Dream Theater Eyeing June For New Album

Rock act Dream Theater will release its next album, "Octavarium," June 7 via Atlantic.

Rock act Dream Theater will release its next album, "Octavarium," June 7 via Atlantic. "We wrote it and recorded it at [New York's] the Hit Factory, which is now closed -- we were the last session in that studio," guitarist John Petrucci tells Billboard.com.

Asked how "Octavarium" differs from its predecessor, "Train of Thought," Petrucci explains, "The album before this we wrote in the rehearsal period, constructed all the songs and then went into the studio and recorded them. The style from song to song was pretty consistent; that album was pretty dark and heavy and very riffy, sort of metal [or] progressive metal-sounding. This one we wrote in the studio, and I think that stylistically from song to song it's more diverse."

Dream Theater plans to resume touring in June by playing the summer metal festival circuit in Europe. However, Petrucci will be on the road prior to that, as he is returning to the G3 tour in May to play dates in Japan with guitarists Joe Satriani and Steve Vai. Petrucci's 2001 tenure with G3 helped generate material for his first solo album, "Suspended Animation," which he released March 1 via his own Sound Mind label.

"I wrote material to be able to do that tour, and then of course, people were asking, 'Where can I hear this stuff?' I didn't have it out, so [I said], 'All right, I'll make a solo album,'" he recalls with a laugh. The instrumental, eight-song set features four tunes Petrucci wrote for G3: "Jaws of Life," "Glasgow Kiss," "Damage Control" and "Lost Without You."

Petrucci says he's very excited about the project, which he recorded in a trio setting. He thinks people will likely hear elements of Dream Theater, but "there are more styles on it -- blues, rock, progressive stuff -- and there's a lot more improvising and soloing."

Among other recent side projects from Dream Theater's members are vocalist James LaBrie's solo album, "Elements of Pursuasion," due April 5 on Inside Out Music America. That label also released keyboardist Jordan Rudess' solo project "Rhythm of Time" and "Jelly Jam 2," the second album from bassist John Myung's side band Jelly Jam.