Progarchives, the progressive rock ultimate discography


Fates Warning

Progressive Metal

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Fates Warning Theories of Flight album cover
3.96 | 314 ratings | 8 reviews | 26% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

Write a review

from partners
Studio Album, released in 2016

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. From the Rooftops (6:52)
2. Seven Stars (5:33)
3. SOS (4:34)
4. The Light and Shade of Things (10:14)
5. White Flag (5:20)
6. Like Stars Our Eyes Have Seen (5:13)
7. The Ghosts of Home (10:31)
8. Theories of Flight (4:00)

Total Time 52:17

Bonus disc from 2CD special edition:
1. Firefly (3:15)
2. Seven Stars (4:25)
3. Another Perfect Day (3:25)
4. Pray Your Gods (Toad the Wet Sprocket cover) (3:45)
5. Adela (Joaquin Rodrigo cover) (2:25)
6. Rain (Uriah Heep cover) (4:03)

Line-up / Musicians

- Ray Alder / vocals
- Jim Matheos / guitar, producer
- Frank Aresti / guitar solos (1,5)
- Joey Vera / bass, backing vocals
- Bobby Jarzombek / drums

- Carina Tinker / spoken word (8)
- Mike Abdow / guitar solo (5)

Releases information

Artwork: Graceann Warn

CD Inside Out Music ‎- IOMCD 458 (2016, Europe)
2CD Inside Out Music ‎- IOMSECD 458 (2016, Europe) Bonus CD w/ 6 previously unreleased acoustic versions (incl. 3 covers)

Thanks to ProgDrummerTony for the addition
and to projeKct for the last updates
Edit this entry

Buy FATES WARNING Theories of Flight Music

FATES WARNING Theories of Flight ratings distribution

(314 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(26%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(40%)
Good, but non-essential (23%)
Collectors/fans only (7%)
Poor. Only for completionists (3%)

FATES WARNING Theories of Flight reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by UMUR
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars "Theories Of Flight" is the 12th full-length studio album by US progressive metal act Fates Warning. The album was released through InsideOut Records in July 2016. Itīs the successor to "Darkness In A Different Light" from 2013 and the second album after their 9 year long recording break since "FWX (2004)". "Theories Of Flight" features the exact same lineup who recorded "Darkness In A Different Light (2013)": Ray Alder (vocals), Jim Matheos (guitars), Frank Aresti (guitars, although only a couple of leads), Joey Vera (bass), and Bobby Jarzombek (drums).

Stylistically "Theories Of Flight" is pretty much a continuation of the progressive metal style on "Darkness In A Different Light (2013)". Itīs generally a bit more melodic and to my ears also slightly more memorable, but the overall concept is similar to the predecessor. Heavy intriguing guitar riffs and rhythms, melodic solos, beautiful acoustic/clean guitar work, and Ray Alderīs strong emotive vocals in front (often featuring harmony and choir vocals).

The album feautures 8 tracks and a full playing time of 52:17 minutes. Both "The Light and Shade of Things" and "The Ghosts of Home" are around 10 minutes long, but the remaining tracks feature more regular lengths (from 4 to 6 minutes). The material is very well written and the combination of relatively straight forward and catchy tracks like "Seven Stars", "SOS", and "Like Stars Our Eyes Have Seen", and the longer more complex tracks like the two above mentioned, and album opener "From the Rooftops", works really well. Now that Iīve mentioned almost every track featured on the album, I can just as well mention the remaining two. "White Flag" is a powerful track with a commanding vocal delivery by Alder and the title track, which is the album closer, is an atmospheric instrumental, which ends the album in great style.

Itīs overall a very dynamic and adventurous album. One moment itīs melodic and beatiful and the next a bit darker and heavy. The trademark sophisticated Fates Warning groove, which features a lot of off-beat rhythm patterns and chord strokes, is also present and accounted for. The musicianship is on a high level on all posts. Alder is as mentioned an incredibly skilled and distinct sounding vocals, who can sing both emotive mellow parts and louder more aggressive ones (for the style), with equal passion and conviction, the rhythm section play varied and powerful, and the guitars both play melodic and heavy. The guitar solos deserve a special mention. They are played with a lot of attention to tone and feeling, and they are also pretty varied.

"Theories Of Flight" features a warm, clear, and powerful sounding production, which suits the material perfectly, and I actually have a very hard time coming up with any issues regarding the album. To my ears itīs their best release in years, which is especially due to the increased focus on melody and accessibility that Fates Warning have here. A focal point which has not affected how heavy and powerful the music is, and thatīs usually a hard balance to strike. A 5 star (100%) rating is deserved.

Note: Thereīs a limited edition 2CD/2LP version available, which features 6 bonus tracks. Acoustic versions of the bandīs own compositions "Firefly", "Seven Stars", and "Another Perfect Day", and acoustic covers of "Pray Your Gods" by Toad The Wet Sprocket, "Adela" by Joaquin Rodrigo (with Alder singing Spanish language lyrics), and "Rain" by Uriah Heep. While acoustic renditions of existing non-acoustic material arenīt always the greatest idea, Fates Warning pull if off with ease. Beautiful acoustic guitar arrangements and a Ray Alder in vocal top form, ensure that these bonus tracks are well worth purchasing the limited edition for. I especially enjoyed "Firefly", "Another Perfect Day", and "Rain", but the remaining tracks are also of high quality.

Review by Mellotron Storm
4 stars 4.5 stars. This is the second album in a row that FATES WARNING has had the same lineup of Matheos, Aresti, Vera, Adler and Jarzombek. And this album also follows the same path as the previous album "Darkness In A Different Light" from 3 years earlier only I feel this one tops it. We get plenty of heaviness and I even thought of IRON MAIDEN a few times. The rating wasn't easy as I feel this album reaches highs that I haven't heard from them since their "Disconnected" record although unlike that album there are some not so great moments although they are few. Also I think it's a step below that ARCH/ MATHEOS album. Still I'm really impressed with this album and the performances of each member as a 4.5 star rating would suggest.

"From The Rooftops" opens with drums and atmosphere as soaring guitar leads join the relaxed sound. Ray's reserved vocals arrive before 1 minute then some more of that melancholic soaring guitar. A change after 2 minutes as we get crushed with heaviness as Ray spits out the lyrics. I like the section starting 3 1/2 minutes in as we get an IRON MAIDEN-like sound including the vocals. Ripping guitar after 5 1/2 minutes as they kick more ass. "Seven Stars" starts off sounding pretty amazing instrumentally, it's heavy with guitar over top. The vocals join in as it settles back some. A classic FATES WARNING chorus here as I'm singing along with Adler. There's a nice guitar solo 3 minutes in.

"SOS" opens with guitar grinding away as emotional vocals join in then it kicks in hard. Riffs galore at times and this would sound awesome live, a barn-burner. An atmospheric calm arrives 2 minutes in as Ray returns with those emotional vocals. "The Light And Shade Of Things" is dark and laid back with atmosphere as soft vocals arrive. It's building some 1 1/2 minutes in but not much until we get hit with a wall of sound 3 minutes in. Oh my! The chorus before 4 minutes is heavy and catchy with vocals. It's pretty intense after the chorus as Ray sings with anger. The chorus returns then we get a heavy bass/ drum section then it settles with relaxed guitar expressions. The chorus is back then they kick it hard again 8 1/2 minutes in before it settles to end it.

"White Flag" is a top three for me. A heavy intro as passionate vocals join in. What a kick-ass tune! How uplifting is this after 2 minutes as it settles back a little. So much emotion for me. A killer instrumental section arrives after 3 minutes. "Like Stars Our Eyes Have Seen" is another top three. An all out assault from Jarzombek on his kit as Adler joins in with attitude. It doesn't change much on the chorus other than Ray's vocals aren't as mean sounding. It's not nearly as heavy 2 1/2 minutes in but that doesn't last for long. Intense is the word 3 1/2 minutes in.

"The Ghost Of Home" is my favourite song on here. Samples of different spoken words and sounds last for about a minute then it all stops as vocals and intricate guitar take over. it kicks in hard bringing MAIDEN to mind before 2 1/2 minutes. Vocals before 4 1/2 minutes as it lightens. Love Vera's bass lines here, so upfront. I also like when Adler cries "Home again! Home again!" then it settles some after 6 minutes. It's so uplifting after 7 1/2 minutes then it ends with a heavy duty section. "Theories Of Flight" is the interesting closer bringing to mind the "Disconnected" album with all the atmosphere. Samples to start in that atmosphere before some guest female spoken words arrive and she will come and go with them as she tells the story. The tempo picks up before 2 minutes in this instrumental section then a calm follows. More spoken female words then the intricate guitar returns. The guitar cries out 3 minutes in then more spoken female words and intricate guitar. This is just outside of my top three.

Just an excellent Prog-Metal album and I think I'd rank it fourth or so when it comes to their studio albums, not counting that ARCH/ MATHEOS recording of course even if that seems like a legit FATES WARNING album.

Latest members reviews

4 stars What a great album. This is similar to Fates Warning at their peak--same style, excellent songwriting, haunting lyrics, great performances. "Theories of Flight" doesn't quite match the brilliance of "Perfect Symmetry" or "Parallels"--if you've just started listening to the band, start with those ... (read more)

Report this review (#2903892) | Posted by Idaho | Sunday, April 2, 2023 | Review Permanlink

5 stars This stunning of an entry, this far into their career? (and never mind that each member is close to 50-years-old or older) I'm shocked and more than pleasantly surprised. Ray Alder's vocal work here is impeccable- just slightly more mature than albums 20+ years ago but trust me, he brings hom ... (read more)

Report this review (#1631166) | Posted by Timdano | Tuesday, October 11, 2016 | Review Permanlink

5 stars All those of us who love Prog Metal owe so much to this pioneering band, and to see them (a) playing with such power after so many years, and (b) topping the Prog Archives charts is just great. 'Theories of Flight' continues in the same relatively conservative style as the previous 'Darkness in ... (read more)

Report this review (#1597369) | Posted by Einwahn | Saturday, August 13, 2016 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Fates Warning is a rare prog metal band without the musical cheese. The word to describe their music is... certainly not harsh. Bleak? No, serious would be the word. Even the albums have such scientifically-inclined names as Theories of Flight or Darkness in a Different Light. Fates are famous f ... (read more)

Report this review (#1586600) | Posted by Progrussia | Monday, July 11, 2016 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Music tablet slowly dissolving in my ears and Dream Theater's nightmare. That is a very good album and it seems that FW have musically still 'something to say'. I was not impressed by the album teaser available on tube and I think I will avoid listening to 30 seconds excerpts taken out of context ... (read more)

Report this review (#1585753) | Posted by DeepPurplePL | Thursday, July 7, 2016 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Another Outrageous Album. Although I've been listening to Fates Warning just a bit less than a year, great adoration and respect have appeared in my mind and soul. Obviously, the band led by it's eternal mastermind Jim Matheos shows the real progress in their music and attitude to its composition ... (read more)

Report this review (#1583133) | Posted by ArtuomNechuev | Sunday, June 26, 2016 | Review Permanlink

Post a review of FATES WARNING "Theories of Flight"

You must be a forum member to post a review, please register here if you are not.


As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Forum user
Forum password

Copyright Prog Archives, All rights reserved. | Legal Notice | Privacy Policy | Advertise | RSS + syndications

Other sites in the MAC network: — jazz music reviews and archives | — metal music reviews and archives

Donate monthly and keep PA fast-loading and ad-free forever.