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Fates Warning

Progressive Metal

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Fates Warning Darkness In A Different Light album cover
3.85 | 340 ratings | 13 reviews | 24% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 2013

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. One Thousand Fires (7:20)
2. Firefly (4:57)
3. Desire (3:58)
4. Falling (1:34)
5. I Am (5:05)
6. Lighthouse (5:22)
7. Into the Black (5:07)
8. Kneel and Obey (5:05)
9. O Chloroform (4:13)
10. And Yet It Moves (14:03)

Total Time: 56:44

Bonus Disc on 2013 double-CD Limited Edition:
1. Firefly (Extended) (7:20)
2. Falling Further (Non album track) (4:43)
3. One (Live *) (4:41)
4. Life in Still Water (Live *) (5:21)

* Recorded at ProgPower USA; Atlanta, Georgia- September 12, 2009)

Total Time: 22:05

Line-up / Musicians

- Ray Alder / vocals, co-producer
- Jim Matheos / guitar, co-producer
- Frank Aresti / guitar, backing vocals
- Joey Vera / bass
- Bobby Jarzombek / drums

Releases information

Artwork: Conte di San Pietro

2xLP+CD Inside Out Music - IOMLP 385 (2013, Europe) With 4 bonus tracks on LP

CD Inside Out Music - IOMCD 385 (2013, Europe)
2xCD Inside Out Music - 0524-2 (2013, US) Bonus disc with 4 tracks

Thanks to Norbert for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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Buy FATES WARNING Darkness In A Different Light Music

FATES WARNING Darkness In A Different Light ratings distribution

(340 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(24%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(40%)
Good, but non-essential (28%)
Collectors/fans only (4%)
Poor. Only for completionists (2%)

FATES WARNING Darkness In A Different Light reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Second Life Syndrome
4 stars It constantly amazes me how older bands can simply up and jump right back into the music with little or no problems. In fact, sometimes the old guard is what keeps the new guys in their place. You know, so there aren't any egos being thrown around the industry. Fates Warning is back after taking a good nine year break between albums. That is a large hunk of time, but I honestly don't see the strain of that upon this album.

Fates Warning's Ray Alder (Redemption's vocalist, also) is still in action here with a great vocal performance. He does sound a bit tired, I'll admit. I mean, he's getting old, so what can we expect? But his voice is still rich and emotional. So, this isn't the performance of his career, but it certainly is respectable. I think this is generally the case for the entire band, to be honest. These guys don't really need to come out with some innovative new style that will knock our socks off: No, they can simply come out to give us a solid record, and everyone will love it! You know, because it's Fates Warning, and all.

Therefore, this album is great, but no masterpiece. It is a solid rocker that features all of Fates Warning's old tricks, but it doesn't try anything new. For a young band, this would be a problem. For veterans, it's just fine. This ultimately means that we still get the ever-so-silky- smooth rhythm guitars that have a satisfying darkness and complexity to them. We get soulful solos that seem catchy and without much attempt at showboating. It means that the music is complex, yes; but it is also simply enjoyable and immersive.

There is a new drummer in town, however. Bobby J. is an excellent drummer that I think uplifts the style of the band in much the same way the younger generation revitalized Evergrey a few years back. Fills are stunningly performed, bass beats are complex and really catchy, and the overall feel really adds to the music instead of trying to compete for the spotlight. The very first track, One Thousand Fires, is especially where Bobby shines as he lets his feet do the talking with some very creative and technically difficult blast beats.

Fates Warning isn't all about prog metal, though. There are a couple ballads on the record, and even some very proggy ones that go through several different atmospheres before emerging again in a metal piece. Fates Warning is also about excellent lyrics, and I feel they upheld that here, too. The lyrics seem to be about a desire to be light in the world, but instead finding darkness in yourself and in others. It is about pain and hope. Law and grace. Darkness and light. I still have to figure them out a bit more, but I think this a decent summary.

So, Fates Warning is back, and just as good as ever. The music is still excellent with a good boost from new blood, and the overall album is perfectly solid and really enjoyable. It will get stuck in your head, and perhaps that's what these old guys wanted in the first place.

Review by J-Man
5 stars Though fans of Fates Warning have had some killer side projects to keep them occupied during the nine year gap between 2004's FWX and 2013's Darkness in a Different Light, it's great to finally hear a new album from these American prog metal legends. Vocalists aside, this album features the exact same lineup that crafted the masterpiece of a debut from Arch/Matheos, and it also marks the first time that guitarist Frank Aresti has appeared on a Fates Warning album since Inside Out released back in 1994. Subsequently, Darkness in a Different Light feels like a throwback to the band's catchy, twin-guitar sound of the early nineties', and, as expected from Fates Warning, the result is nothing short of excellent.

Between the technical workouts in "And Yet It Moves", the heavily melodic touch in "Firefly", and the haunting atmospheres in "Lighthouse", Darkness in a Different Light explores all of the band's trademark qualities with some unforgettable compositions to boot. Fates Warning's comeback album may not be the most groundbreaking thing they've ever released, but from a listening perspective, it doesn't get much better than this! An essential pickup for any progressive metal fan.

Review by aapatsos
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars And Yet it (just about) Moves

Almost 10 years since the disappointing FWX album, Fates are back with a new release and a very strong line-up, combining old faces (Frank Aresti, Joey Vera) and a new entry (Bobby Jarzombek). "Darkness in a Different Light" could well be the conclusion from listening to the 56+ minutes of "new" music, but I prefer to keep a slightly more optimistic view.

Surely, the typical-Fates, heavy openers in "One Thousand Fires" and "Firefly" leave a promise for a strong follow-up but this new album suffers from recycled ideas ("I Am" is a copy of "One" from Disconnected), too much resemblance to associated acts (OSI) and reveals some contemporary influences such as Opeth (see "Into the Black") and Tool that don't strengthen its personal character. Musically, the heavy riffing is a continuation of APSOG and Disconnected, with the Sabbathy/groovy sound that Matheos has employed since 1997. The middle part of the album is simply indifferent, if not bad, but a glimmer of hope comes with "O Chloroform" and the only memorable composition "And Yet it Moves", which clocks at 14 minutes and saves the day. Acoustic guitar intro, an inspired main theme, galloping riffs on heavy bass lines and a decent melodic refrain with plenty of variation - now that sounds more like it. The re-introduction of acoustic guitars takes away the momentum for a while but the track recovers shortly after.

If you liked the album Disconnected, you would probably enjoy this; an improvement over FWX, but nowhere near the pre-2000 solid works. Not recommended to a new comer to Fates, but still a decent return to light for the fans...

Review by kev rowland
4 stars 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.

Review by UMUR
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars "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 hasnīt 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. Iīm actually slightly disappointed by that track. I think itīs clumsily put together, and the song structure lack the elegance that is usually a Fates Warning trademark. Itīs 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 bandīs sound and while the albums that didnīt feature those elements had their own charm, I must admit, that Iīve 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 Iīm a bit indifferent towards it and the two live tracks donīt feature a very good sound quality and what to my ears sound like out of tune singing, so itīs actually only "Falling Further" thatīs really interesting in my opinion. Itīs 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 latterīs unique drumming style can never be fully matched. At times Jarzombekīs drumming seems to imitate Zonderīs 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 doesnīt exactly blow me away like some of the bandīs earlier albums have done, itīs 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.

Review by Gatot
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Having been vacuum for about nine years since its FWX album in 2004, finally Fates Warning released its eleventh studio album last year (October 2013). Actually my emotional relationship with the band started long time ago when I found a bunch of CDs of their albums at second hand market at Jalan Surabaya, Jakarta. I was actually at a big surprise with the band as the music was quite different then typically labelled progressive metal sub-genre. For sure, this is not the kind of Dream Theater or Symphony X or Threshold and the like. The key attraction of the music to me was the accentuated vocal line of Ray Adler combined with stunning guitar work of Jim matheos, known as the band leader, and of course with its drummer. But now the drummer has been changed in this album. The album itself took so long from its first creative work of composing since 2009 until it hit the store in 2013 - so it's about four years.

But, the result is something worth waiting for as the music is really carefully composed using the norms of what have been the characteristics of the band's music. I personally enjoy the music from start to end. It kicks off with a blast of One Thousand Fires (7:20) in fasst tempo with heavy but thin guitar riffs and powerful drumming. The Ray Adler vocal is still powerful and fit very well with the music. The second track Firefly (4:57( is even heavier in riffs but slower ini tempo with much groove than the opening track. The riffs sometimes remind me to the classic rock typical riffs. The third track Desire (3:58) starts in an ambient mode through soft guitar fills. The music is now slower with clearer vocal line. On the fourth track you would be surprised with a very nice musical break Falling (1:34) with only guitar and vocal, serving its role as a bridge to the next track I Am (5:05) which is a kind of psychedelic in style at the intro part. But then it moves to a heavy riffs music to welcome Adler's vocal work. It sounds really good after the tracks that start with something heavy and then moves slowly until musical break and returns back to heavy riffs. Until this I am really excited with the music.

What follows is then a mellow music with nice guitar fills combined with vocal in under Lighthouse (5:22). Right here I feel like not under the progressive metal mode as it sounds like a symphonic prog. It's really beautiful this break at 6th track and then it moves to Into the Black (5:07) in medium tempo at the beginning, it then moves in crescendo. I really love the 8th track Kneel and Obey (5:05) because it combines the heavy part of progressive metal through the guitar riffs but also it has guitar fills in the vein of psychedelic. The music is very enjoyable with medium to slow tempo music. To me this sounds like the first time Fates Warning has ever made this kind of style. I really enjoy from start to end of this track even though it sounds quite simple. I would say this is a radio-friendly track. The chorus is heavier especially when it features stunning guitar solo ( I guess it's played by Matheos). I always replay this track when the album reaches this. It's cool. The concluding two tracks are also excellent: O Chloroform (4:13), and And Yet It Moves (14:03).

Overall, this is an excellent addition to any prog music collection. If you want something different from progressive metal sub-genre, this is the best choice, I believe. I salute the band for making this well-crafted album after a very long vacuum period. It's a four star rating album, for sure. Keep on proggin' ...!

Peace on earth and mercy mild - GW

Review by Mellotron Storm
4 stars FATES WARNING are my favourite metal band and so it's great that they are back after a nine year absence. Mind you having that Arch/Matheos album to enjoy did more to scatch that itch than this particular album. Still this is another very good album from the boys and i'm really impressed with new drummer Bobby Jarzombek, and even more impressed that guitarist Frank Aresti is back. One of the most enjoyable aspects of this album is hearing Matheos and Aresti playing their different parts as they compliment each other so well. I did pick up the special edition with bonus tracks and the two live songs("One" and "Life In Still Water") are what I appreciate the most.

"One Thousand Fires" is such a good choice for the opener as they really bring a lot of energy with this one. I like how the soundscape swirls and check out the massive bass a minute in as the guitars grind away. A calm quickly follows then vocals. Some nice guitar after 3 minutes but my favourite section is that beautiful soundscape after 4 minutes followed by a ripping guitar solo. "Firefly" has a really good heavy sound to it as the vocals join in. Some powerful riffs before 3 minutes as the second guitar comes in. Vocals and that previous sound are back before 4 minutes. "Desire" and the next track don't do much for me. This one starts off well with the atmospheric guitar before it kicks in then settles right back with vocals. Each time it turns fuller I just don't like it. "Falling" is a short(thankfully) ballad with fragile vocals and acoustic guitars. Why? Sorry I just don't get why we get a ballad on a metal album. "I Am" makes up for it though. This is a top three for me. It's almost TOOL-like with the dark atmosphere and powerful under-current. It's building until it breaks out hard. Love the drumming. Vocals join in as well. Great track!

"Lighthouse" opens with a relaxed sound with reserved vocals but there's this tension that continues and I keep thinking it will break out. A cool tune. "Into The Black" features guitar that cries out over top as the drums pound away. I like when it settles in before a minute then it picks back up with vocals. A ripping guitar solo before 3 minutes then it settles back again before building. A top three for me. "Kneel And Obey" has this heavy base to it which I really enjoy. Vocals come in and check out the guitar before 3 minutes as he lights it up. "O Chloroform" opens with the atmosphere then the guitar comes out of that followed by drums and a heavy sound. Vocals too then it settles back before 2 1/2 minutes but not for long. I like this one especially that background sound. Atmosphere ends it. "And Yet It Moves" is the over 14 minute closer and my final top three. It opens with what sounds like a classical guitar as a second one joins in. Bass joins in then it kicks in beautifully just after a minute. Some cool sounding guitar licks arrive then vocals 4 minutes in. They are kicking ass 6 minutes in. A calm with strummed guitar after 9 minutes. Some atmosphere too as laid back vocals join in. The guitar comes and goes grinding away. It kicks in heavily after 12 1/2 minutes then back to that earlier sound.

Man I have enjoyed this a lot but for me it doesn't measure up to that Arch/Matheos release or earlier albums like "Disconneted", "Perfect Symmetry" or "Awaken The Guardian".

Latest members reviews

5 stars And Yet It Moves... Are You Kidding Me? Of Course It Moves, Grooves And Proves That Still After A 9-Year Absence Fates Warning Are Still One Of The Most Lethal, Talented Progressive Bands Around. Excited, amazed and astonished to hear earlier in 2013 that Fates Warning would be making its w ... (read more)

Report this review (#1129821) | Posted by progbethyname | Monday, February 10, 2014 | Review Permanlink

3 stars At the time of this review Darkness in a Different Light was Fates Warning's highest rated album. Fact or coincidence? I attribute it the new-ness of the album, which was reviewed first by the fans hungry from a 9-year wait. Well it is a solid later-stage Fates album, certainly no worse than the ... (read more)

Report this review (#1068137) | Posted by Progrussia | Monday, October 28, 2013 | Review Permanlink

4 stars As soon as the album starts playing "One Thousand Fires" you know your going to be in for a treat! This album rocks on all levels, great progressive metal and rock Some real nice crunch and heavy guitars mixed in with the Acoustic passages and great musicianship ! Production is Very good. There ... (read more)

Report this review (#1053590) | Posted by metalrob4662 | Friday, October 4, 2013 | Review Permanlink

2 stars I use to like progressive music and most subgenres have both groups I like and thoose I do not. But until now I haven't found a prog metal band I like. The though is very positive: making very heavy, intelligent and symphonic music but the result is quite negative in my opinion. I just can't l ... (read more)

Report this review (#1052405) | Posted by DrömmarenAdrian | Thursday, October 3, 2013 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Fates Warning is an artful combination of simple melodies with complicated riffs. This album is full of beautiful and emotional melodies. In it you can hear sensational and powerful drumming. Ray Alder is one of the legendary voices of progressive metal and he always gives his best. After nine y ... (read more)

Report this review (#1047527) | Posted by amirima | Sunday, September 29, 2013 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Its been a very long wait for Fates fans, but finally album number 11 is here and it was well worth the wait, as what we here is an instant classic. An album worthy of sitting alongside many of the classics this band has produced in their long career. The first thing that stood out was how he ... (read more)

Report this review (#1047334) | Posted by Hrvat | Sunday, September 29, 2013 | Review Permanlink

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