Progressive metal giants DREAM THEATER have announced details of a monumental European headline tour. The trek, which gets underway January 30 at Rome, Italy's Auditorium Parco Della Musica, will see the pioneering group celebrating the 25th anniversary of their milestone RIAA-gold-certified album "Images And Words". Each performance will see the iconic progressive rock band delivering an unparalleled live set of "Images And Words" in its entirety along with fan favorites from their renowned catalogue. Tickets for select dates go on sale this week. Additional dates will be announced in the coming weeks.
Images, Words & Beyond" tour dates:
Jan. 30 - Rome, Italy - Auditorium Parco Della Musica
Feb. 01 - Padova, Italy - Gran Teatro Geox
Feb. 03 - Zurich, Switzerland - Samsung Hall
Feb. 04 - Milan, Italy - Mediolanum Forum
Feb. 06 - Prague, Czech Republic - Forum Karlin
Feb. 08 - Tilburg, Netherlands - 013
Feb. 10 - Ludwigsburg, Germany - MHP Arena
Feb. 11 - Dusseldorf, Germany - Mitsubishi Electric Halle
Feb. 12 - Paris, France - Zenith
Feb. 14 - Hamburg, Germany - Mehr
Feb. 16 - Malmö, Sweden - Malmö Arena
Feb. 17 - Partille, Sweden - Partille Arena
Feb. 18 - Stockholm, Sweden - Fryshuset Arenan
Asked if he had any idea — prior to the "Images And Words" release — of the success the album would eventually become, DREAM THEATER guitarist John Petrucci told Metal Insider: "Not at all. The whole situation was very uncertain. We had put out our first album, 'When Day And Dream Unite', and we didn't do any touring or anything for that. We did some press. People seemed to like it but it just ended. We decided to switch lead singers, and we went on this very long singer hunt for like a year and a half. We weren't really crazy about the label, so we were singerless, labelless, and holding jobs down teaching guitar and doing other things. We started to wonder if we would have an opportunity to do this again as a band. When Derek Oliver from Atco expressed interest, the very first thing they did was more of a development deal. We recorded a few songs from 'Images And Words' as a demo. By the time we went to actually do the album and got James [LaBrie] as a singer, 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."
Regarding how DREAM THEATER approached "Images And Words" as opposed to "When Day And Dream Unite", Petrucci said: "With 'When Day And Dream Unite', we were really young and we had just got signed, we had a very short period of time to record it. We went as a band to live together in Pennsylvania and then we would go in and record. We really didn't have any experience. 'Images' was a bit later and we had more experience, some more gear, and some more ideas about what we wanted to do. The studio we were in was beautiful. It felt like we had more time to do it. Things like that. It was still a situation where we had a producer (David Prater) who was directing the whole ship, but yeah. The experience was very wide-eyed and exciting, and it was like a whirlwind. 'Images' was more of a conscious experience when we had more time and were a little bit more grounded at that point."
Petrucci also talked about DREAM THEATER's biggest hit to date, "Pull Me Under", which was included on "Images And Words". Asked if he ever thought the song would get played on the radio or that it would have MTV success, Petrucci said: "No, we didn't think that way at all. We were into writing progressive metal. We were all big fans of YES and RUSH, but we also liked METALLICA and other bands. We came out with this stuff that didn't have the normal pop structure, the songs were long. 'Pull Me Under' was at least eight minutes. Originally, 'A Change Of Seasons' was supposed to be on 'Images', but the label voted against that. The whole nature of the album wasn't really geared towards commercial standards. After we went on tour, that song started to gain legs from requests. We had no idea what was happening. We had to quickly film a video on tour at a club because we didn't have a video and it just grew from there. It was unintentional."
DREAM THEATER are currently on the second leg of their extensive North American headline tour which finds the group performing its widely acclaimed double concept album "The Astonishing" in immersive and interactive settings for a unique and unmatched live experience.