There are two types of people in this world: those who think the new FATES WARNING album Long Day Good Night (November 6, Metal Blade Records) is really awesome and those who are wrong. Look, when the band came back with Darkness In a Different Light seven years ago I was all in. Theories of Flight, while I liked it, I just couldn’t rave about it like every other rock writer on the planet. Well I am happy to report that is NOT the case with this new disc. Quite honestly what we’re getting here is 13 tracks of greatness. Singer Ray Alder continues to knock it out of the park vocally as he did the last two times I saw them live, and his bandmates shine as well. Eight-minute opener “The Destination Onward” is proof positive of that.
“Shuttered World” is like a steam train coming down the tracks ‘atcha. I’d advise you to get out of the way, hoss. Meanwhile “Alone We Walk” has this unique dynamic to it that makes the track so cool and different, yet it is undeniably FATES WARNING. Joey Vera (bass) and Bobby Jarzombek (drums) lead the charge after a very quiet, yet ominous beginning. Guitarist Jim Matheos unveils one of his finest riffs ever on this one, and vocally…well, Alder’s gonna Alder, right? At this point should we expect anything less than excellence? “Now Comes the Rain” is one that didn’t quite hook me upon first listening, but the second time it slapped me in the face and said, “Are you nuts, fool? This tune is GOLD!” Know what? The song is right in saying so.
“The Way Home” is without a doubt my favorite number. It is so nice and warm, like a fireplace loaded with wood and roaring in December, and I cannot get enough of it. If and when the world returns to a semblance of normalcy I would love to hear this track live; it’s THAT goddamn good!! And while we are on the subject of killer tunes, let’s look at “Under the Sun,” hey? Beautiful guitars coupled with a gorgeous vocal from Ray make this yet another winner in my book. “Scars” kicks ass on every level, with the entire group in perfect synergy. Holy fuck, did they write a great one here. Get them sexy, dirty guitars out for “Begin Again,” which should have all the fans swingin’ and swayin’, while their records are playin’ (R.I.P. EVH).
“When Snow Falls”is moody yet still catchy, and it’s one I find myself repeating quite a bit. The gloves come off for “Liar,” another kickass riff machine that operates at 100% efficiency and also boasts one of the best choruses on this whole thing. Jarzombek and Vera get to flex their very impressive muscles, too. “Glass Houses” is another heavy song that shows that this band has not lost any of their bite all these years later. If this one isn’t in future setlists, then something is clearly wrong, and I will just hate everything. “The Longest Shadow of the Day” is also, well, the longest song on the album, clocking in at 11:29. But that should surprise no one. These guys have been delivering amazing epics for decades and this little ditty is no exception. Love it!!
Closing us out is aptly named “The Last Song,”yet another one I love and love hard. Honestly if you’re not scrambling for the REPEAT button when it’s over then you’ve got problems no doctor can fix. All told this record is FUCKING FANTASTIC!! With Long Day Good Night the guys in FATES WARNING have given us their best album since the one-two combo of Parallels and Inside Out. Yeah, I said what I said. Deal with it. Also, go buy this thing ASAP, people!!
STANDOUT TRACKS: ALL OF THEM