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ARCH / MATHEOS

Progressive Metal • United States


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Arch / Matheos biography
ARCH / MATHEOS is a project evolving around FATES WARNING guitarist Jim MATHEOS and former FATES WARNING vocalist John ARCH.
The band also features Frank ARESTI on guitars, Joey VERA on bass, and Bobby JARZOMBEK on drums.

ARCH / MATHEOS began tracking their full length debut album "Sympathetic Resonance" on January 12th 2011. It was released on September 13th.

See also:

- Fates Warning
- John Arch

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4.05 | 237 ratings
Sympathetic Resonance
2011

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ARCH / MATHEOS Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Sympathetic Resonance by ARCH / MATHEOS album cover Studio Album, 2011
4.05 | 237 ratings

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Sympathetic Resonance
Arch / Matheos Progressive Metal

Review by javajeff

5 stars John Arch on vocals and Jim Matheos on guitar is pure magic. If you do not already have the Twist of Fate EP with these two, then you need to get that immediately as well. Sympathetic Resonance could easily be called a Fates Warning album since it has the current lineup adding the original vocalist over the current one, Ray Alder, who is also excellent. Anyone that likes Fates Warning or Progressive Metal should immediately pick this up. I think it is one of the best Progressive Metal albums released by anyone. That list includes Dream Theater, Opeth, Symphony X, Pain of Salvation, and many more that I also enjoy. If you do not have Sympathetic Resonance, it is a must buy. I tend to listen to it often, which is a testament to the quality of the release. It is a Progressive Metal masterpiece.

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 Sympathetic Resonance by ARCH / MATHEOS album cover Studio Album, 2011
4.05 | 237 ratings

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Sympathetic Resonance
Arch / Matheos Progressive Metal

Review by AtomicCrimsonRush
Special Collaborator Symphonic Team

4 stars Arch/ Matheos is the project that was to be the next Fates Warning album but never came to be. Instead Fates Warning's vocalist John Arch and guitarist Jim Matheos came together to create something as special that would please Fates Warning fans and beyond.

The album "Sympathetic Resonance" opens with 'Neurotically Wired', and immediately the high powered high register vocals of Arch resonates beautifully. The vocals are as clear and exceptional as in the Fates Warning days. The guitars hammer on with pounding riffs as one would expect from the legendary guitarist Matheos. There are some stunning time sig changes and overall a strong prog metal vibe.

The melodic chorus on 'Midnight Serenade' is infectious, and this is followed by the longest song,'Stained Glass Sky'. This features amazing dextrous lead guitar work and a killer riff. 'On the Fence' is more emotional, a power ballad of sorts, and particularly shines with Matheos' lead breaks and guitar tones. 'Any Given Day (Strangers like me)' begins with wonderful instrumentation, and acoustic vibrations. It builds with a great percussion meter from Bobby Jarzombek, and switches tempo at will with some pummeling riffs and the omnipresent bassline of Joey Vera.

The closer is 'Incense and Myrrh', a short track with enough power to make it worthwhile. The distorted riffs resound nicely in the ears, and has an outstanding melody. Overall this album is a real crowd pleaser, a definitive prog metal album, and hopefully not the last time Arch and Matheos will collaborate, as they are obviously capable of greatness even without the Fates Warning moniker.

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 Sympathetic Resonance by ARCH / MATHEOS album cover Studio Album, 2011
4.05 | 237 ratings

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Sympathetic Resonance
Arch / Matheos Progressive Metal

Review by Puppies On Acid

5 stars Now to review the latest Fates Warning.....err I mean the newly formed band Arch/Matheos' album Sympathetic Resonance. It would be easy to call this a Fates Warning album since all the current members are part of this project with the exception of vocalist Ray Alder. Instead of Alder its original Fates Warning vocalist (and in my opinion the better of the two) John Arch. While his vocal style may not appeal to all, there is no doubt that this man can sing. Between the EP he released in 2003 and now this full length he hasn't lost any of his vocal prowess he displayed 25 years ago on the last Fates Warning album he did. There's complex vocal passages, soaring harmonies and an impressive vocal range on display here. Also making a return is the Fantasy themed lyrics that fit his voice so well. John Arch without a doubt steals the show on this album, but the rest of the band is no slouch. Jim Matheos is one of the best song-writers out there, and between him and Frank Aresti the guitars are quite pleasing. Acoustic passages, heavy riffs, and blazing solo's are all testament to the talent these guys have. Just listen to the first few minutes of Stained Glass Sky. Or any of the other songs for that matter. Then you have Bobby Jarzombek on drums, who can pretty much play anything and keep it interesting. In the end this is what I would imagine Fates Warning would sound like today had John Arch never left. Then again this pretty much is Fates Warning....

92/100

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 Sympathetic Resonance by ARCH / MATHEOS album cover Studio Album, 2011
4.05 | 237 ratings

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Sympathetic Resonance
Arch / Matheos Progressive Metal

Review by UMUR
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

5 stars "Sympathetic Resonance" is the debut full-length studio album by US progressive metal act Arch / Matheos. The album was released through Metal Blade Records in September 2011. Arch / Matheos is a project formed by former Fates Warning frontman John Arch and Fates Warning guitarist and main composer Jim Matheos. Since John Arch left Fates Warning in 1987, little has been heard from the singer. The 2003 "A Twist of Fate" EP, which was released under his own name, and which was also created in collaboration with Jim Matheos, didn´t result in a comeback to the scene. It did however signal that John Arch wasn´t completely through with music and when he was approached by Jim Matheos, who had written material for a new project, his interest was aroused and the two of them started sending music files to each other. Matheos would send his compositions to Arch, and Arch would write melody lines and lyrics to go along with the compositions. When it came to recording the album they enlisted a couple of prolific and greatly skilled musicians to record the bass, drum and lead guitar parts in bassist Joey Vera (Fates Warning, Engine, Armored Saint), drummer Bobby Jarzombek (Fates Warning, Halford, Iced Earth) and lead guitarist Frank Aresti (Fates Warning).

The music on the album is guitar driven progressive metal rooted in the eighties progressive metal movement (before keyboards became an integrated part of most progressive metal music). With all musicians involved being related to Fates Warning, it´s impossible not to think of this album in relation to that band and especially the early John Arch-led Fates Warning releases, but ultimately "Sympathetic Resonance" doesn´t sound like neither that era nor later Fates Warning eras. Arch / Matheos have succeeded in striking a good balance between recognisable elements from their Fates Warning past (and for some present) and an original progressive metal sound.

The riffs are dark and heavy, the rythm section provide complex and powerful playing and John Arch signature high pitched and nasal vocal delivery is the icing on the cake. The latter´s vocal melody lines are amazing to say the least. Not only is he one of the most powerful and distinct sounding vocalist in metal, his way of writing melody lines is brilliant too. Lots of twists and turns delivered with great passion and conviction.

The 6 tracks on the album are for the most part structurally complex. Especially the three longest tracks on the album, "Neurotically Wired", "Stained Glass Sky" and "Any Given Day (Strangers Like Me)", are really complex, going through multible sections and atmospheres. That´s why it´s also great for the dynamics of the album that the band include more direct and relatively more "simple" tracks like "Midnight Serenade" and "Incense and Myrrh". While the former is a powerful progressive metal track the latter is a beautiful ballad, that closes the album in great style. The dark and heavy "On the Fence" is probably the least remarkable track on the album, but it says a lot about the quality of the rest of the material, when a fantastic track like "On the Fence" is pulled out as an example of a slight decline in quality. And mind you I say a SLIGHT decline in quality.

"Sympathetic Resonance" is simply through and through a fantastic progressive metal release to fans of guitar and vocal driven progressive metal. We´re talking top notch musicianship, a warm and powerful sound production and outstanding songwriting. To my ears progressive metal doesn´t come better than this. "Sympathetic Resonance" is a born classic in the genre and fully deserves a 5 star (100%) rating.

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 Sympathetic Resonance by ARCH / MATHEOS album cover Studio Album, 2011
4.05 | 237 ratings

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Sympathetic Resonance
Arch / Matheos Progressive Metal

Review by dtguitarfan

5 stars Sympathetic Resonance is an album that was rumored to be the next Fates Warning album. I'm actually quite pleased it was not, though I do happen to be a Fates Warning fan. Featuring the vocals of former Fates Warning vocalist John Arch and Fates Warning's guitarist Jim Matheos, there were of course many high expectations for this album. What I find unique about this album is the complete absence of keyboards, a common piece of a Progressive Metal band. Despite this absence, the band has a HUGE sound. And while it is most definitely a Progressive Metal album, it would be very accessible to fans of other Metal sub-genres. Sounding like a cross between Queensryche and Rush at times, with bombastic heavy guitar riffs and Led Zeppelin-esque vocals, this album will rock your socks off!

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 Sympathetic Resonance by ARCH / MATHEOS album cover Studio Album, 2011
4.05 | 237 ratings

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Sympathetic Resonance
Arch / Matheos Progressive Metal

Review by EatThatPhonebook
Prog Reviewer

4 stars 8/10

"Sympathetic Resonance" is an orgasmic fix for Prog Metal enthusiasts.

John Arch, Prog Metal veteran, formal singer of Fates Warning, gave to the world early in the millennium a precious EP called "A Twist Of Fate", and until now nothing was heard of him. But in 2011, with guitarist Jim Matheos, another Fates Warning member came out under the name Arch/Matheos "Sympathetic Resonance", one of the great Prog Metal albums of recent years. This project, in the near future, could very easily be the Fates Warning of the new decade, not only because they share half of the members, but because they play the same role, in different eras, in the progressive metal realm.

Like the former band, Arch/Matheos is a prog metal that does not feature keyboards. They are used very rarely, maybe to give a bit of atmosphere. I love keyboards, so when I knew about this feature I wasn't so sure I was going to love it as I do actually. The musicianship of this project is amazing, the musicians are extremely well educated, obviously influenced by Jazz, Prog Rock , and Metal, everyone gets the job done so well: John Arch gives us his unique beautiful voice that I wish more Progressive Metal singers had, Jim Matheos is a great guitarist and proves it once again with beastly riffs and solos, Bobby Jarzombek has been a genuine inspiration to me(being myself a drummer), his technicality is outstanding, his fills mind-blowing. Joey Vera, finally, proves that he can play bass, playing his instrument so that we can actually hear it, for once. Together, they have fun putting all in one song constant time changes, dozen riffs, solos, acoustic moments and what not. Arch/Matheos at this point come from the more complex side of metal.

"Sympathetic Resonance" is maybe a perfect summary of what Fates Warning is, but it sounds to me a much more modern effort. The album is extremely solid, produced extremely well, the sounds are crystal clear and no instrument is overlapping all the others, something I find very rare and something I always enjoy hearing. "Neurotically Wired" and "Stained Glass Sky" are basically perfect songs, that sound so complete, like nothing was missing: you got nice acoustic moments, you got insane bridges with crazier drumming and guitar performances, and tons of beauty, surprisingly. Every riff in these two songs is spectacular and memorable, especially the heavier ones. The softer songs are good too, like "Midnight Serenade" and "Incense And Myrrh", but there's just no comparison in my opinion. "Any Given Day" has a similar song structure to the first two songs I mentioned, and it is possibly just as good, but I sense a little more straightforwardness, however in the end, that's exactly what the album needs, after a while, to make it sound like something that has moments for every kind of metal fan.

A great album I loved listening to and enjoyed a whole lot. I'm not a big Fates Warning expert, but this album just might do it for me, to start listening to them. "Sympathetic Resonance" no doubt has become one of the great releases of this year, possibly one of the very prog metal albums of the last few years. An orgasmic fix for Prog Metal enthusiasts.

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 Sympathetic Resonance by ARCH / MATHEOS album cover Studio Album, 2011
4.05 | 237 ratings

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Sympathetic Resonance
Arch / Matheos Progressive Metal

Review by SouthSideoftheSky
Special Collaborator Symphonic Team

3 stars It resonates sympathetically!

John Arch and Jim Matheos are familiar from Fates Warning in which Matheos has been a constant member (present on all of the band's ten studio releases from 1984's Night On Bröcken to 2004's FWX). Arch, on the other hand, left the band (and the music business altogether for a very long time, as far as I understand) after the first three Fates Warning albums and was replaced by Ray Alder. While Fates Warning is better known for the Alder-era albums, many fans apparently have fond memories of the Arch-era albums (?). Personally, I discovered Fates Warning in recent years and I must say that I much prefer the Alder-era albums (particularly Perfect Symmetry, Parallels and A Pleasant Shade Of Gray). But even if I was not too impressed by the Arch-era Fates Warning albums I still decided to check out John Arch's highly regarded solo EP A Twist Of Fate (on which Matheos also played along with Dream Theater's Mike Portnoy) and was very impressed by it. This was Arch's return to music after many years doing other things. The music found on that excellent EP was quite different from the early Fates Warning albums and the present collaborative album is different yet again from both of those. In some ways Sympathetic Resonance is perhaps more similar to some of the Alder-era Fates Warning albums but also different from those in other ways.

Arch's voice is similar to that of Bruce Dickinson of Iron Maiden and the sound of this album indeed often comes across as Iron Maiden with some piano and acoustic guitars added to the mix. None of this is intended as criticism, Arch is an excellent Metal singer and Matheos provides strong riffs. At first I was a bit disappointed after hearing the excellent Twist Of Fate tracks, but Sympathetic Resonance grew on me with further listens. This is a good album of its kind, but it is not very original or too special for me. The first three or four tracks are great but it does tend to get rather samey toward the end. Fans of Fates Warning should enjoy it, but for newcomers I would certainly recommend to get the much better Twist Of Fate EP and some Alder-era Fates Warning albums before investing in Sympathetic Resonance.

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 Sympathetic Resonance by ARCH / MATHEOS album cover Studio Album, 2011
4.05 | 237 ratings

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Sympathetic Resonance
Arch / Matheos Progressive Metal

Review by Time Signature

5 stars As tempting as it is to just copy-paste the word 'fap' a hundred times, I guess I'd better write a proper review. "Sympathetic Resonance" is the debut album from Arch / Matheos, which according to both Arch and Matheos is a band and not just a project (so, who knows, maybe there will be more albums under this moniker).

Given that all members of Arch / Matheos are, or have been, involved in Fates Warning, this release bears some similarities with Fates Warning, but it stands alone in its own right. Musically, we are dealing with listener-friendly progressive metal in the sense that there are a lot of things going on, particularly a lot of Jim Matheos' signature odd meters, and the tunes are complex, but things never get too technical for the listener to follow. While complex and with many twists and turns, the music on this release is mainly riff-based - and the riffs have the same sort of solidity to them as on John Arch's "A Twist of Fate" as well as on Fates Warning efforts like "Disconnected" and "FWX" (but the Arch / Matheos tunes strike me as more complex and with a tad more quirky elements).

The musicianship is top notch across the board with rocking riffage and tasty guitar solos, rock solid bass, and tasty progressive drumming with lots of nice little details to enrich the overall experience. The main attraction, to me at least, is John Arch's soaring vocals. His voice is so unique and the vocal melodies so complex and busy. His voice sounds better than before - better than on his EP and better than the classic Fates Warning albums (and he was already phenomenal back then) - and I would argue that it is his vocals which, although the entire package is awesome, is what characterizes "Sympathetic Resonance" and gives it its unique nature.

"Sympathetic Resonance" is an instant progressive metal classic featuring some of the best musicians within the genre. Obviously, it will appeal to Fates Warning fans, but I would recommend it to fans of all types of progressive metal.

(review originally posted at metalmusicarchives.com)

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 Sympathetic Resonance by ARCH / MATHEOS album cover Studio Album, 2011
4.05 | 237 ratings

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Sympathetic Resonance
Arch / Matheos Progressive Metal

Review by J-Man
Prog Reviewer

5 stars Sympathetic Resonance from Arch / Matheos is an album that will undoubtedly be every Fates Warning fan's wet dream. The lineup consists of all current or former Fates Warning band members, the vocals are performed by none other than the legendary John Arch (this is his first performance behind the mic since 2003), and the songwriting is just as technical, progressive, and memorable - if not even more so - than what we'd expect from a classic Fates Warning album. The musicianship is some of the best you're bound to hear in your lifetime, and John Arch delivers an absolutely stunning performance on Sympathetic Resonance. Even though this album may be overshadowed by some of the bigger prog metal releases in latter 2011, please do not let this masterpiece slip under your radar. This is one of the genre's most impressive albums over the past decade, and an absolutely essential purchase for those who enjoy their prog metal on the heavier and more technical side.

Even though the obvious stylistic comparison to make here would be Fates Warning, there are some noticeable differences that assure that Jon Arch and Jim Matheos are not focused on creating a clone of their other band (or, in Arch's case, his former band). The music here is extremely heavy (not in an extreme sense, but more in terms of the sheer heaviness of the riffs), complex, and technical progressive metal, somewhat in the same vein of Perfect Symmetry-era Fates Warning. The power metal-influenced sound of Jon Arch-era Fates Warning is seldom found here, and the lengthy and complex compositions also don't bear a whole lot of resemblance to the Ray Alder period of the band either. The complete lack of keyboards also shows that Arch / Matheos are entirely dedicated to creating progressive metal as it was originally intended in the late eighties - complex and technical indeed, but first and foremost, metal!

As far as I'm concerned, Sympathetic Resonance's biggest similarity to Fates Warning is in terms of quality. The sheer standard of the compositions and musicianship here is impeccable, and in that sense, I'm frequently reminded of Fates Warning's multiple top-notch masterpieces. Make no mistakes - Sympathetic Resonance is some of the finest progressive metal music in existence played by some of the most impressive musicians in the scene. I don't think it gets much better than that! Songs like "Neurotically Wired" (this one is especially excellent), "Stained Glass Sky", and "On the Fence" are all bound to be regarded as prog metal classics in ten or twenty years, but I'd hope that the entire album is recognized as one of the most impressive efforts from this decade.

The songwriting is excellent across the board, but it's the convincing execution, powerful delivery, and outstanding production that ultimately make Sympathetic Resonance an utter masterpiece. John Arch delivers one of the most impressive vocal performances of his career here (which is saying quite a lot), and his ability to hit high falsettos and still sound pitch-perfect and melodic is admirable. For a man in his fifties, the performance on Sympathetic Resonance is almost unheard of - surely the perfect testament to his abilities as one of prog metal's finest vocalists. Of course, the guitar playing from Jim Matheos is always polished and distinct; he's one of the most unique (yet somehow underrated) guitarists in all of metal. Bobby Jarbozmek's jazzy and technically insane drum patterns always keep the listener on their toes, and the expressive bass playing from Joey Vera sets a strong foundation for all of the compositions. Frank Aresti (of Fates Warning) also contributes a few additional lead guitar parts. A lineup to be remembered for ages to come? You bet!

It's also worth noting (at least briefly) what an excellent production that Sympathetic Resonance has. The sound is extremely sleek and clean, and entirely void of modern gimmicks and trivial effects. Everything sounds very authentic and "real", and the mix is absolutely spot-on. There are times where it feels like you are sitting in the rehearsal room when listening to this album with a nice pair of headphones.

It may seem like I have endless praises for Sympathetic Resonance, and I guess that really is the case. The lengthy and technical compositions may demand a few initial spins to "sink in", but they eventually reveal themselves as some of the best progressive heavy metal in recent memory. Arch / Matheos have crafted a legendary soon-to-be classic with Sympathetic Resonance, and I can only hope for even more masterpieces from this project in the approaching years. There may be tons of other prog metal albums out there this year, but this one is mandatory listening for any fan of the genre. 5 stars and the "essential masterpiece" stamp are very well earned. Mark up yet another masterpiece with John Arch and Jim Matheos in the lineup!

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 Sympathetic Resonance by ARCH / MATHEOS album cover Studio Album, 2011
4.05 | 237 ratings

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Sympathetic Resonance
Arch / Matheos Progressive Metal

Review by memowakeman
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars An excellent project!

You may kill me but I want to start being completely honest: I have never listened to Fates Warning. So in this review I cannot make a comparison or talk about their FW past, I will only focus in what I found here, and how I experienced this album. 'Sympathetic Resonance' is the name of this child, a six-song album with a total time of 58 minutes approximately. As you can imagine, you will find long and elaborated songs. So have fun!

It opens with 'Neurotically Wired', whose first introductory minute has a kind of soft sound, which later will be heavier, in the vein of progressive metal. The song will be progressing little by little, capturing your attention and opening the gates to an addictive Arch/Matheos sound. I like the changes, the nuances, and the composition in general. The voice has that metal-ish style, so if you like the genre you will surely love it. Pardon for my Fates Warning ignorance, but after listening to this album I have to give them a spin.

'Midnight Serenade' is a much shorter track with a nice atmosphere at the beginning. Then it once again turns heavier and starts building up a structure. The chorus is pretty nice, easy to dig and get addicted to it. However, this has to be my least favorite track of the album.

'Stained Glass Sky' is the longest song, and a truly challenging composition. A powerful track with an awesome musicianship, powerful and electrifying instrumental passages that will surely catch your attention. After four minutes Arch's vocals appear and give that special and unique colour he has, creating a wonderful communion between his tone of voice and the instruments. The bass sound along the whole album is strong, drums constant and with great figures, and guitars always great, with cool riffs and wonderful melodies. After eight minutes, the music slows down for a while, but later the heavier explosion appears once again. Great track!

'On the Fence' is powerful and emotional since the first seconds. This also has a darker sound in some passages; the structure is well crafted and elaborated, the guitar work wonderful all the time, and the diversity of feelings created make this a great track.

'Any Given Day (Strangers like me)' has a cool instrumental introduction, with a nice acoustic guitar hide somewhere, and with a powerful drumming. After four minutes there is a one-second stop that sounds great, because it marks like an instant pause which will lead to the explosion. After seven minutes there is another change like that, I love these kind of cohesive and emotional mixtures, which talk positively about the compositional skills of the musicians.

Finally 'Incense and Myrrh' closes this great album. This is the shortest composition, which softly starts with nice clam guitars and vocals, it gradually progresses and adds those heavier elements that are featured on the whole album. This is a nice last track.

Well, I will surely listen to Fates Warning to know at least this project's background, but 'Sympathetic Resonance' as a unit, is a strong and recommendable album. My grade will be four stars.

Enjoy it!

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