Progressive Metal

Progressive metal blended elements of heavy metal and progressive rock music, taking the loud "aggression" and amplified electric guitar-driven sound of the former, with the more experimental, complex and "pseudo-classical" compositions of the latter.

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  • Fates Warning

    Fates Warning is an American progressive metal band, formed in 1982 by vocalist John Arch, guitarists Jim Matheos and Victor Arduini, bassist Joe DiBiase, and drummer Steve Zimmerman in Hartford, Connecticut. Fates Warning has experienced numerous line-up changes. From 1982 to 1996 — and temporarily in 2010 — Matheos and DiBiase were the only remaining original members of the band, with Matheos being the only constant member. Their current lineup consists of guitarists Jim Matheos and Frank Aresti, vocalist Ray Alder, bassist Joey Vera, and drummer Bobby Jarzombek. As a pioneer of the American progressive metal movement, Fates Warning rose to international fame in the 1980s and was ranked as one of the early "flagship bands of progressive metal" along with Queensrÿche and Dream Theater, who were responsible for creating, developing and popularizing that genre. Fates Warning has released eleven studio albums, two live albums, one compilation album, one VHS, three DVDs (each of them features live concerts) and four demo tapes. The band experienced major American commercial success with the 1986 release of their third studio album, Awaken the Guardian, which peaked at number No. 191 on the Billboard 200,[2] and became the first album released on Metal Blade to enter that chart. Their next three albums, No Exit (1988), Perfect Symmetry (1989) and Parallels (1991), were also successful; the first two peaked at No. 111 and No. 141 on the Billboard 200 respectively. Fates Warning's most recent studio album, Darkness in a Different Light, was released in 2013.

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  • Queensrÿche

    Queensrÿche is an American progressive heavy metal band formed in 1982 in Bellevue, Washington out of the local band The Mob. The band has released 14 studio albums, one EP and several DVDs, and continues to tour and record. The original lineup consisted of vocalist Geoff Tate, guitarists Chris DeGarmo and Michael Wilton, bassist Eddie Jackson and drummer Scott Rockenfield. Queensrÿche has been successful in the progressive scene, having sold over 20 million albums worldwide, including over 6 million albums in the United States. The band received worldwide acclaim after the release of their 1988 album Operation: Mindcrime, which is often considered one of the greatest concept albums of all time[by whom?]. Their follow-up release, Empire, released in 1990, was also very successful and included the hit single "Silent Lucidity". The band has received three Grammy Award nominations for songs off both albums. In the late 90s, drummer Rockenfield also received a Grammy nomination outside of Queensrÿche. In 1997, guitarist and primary songwriter DeGarmo left the band for personal reasons. Over the years, his replacements have been Kelly Gray, Mike Stone, and Parker Lundgren, respectively. Following a highly publicized backstage altercation before a show in São Paulo, Brazil in April 2012, Tate was fired from the band and replaced with then-Crimson Glory singer Todd La Torre. In response to his dismissal, Tate and his wife Susan (who served as the band's manager from 2005–2012) filed a lawsuit in a Washington court, claiming that he was wrongfully terminated. The ruling in the preliminary injunction was that both parties were allowed to use the name Queensrÿche until a court ruling or a settlement decides who gets to use the name. A settlement was reached on April 17, 2014, in which founding members Wilton, Rockenfield and Jackson were awarded the rights to the band trademark, continuing to play with the lineup that additionally includes singer La Torre and guitarist Lundgren. During the time both parties could use the name Queensrÿche, Tate created his own lineup featuring former guitarist Gray and musicians from bands including Blue Öyster Cult, Ozzy Osbourne, Whitesnake, Dio, AC/DC and Quiet Riot.[5][6] This version of Queensrÿche with Geoff Tate released the album Frequency Unknown on 23 April 2013, while Queensrÿche (with La Torre replacing Tate) released their eponymous album on 24 and 25 June 2013 (European and American release date, respectively). Both bands toured in 2013 and 2014.

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  • Dream Theater

    Dream Theater is an American progressive metal and progressive rock band formed in 1985 under the name Majesty by John Petrucci, John Myung, and Mike Portnoy while they attended Berklee College of Music in Massachusetts. They subsequently dropped out of their studies to concentrate further on the band that would ultimately become Dream Theater. Though a number of lineup changes followed, the three original members remained together along with James LaBrie and Jordan Rudess until September 8, 2010 when Portnoy left the band. In October 2010, the band held auditions for a drummer to replace Portnoy. Mike Mangini was announced as the new permanent drummer on April 29, 2011. The band is well known for the technical proficiency of its instrumentalists, who have won many awards from music instruction magazines. Guitarist John Petrucci has been named as the third player on the G3 tour six times, more than any invited players. In 2009 he was named the No. 2 best metal guitarist by Joel McIver in his book The 100 Greatest Metal Guitarists. He was also named as one of the "Top 10 Fastest Shredders of All Time" by GuitarOne magazine. Jordan Rudess is considered to be one of the greatest keyboard players of all time by many publications like MusicRadar. Former drummer Mike Portnoy has won 26 awards from Modern Drummer magazine and is also the second youngest person (at the age of 37) to be inducted into the Rock Drummer Hall of Fame. His replacement Mike Mangini has also previously set 5 WFD records. John Myung was voted the greatest bassist of all time in a poll conducted by MusicRadar in August through September 2010. The band was inducted into the Long Island Music Hall of Fame in 2010. The band's highest-selling album is the gold-selling Images and Words (1992), which reached No. 61 on the Billboard 200 chart. Both the 1994 release Awake and their 2002 release Six Degrees of Inner Turbulence also entered the charts at No. 32 and No. 46 respectively and received mostly positive reviews. Metropolis Pt. 2: Scenes from a Memory was ranked number 95 on the October 2006 issue of Guitar World magazine's list of The greatest 100 guitar albums of all time. It is ranked as the 15th Greatest Concept Album (as of March 2003) by Classic Rock Magazine[7] and as the number one all-time progressive album by Rolling Stone (as of July 2012). Six Degrees of Inner Turbulence also led to Dream Theater becoming the initial band reviewed in the music section of Entertainment Weekly during its opening week of release, despite the magazine generally preferring more mainstream music. The band's eleventh studio album, A Dramatic Turn of Events, was released on September 13, 2011. On November 30, 2011, the album's lead single, "On the Backs of Angels", was nominated for a Grammy Award in the "Best Hard Rock/Metal Performance" category, marking the band's first ever Grammy nomination. Dream Theater's self-titled twelfth studio album was released on September 23, 2013 and sold around 34,000 copies in the first week and landed at No. 7 on the Billboard 200 chart, one position higher than A Dramatic Turn of Events. Dream Theater earned their second Grammy Award nomination, this time for “Best Metal Performance”, for the album's first single, "The Enemy Inside". On April 9, 2013, Images and Words won Loudwire's fan voted March Metal Madness for world's best metal album beating albums by Dio, AC/DC, Judas Priest, Megadeth and Metallica. As of 2011, Dream Theater has sold over 12 million records worldwide.

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  • Symphony X

    Symphony X is an American progressive metal band from Middletown, New Jersey. Founded in 1994, the band consists of guitarist Michael Romeo, keyboardist Michael Pinnella, drummer Jason Rullo, lead vocalist Russell Allen and bassist Michael Lepond Their albums The Divine Wings of Tragedy and V: The New Mythology Suite have given the band considerable attention within the progressive metal community. They also have achieved more commercial success with the 2007 album Paradise Lost; the band's 2011 album Iconoclast is the highest chart position and the most first-week sales in the band's history. Michael Romeo about the origin of their name: "So, you know, the music we were coming up with had the keyboard thing and the guitar, and some classical elements, so the word ‘Symphony’ came up and, so the dramatic thing, you know? So then, somebody said ‘Symphony X’ and we were like, ‘yeah, that’s cool’ it is that kinda thing, and the ‘X’ is the unknown and all the other stuff we do." Symphony X began recording a new album on September 9, 2014. The band's 9th studio album, "Underworld", will be released July 24, 2015.

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  • Meshuggah

    Meshuggah is a Swedish extreme metal band from Umeå, formed in 1987. Meshuggah's line-up has primarily consisted of founding members vocalist Jens Kidman and lead guitarist Fredrik Thordendal, drummer Tomas Haake, who joined in 1990, and rhythm guitarist Mårten Hagström, who joined in 1992. The band has gone through a number of bassists, with the position currently being held by Dick Lövgren since 2004. Meshuggah first attracted international attention with the 1995 release Destroy Erase Improve for its fusion of fast-tempo death metal, thrash metal and progressive metal with jazz fusion elements. Since its 2002 album Nothing, Meshuggah has switched from seven-string to downtuned eight-string guitars. Meshuggah has become known for their innovative musical style, complex, polymetered song structures and polyrhythms. Meshuggah was labeled as one of the ten most important hard rock and heavy metal bands by Rolling Stone and as the most important band in metal by Alternative Press. Meshuggah has found little mainstream success as yet, but is a significant act in extreme underground music. Nevertheless, Meshuggah has begun to gain attention and respect among more mainstream audiences since the late 2000s, having also inspired the djent movement within progressive metal. Since its formation, Meshuggah has released seven studio albums, seven EPs and eight music videos. The band has performed in various international festivals, including Ozzfest and Download, and embarked on the obZen world tour from 2008 to 2010. Meshuggah's latest studio album, Koloss, was released on March 23, 2012. Nothing and the albums that followed have all charted on the Billboard 200. Meshuggah's most commercially successful album, Koloss, debuted at number 17 in the USA, with first week sales of 18,342 copies. In 2006 and 2009, the band was nominated for a Swedish Grammy Award.

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  • Opeth

    Opeth is a Swedish heavy metal band from Stockholm, formed in 1990. Though the group has been through several personnel changes, singer, guitarist, and songwriter Mikael Åkerfeldt has remained Opeth's driving force throughout the years. Opeth has consistently incorporated progressive, folk, blues, classical and jazz influences into their usually lengthy compositions, as well as strong influences from death metal, especially in their early works. Many songs include acoustic guitar passages and strong dynamic shifts, as well as both death growls and clean vocals. Opeth rarely made live appearances supporting their first four albums; but since conducting their first world tour after the 2001 release of Blackwater Park, they have led several major world tours. Opeth has released eleven studio albums, three live DVDs, three live albums (two that are in conjunction with DVDs), and two boxsets. The band released its debut album Orchid in 1995. Although their eighth studio album, Ghost Reveries, was quite popular in the United States, Opeth did not experience major American commercial success until the 2008 release of their ninth studio album, Watershed, which peaked at No. 23 on the Billboard 200, and topped the Finnish albums chart in its first week of release. Opeth has sold over 1.5 million albums and DVDs worldwide, including 300,000 collective SoundScans of their albums Blackwater Park, Damnation and Deliverance in the United States.

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