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Train Of Thought Why didn't DT record TOT at BearTracks?
"We didn't do this album at Beartracks, simply because we wanted to be fair to John and John. We have done the last 2 or 3 albums at Beartracks, which is up where Jordan and I live and both Johns had to commute while making those rcords. So therefore they asked if we could make an album nearer to them this time."

"We did the drum tracks and most of the guitar tracks at a studio called Cove City Studios. Then we moved into another studio on Long Island called Pie Studios and that's where we did all the overdubs..."

- Mike Portnoy, Summer 2003 issue of Theater of Dreams

Is This Dying Soul a continuation of The Glass Prison?
"The Glass Prison" was written about the first three steps in the Alcoholics Anonymous 12-Step Program, and after Six Degrees of Inner Turbulence came out Mike said he would like to write a song on each album that continued with that theme. "This Dying Soul" is about steps four and five (and "The Root of All Evil" from Octavarium is about steps six and seven).

The two songs share some lyrics and a riff, and there is also some small references to "The Mirror", which is written around the same themes.

Did MP write Honor Thy Father about his dad?
The following is from a 2004 IRC chat with MP:

[AgentCooper] I was wondering whom the lyrics of Honor Thy Father were directed at? They seemed quite brutal, and personal.
[Portnoy] Let me clear this up right now....
[Portnoy] It is NOT directed at my father, Howard Portnoy...we have a GREAT relationship and I love him dearly...
[Portnoy] It is aimed directly at somebody else in my immediate family....
[Portnoy] If you take the key word from the title as well as the key word from the bridge (Crooked _____), you can figure out who it was written for... [step father]
[Portnoy] I've never been ghood at writing love songs, so i decided to write a HATE song!!!!

What are the vocals in the background at the end of ITNOG?
The chant/hymn is called "The Battle Hymn of the Republic", and it was written by Julia Ward Howe in 1861 during the Civil War to the tune of a popular camp song of the time.

The verse sung in "In the Name of God" is as follows:

Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord;
He is trampling out the vintage where the grapes of wrath are stored;
He hath loosed the fateful lightning of His terrible swift sword;
His truth is marching on.

Glory! Glory! Hallelujah!
Glory! Glory! Hallelujah!
Glory! Glory! Hallelujah!
His truth is marching on.

Currently it's unknown if this is a sample or sung by MP/JP/JLB.

How come JM didn't contribute any lyrics for TOT?
In a recent IRC chat, Mike said the following:

[Portnoy] starting with SFAM, we kinda layed down a new lyric rule....if you are going to present lyrics, they must be properly formed, phrased, constructed, etc. to go with the melodies
[Portnoy] JM's lyrics were always kind of presented in a more free form poetic manner and it was up to us (Kev, JP or myself) to kind of shape them to the song
[Portnoy] to be blatently honest, we wanted everybody to kind of "carry their own weight" when writing lyrics, and since then John has kind of backed off
[Portnoy] the door is always open to him to contribute again if he'd like...

Will there be a DVD-A release of TOT?
Kevin Shirley did mix the album in 5.1 for a possible DVD-A release, but it all depends on the labels willingness to release it. Since it hasn't already been released it appears likely it will only see the light of day as some kind of anniversary release or similar.

What's the story behind the 'nugget' in ITNOG?
In the commentary for MP's Drums of Thought DVD, he mentioned a special "hidden nugget" that could be found somewhere in the studio version of "In the Name of God".

Over many weeks, many people on MP's forum were searching all through ITNOG to find out what the nugget was. Mike kept an eye on the discussions and let people know when they were wrong, and dozens of theories were proven false by MP.

One thing that he did say was that somebody had touched on what the nugget was in one of the various threads, but no one had expanded on it.

Eventually, Nick Bogovich (Bogie on the forum) discovered what the nugget actually was: the words "eat my ass and balls" spelled out in morse code from 5:51 to 6:07 of the song. Here's a copy of the post in which he announced his discovery:

This is the nugget.

EAT MY ASS AND BALLS EAT MY ASS AND BALLS

in Morse code from 5:51-6:07.

The pattern breaks down like this:

..-----.--.-.......--.-..-....-.-...-..... (from 5:51 - 5:59)
..-----.--.-.......--.-..-....-.-...-..... (from 5:59 - 6:07)

. = E
.- = A
- = T
-- = M
-.-- = Y
... = S
-. = N
-.. = D
-... = B
.-.. = L

EATMYASSANDBALLS written in Morse code [without] any spaces is:

..-----.--.-.......--.-..-....-.-...-.....

The person who originally brought up morse code was DarrylRevok, who had mentioned that the clicking at 5:51 sounds like morse code but he didn't try to translate it into English.

Following Bogie's discovery, Mike replied not long after with this post:

CONGRATS!!! :D
It only took a year and half for somebody to find it! ;)
(I wonder if anybody would have eventually found it if I never mentioned it in the commentary?)

DarrylRevok gets the distinction of being the first person to actually notice the morse code...
And Bogie gets the distinction of being the first fan ON EARTH to uncover this wonderful nugget!!

If either of them are interested, I can offer:
1. my hair from when I cut it off a few months ago
2. my underwear from the famous "Breakdown in Berlin" clinic in 2000

Otherwise, they simply get the distinction of being the first people to discover this wonderful piece of DT absurdity that Jordan and I planted oh so long ago!

OK - back to work I go....

(I am currently in the control room while Jordan lays down the opening synth line to what will be track #3 on the album....)

MP

How do I unlock the hidden extras on TOT?
Originally, when you put Train of Thought in your computer it would link you to a bonus video hosted on DT.net, but it hasn't been available for quite a while. The only way to get your hands on the video is through P2P or other means.