Tag Archives: Dream Theater ‘Distance Over Time’

Thunder Bay Arena Rocks Top 10 Music Picks for 2019!

This year I thought I would post my Best of Lists a little early. When I think back to the last 12 months of music it was the year of massive reissues of bands like R.E.M/STP/Whitesnake with 2 Reissues!!/Sloan/Def Leppard/Skid Row and the list goes on and on.


Some bands and artists put out some new cool quality stuff so hopefully, you may check out some of these acts and artists to see what I dug in the year 2019. Feel free to post your picks in the comments below!

Here we GO!

1-Tom Keifer-RISE: Well looky, looky here. Is it 1989? No way folk’s it’s 2019 and who saw this coming? Tom Keifer shakes it and doesn’t break it as he delivers a solid blast of  CinderRock over 11 tracks that fuse all the old school elements of Cinderella while cementing a future in a really cool current sound that I hope the Keiferband will continue to follow. My favorite release this year, Congrats Tom! You have no idea who the Hell I am but I dig your album.

2-Big Wreck- …but for the sun: Guitar wizard Ian Thornley is back in a big way Folk’s as he cranked up the amps and cuts loose over the 12 tracks on this album.  Ian’s singing/guitaring and writing on this album is phenomenal as well as the two other fellas who helped him out on this as well! Kudos to Dave MacMillian and Chuck Keepling. Locomotive is one unbelievable track!

3-Rival Sons- Feral Roots: Rival Sons basically took over crap rock radio in Thunder Bay with the single Do Your Worst and on this album, the band, and producer Dave Cobb stepped up and kicked down the walls on this opus. Big Loud Fuzz Guitar Rock! How about the drums on Back In The Woods!

4-Carl Dixon- Unbroken: You want a straight-ahead hard rock album with a throwback sound to the roaring ’80s with some fantastic catchy driven rock. Than Unbroken is for you! 11 songs in the Hard Rock AOR spectrum that are pure Gold! Carl’s the definition of Rock n Roll survivor!

5-Jared James Nichols-Black Magic: Jared showed up one night this past April here in Thunder Bay opening for John5 and sizzled mine and Tbone’s brains into mush! JJN is a must-see live as he nails that heavy blues power trio format to a T. This guy is that good live and Black Magic is a stellar album that features all the fine trimmings that Mr. Nichols possess. Watch for this dude in 2020!

6-Page 38-Burning The Midnight Oil: These 4 young fella’s hail from my hometown Thunder Bay and this 5 song EP kicks serious ass. Page 38 came across my radar when they opened for and kicked to the curb ‘Cranky’ Anvil back in May of this year. I quickly scooped up the EP from iTunes as you should do as well! Love the tune Mama June! Click the video below and support our local Boy’s.

‘At Mama Junes, back door liquor store
She got what you want, couldn’t ask for more
Knock three times, 20 under the door, forget what you know
At Mama Junes, back door liquor store ‘

7-Whitesnake- Flesh and Blood: An album I had zero interest in until Ladano and John Snow got into my noggin about how good it was. They were right. Coverdale wrote a batch of tunes with Reb Beach and together they slid out 14 good rock tracks especially Hey You (You Make Me Rock) Plus add the two reissues this year of Slide It In and Slip of the Tongue.  Cov has been one busy dude! All hail the old guy!

8-Sammy Hagar & The Circle- The Space Between: Speaking of an old guy. Crazy to think that Sammy is 71 and has been doing the Rock thing for 5 Decades! That’s longevity in the truest sense. Sammy  with his good pal Micheal Anthony along with Vic Johnson and a drummer whose last name is Bonham released a pretty decent rock record in 2019. Concept album none the less about Greed and Corruption. Trust Fund Baby is a great track and as well the production on this album is old school sounding. No Polish and that’s a good thing.

9-Motley Crue- The Dirt: Never been big on soundtracks but The Dirt soundtrack interested me for some reason or maybe I was bored that week it came out. Dunno but when Tricky Sixx and Tommy muster up some new songs with Bob Rock I’m onboard. 4 new songs 3 of which are originals are ok but the cover tune of Madonna? Ummm. Whatever, still though when you dump a bunch of tracks off the first two albums (Too Fast For Love and Shout At The Devil) the sucker in me will always bite!

10-Sean Kelly-Touch Me: All round Great Canadian Fella Sean Kelly when not playing guitar/singing/songwriting in a bunch of bands (Coney Hatch/Alan Frew/Lee Aaron to name but a few) reactivated his old band Crash Kelly and put out a doozie of a track titled Touch Me which is a Glam Rockers delight. Think Cheap Trick mashed up with The Sweet.  This is Ear Candy. I think we need a full album, Mr. Kelly!

Check back here in a couple of days for another Best OF list with a twist!

Dream Theater: Distance Over Time (2019)



Now is that a cool cover or what? I love the colour scheme and  the look. Another fine album cover  courtesy of Hugh Syme!

Dream Theater  came into my world when these guys dropped the classic track Pull Me Under from the fantastic Images and Words album from 1992!

Plus the fact that Lead Singer James Labrie is a fellow Canuck also piqued my curiosity as well!

From there I bought 1994’s Awake and 1997’s Falling Into Infinity.

Then that was it! What the PROG is going on here??

I got off the Prog Bus driven by Dream Theater. No reason really. I still would read the interviews and such or news posted about them but I just didn’t buy any more.


Who knows maybe it was because RUSH set the bar way too high for me for anyone to come close and as well RUSH at the time was pretty active so that wetted my Prog Appetite enough.

Since my last Dream Theater purchase back in 1997 Dream Theater has released 9 studio albums and 7 live albums! So no lack of productivity from these guys  that’s for sure…

So earlier this year Dream Theater released in quick succession three songs from their upcoming release Distance Over Time and I watched one of the tracks which was Fall Into The Light and this  tune blew me away….

I than decided to preorder the album and the first 3 songs dropped right onto my iPod and i can honestly say this is one killer release.

10 songs just checking in at over an hours worth of music!

The Prog Dudes…

In case you didn’t know already these cats can play…

  • James LaBrie – lead vocals
  • John Petrucci – guitars, production
  • John Myung – bass
  • Jordan Rudess – keyboards
  • Mike Mangini – drums

Petrucci has a massive wall of sound coming from his amplifier that is HUGE! Amazing how he can do what he does on solo’s. It’s just nuts..

  1. Untethered Angel
  2. Paralyzed
  3. Fall into the Light
  4. Barstool Warrior
  5. Room 137
  6. S2N
  7. At Wit’s End
  8. Out of Reach
  9. Pale Blue Dot
  10. Viper King (Bonus Track)

So a pretty decent set of tracks. Too be honest if these songs were all   10  minute musical workouts at this point in my life I would have lost interest but while most push the over 6 minute mark and one track clocks in at 9 minutes I’m cool with it. The best thing I can say about this album is that it doesn’t lose me as a listener.

Meaning I can listen to the whole album front to back without skipping. I like the fact that Labrie does a lot of singing and the soloist’s  of the band(Petrucci and Rudess) get to the point quick and the songs move forward.

Distance Over Time surprised me at how good it is. Everything is slick about it musically and as well as the production which is crisp n clear!

From this point forward I will more than likely purchase what Dream Theater is selling as it really is a solid piece of Prog N Roll and that’s all that matters when you really get down to the root of it!