Dream Theater singer James LaBrie spoke in an interview with Metal Command, and revealed the details behind their songwriting process of latest album “Distance Over Time”. He said:

“Primarily, [John] Petrucci and myself, we sat down and we wrote the melodies for these songs. Jordan [Rudess] was involved as well. I think the melodies where they are is what I felt at the end of the day best suited these songs.

I mean, if that’s the way it hits you, I’m not gonna change your opinion on it, but to me, they speak volumes of expression and I can see how you might interpret it as being straightforward, but just due to the nature of the album being more heavier, more aggressive, I thought that that’s where the melodies should also be pretty much hand-in-hand, or stride-in-stride.

They don’t necessarily have to be fancy, they have to be very strong and very rigid, so to speak, in order to really support the direction of the music and the pieces and the arrangements. I’m absolutely thrilled with these melodies and in many pieces it still allowed me to be very expressive.”

He also talked about drummer of Dream Theater, Mike Mangini, and said:

“It goes without saying, he’s a phenomenal player, technically a master at what he does, but I think with ‘Distance Over Time,’ this was really where Mike was able to be 100% fully engaged, he stepped up to the plate.

He’s a big part of this from a writing standpoint, from day one to day done when we were done writing, he was fully 100% involved with the ideas, with the arrangements, so on and so forth.

He’s played incredible and the chemistry was there as well since before Dream Theater because he played on a few [three] of my solo albums.

The last one he did was [2005’s] ‘Elements of Persuasion’ which he played on, but he also played on my first two [1999’s ‘Keep It to Yourself’ and 2001’s ‘James LaBrie’s MullMuzzler 2’]. I knew when the auditions were coming up, I kept saying to the guys, ‘This is our guy, this is our guy, I’m telling ya.'”

You can listen to the entire interview below.

Distance over Time was released on February 22, 2019 via InsideOut Records.