Did Dream Theater Steal From Christian Rock Band?

Fans think the band may have plagiarized a song by Red, and former drummer Mike Portnoy agrees. Listen to both here to decide for yourself.

Did Dream Theater Steal From Christian Rock Band?
0
A fan has highlighted similarities between a Dream Theater song and a Christian rock band - and former drummer Mike Portnoy agrees. The opening song on Dream Theater's latest album "A Dramatic Turn Of Events" apparently sounds remarkably similar to a song by the band Red. The fan posted their observation on Dream Theater's forums, where other fans appear to be disappointed with the similarities. Mike Portnoy decided to join with the discussion, taking an obvious jab at his former band mates: "Check out the first song on [John Petrucci's] fave album of the year... WOW, the arrangement and orchestration sounds awfully familiar! Surely it must be an intentional 'nugget' for the fans... It couldn't possibly be blatant formula plagiarism, now could it... ? I just have to laugh... [sic]" When some fans took a dislike to Portnoy's tactless contribution to the discussion, he replied again: "Hey... I'm not trying to start a war... And I am indeed totally in a happy place in my life and career... I'm just merely making an observation and posting openly on my own forum like I always have and always will... If anybody ELSE wants to blow this up, it's their choice and doing... Not mine! [sic]" It is not the first time Dream Theater have been accused of plagiarism. This year, some fans noted the similarities between their newest album and their 1992 release "Images And Words", suggesting they had even copied themselves in a bid to release new music. John Petrucci later told Ultimate Guitar that he appreciates fans analyzing their music, but the similarities were down to the band having such a definitive style of their own. "We really like music," Petrucci said. "We have a certain thing that we try to accomplish musically, a certain sound that makes us who we are. The core elements of Dream Theater, of who we are and how we make music. Those are elements that are identifiable. That's what gives the band its sound, and keeps the band having an identity." Listen to the two songs here. Do you think they sound similar? Share your opinion in the comments.

314 comments sorted by best / new / date

comments policy
    metallica144
    i hear the similarities. but UG.... Build Me Up, Break Me Down isn't the opening track ...
    6sic6_blank
    There are only 12 notes in music theory and billions of musicians. Odds are there are gonna be some similar songs.
    strat0blaster
    GibsonMan321 wrote: judo_john wrote: GrungeHippie26 wrote: metallica144 wrote: also, what's the point of adding ''christian'' in the title? Because its not real rock music. Please do explain..... Because using religion as a crutch for your songwriting is not in the spirit of rock'n'roll. As is pandering to a specific audience because of religion, rather than just people who like rock. They're almost always mediocre bands and shoddy musicians. Show me one christian rock band that doesn't suck.
    Are you serious? You do realize that the only thing that makes Christian rock 'Christian' are the lyrics, and EVERY singer writes lyrics about things that are important to them, that affect their lives, and that they're invested in emotionally, whether positive or negative, right? Saying all Christian rock bands suck because they're 'using religion as a crutch' is like saying "all metal sucks because they're not using religion as a topic,' or that 'all country sucks because they're singing about relationships and breakups and their way of life.' And I always thought the 'spirit of rock and roll' was doing whatever you wanted with your rock music? Did this change when I wasn't looking?
    Pagan_Poetry
    A fan has highlighted similarities between a Dream Theater song and a Christian rock band - and former drummer Mike Portnoy agrees.
    Annnnd of course he does. You have to admit they do sound pretty familiar. Now I'd love to see how this plays off. After years of people making the same stupid Coldplay Satriani joke, are they going to say this is a rip off as well, or just say it's coincidence because it's Dream Theater (and the former was just about disliking Coldplay/liking Satriani)? *grabs popcorn*
    agm_ultimatex
    I think how the song connects and progresses sounds similar, some parts in the verses, but other than that I don't really notice it. Probably a biased sentence here, but with all the music out there, something is bound to sound similar.
    Pagan_Poetry
    judo_john wrote: GrungeHippie26 wrote: metallica144 wrote: also, what's the point of adding ''christian'' in the title? Because its not real rock music. Please do explain.....
    *grabs more popcorn*
    Hell Kaiser Ryo
    I don't really find these songs similar enough to call these two copies... Mike Portnoy is just butthurt.
    $hithappen$16
    to be honest...i don't think anyone copied anyone. They both sound like generic riffs to me
    Unholy Crusada
    Petrucci did say on his list of his top albums of 2011 that Red's sound was a big influence for this one song. So of course it sounds a little similar, but it's not like he stole something from them. Also, why does Portnoy have to be involved in just about every DT article now? We get the picture man, you left, now you want back in. But please don't act like this, it just makes you look like a bigger douche each time.
    goth clash
    GibsonMan321 wrote: judo_john wrote: GrungeHippie26 wrote: metallica144 wrote: also, what's the point of adding ''christian'' in the title? Because its not real rock music. Please do explain..... Because using religion as a crutch for your songwriting is not in the spirit of rock'n'roll. As is pandering to a specific audience because of religion, rather than just people who like rock. They're almost always mediocre bands and shoddy musicians. Show me one christian rock band that doesn't suck.
    Seventh Day Slumber, Casting Crowns, POD, As I Lay Dying.. I could go on. Shut yourself up and go back to your hole.
    mysticguitar77
    goth clash wrote: GibsonMan321 wrote: judo_john wrote: GrungeHippie26 wrote: metallica144 wrote: also, what's the point of adding ''christian'' in the title? Because its not real rock music. Please do explain..... Because using religion as a crutch for your songwriting is not in the spirit of rock'n'roll. As is pandering to a specific audience because of religion, rather than just people who like rock. They're almost always mediocre bands and shoddy musicians. Show me one christian rock band that doesn't suck. Seventh Day Slumber, Casting Crowns, POD, As I Lay Dying.. I could go on. Shut yourself up and go back to your hole.
    I'd add Demon Hunter in there as well. Not to mention Pillar, Kutless, 12 Stones, Blindside, Disciple (early stuff specifically), Neal Morse, Project 86, Thousand Foot Krutch, and that's just off the top of my head.
    FloyDZeD
    GrungeHippie26 wrote: metallica144 wrote: also, what's the point of adding ''christian'' in the title? Because its not real rock music.
    Oh, I forgot that you can only make rock music if you sell your soul to the devil.
    Carndawgy
    i love how portnoy always has to emphasize that he'd happy with where he is in his career...
    IronSamurai10
    GibsonMan321 wrote: judo_john wrote: GrungeHippie26 wrote: metallica144 wrote: also, what's the point of adding ''christian'' in the title? Because its not real rock music. Please do explain..... Because using religion as a crutch for your songwriting is not in the spirit of rock'n'roll. As is pandering to a specific audience because of religion, rather than just people who like rock. They're almost always mediocre bands and shoddy musicians. Show me one christian rock band that doesn't suck.
    August Burns Red. They rock and they're Christian.
    Root Beer
    GibsonMan321 wrote: judo_john wrote: GrungeHippie26 wrote: metallica144 wrote: also, what's the point of adding ''christian'' in the title? Because its not real rock music. Please do explain..... Because using religion as a crutch for your songwriting is not in the spirit of rock'n'roll. As is pandering to a specific audience because of religion, rather than just people who like rock. They're almost always mediocre bands and shoddy musicians. Show me one christian rock band that doesn't suck.
    Kansas.
    shredflare666
    Goddammit today sucks. first Christopher Hitchens dies and now this shit!? whats next!? next UG headline will be "Maynard James Keenan to guest star in glee"???? I wish fans would stop over analyzing DT's music, shut the **** up and enjoy it. I'm not mad keen on the track, but its a great album. I don't see how Portnoy's comments are helping the situation. He chose to leave, and thats ****ing that. fans are pissed enough as it is without shit being stirred. Fuck you blabbermouth, and could UG STOP USING THEIR ARTICLES?
    Undead Rat
    Maybe a statement completely irrelevant to the topic, but I hadn't heard of Red before and I think they sound awesome.
    bassthunder
    Uh... wow, that's actually really similar. Similar patterns in the riffs, chord progressions in the chorus. Granted, they're both pretty dull, but still.
    shredder3386
    Dregen wrote: Portnoy is a douchebag.
    Agreed, he needs to vanish already. No one cares about him, his opinions, or his BLS cover band
    BigSpence
    ShevanelFlip wrote: Undead Rat wrote: Maybe a statement completely irrelevant to the topic, but I hadn't heard of Red before and I think they sound awesome. agreed!
    You've been missing out! All of their albums are amazing!
    pailoong
    guitarlad89 wrote: both songs sound like shit anyway, so it's a lose-lose. A retarded pine cone could make a better riff.
    DUH, I MAKE PINE TWEEZ. I LIKE PIZZA. I WORK AT BURGER KING MAKING WHOPPERS I WEAR PAPER HATZ.
    kerguitar08
    So supposedly accusing them of ripping off Images & Words is never enough for MP.
    dudewithapen
    This is probably the most publicity Red will ever get that being said, their first album was good, and they're great live, but I've no idea how a band can make the exact same album three times and evidence zero growth or new ideas...
    BigSpence
    espal wrote: GibsonMan321 wrote: judo_john wrote: GrungeHippie26 wrote: metallica144 wrote: also, what's the point of adding ''christian'' in the title? Because its not real rock music. Please do explain..... Because using religion as a crutch for your songwriting is not in the spirit of rock'n'roll. As is pandering to a specific audience because of religion, rather than just people who like rock. They're almost always mediocre bands and shoddy musicians. Show me one christian rock band that doesn't suck. P.O.D.? idk
    Red.
    Campion95
    similar format but not similar music. there are tons of songs the follow this format. and Portnoy come on Dream Theater aren't poking fun at your generic metal band, also that riff on Physcosane sounds alot like Lie.
    Reisgar42
    baraklavy wrote: Its also similar to "don't stay" of linkin park
    Glad I'm not the only one that heard that. Say what you will about LP, Meteora is still a pretty good album.
    Herotime
    I haven't read any other comments so pls just bare with me here. I gave both a very strong listen and have feelings that they are very close but yet very different. As if DT heard this song before but really should we say that Portnoy was the Master song writer for DT? I run across things all the time that sound like someone else. like motley crue did a song called starry eyes that gave papa roach an idea. hmmm! take a close listen to motley crues mid break in the song and tell me any different. it happens all the time. so do we throw blame or just except it. riff for riff time for time beat for beat? how does it play out. none of the above. it just sounds close thats all.
    crazysam23_Atax
    GibsonMan321 wrote: judo_john wrote: GrungeHippie26 wrote: metallica144 wrote: also, what's the point of adding ''christian'' in the title? Because its not real rock music. Please do explain..... Because using religion as a crutch for your songwriting is not in the spirit of rock'n'roll. As is pandering to a specific audience because of religion, rather than just people who like rock. They're almost always mediocre bands and shoddy musicians. Show me one christian rock band that doesn't suck.
    Your ignorance astounds me...
    da.benson8r
    GibsonMan321 wrote: Show me one christian rock band that doesn't suck. Relient K Switchfoot Anberlin As I Lay Dying Deas Vail Farewell Flight House Of Heroes mewithoutyou Underoath Newsboys Red (isn't actually that bad listen to their first album it's way better than this) I can keep going. I don't like that much christian music but there are plenty of fine bands that are christian. [/quote] THANK YOU. A lot of people instantly assume that because it's "Christian" it's going to be preachy, "Love Jesus or you're going to Hell" kind of music, and that it's going to suck. FUCK NO, MAN. Christian music has evolved way past that - it's just as legitimate as anything else out there. It encompasses every genre, from folk and country to the heaviest of metal. I think it's amazing that bands aren't afraid to admit their love for something they feel so strongly for in their music, and doing it however they want to. Music's meant for people to express themselves - have we forgotten about that? You don't like it, don't listen to it. Plain and simple. As for me, I'll fly the Christian flag high and proudly admit that I am one. You close your mind to the music, though, and you're missing out on some really unique talent. (Oh yeah, and on the topic, they sound a little alike. However, I love both bands, and doing this "they ripped them off" bullshit is pointless - everyone's been ripping everyone off since there's been more than one musician in the world.)
    GeekInThePink
    metallica144 wrote: also, what's the point of adding ''christian'' in the title?
    Because that term seems to make non-Christian music fans (who are a majority of users here) angry for some reason, and UG just wants to start something.
    Lacebad
    U2 are regarded as the biggest christian rock band in the world, without tying themselves to that label, google it. Don't get me wrong, U2 can go **** themselves but like it or not they've sold tons. yeah by and large christian rock bands suck ass, I cannot think one I listen to at all..I mean I must listen to christians who make music but people who use it as a gimmick. on topic, haven't dream theater stolen riffs before? something you notice when you listen to enough Pink Floyd and ELP..but here's some examples Micheal Jackson
    Dream Theater
    Corrosion Of Conformity
    Dream Theater
    Peter Gabriel
    Dream Theater
    sickassfoo
    this is like one of those youtube videos "did megadeth copy metallica..." well who the hell cares, just listen to it
    mschup27
    GrungeHippie26 wrote: metallica144 wrote: also, what's the point of adding ''christian'' in the title? Because its not real rock music.
    Im sorry, but am I the only one who finds this funny? On the article: I rolled my eyes before I even clicked on this one. Portnoy seems kind of like a butthurt douche to me, now I'm not a huge fan of DT A7X or any other Portnoy related projects so I'm just commenting on what i've read on this site, which we all know can be a little misleading... But seriously, you'd think he would let it go by now. Oh and the songs, similar but def not plagiarism
    Kortez3000
    Seriously? The Dream Theater song sounds more melodic. The songs may be in the same key or something but they do not sound a like!
    KingBobert
    I can't believe the article actually said that DT "plagarised" their own earlier work. Usually it's called "getting back to your roots", is it not? And the opening track on ADTOE is way more deadly than either of these songs, On the Backs of Angels is siiiick
    Pagan_Poetry
    ^ Good god I thought that was a bot at first and almost raged. Then I read a bit and thought "Man, this is one hell of a clever bot".