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Fates Warning - FWX CD (album) cover

FWX

Fates Warning

 

Progressive Metal

3.36 | 202 ratings

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UMUR
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars "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) doesnīt 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 thereīs a slight alternative influence on the album too. To my ears Some tracks sound closer to Ray Alderīs and Joey Veraīs 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 Alderīs voice features a somewhat unpleasant metallic production. But thatīs been the case on the two precessors too. Whatīs 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 itīs not often the bandīs great skills are put to their full use.

So overall "FWX" is a bit of a disappointing release by Fates Warning. Itīs a bit hard to follow what the band were aiming at with the album but the bottom line is that it isnīt 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 donīt deliver their most well written or interesting material, so a 3 star (60%) rating is still deserved.

UMUR | 3/5 |

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