View Full Version : Mike Portnoy leaves Dream Theater

09-09-2010, 12:05 PM

To all of our loyal fans and friends: It is with profound sadness -- regret -- we announce that Mike Portnoy, our lifelong drummer and friend, has decided to leave Dream Theater. Mike's stature in the band has meant the world to all of us professionally, musically, and personally over the years. There is no dispute: Mike has been a major force within this band.

While it is true that Mike is choosing to pursue other ventures and challenges, we can assure you that Dream Theater will continue to move forward with the same intensity -- and in the same musical tradition -- that you have all helped make so successful, and which is truly gratifying to us.

Fans and friends: File this episode under "Black Clouds and Silver Linings." As planned, we begin recording our newest album in January 2011, and we'll follow that with a full-on world tour. "The Spirit Carries On."

All of us in Dream Theater wholeheartedly wish Mike the best on his musical journey. We have had a long and meaningful career together. It is our true hope that he finds all he is looking for, and that he achieves the happiness he deserves. He will be missed.

I am shocked, I am speechless!
Honestly, I am not too sad about it, since I always saw him as something like an "enfant terrible" in the DT line up.
I am even more curious of how their next album will sound.

09-09-2010, 12:11 PM
Sweeet! Hopefully this means he'll be drumming with Avenged Sevenfold full time

09-09-2010, 12:30 PM
Sweeet! Hopefully this means he'll be drumming with Avenged Sevenfold full time

Right, thats where (Arguably) history's best drummer needs to finish off his career, full timing for that fucking joke of a band. Not to sound too bitter or anything but that would be a tragic and epic fuckign waste of some top talent unless A7X's musical direction completely changes as a result.

This is some seriously fucking tragic news to the music industry but hopefully it means a step away from these horribly dark and negative vibes DT has been sending off with their last 3 albums. I'm quite certain Portnoy has played a very large part in DT moving that direction.

09-10-2010, 03:56 AM
I can't believe this...legitimately I'm stunned right now. Reading his statement on the subject on his website makes it sound like this has been bubbling for a while, and it frankly paints the rest of the band in a less than favourable light in a way...

I am about to write something I never imagined I'd ever write:

After 25 years, I have decided to leave Dream Theater....the band I founded, led and truly loved for a quarter of a century.

To many people this will come as a complete shock, and will also likely be misunderstood by some, but please believe me that it is not a hasty decision...it is something I have struggled with for the last year or so....

After having had such amazing experiences playing with Hail, Transatlantic and Avenged Sevenfold this past year, I have sadly come to the conclusion that I have recently had more fun and better personal relations with these other projects than I have for a while now in Dream Theater...

Please don't misinterpret me, I love the DT guys dearly and have a long history, friendship and bond that runs incredibly deep with them...it's just that I think we are in serious need of a little break...

Dream Theater was always my baby...and I nurtured that baby every single day and waking moment of my life since 1985...24/7, 365...never taking time off from DT's never-ending responsibilites (even when the band was "off" between cycles)...working overtime and way beyond the call of duty that most sane people ever would do for a band...

But I've come to the conclusion that the DT machine was starting to burn me out...and I really needed a break from the band in order to save my relationship with the other members and keep my DT spirit hungry and inspired.

We have been on an endless write/record/tour cycle for almost 20 years now (of which I have overseen EVERY aspect without a break) and while a few months apart from each other here & there over the years has been much needed and helpful, I honestly hoped the band could simply agree with me to taking a bit of a "hiatus" to recharge our batteries and "save me from ourselves"...

Sadly, in discussing this with the guys, they determined they do not share my feelings and have decided to continue without me rather than take a breather...I even offered to do some occasional work throughout 2011 against my initial wishes, but it was not to be...

While it truly hurts for me to even think of a Dream Theater without Mike Portnoy (hell, my father named the band!!), I do not want to stand in their way...so I have decided to sacrifice myself and simply leave the band so as to not hold them back against their wishes....

Strangely enough, I just read an interview that I recently did that asked me about the future of DT and I talked about "always following your heart and being true to yourself"...sadly I must say that at this particular moment, my heart is not with Dream Theater...and I would simply be "going through the motions", and would honestly NOT be true to myself if I stayed for the sake of obligation without taking the break I felt I needed.

I wish the guys the best and hope the music and legacy we created together is enjoyed by fans for decades to come...I am proud of every album we made, every song we wrote and every show we played....

I'm sorry to all the disappointed DT fans around the world...I really tried to salvage the situation and make it work...I honestly just wanted a break (not a split)...but happiness cannot be forced, it needs to come from within....

You DT fans are the greatest fans in the world and as you all know, I have always busted my ass for you guys and I hope that you will stay with me on my future musical journey, wherever it may lead me....(and as you all know my work ethic, there will surely be no shortage of future MP projects!)

Your fearless ex-leader and drummer,

"Move on be brave, don't weep at my grave, because I am no longer here...
But please never let your memory of me disappear...."
--- The Spirit Carries On

I know some people, including Kyle apparantly, point to Portnoy as the most likely reason DT has become a little darker over the last few releases, and subsequently become less true to what people want them to be. But the truth is Portnoy hasn't had as big a hand in writing as he did on past albums. Black Clouds is almost exclusively a John Pettrucci album. The only two songs Portnoy wrote were "The Shattered Fortress" as the finale to his 12 step suite, and "The Best of Times" about his father passing away.

The fact is Dream Theater arguably on a pure talent scale ranks among the most talented bands to ever grace this planet. Their strongest link just left the band, and I truly cannot imagine ever hearing Dream Theater without Mike Portnoy. Considering they were one of my favourite bands, it's crazy to think about this happening.

09-11-2010, 10:42 PM
When Portnoy first hopped in on Sevenfold, it was rumored that he would pursue other projects and interests outside of Dream Theater. Re-read the Portnoy presser. He is simply taking a break. I fully see him back in the band in two, three years. He has so much going on all the time, I cannot fault him here. Dream Theater have been work-a-holics. He doesn't want to burn out. As much as it may pain DT fans, I think this is actually best for them. Take the next album for what it is.... Portnoy will be back.

05-04-2011, 01:36 PM
For anyone who hasn't heard, Dream Theater just named their replacement for Portnoy.

Mike Mangini from Extreme, Annihilator, Steve Vai and James LaBrie's solo stuff is the new drummer.

If you didn't get a chance to see, they made a youtube show about the auditions...Mangini is the first audition...his audition stars around the 11:30 mark.

YouTube - Dream Theater - The Spirit Carries On Episode 1

I'm still not sure about DT as a band without Portnoy because he was more than just a drummer, he was half of the main composers/song writers, so it still remains to be seen.

But if you're going to have to fill a drummer role, you can't do much better than Mangini.

05-05-2011, 01:34 PM
Thats a very worthy replacement as far as talent is concerned. I'm concerned about the song writing as well, but I'd honestly be lying if I said I truly liked the direction Dream Theater has turned in its last few albums, so maybe that won't turn out to be such a bad thing. Regardless, as long as two men named Jordan Ruddess and John Petrucci collaborate, magic will occur.

05-06-2011, 08:56 PM
Yeah, I saw the news on the replacement. I am cool with the Mangini.

07-01-2011, 05:43 AM
I think I just had an orgasm. A return to "Images and Words"-era Dream Theater? Good god yes please. This song is fucking incredible.

YouTube - ‪Dream Theater - On The Backs Of Angels‬‏

07-01-2011, 07:57 AM
Oh, also, if you haven't heard of Portnoy's new band, it's a pretty cool supergroup lineup.

Russell Allen(Symphony X) - Vocals
Mike Orlando(guitar virtuoso, check out 'Sonic Stomp') - Guitar
Rich Ward(Stuck Mojo and Fozzy) - Guitar
Paul DiLeo(Fozzy) - Bass
Mike Portnoy(Dream Theater) - Drums

Band's called Adrenaline Mob.

07-01-2011, 10:47 AM
THANK YOU so much for the post, Cayuga. Holy shit what an awesome single! I'd call it more Scenes From a Memory era due to the darker vibe but its definitely a return to that 5-7 year chapter of their history and a total step away from the last decade. I couldn't be more ecstatic. What a fucking promising taste of the new album!!

07-02-2011, 02:43 AM
Another "allstar" band?
Come on... :blah:

07-07-2011, 06:27 PM
I dig the new track.... Orgasm worthy?? I am not there yet, but I dig it. Let me ask you this... Now that we have a new track, do you think Mangini holds up his end? I know you can't compare him to Portnoy, but does he hold his own?

07-08-2011, 04:06 AM
Upon hearing the single, I'm not so sure I'm not kind of leaning towards the same thoughts that Kyle had been saying, obviously I'm over-simplifying this, but that Portnoy was "addition by subtraction" more or less.

No one is ever going to question the brilliance of Mike Portnoy behind a drum kit. But I think upon hearing this single it's fair to question his song writing brilliance. Dream Theater took a turn away from what made them so great, and while individual songs and albums worked, as a whole they were becoming less likeable. Now, with hearing this they've gone back to the songwriting that made them great.

So, I think assuming as long as they found someone to play technically even close to Portnoy, but lose the "darker" songwriting that took them out of their comfort zone, they come out winners. As soon as it was announced it was Mangini, there was no question that was a win. Mangini is one of maybe 5 drummers on this planet that can even be considered near the level Portnoy drums at.

The song sounds fine on Mangini's part.

08-06-2011, 04:51 PM
‪Dream Theater - Bridges In The Sky‬‏ - YouTube

Sample from another new song "Bridges in the Sky"