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7 Big Memorable Moments From the Dream Theater India Show

Thunderbolts on cue, James LaBrie’s Indian accent impression, John Myung’s tribute to Jaco Pastorius and more

David Britto Oct 10, 2017

Despite the relentless rain that depleted the concert venue, the American prog metallers were in top form in Mumbai. Photo: Prashin Jagger

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When Mumbai-based events agency Opium Events announced that they will be bringing down American prog rockers Dream Theater for their India debut this past August, fans from around the country could not contain their excitement to the days leading up to the big show. But as luck would have it, the day of the band’s first show here invited a roar of applause from weather gods who were probably having a rather noisy prog party of their own in the skies. Despite rains lashing the city and the frequent (and often scary) thunderbolts, Dream Theater powered through the gig—with a couple of breaks here and there. The venue might have turned into a marshland by the end of the show but for fans of the band, the experience of watching the pioneers of prog playing songs from their 1992 magnum opus Images and Words was worth it all. Here are some of the most memorable moments from the show:

1. Lightning struck just as the band opened the show with the scorching “The Dark Eternal Night” off their ninth album Systematic Chaos. Although it made for a beautiful sight, the band had to cut the song short and go off stage till the thunderbolts subsided.

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2. The rain gods weren’t particularly kind to the 4000-odd people who turned up for the gig. Even though it poured for the entirety of the concert, fans were glued to their spots, cheering for the world’s biggest prog band.

3. The show witnessed musicianship at its highest quality. From John Petrucci’s scintillating guitar solos, Jordan Rudess’ slick keyboard work and James LaBrie’s impressive vocal range, India was treated to an epic level of virtuosity.

4. John Myung paid a rousing tribute to the late great Jaco Pastorius with a bass solo that sent goosebumps among the fans.

5. We could count the number of female fans at the concert on our fingers. The concert also proved the hypothesis that Dream Theater’s fan following in the country is largely black T-shirt wearing (bearded) men.

6. When the band performed their lead single “Pull Me Under” off their 1992 album Images and Words, the crowd chipped in and showcased their vocal chops, giving LaBrie a run for his money.

7. Sometime during the middle of the set, LaBrie decided to turn standup and show off his Indian accent impression. The moment might have caused a bunch of us to roll our eyes at the shtick (another Apu-like impression from The Simpsons, really?) but LaBrie quickly disclaimed that it was done for pure fun with no bad intention at all. Oh, and he also admitted Indian food is the band’s all-time favorite cuisine.

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