Mike Portnoy on Dream Theater Split: 'I Wish I Did What Geoff Tate Did With Queensryche'

"But, to be honest, who the hell cares about 'Operation: Mindcrime' at this point?" the drummer asks.

Ultimate Guitar

Mike Portnoy recently weighed in on the Queensryche settlement, comparing it to his Dream Theater split and wishing he took some of the actions similar to Geoff Tate.

What the drummer referred to during a recent Trunk Nation chat was the legal aspect and the way Tate managed to retain rights to "Operation: Mindcrime" and "Operation: Mindcrime II" records.

"I think it's smart," Mike said (via Blabbermouth). "I mean, that's what Roger Waters did with 'The Wall.' And, to be honest, I wish I did it with my 'Twelve-Step Suite,' but I didn't think of it at the time. 'Cause I get that. If Dream Theater was to go out there and perform my five-song concept thing that was completely my concept and my baby, it would break my heart to see them doing that. So I get it."

Noting how Waters would've been crushed if he hadn't kept "The Wall" rights, Mike got back to the Ryche case, saying, "But, to be honest, who the hell cares about 'Operation: Mindcrime' at this point? It's been so done to death over the last 20 years, who the hell cares?"

In conclusion, Portnoy added that the final settlement was definitely the right one. "I think it's right that Michael [Wilton], Scott [Rockenfield] and Eddie [Jackson] got the name, because it's those three guys and they are in the band. I shouldn't have gotten the name Dream Theater; it makes sense and I get it."

22 comments sorted by best / new / date

    The headline makes MP sound like a huge douche, comparing himself to Tate. The article says he wishes he had the rights to his own songs...which is perfectly reasonable. Frankly, I'm surprised DT is playing Shattered Fortress (not to mention Kevin Moore's Space-Dye Vest) on their current tour.
    Yeah, I thought he meant he should've tried to sue for the Dream Theater name. But UG tried to spin it into a controversy, and now I can't even say they're bad for it because I'm here commenting and I'm part of the problem. I really need to stop coming here.
    I'm sure Mike had huge input into his 12-Step Suite songs, and of course wrote the lyrics....but I'm sure John and Jordan (and John Myung to an extent) had plenty of input as well, musically. Mike Portnoy isn't the only writer on those songs. "Space-Dye Vest" was definitely a surprise (and Kevin Moore is the only writer on that song), but hey, I can't blame a band for playing any song in their back catalog.
    First of all, anyone who knows at least a bit about MP knows that someone suggesting he said something good about Geoff Tate is the definition of absurd. Also, he should have NEVER tried to sue for the DT name and if he did so that would be a really stupid thing to do, since leaving the band was entirely his decision, and I'm glad he was a lot smarter than Tate. Although I'm pretty sure he could just try to settle the rights to his songs with DT if he just tries to approach them with that . I'm pretty sure they won't try to stop him.
    I don't remember any of his other comments on Tate, but I completely agree about him suing. It was his choice to leave and he couldn't rejoin later on because the band had made a commitment to another Mike. Now, if Portnoy requested they not play any songs he had a hand in writing or even that he wrote lyrics for, things might get a little complicated.
    Portnoy needs to let it rest.
    The problem here is that Mike is made to look like a whinner when in reality he's just honestly answering questions that are asked. It's not like he released some official statement.
    "I mean, that's what Roger Waters did with 'The Wall.'" Thanks for the examples. I'll think twice before starting a band with prog fans from now on. Seriously though, Portnoy needs a chill pill.
    Nothing better than quoting people out of context, if you read the actual interview he sounds pretty reasonable. He's just commenting on Geoff Tates situation while noting that he probably should have tried to get some of the rights for hos AA suite back when he had the chance, because that would be the clever thing to do, as with Tate and Waters. He's said a lot of douchey things back in the day, but i think he's pretty down to earth and reasonable in this interview. Nothing controversial here.
    I read the article from it's source material before reading Ultimate-Guitar's interpretation of it. Ugh. I hate the way they slander interviews on this site just to generate clicks and off-topic comments. He's talking about the Queensryche split, comparing it to Roger Waters/Pink Floyd, while throwing in a little bit of a personal touch to it by referencing his split from Dream Theater. He isn't bitching about Dream Theater. That's just what this site wants you to think.
    I think Operation Mindcrime is better than anything Dream Theater has ever done.
    Wow, agree to disagree big time on that statement lol... I think Train Of Thought was an unbelievable album, hands down my favorite DT album. That may be because it's probably the heaviest, I don't know but its definitely a classic in my book.
    ToT is also the dullest album they've recorded. I'd listen to any Dream Theater album over it, even the latest one.
    I agree. Dream theater is good to some people I find it boring lol Best song for me is take the time. Mindcrime is an amazing album.
    Operation: Mindcrime is better than anything this turd has put his hands on.
    I read the title and just think... No Mike... I assure you, you don't want to wish that.