Who played the drums for Fates Warning

Fates Warning

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Fates Warning

When Fates Warning started making music in 1983 in Cincinatti, Ohio, it all still sounded like traditional heavy metal. The two guitarists Jim Matheos and Victor Arduini, bass player Joe DiBiase, drummer Steve Zimmerman and singer John Arch are also part of the party.

In the first year the track "Soldier Boy" appeared on the sampler "Metal Massacre 5", a year later the debut "Night On Bröcken" came out on Brian Slagel's label Metal Blade. But already with the follow-up "The Specter Within" Fates Warning move on to more complex arrangements and tricky guitar work, which complements the singer John's voice perfectly. In the beginning he was always compared to Geoff Tate (Queensryche) and Bruce Dickinson, but quickly developed his own style.

For "Awaken The Guardian", Fates Warning bring Frank Aresti (ex-Demonaxe) into the band, who replaces Victor. The pieces become more epic, the term Progressive Metal comes up more and more often in connection with the band, although the band never tries to integrate great fiddling into their music.

In 1987 the band broke up with John, who from then on occupied himself with other things. Fates Warning bring the young talented singer Ray Alder (ex-Syrus) into the ranks and present him with a big task. With "The Ivory Gate Of Dreams" there is a 22-minute song on "No Exit", which is not only considered a milestone, but demands everything from each of the musicians. Afterwards Fates Warning start their first North American tour

Nowadays revered as a cult band by many, the quintet takes a big step towards catchability two years later, when drummer Steve hands over the sticks to Mark Zonder (ex-warlord). "Perfect Symmetry" still has its powerful parts, but also many quiet moments in which acoustic guitars dominate. But it works out, Fates Warning go on an extended concert tour both in Europe and once again in the States.

So it's not particularly surprising that "Parallels" is even more melodic and that the hard guitars are almost completely a thing of the past. Singer Ray shows on the disc how harmoniously he can sing, and main songwriter Jim also lets his vein run free for soulful guitar pieces.

Since there are three years between "Parallels" and its successor "Inside Out", Jim uses this time to publish his first solo work "First Impressions". He is then only accompanied by a cello and a violin on his acoustic guitar. The record was released in 1993, the same year that Fates Warning signed up to headline Wacken Open Air.

Back home, they continue to work on the new album and meanwhile play a gig with ex-singer John Arch on stage. Many fans call "Inside Out" the worst, because it is the most commercial Fates Warning album, although the songs are actually not bad, but apparently rely too much on the commercial breakthrough. But the subsequent US tour with Dream Theater doesn't help either.

In 1995 a best-of with two unreleased tracks was released with "Chasing Time", otherwise not much happens this year. When the news got around in 1996 that both bass player Joe and guitarist Frank had left the band, many no longer gave much thought to the future of Fates Warning. With Joey Vera (Engine / Armored Saint) a gifted bassist joins the band, the second guitar position remains unmanned from now on. Before they finally start working on "A Pleasant Shade Of Gray", Fates Warning recorded one more track for the Rush sampler "Working Man" and one for the Judas Priest sampler "Legends Of Heavy Metal Pt.I" on.

"A Pleasant Shade Of Gray" was released in 1997 and consists of a single 60-minute song. Former Dream Theater keyboardist Kevin Moore plays the piano parts. Finally the band is returning to its old genius. Since Kevin cannot go on tour, Ed Roth takes over his parts first and then Jason Keazer (Divine Regale).

A year later, a video of this tour was released, as well as a live record, before they take it easy again. 1999 shines with the release of Jim's second solo album "Away With Words" as well as with Ray's Project Engine, in which bassist Joey is also involved. Before that, the guys will record a track for the Dio tribute album "Sign Of The Southern Cross".

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At the turn of the millennium, the next studio album, "Disconnected", is released, which is technically tough again, as well as the DVD "Live At The Dynamo". Ray's side project Engine will be playing at Dynamo in Eindhoven as well as at Wacken Open Air this year. To promote "Disconnected", Fates Warning will go on tour in 2001 as a support act for Savatage. Ray uses the following break for his second engine disc "Superholic", Joey works in countless other bands and also lets Armored Saint revive. Drummer Mark also brings one new Warlord disc out with Joacim Cans (Hammerfall) doing the vocals.

As if all of that wasn't enough, the OSI project is soon to be released, featuring drummer Mike Portnoy (Dream Theater), keyboardist / singer Kevin Moore, guitarist Jim Matheos and bass player Sean Malone (Cynic / Gordian Knot) let off steam. It always seems more and more as if Fates Warning faded into the background in all the projects of the individual participants, as the Gods Tour is simply being announced. Together with Dream Theater and Queensryche, Fates Warning are going on a major US tour and are apparently getting their taste for it again. For Mark Zonder, Nick D'Virgilio from Spock's Beard is now on the drums.

Afterwards Jim gathers his colleagues Ray, Joey and Mark together and records "FWX" with them. In addition to a certain preference for samples and overdubs, Jim has also rediscovered the benefits of hard guitars. This is followed in 2005 by the DVD "Live In Athens", which is on a very low level in terms of sound and, above all, image technology, but musically remains beyond any doubt. Since Frank Aresti was on tour as the second guitarist, the band is concentrating on their heavier pieces.

Since drummer Mark has finally turned his back on the band, they play at the Headway Festival in Amstelveen with Mike Portnoy on drums and otherwise fall back on Nick D'Virgilio. In addition to the DVD, Metal Blade also re-issue "Awaken The Guardian" and include another CD with live and demo tracks as well as a DVD with material from 1986 in addition to the remastered disc. Meanwhile Jim is already involved in the new O.S.I.-album "Free", but Fates Warning are also active in 2006 and play at the Rock Hard Festival. Here, too, they have Frank on guitar and Nick on drums by their side.

With Fates Warning it remains calm for the time being. So Ray passes the time by joining Redemption. In addition, the next new edition will be released with "No Exit", again with a bonus CD and DVD with recordings of the world tour in 1988. Before 2007 comes to an end, the band will do a few more laps in Europe with Pagan's Mind as the opener with it. In June, "Perfect Symmetry (Re-Release)" is the third trick in terms of the new edition.

The Arch / Matheos collaborations and occasional live performances with the cast around Ray Alder, Bobby Jarzombek and Joey Vera keep the flame burning. In autumn 2013, a full nine years after the last regular release, Matheos and Co. heaved the next long player into their home systems. "Darkness In A Different Light" sounds a lot more Metal than the albums from the noughties and proves that retirement is far from coming.

All the more astonishing that the extremely self-critical band leader lets himself be carried away to a temporary reunion in the Awaken The Guardian line-up. Except for a few shows in 2016, nothing happens. The current line-up around singer Ray Alder is responsible for the creative part. Despite the numerous projects, this time it will take less than three years to finish the next sound carrier. "Theories Of Flight" goes through as terrific proof that progressive metal does not have to be a pure nostalgia event, but can absorb and convey new impulses.