An extract on #ukseaside
In a May 2017 interview with Rockbook, frontman James LaBrie stated that Dream Theater plans to release their fourteenth studio album in 2018. He commented: "We're pretty psyched because we already know what we're gonna do. But I'm not gonna tell you. [Laughs] It's really important for us that the new album will be our best effort. It should be who we are at that particular moment. We still want to create something that's better than what we did before. That's what keeps you interested in what you do. But if along the way we feel that there is another album we should recognize once again, then we'll do it." LaBrie also stated that the band will concentrate on "one album at a time and not thinking in a concept", and added, "Unless we wanna write an epic song that has multiple parts in it. Doing something like that might be cool. Something like A Change of Seasons. But a whole album again, no."
AllMusic's Stephen Thomas Erlewine described Dream Theater's music as a "dense blend of progressive rock and post-Halen metal". The band is well noted for being one of the early progenitors of the progressive metal genre. The original members, Mike Portnoy, John Petrucci and John Myung, have strong influences from progressive rock bands such as Rush, Yes, and Pink Floyd, heavy metal bands such as Iron Maiden and Judas Priest, various speed metal bands, and even the glam metal of the day. This synthesis created a unique metal that was not traditional of the day: it had distorted guitars and fast riffing, but the music focused more on technical proficiency and precise execution than on heavy metal riffs. The band's music has focused on three main elements: metal, melody, and progressive roots. Mike Portnoy has also stated that the band's slower songs are in appreciation of artists such as Peter Gabriel, U2, and Journey. Dream Theater's music also borrows elements from the 1970s and '80s art rock sound of musicians such as Kate Bush, Peter Gabriel, Electric Light Orchestra, the Moody Blues, and Procol Harum.
Dream Theater's more recent albums such as A Dramatic Turn of Events and Dream Theater lean heavily towards hard rock, while still maintaining their trademark progressive rock and metal sound, whereas their 2003 album Train of Thought showcased a darker, heavier, sometimes more straightforward metal sound, and much of their progressive rock sound was absent, replaced by metal elements such as riffing and shredding. This decision was inspired by the positive feedback received from their previous heavier songs on stage. 1999's Metropolis Pt. 2: Scenes from a Memory was praised for its display of old-fashioned progressive rock, and was influenced by classic conceptual rock records such as the Beatles' Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, Pink Floyd's The Wall and The Final Cut, the Who's Tommy, and Genesis's The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway.
Dream Theater's music occasionally borrows elements of other musical styles including symphonic rock, symphonic metal, arena rock, soft rock, and classical music.