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Ray Alder, Singer for Fates Warning

Date: 10/22/04
Interviewer: Rich Catino


1. What is Fates Warning trying to accomplish, if anything, on X?

RAY: We were trying to do something a little different, we do that with every record. A little heavier for this record, shorter tunes, songs that worked better Live as opposed to some of our other songs which are longer.

2. Most bands usually say that their latest Cd is their best. What are your thoughts on X?

RAY: Well the album is the number ten, not X. Certain songs stand out, it was natural progression from our last release Disconnected. It is definitely a great record but I don’t think our best.

3. This album has a sound and influence from things like Tool. Was that a conscious decision going into writing the record?

RAY: Tool are a great band and have very good melodies, actually I wonder why they are not considered a progressive band. I listen to and like Tool so if that influence is on this record that’s cool. I am not sure what Jim listens to that may inspires his writing. The music was not intended to sound like them, it just happened that way in the course of writing.

4. Would you say that X is the most modern Fates Warning record, like for example the song “Another Perfect Day”?

RAY: Every time we record we try to be modern, we try to progress every time. “Another Perfect Day” was a mistake and was a lot of work to get it where it is on the record. It did not jell at first, the vocals and the arrangement didn’t work. I suggested we change the chorus from the original since Jim’s original composition we were not satisfied with. Then Jim started to play an acoustic guitar and that’s where the melody came from. The chorus use to be the intro.

5. Is their any element still in the Fates Warning sound and style from the early days with Jon Arch on vocals?

RAY: I don’t think so, the sound has totally changed and it’s a different band. Even when I sing the old songs I don’t like to sing high, it doesn’t sound right anymore.

6. How important is it to the band to include songs from that period in your Live set? What songs do you prefer to perform Live?

RAY: Jim doesn’t really want to do the old stuff, he thinks that timer has passed. When I first joined the band we did it but now since we have so many records out he feels we don’t have to do that anymore and keep with what we are doing now. I’m sure the fans are not too happy with that. I wouldn’t mind doing the old stuff because I was a big fan, doing those as cover tunes.

7. Of your time with the band, what album would you recommend someone to get?

RAY: All of em I guess, HaHa, there all out there. I guess I recommend the new one.

8. What are your touring plans?

RAY: Right now Eastern Europe for a few weeks in January and February. In March we are looking to headline in the States, maybe co headline, its been so long since we have headlined and plan on doing a two hour set. Joey Vera will also be on the road with us. There is talk of us going out in a package tour, maybe some sort of Prog or Power Metal band. I actually really don’t listen to that stuff. I like the heavier stuff. Also things like female singer Eedie Burkel, folk singers chicks, ya know, KD Lang. Also a girl named Res who’s an R&B singer and has a great voice.

9. Have you been asked to play the ProgPower festival in Atlanta?

RAY: I think we have been asked to play it but the schedules did not fit it in at the time. I have been there before as a guest and it’s a good time. When I went I was hanging with Jon Oliva so that was crazy.

10. What is in the near future for Fates Warning? Any rereleases, DVD’s?

RAY: We plan on recording some shows in Greece for a DVD, those shows are always great there, the fans and the energy from the crowd is unbelievable, we couldn’t even hear ourselves on stage at some of those shows. Even if they didn’t know the words they would sing the guitar solos, HaHa.

For more info: www.fateswarning.com

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