FATES WARNING
Progressive Metal / Power Metal / Traditional heavy metal • United States

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Fates Warning is an American progressive metal band, formed in 1982 by vocalist John Arch, guitarists Jim Matheos and Victor Arduini, bassist Joe DiBiase, and drummer Steve Zimmerman in Hartford, Connecticut. Fates Warning has experienced numerous line-up changes. From 1982 to 1996, and temporarily in 2010, Matheos and DiBiase were the only original members of the band, with Matheos being the only constant member. Their current lineup consists of guitarists Jim Matheos and Frank Aresti, vocalist Ray Alder and bassist Joey Vera. Drummer Bobby Jarzombek has been part of Fates Warning since 2007 but is only a live member. As a pioneer of the American progressive metal movement, Fates Warning rose to international fame in the 1980s and was ranked as one of the early flagship bands of progressive metal along with Queensrÿche and Dream Theater, who were responsible for creating, developing and popularizing that genre. Fates Warning has released read more...
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Fates Warning - Still Life  (CD, 1998, 2 Discs, Metal Blade) Fates Warning - Still Life (CD, 1998, 2 Discs, Metal Blade) USD $7.19 Buy It Now 3 days
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Night on BröckenNight on Bröcken
Remastered · Extra tracks
Metal Blade 2002
Audio CD$6.98
$5.98 (used)
Darkness in a Different LightDarkness in a Different Light
Inside Out U.S. 2013
Audio CD$9.20
$6.57 (used)
Spectre WithinSpectre Within
Remastered · Extra tracks
Metal Blade 2002
Audio CD$7.67
$5.98 (used)
DisconnectedDisconnected
Metal Blade 2000
Audio CD$6.23
$3.63 (used)
Pleasant Shade of GrayPleasant Shade of Gray
Metal Blade 1997
Audio CD$6.99
$4.66 (used)
No Exit: 25th Anniversary EditionNo Exit: 25th Anniversary Edition
Remastered · Extra tracks
Metal Blade 2007
Audio CD$7.99
$12.99 (used)
Perfect SymmetryPerfect Symmetry
Extra tracks · Remastered
Metal Blade 2008
Audio CD$10.73
$10.43 (used)
ParallelsParallels
Extra tracks · Remastered
Metal Blade 2010
Audio CD$11.81
$13.47 (used)
Awaken the GuardianAwaken the Guardian
CD+DVD · Remastered · Extra tracks
Metal Blade 2005
Audio CD$11.65
$8.99 (used)
Chasing TimeChasing Time
Metal Blade Records 1995
Audio CD$20.19
$3.49 (used)
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FATES WARNING Discography

FATES WARNING albums / top albums

.. Album Cover 3.05 | 25 ratings
Night On Bröcken
Traditional heavy metal 1984
.. Album Cover 3.86 | 27 ratings
The Spectre Within
Progressive Metal 1985
.. Album Cover 4.13 | 33 ratings
Awaken The Guardian
Progressive Metal 1986
.. Album Cover 4.22 | 40 ratings
No Exit
Progressive Metal 1988
.. Album Cover 4.18 | 54 ratings
Perfect Symmetry
Progressive Metal 1989
.. Album Cover 4.31 | 60 ratings
Parallels
Progressive Metal 1991
.. Album Cover 4.13 | 30 ratings
Inside Out
Progressive Metal 1994
.. Album Cover 4.14 | 39 ratings
A Pleasant Shade Of Gray
Progressive Metal 1997
.. Album Cover 3.82 | 34 ratings
Disconnected
Progressive Metal 2000
.. Album Cover 3.46 | 29 ratings
FWX
Progressive Metal 2004
.. Album Cover 4.07 | 19 ratings
Darkness In A Different Light
Progressive Metal 2013

FATES WARNING EPs & splits

FATES WARNING live albums

.. Album Cover 4.16 | 10 ratings
Still Life
Progressive Metal 1998

FATES WARNING demos, promos, fans club and other releases (no bootlegs)

.. Album Cover 2.00 | 1 ratings
Misift
Power Metal 1984
.. Album Cover 2.00 | 1 ratings
Demo
Power Metal 1984
.. Album Cover 2.00 | 1 ratings
Dickie
Power Metal 1985

FATES WARNING boxset & compilations

.. Album Cover 4.13 | 6 ratings
Chasing Time
Progressive Metal 1995

FATES WARNING singles (4)

.. Album Cover
2.00 | 1 ratings
Silent Cries
Progressive Metal 1988
.. Album Cover
2.00 | 1 ratings
Through Different Eyes
Progressive Metal 1989
.. Album Cover
2.00 | 1 ratings
Pale Fire
Progressive Metal 1994
.. Album Cover
2.00 | 1 ratings
A Pleasant Shade Of Gray: Part II
Progressive Metal 1997

FATES WARNING movies (DVD, Blu-Ray or VHS)

.. Album Cover
3.03 | 4 ratings
The View From Here
Progressive Metal 2003
.. Album Cover
3.51 | 3 ratings
Live In Athens
Progressive Metal 2005

FATES WARNING Reviews

FATES WARNING FWX

Album · 2004 · Progressive Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
UMUR
"FWX" is the 10th full-length studio album by US progressive metal act Fates Warning. The album was released through Metal Blade Records in October 2004. "FWX" was recorded by the same lineup who recorded the two predecessors "A Pleasant Shade of Gray (1997)" and "Disconnected (2000)". This time around Kevin Moore (Dream Theater, Chroma Key, OSI) doesn´t guest on keyboards though. The keyboards and the programming are instead handled by guitarist/main composer Jim Matheos.

While the music on the two predecessors is among the most progressive the band have yet released, "FWX", for the most part, follows a different route. The album is generally more vers/chorus oriented and there´s a slight alternative influence on the album too. To my ears Some tracks sound closer to Ray Alder´s and Joey Vera´s side-project Engine than they sound like Fates Warning tracks. A track like "Another Perfect Day" reminded me quite a bit of Enchant, so "FWX" is generally a bit of a different sounding Fates Warning album.

The album is well produced although I think Ray Alder´s voice features a somewhat unpleasant metallic production. But that´s been the case on the two precessors too. What´s more disturbing is the quality of the vocal melody lines, which are not very catchy. That worked alright on the more progressive predecessors because the quality of the music was so high, but here the instrumental part of the music too often falls into anonymous territory. The musicianship is as always on a very high level, but it´s not often the band´s great skills are put to their full use.

So overall "FWX" is a bit of a disappointing release by Fates Warning. It´s a bit hard to follow what the band were aiming at with the album but the bottom line is that it isn´t really working. "FWX" features glimpses of greatness and there are definitely both memorable and enjoyable parts on the album, but they are generally few and far between. Still a band like Fates Warning never fall flat on their face even on an album where they don´t deliver their most well written or interesting material, so a 3 star (60%) rating is still deserved.

FATES WARNING Darkness In A Different Light

Album · 2013 · Progressive Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
UMUR
"Darkness In A Different Light" is the 11th full-length studio album by US progressive metal act Fates Warning. The album was released through InsideOut Music in September 2013. There have been quite a few years between this album and "FWX" from 2004. A lot has happened in those years though. Drummer Mark Zonder left Fates Warning in 2005 and the remaining members of the band busied themselves with various other projects like OSI, Arch/Matheos and Redemption. Mark Zonder hasn´t returned on "Darkness In A Different Light" and has been replaced by Bobby Jarzombek. Lead guitarist Frank Aresti, who left Fates Warning after "Inside Out (1994)", is the other "new" member of the lineup as he makes a return on "Darkness In A Different Light". The "usual" suspects are bassist Joey Vera, guitarist Jim Matheos and lead vocalist Ray Alder. Except for Alder this is exactly the same lineup that recorded the "Sympathetic Resonance (2011)" album by Arch/Matheos.

"Darkness In A Different Light" is quite different from "Sympathetic Resonance (2011)" though. Most of the tracks on the 10 track, 56:41 minutes long album are "regular" length and most feature clear vers/chorus structures even though Fates Warning as usual twist and turn that concept and end up with an adventuours result. The 14:03 minutes long album closer "And Yet It Moves" is the only really long track on the album and even that track is divided into parts, that make it sound like several tracks put together to form one longer track. I´m actually slightly disappointed by that track. I think it´s clumsily put together, and the song structure lack the elegance that is usually a Fates Warning trademark. It´s too bad because taken section by section there are some brilliant moments in that track. The rest of the album is thankfully of the usual high quality that Fates Warning are known for. With Frank Aresti returning, the clean guitar/distorted guitar sound of the late eighties/early nineties and the melodic guitar solos are back in the band´s sound and while the albums that didn´t feature those elements had their own charm, I must admit, that I´ve missed them. The subtle use of dissonances that the band have experimented with on the last couple of albums are also a part of the sound on "Darkness In A Different Light", but it is generally the most melodic album by the band since "Inside Out (1994)".

To my ears highlights on the album include the opening trio of tracks "One Thousand Fires", "Firefly" and "Desire" and the dark ballad type track "Lighthouse". The latter is pretty strong even though it is strangely non-melodic. The aforementioned subtle dissonances are on full display here though and work really well within the context of this particular track. Despite my reservations "And Yet It Moves" should also be counted among the standout tracks on "Darkness In A Different Light".

The limited edition of the album features a bonus disc containing four tracks. An extended version of "Firefly" (almost 3 minutes longer than the version on the album), "Falling Further", which sounds like an outtake from the recording sessions and live versions of "One" and "Life in Still Water", which are both tracks from previous releases. The extended version of "Firefly" is a bit more progressive in nature than the version that ended up on the album, but I´m a bit indifferent towards it and the two live tracks don´t feature a very good sound quality and what to my ears sound like out of tune singing, so it´s actually only "Falling Further" that´s really interesting in my opinion. It´s a very catchy and mainstream oriented track. Somewhat in the same vein as tracks like "Eye to Eye" and "Through Different Eyes".

Fates Warning are an exceptionally well playing act and lead vocalist Ray Alder is as skilled and powerful sounding as ever. Bobby Jarzombek is a skilled replacement for Mark Zonder, even though the latter´s unique drumming style can never be fully matched. At times Jarzombek´s drumming seems to imitate Zonder´s playing style and while the drumming style suits the music well, I could have wished for a more personal touch from him.

"Darkness In A Different Light" features a professional and well sounding production and while it doesn´t exactly blow me away like some of the band´s earlier albums have done, it´s still a step up from the rather mediocre "FWX (2004)" and a pretty great welcome back to one of the most important progressive metal acts on the scene. A 4 star (80%) rating is deserved.

FATES WARNING Darkness In A Different Light

Album · 2013 · Progressive Metal
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Kev Rowland
Sometimes it is hard to remember just how long this band has been around, but they were formed in 1982 with their first album out in ’84. Some 20 years on from that they decided to take a break, although they all stayed active in different groups (and sometimes working together). Now, some nine years after ‘FWX’, they are back. This is the first FW release by this line-up, but there has only been one change with Bobby Jarzombek (drums) taking over from Mark Zonder, but the rest of the gang are here, with the line-up completed by Ray Alder (vocals), Jim Matheos and Frank Aresti (guitars) and Joey Vera (bass). Yes that’s right, no keyboards or samplers, these guys have gone back to their roots and have created a complex metal album that is full of riffs and interplay.

One of the things that has always marked these guys out as being a little different to many in their field is that they have always concentrated on the songs and refused to let their own musical prowess take them away from that. The result in this case is an album packed full of songs, with only one being long, with plenty of room for everyone to shine as long as it doesn’t detract from the overall feel of the piece. Ray has been fronting this band for some 25 years now but he doesn’t show any sign at all of slowing down, and still hits the notes with ease and displays great breath control. It is an infectious album that is full of punch and vigour, and something that can be enjoyed from the very first time it hits the player. For fans of the band, and for fans of all types of infectious metal with a commercial prog element to the approach.

FATES WARNING A Pleasant Shade Of Gray

Album · 1997 · Progressive Metal
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Warthur
Fates Warning's A Pleasant Shade of Gray earns points for ambition, presenting as it does a single multi-part song, but it fails to make that song compelling enough to hold my attention. In particular, I find the repetitive and tedious Part VIII so irritating that it ends up as a roadblock to my enjoyment of the piece as a whole. It's good that the band were trying to do something different - in particular, for a lot of the time the album is more sedate and sombre and less traditionally "metal" than most preceding Fates Warning work - but it isn't quite my cup of tea.

FATES WARNING Darkness In A Different Light

Album · 2013 · Progressive Metal
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Time Signature
And yet it moves...

Genre: progressive metal

The first proper Fates Warning album in nearly ten years, “Darkness in a Different Light” has obviously been greatly anticipated. Of course, we Fates Warning fans godt a massive treat when Arch/Matheos’ masterpiece debut album “Sympathetic Resonance” was released in 2011 featuring Fates Warning’s current line-up in its entirety and former Fates Warning vocalist Jon Arch in front. While many people consider “Sympathetic Resonance” the lost Fates Warning album or the Fates Warning album that never was, “Darkness in a Different Light” is the real comeback from these pioneers of progressive metal.

Stylistically, this album falls somewhere between “Disconnected” and “FWX”, which are probably my least favorite Fates Warning albums, but in combining these albums, “Darkness in a Different Light” rises above these two albums, taking the best of both and moving it in a direction of its own. The songs on the album are, for progressive metal standards, pretty short and relatively straightforward at first listen. But after a couple of listens, the listener will discover little details that are more reminiscent of the bands legendary early 90s output. This is largely due to the return to the two-guitarists set-up, which Fates Warning exploit in a number of interesting ways on this album.

The opening track opens with a frantic wasp-like guitar figure on top of a groovy guitar riff and takes the listener – in true Rush-style – through a couple of different passages before the verse kicks in. The verse is a heavy and groovy affair with an acoustic guitar overlaid on top. Already here, the listener is reminded of some of the aesthetics of “Parallels” and “Inside Out” which made efficient use of the combination of distorted and clean guitars. But, still, what we hear here is not quite identical to those two albums, as Fates Warning pursue a much heavier and groovier sound on this album. ‘Firefly’ is dark and heavy, drawing on some simple and groovy guitar figures. ‘Desire’ has a considerably dark almost Twin Peaks-like atmosphere to its verse due to the use of clean-ish guitars with a retro flanger effect. The chorus, however, is more groovy with a sing-a-long-friendly vocal melody – which is actually characteristic of the entire album. Both of these tracks focus more on atmosphere than on technical finesse, but still they feature that band’s trademark odd time signatures, and the former in particular treats the listener to some rhythmically mindboggeling passages. ‘Falling’ is a wee acoustic piece featuring emotional lyrics and vocals by Ray Adler – I do not know if it is intended as a mere filler, but it definitely suits the dark feel of the album and is, at least, not out of place. ‘I Am’ has some groovy alternative metal elements and is slightly reminiscent of some of the most characteristic tracks of “Disconnect”, except that ‘I Am’ is slightly slower and does not feature any of the industrial elements of that album. ‘Lighthouse’ is the most atmoshperic track on the album, while ‘Into the Black’ takes the listener through various shades of black, and ‘Kneel and Obey’ and ‘O Chloroform’ revisit the heavy grooves and progressive rhythms of the first handful of tracks on the album. My absolute favorite of the album is the mammothian ‘And Yet It Moves’, which opens with a medieval-sounding acoustic intro and takes us through a number of groovy odd-metered instrumental sections with slightly different guitar figures overlaid on top each other. In the verse, Adler’s melancholic voice fits the overall atmosphere very well, and the rhythm section delivers some nice ostinatos that contrast with the guitar rhythms upon which – true to their 90s sound – Fates Warning have overlaid clean guitars. Drummers are bound to adore this track, as it is the one that showcases Jarzombek’s magnificent skills behind the drumkit. Combining heavy riffs, challenging rhythms, odd time signatures and captivating vocal melodies, this is the magnum opus of the album, and personally I hope that future output from Fates Warning will be more in the vein of this awesome, driving progressive metal tune.

The characterizing features of the album are, not surprisingly, darkness and melancholy in atmosphere (imagine the depressive atmosphere of “A Pleasant Shade of Grey” but more intence and much heavier) – and this is of course a mood that Ray Adler’s voice and vocal melodies excellently convey. Another characteristic of the album is groove and heaviness. Many of the songs on the album evolve around groovy riffs, some of which are straightforward while others are accompanied by challenging odd time signatures and frighteningly tight drumming by Jarzombek – definitely a more than worthy successor to Mark Zonder. Finally, with the return of Frank Aresti in the studio, Fates Warning have re-embraced the twin guitar sound, but not quite in the same way as on their early 90s classics. As on “Parallels” and “Inside Out”, they make use of clean guitars on top of distorted ones, but, unlike these two albums and “Perfect Symmetry”, there are no twin guitar leads. Instead, Matheos and Aresti experiment with ways of rhymically utilizing two guitars by having them play different grooves on top of eact other; this also appears on previous Fates Warning albums as well as “Sympathetic Resonance”, but this approach is much more developed on “Darkness in a Different Light” than on any previous Fates Warning related album.

We are definitely dealing with a successful comeback, and I particularly enjoy the combination of simple grooves and technical rhythms. Not all tracks on the album appeal to me equally much, but overall we are dealing with, for my money at least, the best Fates Warning release since “A Pleasant Shade of Grey”. This is a promising album, and it makes me hopeful. I hope to see Fates Warning further explore the twin-guitar sound in the future, and, of course, I also hope for a more regular stream of releases from the progressive metal giants that are Fates Warning.

FATES WARNING Movies Reviews

FATES WARNING The View From Here

Movie · 2003 · Progressive Metal
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Stooge
After owning this DVD for around 4 years, I can say one thing for sure. It serves as a healthy crash course in the Ray Alder era of Fates Warning. It was actually my first Fates Warning purchase, and I now consider them one of my favorite prog metal bands. All of the footage included features the band fronted by Ray Alder, but they do touch briefly on the John Arch-era material (“Prelude To Ruin” but done with Alder). A large portion of the concert footage can be described loosely as bootleg quality (at least when it comes to production and editing), but definitely above average in terms of overall visual quality.

As great as this is as an introductory piece to Fates Warning fan, it may also find it’s place in your collection to be a temporary one. In recent years, Metal Blade Records has done an outstanding job in re-issuing a large portion of Fates Warning’s back catalog. As many of their re-released albums have included a great amount of footage on bonus DVDs, much of what exist on The View From Here has become available in other ways. Additionally, I believe the band’s complete performance of A Pleasant Shade of Gray is available on DVD in some markets.

I also wonder why, on a DVD that runs roughly an hour long, they chose to include two examples of song repetition. You get both the music video for “Point of View” and their performance of the song at the Dynamo festival. The same Dynamo concert features a performance of “The Eleventh Hour”, which is also included as a bonus performance from another venue in rough bootleg quality. There were surely plenty other performances in the Fates Warning archives that could have added some more variety to this compilation.

As a big fan of this group, I was pleased to see some of the behind the scenes footage from the making of their Disconnected album. Though I’ll admit, it doesn’t go into too much depth. There is also a small trailer for the promotion of the Parallels album. To see the creation of Parallels in more detail, check out their 2CD/1DVD re-issue of that album.

This is a good DVD to pick up for more die-hard Fates Warning fans and those who are just getting into the band. Merely an appetizer.

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