Jordan Rudess on New Dream Theater: 'Youve Just Got to Smile at the Drumming, It's So Outrageous'

Keyboardist praises the band's new drummer Mike Mangini and the contributions he gave on the upcoming record.

Ultimate Guitar

After praising the band's new drummer Mike Mangini for his "super math brain," Dream Theater keyboardist Jordan Rudess once again saluted the stickman's contributions on the upcoming prog giants' record.

During a recent chat with Loudwire, the keyboardist first confirmed that the five-piece is "doing very well" when it comes to the new album, and then went on to focus on Mangini and what he had brought to the table during the recording sessions.

"Having Mike in the room with us as we were doing the writing and everything was such a wonderful thing. The man has such a strong energy and such a great player that it made a big difference to our process to have him there, have him contributing ideas."

Rudess then started talking about the drummer's exceptional sense of rhythm, saying, "The way I see it is like, he's such a specialist in his area. He's got such a rhythm math brain and that addition to what Dream Theater already has in the composition department was so cool, 'cause we've been able to do things I've never done before. There's some stuff on the album that I'll rhythmically is very, very cool."

When asked whether the lineup change had any impact on the group's energy, Rudess replied: "Oh for sure. Anyone whos heard this album or stopped by the studio, you've just got to smile at the drumming, it's so outrageous. He does some fills that are like, 'Oh my God!' [laugh] I can't help but almost like laugh."

Finally, the keyboardist described the band as more unified than before, also giving former drummer Mike Portnoy the props he deserves.

"One thing about the new Dream Theater if you will, I mean I've always enjoyed playing with this band, and [Mike] Portnoy was one of the greatest drummers, but one thing that has changed with Mike Mangini is there is this unified, five guys all similar in our musical ways, just working together. I really feel it and it's interesting. It's tangible. Everybody I talk to at the shows are like, 'Wow, you guys are such a unit.' And I think that's really cool."

Although the band is working hard in the studio, new record release details are yet to be revealed. The latest Dream Theater album, "A Dramatic Turn of Events," was released back in September 2011 through Roadrunner Records, reaching No. 8 position on the Billboard 200 chart.

40 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Im glad he has no venom to spit at Portnoy. Super excited for this album! If it drops this year, 2013 will be the best year for music I know of; so many amazing albums released/coming!
    Just checked youtube. Album is titled ""Dream Theater", release date september 24
    I wonder if it'll have a track called "Dream Theater"? Would be very interesting. EDIT: Is that a rolly-eyes smiley?
    No, just : and ).
    Looks a bit weird in these comment threads In the grand scheme of things, it'll probably look a bit strange that their self-titled album was the first album the band started after the founding member who named the band left. Having said that, I absolutely love Mike Mangini as a person and as a drummer. Hope I'll be able to talk with them again for this tour!
    Hmm... So far they've only had songs named after the album title on SDOIT and Octavarium. It'd be interesting if they did, yeah.
    As far as I know this band has always wished the best for Mike Portnoy. Extremely professional group of musicians.
    I think they should let Myung write the lyrics for the whole album. Everytime he does so the song is a masterpiece.
    Lifting shadows off a dream once broken; She can turn a drop of water into an ocean... \m/ \m/
    "Searching out, reaching in arrive where I begin" and "The way your heart sound, it makes all the difference..." are my favourites
    Recently learned that Myung wrote Fatal Tragedy... Definitely one of my favorite Dream Theater songs in the whole collection
    "that I'll rhythmically" wut?
    It's probably either a case of missing punctuation or an added word. It's either something like "that I'll -- rhythmically is very, very cool." or the obvious one which is "that rhythmically is very very cool."
    ding dong your opinion is wrong
    Compared to their entire catalog, sucked.
    Personally, I definitely rank Dramatic Turn up with Octavarium, Train of Thought and Scenes from a Memory and Awake above all other albums.
    I would definitely put Scenes From A Memory as my first choice. I really just didn't like the mixing on Dramatic Turn and I hate to say this, but, it just seems like I heard a lot of repetition in terms of musical passages from other DT albums.
    True. I guess fan-curve for DT is quite steep. Images & Words is the only DT album I really like...
    Well hopefully this means it sounds at least a little bit different from their other stuff... Dream Theater have sounded like a bad parody of themselves for the last two albums to be honest
    You have a fitting username.
    I don't understand, am I not allowed to criticize the band because I'm not famous myself? Dream Theater is full of technically incredible musicians, but they haven't made anything worth listening to more than once since Systematic Chaos. Everything up until then was good to fantastic, but you must not be listening if you honestly believe that everything they have made recently sounds fresh and new and not like a rehash of things they've already made.
    Preach, brother. This 'new' DT album will just sound like everything else of theirs' only with different drumming.
    Let's see how James Labrie sounds in this album because during live concerts he sounds like nails on chalkboard...Looking forward to the new album though!
    I'd love to see them live again. to me, their live performance is more impressive than any album they could record. Not saying the albums are bad.