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Fates Warning - Awaken The Guardian CD (album) cover


Fates Warning


Progressive Metal

3.98 | 289 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

5 stars Awaken The Guardian by Fates Warning isn't just an ordinary album. It is a magical journey through fantasy landscapes drawn by the music. Just the word "magic" is sufficient to describe this album, but I will write some more about this masterpiece.

It was released in 1986. I don't like history, but in this case it is very important to realize when it was made. Heavy and power metal were fully evolved in these times. Fates Warning have made 2 straight heavy metal albums back then. But then the ATG came out. I think it was one of the first progressive metal albums. So it is very important to consider it as a progressive album, not just US power metal as many people do. This wrong attitude generates the problem with bad reception of this piece. So in conclusion you have to be very open minded to understand this weird music ;)

Personally it is easily in my top 3 albums(with "A Sceptic's Universe" and "Images and Words") I totally understand that somebody don't like it. The reason is that John Arch has a very high pitched vocals. It is pretty hard to get used to his "lalala" harmonies (that I personally really like :D ). Some people can say that the bass guitar on this album isn't progressive at all and the quality of the recording isn't wonderful. And some people can have this wrong attitude and consider it as a weird heavy/power metal. These people just don't feel the magic.

The album is opened by "The Sorceress". The first riff has pretty odd time signature. Then comes the fantasy based lyrics and some nice instrumental work. Pretty good song.

"Valley of the dolls" is pretty fast and the lyrics deals with hair metal scene. Again some odd time signatures and nice guitar work. Good song.

"Fata Morgana" Oh this is madness !! Magnificent song. Fantasy lyrics, beautiful vocal harmonies, great riffs. I like to watch the album cover art while listening to his one. It takes me to another word. Very, very magical one.

"Guardian" The title track. Marvelous acoustic intro and solo. The lyrics deals with handicapped people. John Arch shows his anti-euthanasia statement here (personally I don't approve it but it is nice to see the lyrics that have important, hidden message). This is a mind blowing song.

"Prelude to Ruin" Has meaningful lyrics too. I think they deal with American patriotism. Pretty progressive drum and guitar work. Btw it was covered by Spiral Architect.

"Giant's Lore" is based on a fantasy theme but I think it has some hidden message( if anybody knows the meaning, tell me about it). The music is pretty sad but i like it.

Time Long Past is an acoustic piece. For me it is too repetitive and probably the worst song on the album, but still worth listening.

"Exodus" closes the album. It is hard to write about how good this song is. The chorus is probably the best that I have ever heard. The lyrics are fantasy based. John Arch shows that he is one of the best singers of all time. Amazing riffs, some odd time signatures and the album ends.

I have to say about one thing. The album cover art. I love it !! It reminds me of the film "Never Ending Story". John Arch is one of my favorite singers. His lyrics + cover art can take you to another dimension.

Mystic Journey to Arcana !!

PS. This is my first review on progarchives. It is pretty long but who cares ;) Prog on.

NastyProgger | 5/5 |


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