think the instrumentalist in DT have more talent in one hand than she does in her entire body but they probably sell fewer tickets/goods in 5 years than she sells in one night and that is just how it goes in the entertainment business. The average consumer has no f-ing clue who any of them are. It has zero to do with talent.

That's kind of a ridiculous statement though. Being a great instrumentalist is just one skill out of an almost uncountable number of possible skills humans can have.  Elvis Presley couldn't do ANY of the things that Jordan, Mike, John and John can do.  NONE OF IT.  Elvis could barely play guitar.  He has no talent? 

Personally, I think that ability to take a thought in one's head, translate it into melody and lyrics, and then connect with millions of people across all ages, genders, financial backgrounds, and nationalities isn't something to be sneered at as "populist" but rather something to celebrate and applaud.  I have no doubt that if John COULD do that, he would in a heartbeat.

And for the record, by all accounts she writes all or most of her music.  She has cowriters, but again, by all accounts that's her being generous, since most of the frameworks and certainly all the lyrics are hers.

What is ridiculous about it? I think DT is way more talented than TS and the point of the comparison was to say that talent does not always correlate with financial success in this business.

Talent isn't just notes per second.  Talent isn't just writing in 344/11 time signatures.   

Quote
I don't get your reference to John (John Petrucci I assume?). Seems to me he is already doing that. Are you suggesting if he could make Taylor Swift-like songs with Taylor Swift like success, he would? I do not agree if that is what you're implying.

That's not what I'm implying. I'm actually coming out and saying that if John (yes, Petrucci) could write a song - independent of any style; I'm not saying he would write a pop song - that would connect with 1,000,000 people, or more, he would do it in a heartbeat. Artists follow their muse, but I think to a person, artists want their art to be seen/heard/enjoyed.

Quote
The songwriting credit discussion is a large enough topic to warrant its own thread in a different forum. I don't want to get too off track here but I think fair to say a songwriting credit in the legal sense does not necessarily mean person X is solely responsible for a song. Often people who participate in the process do not get credit sometimes depending on how big the act is. I don't know what her arrangement with co-writers, producers, the other musicians etc, but it would be interesting to know if you took some of her most well known songs which parts specifically she was responsible for and which parts were fleshed out by others. I said in my initial post I am open to her having talent but I can see one thinking she doesn't.

She writes almost all of her own material. It's not hard to look up.  This is not, generally, a Beyonce situation where there are 24 writers per song.  She has co-writers, most recently (on the last four records or so) mainly Jack Antonoff or Aaron Dessner, but she has albums where she has written the bulk of the material herself (including Speak Now, where she wrote every song herself).

I can see people thinking it too, which is why I responded.  It's a stereotype.  Young, female, hot, famous, in the tabloids... of course it can't be her!   I think that's unfair.

Quote
I can't comment much on Elvis. I did not live through his heyday and I have not done a lot of digging through the history or his abilities. A statement one way or another does not strike me as unreasonable but again, I am less familiar with him. It strikes me that there was something new about Elvis as an act in the 1950s and a lot of America had never experienced anything like it. That's not necessarily talent but maybe it had something to do with his success. If it's true what you're saying - and I am not doubting you - that he could not sing, write songs, or play guitar then...yeah, he might not have had any talent. Not exactly a ringing endorsement of the contrary lol. It was a cultural phenomenon in the 1950s, so many factors could have been responsible for its impact. Successfully feeding the masses something isn't by itself evidence of any particular aptitude except, well, selling. I guess that is a skill in and of itself so if that is all you mean by talent I guess you have a point. Doesn't always equate with musical talent, which is what I was talking about originally.

I'm not saying Elvis had no talent; I'm saying the opposite.  There are more ways to manifest talent than simple bitchin' quick keyboard lines, or insane guitar solos.  A six string bass and drums hanging from the ceiling are not evidence of talent.  Elvis is probably my vote for the greatest rock'n'roll singer of all time (Freddie and Ann Wilson are the other of the top three).  Ringo Starr was my number 5 drummer on our recent list here of top 25 drummers (Bonham/Collins/Peart/Portnoy is my Mt. Rushmore).   I sat in RCA Studio A in Nashville and heard an isolation tape of Elvis singing Bridge Over Troubled Water and when it was done we were speechless.  You could hear a pin drop.  It was one of the most amazing performances - from beyond the grave, no less - I've ever heard in my life.  I'm paraphrasing here, but "Paul, did the Beatles ever use drum machines or click tracks?"  "No, we didn't have to; we had Ringo."  And none of this is necessarily or fairly reduced to "selling".   

Look, I came to an epiphany when I became a dad.   Yeah, I went through my phases ("only King Crimson is REAL music, because everything is improvisation in real time" and "well, Tony Banks says Sibelius is the most relevant modern composer, so he must be great" and "Duran Duran isn't real music, it's just pop marketing!") and I watched my kids engage in the music they liked - whether it was the Jonas Brothers, or Slipknot! or Lil Wayne - and get the same joy I did growing up.  Reading the liner notes, parsing through the words.   And particularly my stepson and my daughter, they KNOW.   My daughter loves Fleetwood Mac, Queen, Def Leppard, Marillion (I took her to see Fish on his 13th Star solo tour), and The Beatles, but... Taylor Swift touches her heart.  That's her act. Her "Dream Theater" if you will.  And she parse the setlists like many of us here did back in the '90s.  "What did she play tonight? What was the rotating song?  OMG, she STILL hasn't played "xxx" yet!".    It's not selling; no one told her what to listen to. It's not marketing; no one told her how to react to these songs.   She's seen Swift I think five times now, and every time it's a new experience, and some new emotion, some new reaction. We talk and it seems an awful lot like my reactions to seeing Yes back in the late '80s, early '90s, or Page and Plant back in '95.  I think I have more pictures on my phone of her crying at a Taylor Swift show than I do of her college graduation.

I won't quite put her on the level of the greatest (IMO) living musician, Sir Paul McCartney, but she's got the same gift as Springsteen.  I remember not really getting Bruce growing up, and being in a dorm room up at Uconn, and a bunch of guys and girls were going to see Bruce (had to be the Born In The USA tour).  And one girl was going on and on about how he had a vision and that he was a storyteller and that he could touch you with his words.  I hear time and again, not just from "young girls" (as if young girls can't possibly know "good" music, or talent, please) but also people HERE, that presumably know the difference, that she's something special.  I later came to appreciate Bruce, primarily through his interviews and such (his Broadway show was the second best show I've ever seen live, out of close to 400 shows) and I see a lot of similarities.

You don't have to get it, or see it, or acknowledge it.  Not saying any of that.  I can't and won't tell you what to think, what to like or what to say.   But I think it's not unfair to ask that you assess your standard and contemplate whether it's inclusive enough to cover all the bases that something like "music" - or any art that touches individuals - requires.  I still don't get Bob Dylan, but it's silly of me to not recognize that he is a pioneering spirit in music history, and one of the greatest American songwriters and musicians.

You're not listening to what I am saying. You're just repeating that she writes her own material and I am fully aware she has songwriting credits. In a song of 50 tracks how many does she have to write by herself in order to get songwriting credit? What if the song is C, F, G and she strums 3 chords and writes the lyrics...what if she just writes the melody and nothing else and a team of hired guns and producers flesh everything out? There are a thousand scenarios and inputs possible in constructing the final product and at the end of the day it is a legal agreement that determines who is allowed to say he 'wrote' the material. It can be an extremely arcane topic unless you're on the legal side of the music business. There are even circumstances in which an act is so popular that songwriters and producers have to give them songwriting credits in order to secure the job. Since you brought up Elvis, evidently he never wrote a song but has songwriting credits. Maybe some people think that if the song says 'music by 'insert name'' that this person was like Beethoven the mad genius scribbling an entire sonata by himself, somehow churning out this awe-inspiring magnum opus and it was all him. It is clearly not always like that in today's day and age and that is fine. What is required to be the 'songwriter' might surprise some people; and the same is true for people who contribute to songs who get zero credit.

I was never a huge fan but I have read that Price actually wrote all of the musical parts and played all of the instruments on a few of his albums (insane). That is not the case with Taylor Swift...by a long shot. She did not write every one of the tracks and play all the instruments and there is nothing wrong with that! Yet, they both are the sole 'writers' of the music as far as the law is concerned. I use that example to show that getting legal credit for the output can be very different things depending on the particulars.

Again, I am not saying she has no talent. All I am saying is that I understand the viewpoint of those who are skeptical given the way music in popular culture tends to work.

Offline Stadler

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Re: my most controversial take: awake is the worst DT album
« Reply #179 on: October 13, 2023, 07:06:12 AM »

EDIT: I want to relate this to DT. I think the instrumentalist in DT have more talent in one hand than she does in her entire body but they probably sell fewer tickets/goods in 5 years than she sells in one night and that is just how it goes in the entertainment business. The average consumer has no f-ing clue who any of them are. It has zero to do with talent.

That's kind of a ridiculous statement though. Being a great instrumentalist is just one skill out of an almost uncountable number of possible skills humans can have.  Elvis Presley couldn't do ANY of the things that Jordan, Mike, John and John can do.  NONE OF IT.  Elvis could barely play guitar.  He has no talent? 

Personally, I think that ability to take a thought in one's head, translate it into melody and lyrics, and then connect with millions of people across all ages, genders, financial backgrounds, and nationalities isn't something to be sneered at as "populist" but rather something to celebrate and applaud.  I have no doubt that if John COULD do that, he would in a heartbeat.

And for the record, by all accounts she writes all or most of her music.  She has cowriters, but again, by all accounts that's her being generous, since most of the frameworks and certainly all the lyrics are hers.

What is ridiculous about it? I think DT is way more talented than TS and the point of the comparison was to say that talent does not always correlate with financial success in this business.

Talent isn't just notes per second.  Talent isn't just writing in 344/11 time signatures.   

Quote
I don't get your reference to John (John Petrucci I assume?). Seems to me he is already doing that. Are you suggesting if he could make Taylor Swift-like songs with Taylor Swift like success, he would? I do not agree if that is what you're implying.

That's not what I'm implying. I'm actually coming out and saying that if John (yes, Petrucci) could write a song - independent of any style; I'm not saying he would write a pop song - that would connect with 1,000,000 people, or more, he would do it in a heartbeat. Artists follow their muse, but I think to a person, artists want their art to be seen/heard/enjoyed.

Quote
The songwriting credit discussion is a large enough topic to warrant its own thread in a different forum. I don't want to get too off track here but I think fair to say a songwriting credit in the legal sense does not necessarily mean person X is solely responsible for a song. Often people who participate in the process do not get credit sometimes depending on how big the act is. I don't know what her arrangement with co-writers, producers, the other musicians etc, but it would be interesting to know if you took some of her most well known songs which parts specifically she was responsible for and which parts were fleshed out by others. I said in my initial post I am open to her having talent but I can see one thinking she doesn't.

She writes almost all of her own material. It's not hard to look up.  This is not, generally, a Beyonce situation where there are 24 writers per song.  She has co-writers, most recently (on the last four records or so) mainly Jack Antonoff or Aaron Dessner, but she has albums where she has written the bulk of the material herself (including Speak Now, where she wrote every song herself).

I can see people thinking it too, which is why I responded.  It's a stereotype.  Young, female, hot, famous, in the tabloids... of course it can't be her!   I think that's unfair.

Quote
I can't comment much on Elvis. I did not live through his heyday and I have not done a lot of digging through the history or his abilities. A statement one way or another does not strike me as unreasonable but again, I am less familiar with him. It strikes me that there was something new about Elvis as an act in the 1950s and a lot of America had never experienced anything like it. That's not necessarily talent but maybe it had something to do with his success. If it's true what you're saying - and I am not doubting you - that he could not sing, write songs, or play guitar then...yeah, he might not have had any talent. Not exactly a ringing endorsement of the contrary lol. It was a cultural phenomenon in the 1950s, so many factors could have been responsible for its impact. Successfully feeding the masses something isn't by itself evidence of any particular aptitude except, well, selling. I guess that is a skill in and of itself so if that is all you mean by talent I guess you have a point. Doesn't always equate with musical talent, which is what I was talking about originally.

I'm not saying Elvis had no talent; I'm saying the opposite.  There are more ways to manifest talent than simple bitchin' quick keyboard lines, or insane guitar solos.  A six string bass and drums hanging from the ceiling are not evidence of talent.  Elvis is probably my vote for the greatest rock'n'roll singer of all time (Freddie and Ann Wilson are the other of the top three).  Ringo Starr was my number 5 drummer on our recent list here of top 25 drummers (Bonham/Collins/Peart/Portnoy is my Mt. Rushmore).   I sat in RCA Studio A in Nashville and heard an isolation tape of Elvis singing Bridge Over Troubled Water and when it was done we were speechless.  You could hear a pin drop.  It was one of the most amazing performances - from beyond the grave, no less - I've ever heard in my life.  I'm paraphrasing here, but "Paul, did the Beatles ever use drum machines or click tracks?"  "No, we didn't have to; we had Ringo."  And none of this is necessarily or fairly reduced to "selling".   

Look, I came to an epiphany when I became a dad.   Yeah, I went through my phases ("only King Crimson is REAL music, because everything is improvisation in real time" and "well, Tony Banks says Sibelius is the most relevant modern composer, so he must be great" and "Duran Duran isn't real music, it's just pop marketing!") and I watched my kids engage in the music they liked - whether it was the Jonas Brothers, or Slipknot! or Lil Wayne - and get the same joy I did growing up.  Reading the liner notes, parsing through the words.   And particularly my stepson and my daughter, they KNOW.   My daughter loves Fleetwood Mac, Queen, Def Leppard, Marillion (I took her to see Fish on his 13th Star solo tour), and The Beatles, but... Taylor Swift touches her heart.  That's her act. Her "Dream Theater" if you will.  And she parse the setlists like many of us here did back in the '90s.  "What did she play tonight? What was the rotating song?  OMG, she STILL hasn't played "xxx" yet!".    It's not selling; no one told her what to listen to. It's not marketing; no one told her how to react to these songs.   She's seen Swift I think five times now, and every time it's a new experience, and some new emotion, some new reaction. We talk and it seems an awful lot like my reactions to seeing Yes back in the late '80s, early '90s, or Page and Plant back in '95.  I think I have more pictures on my phone of her crying at a Taylor Swift show than I do of her college graduation.

I won't quite put her on the level of the greatest (IMO) living musician, Sir Paul McCartney, but she's got the same gift as Springsteen.  I remember not really getting Bruce growing up, and being in a dorm room up at Uconn, and a bunch of guys and girls were going to see Bruce (had to be the Born In The USA tour).  And one girl was going on and on about how he had a vision and that he was a storyteller and that he could touch you with his words.  I hear time and again, not just from "young girls" (as if young girls can't possibly know "good" music, or talent, please) but also people HERE, that presumably know the difference, that she's something special.  I later came to appreciate Bruce, primarily through his interviews and such (his Broadway show was the second best show I've ever seen live, out of close to 400 shows) and I see a lot of similarities.

You don't have to get it, or see it, or acknowledge it.  Not saying any of that.  I can't and won't tell you what to think, what to like or what to say.   But I think it's not unfair to ask that you assess your standard and contemplate whether it's inclusive enough to cover all the bases that something like "music" - or any art that touches individuals - requires.  I still don't get Bob Dylan, but it's silly of me to not recognize that he is a pioneering spirit in music history, and one of the greatest American songwriters and musicians.

You're not listening to what I am saying. You're just repeating that she writes her own material and I am fully aware she has songwriting credits. In a song of 50 tracks how many does she have to write by herself in order to get songwriting credit? What if the song is C, F, G and she strums 3 chords and writes the lyrics...what if she just writes the melody and nothing else and a team of hired guns and producers flesh everything out? There are a thousand scenarios and inputs possible in constructing the final product and at the end of the day it is a legal agreement that determines who is allowed to say he 'wrote' the material. It can be an extremely arcane topic unless you're on the legal side of the music business. There are even circumstances in which an act is so popular that songwriters and producers have to give them songwriting credits in order to secure the job. Since you brought up Elvis, evidently he never wrote a song but has songwriting credits. Maybe some people think that if the song says 'music by 'insert name'' that this person was like Beethoven the mad genius scribbling an entire sonata by himself, somehow churning out this awe-inspiring magnum opus and it was all him. It is clearly not always like that in today's day and age and that is fine. What is required to be the 'songwriter' might surprise some people; and the same is true for people who contribute to songs who get zero credit.

I heard you. I KNOW you are saying she has credits. I'm saying those credits are LEGIT.  I said somewhere above that her songs aren't - I forget who I used, maybe Beyonce? - those that have 15 writers per song, only one of whom is legit.  I understand as much as anyone not in the business can how it works.  Gene Simmons famously gave Howard Marks - his ACCOUNTANT - several songwriting credits, including "Charisma" on Dynasty, as a form of payment.  Elvis - well, it was Col. Tom Parker - was famous for demanding a songwriting credit. Dolly Parton boldly denied Elvis "I Will Always Love You" (the Whitney Houston hit) because she wouldn't give Elvis a 50% writing credit.   I hear you.  I do.  I just disagree with you.  By EVERY account, she's more than three chords, or a title. She ACTUALLY writes her songs.  I'm not basing that on a "songwriting credit", and I'm not sure why you're insisting on a "possibility" when the facts show otherwise.

Taylor Swift was discovered - at 14 years old - at the Bluebird Cafe in Nashville, world famous for its dedication to SONGWRITERS and it's strict policies about honoring SONGWRITERS not performers. You have to audition. You have to have original material.   The Bluebird has no interest and is expressly against pandering to the sort of pop tartlet that you're (rightfully) railing against.  She has been honored multiple times by the biggest SONGWRITING associations in the world, including the Nashville Songwriters Association and the Songwriters Hall of Fame, both of whom who are strict about their policies about the very thing you are talking about.  Their bread and butter are the people that ACTUALLY write the songs.  It's a multi-billion dollar industry in Nashville; they are not going to fuck this up to pander to Taylor Swift.  She actually has a BMI Award named after her.  Short of chaining her to a wall and forcing her to write a song at gun point, I'm not sure what more you need.   Poele with a vested financial interest in honoring ACTUAL songwriting, not pop charlatanry, have honored her at the highest levels for her craft.

Quote
I was never a huge fan but I have read that Price actually wrote all of the musical parts and played all of the instruments on a few of his albums (insane). That is not the case with Taylor Swift...by a long shot. She did not write every one of the tracks and play all the instruments and there is nothing wrong with that! Yet, they both are the sole 'writers' of the music as far as the law is concerned. I use that example to show that getting legal credit for the output can be very different things depending on the particulars.

Wait, now you're moving the goal posts. First, "songwriting" doesn't mean playing all the instruments.  Paul McCartney doesn't necessarily play all the instruments on his records.   Who is the greatest songwriter of all time? Bob Dylan?  Doesn't play all the instruments on his records.  Doesn't even play MOST of the instruments on his records.  Bruce Springsteen doesn't play all the instruments on his records.  Second, while she hasn't written every song by herself, those songs that she is solely credited on, there's literally NO dispute that she DID write every one of those tracks.

Again, I'm not sure what proof you need; certainly I can't give it to you. I don't have video of her chained to a wall writing a song.  But she makes something like $7 MILLION dollars a MONTH on royalties on her music.  If you don't think there'd be at least ONE shunned ghostwriter looking for their cut, looking for their name, looking to make THEIR career on the fact that they wrote Taylor Swift's songs, you're not paying attention, yet... nothing.

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Again, I am not saying she has no talent. All I am saying is that I understand the viewpoint of those who are skeptical given the way music in popular culture tends to work.

But the devil is in the details.  I guess I understand the skepticism too, but I don't understand ignoring FACTS in favor of that general skepticism.  There are so many logical fallacies included in that skepticism that at some point it has to be acknowledged that it fails.  Sure Beyonce has a similar tour history, but even she doesn't hold up to three nights in each city's stadium.  I think that's in part due to her authenticity, which in turn is due at least in part to her writing her own songs.  She OWNS it.

Online hefdaddy42

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Re: my most controversial take: awake is the worst DT album
« Reply #180 on: October 13, 2023, 07:56:16 AM »
Stads is correct in everything he's saying.
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Re: my most controversial take: awake is the worst DT album
« Reply #181 on: October 13, 2023, 08:36:35 AM »
Apparently Swift had a songwriting contract when she was in high school and she wrote songs with another songwriter as a job. I think it's safe to say she's pretty legit when it comes to being a songwriter.

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Re: my most controversial take: awake is the worst DT album
« Reply #182 on: October 13, 2023, 09:12:25 AM »
1.  Why are we arguing about whether Swift writes her own music?  Every piece of actual factual evidence says she does.  I don't even like her music, but I see no reason to try to make up arguments about her songwriting.

2.  How is any of this at all relevant to Awake?
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Re: my most controversial take: awake is the worst DT album
« Reply #183 on: October 13, 2023, 09:41:12 AM »
1.  Why are we arguing about whether Swift writes her own music?  Every piece of actual factual evidence says she does.  I don't even like her music, but I see no reason to try to make up arguments about her songwriting.

2.  How is any of this at all relevant to Awake?

Question #2 being far more important.
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Re: my most controversial take: awake is the worst DT album
« Reply #184 on: October 13, 2023, 09:50:50 AM »
Haven't figured that part out yet.
Hef is right on all things. Except for when I disagree with him. In which case he's probably still right.

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Re: my most controversial take: awake is the worst DT album
« Reply #185 on: October 13, 2023, 11:53:30 AM »
It's my fault. It's always my fault.  I follow the conversation as it goes.  I'm horrible at keeping to the thread topic.

Awake is great, though!  The band writes their own songs!  :) :) :)

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Re: my most controversial take: awake is the worst DT album
« Reply #186 on: October 13, 2023, 12:16:37 PM »
The band writes their own songs!  :) :) :)

Allegedly.  I heard the songwriting credits for the next album include writing credits to Gene Simmons' chiropractor and Travis Kelce (but lyrics credits to John Myung, so there's that).
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Re: my most controversial take: awake is the worst DT album
« Reply #187 on: October 13, 2023, 01:16:18 PM »
Just imagine how many bricks would be shit if a rumor started that Kevin Moore had contributed lyrics.   :lol
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Re: my most controversial take: awake is the worst DT album
« Reply #188 on: October 13, 2023, 05:06:08 PM »
Erotomania is sung by The Silent Man (that's Johnny Myung)  :omg: :omg:

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Re: my most controversial take: awake is the worst DT album
« Reply #189 on: October 25, 2023, 07:39:17 PM »
Just imagine how many bricks would be shit if a rumor started that Kevin Moore had contributed lyrics.   :lol

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Re: my most controversial take: awake is the worst DT album
« Reply #190 on: October 26, 2023, 09:13:00 AM »
Just imagine how many bricks would be shit if a rumor started that Kevin Moore had contributed lyrics.   :lol

Can you imagine if KM returns
No.
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Re: my most controversial take: awake is the worst DT album
« Reply #191 on: October 27, 2023, 04:07:50 AM »
After some time off the forum, I see the recent threads are a mixed bag. There is all the great buzz around MP rejoining DT...and then there is this...

While it is a perfectly normal and rational thing to say "Awake is a DT album I enjoy the least", claiming it is the worst or weakest (or even one of the weakest) is objectively wrong, the same like claiming Wish You Were Here or The Wall are the worst Pink Floyd albums, the Earth is flat or 1+1=3.  I mean, you need to be able to separate subjective and objective. Contrary to popular opinion, this is entirely doable and desirable. It will prevent one from writing nonsense, such as comparing Awake lyrics unfavorably to later DT stuff . Once again, one might not enjoy them but claiming that lyrics vor Voices, Scarred, SDV or any other Awake song are worse than, say, Answer Lies Within or Count of Tuscany, is ridiculous. Awake or IW was when DT at least tried - they clearly put a lot more effort to their lyrics than they did 10 years later or do now.

Offline TheHoveringSojourn808

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Re: my most controversial take: awake is the worst DT album
« Reply #192 on: October 27, 2023, 07:38:16 AM »
After some time off the forum, I see the recent threads are a mixed bag. There is all the great buzz around MP rejoining DT...and then there is this...

While it is a perfectly normal and rational thing to say "Awake is a DT album I enjoy the least", claiming it is the worst or weakest (or even one of the weakest) is objectively wrong, the same like claiming Wish You Were Here or The Wall are the worst Pink Floyd albums, the Earth is flat or 1+1=3.  I mean, you need to be able to separate subjective and objective. Contrary to popular opinion, this is entirely doable and desirable. It will prevent one from writing nonsense, such as comparing Awake lyrics unfavorably to later DT stuff . Once again, one might not enjoy them but claiming that lyrics vor Voices, Scarred, SDV or any other Awake song are worse than, say, Answer Lies Within or Count of Tuscany, is ridiculous. Awake or IW was when DT at least tried - they clearly put a lot more effort to their lyrics than they did 10 years later or do now.

damn dude, didn't need to call my take nonsense, and it's perfectly acceptable to think Awake is the weakest DT album, you're not the God of Takes

Also, you're wrong, The Wall is the worst Pink Floyd album, not Wish You Were Here ;)
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Re: my most controversial take: awake is the worst DT album
« Reply #193 on: October 27, 2023, 09:10:27 AM »
After some time off the forum, I see the recent threads are a mixed bag. There is all the great buzz around MP rejoining DT...and then there is this...

While it is a perfectly normal and rational thing to say "Awake is a DT album I enjoy the least", claiming it is the worst or weakest (or even one of the weakest) is objectively wrong, the same like claiming Wish You Were Here or The Wall are the worst Pink Floyd albums, the Earth is flat or 1+1=3.  I mean, you need to be able to separate subjective and objective. Contrary to popular opinion, this is entirely doable and desirable. It will prevent one from writing nonsense, such as comparing Awake lyrics unfavorably to later DT stuff . Once again, one might not enjoy them but claiming that lyrics vor Voices, Scarred, SDV or any other Awake song are worse than, say, Answer Lies Within or Count of Tuscany, is ridiculous. Awake or IW was when DT at least tried - they clearly put a lot more effort to their lyrics than they did 10 years later or do now.

I mean for me Awake is one of the worst dream theater albums, I rarely listen to it and think it's aged terribly. That's my take and it's about as valid as yours lol

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Re: my most controversial take: awake is the worst DT album
« Reply #194 on: October 27, 2023, 10:09:51 AM »
I actually suspect the wrongness of the OP is what really facilitated the MP-DT reunion, so hats off to you, sir!  ;) :P

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Re: my most controversial take: awake is the worst DT album
« Reply #195 on: October 27, 2023, 12:35:17 PM »
It's gonna be either Awake or Falling Into Infinity for me, probably the latter. I almost never find myself in the mood to listen to them. I'm not exactly sure why, but the songs don't really speak to me musically.
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Offline blackmetal666

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Re: my most controversial take: awake is the worst DT album
« Reply #196 on: October 27, 2023, 01:00:59 PM »
sorry for the click bait headline but i think i finally feel comfortable unveiling what i think might be my most controversial take: "awake" is dream theater's weakest album

first of all, when we talk about "awake" being the worst, it's all relative. it's like saying the worst ferrari is still a pretty darn good car. that being said, there are a few reasons why some fans might not rank "awake" as high as other dream theater albums. the production quality on "awake" is not up to par with some of their other albums. it's got this kind of muddy sound to it, and the mix just isn't as clear and crisp as, say, "metropolis pt. 2: scenes from a memory" or "images and words." when you're dealing with a band as technically proficient as dream theater, you want every note to shine, and "awake" falls short in that department.

then there's the songwriting. don't get me wrong, there are some great tracks on "awake," like "6:00" and "the mirror." but there are also some forgettable moments, like "innocence faded" and "a mind beside itself: iii. the silent man." it's not that these songs are bad per se, but they just don't reach the same level of complexity and emotional depth that we've come to expect from dream theater. another issue that some fans have with "awake" is the lyrics. they can be a bit on the cheesy side at times, and it feels like the band was trying a bit too hard to be profound. again, this is all relative, because dream theater has never been known for their lyrical prowess, but on "awake," it's particularly noticeable.

perhaps most interestingly enough, "awake" came at a time when the progressive metal scene was really starting to take off, with bands like tool and opeth pushing the boundaries of the genre. in comparison, "awake" feels a bit safe and formulaic. it's almost like dream theater was trying to fit into a mold rather than breaking new ground. while "awake" is by no means a bad album, i would consider it the worst in the dream theater discography because of its production quality, songwriting, lyrics, and the changing landscape of progressive metal at the time of its release.

i know that's probably a big take to let sink in - and to be clear i don't hate the album, but it always shakes out at the bottom of my ranking. what are your thoughts? music is subjective, and there are definitely fans out there who love "awake" just as much as any other dream theater album.

edit: perhaps most interesting about this all is i think my favorite DT song is space-dyed vest  :rollin

This is like saying Master of Puppets is Metallica’s worst album.
Totally ludicrous.

Offline RandalGraves

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Re: my most controversial take: awake is the worst DT album
« Reply #197 on: October 27, 2023, 07:16:45 PM »
Not so controversial take: There's no such thing as objectively good or bad art.

Actual controversial take: Since it was mentioned in the Portnoy thread, I love A Nightmare to Remember and I think the "beautiful agony" portion of the song is the weakest of the three sections.

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Re: my most controversial take: awake is the worst DT album
« Reply #198 on: October 27, 2023, 09:23:06 PM »
That is a hot take, the beautiful agony part is 90% of the reason I listen to the song.

Offline ProgMasterMind92

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Re: my most controversial take: awake is the worst DT album
« Reply #199 on: October 27, 2023, 09:34:05 PM »
a nightmare to remember is good all the way through!!! if you stop it at the 8:30 mark and pretend the rest doesn't exist
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