Monday, January 25, 2016

Dream Theater's Mike Mangini talks about the biggest challenge during the making of "The Astonishing"

Dream Theater drummer Mike Mangini was recently interviewed by Artisan News at Drum-Off on January 16. You can read some excerpts below.

About the biggest challenge during the making of Dream Theater's new album, "The Astonishing", Mangini said: "The biggest challenge for me was interpreting the initial music that was given to me, because there were no drums. So I was like, 'All right, I need to listen to this, really, as a whole piece to understand where I should kind of let loose or I should lay back a lot.' All that. Just to see it as a whole, 'cause I don't wanna play blindly or try to fit too much where it doesn't belong. And if I see the whole picture, it allows me to do that. But then again, doing it is a challenge, because someone else composes… A lot of my career is working with people that write music, and the biggest challenge is, 'What can I do that makes sense to them and still makes sense to myself. So it's like being two people at once. It's interesting."

About the writing process for "The Astonishing": "John Petrucci put together the whole thing, and he organized it in a really amazing way. I mean, he used software, he had everything mapped out. And then he used our keyboard player, Jordan Rudess, who is… When he plays, you see things, you see a landscape; you've got a picture in your mind. It's so visual, it's unbelievable. So there really is nobody better to help bring a story to life so you feel it and see it. I mean, it's not something I do on my instrument, you know what I mean? So when I experience it, it blows my mind."

About if it will be challenge to perform all of "The Astonishing" live: "Ahh… It's always a challenge. Our audience holds up score cards. But that's great, because we do too; we just wanna deliver and make it something that translates. And to give it every night is… That's living. It's not easy, but that's living."

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