Fates Warning's "The Spectre Within," a groundbreaking 12" LP, redefined progressive metal with intricate melodies and profound lyricism. Produced by Brian Slagel and Bill Metoyer, the album, garnered critical acclaim for its technical prowess and cohesive fusion of progressive and metal elements. A timeless masterpiece, it continues to influence and captivate, making the vinyl edition a coveted collector's item for music enthusiasts.


large album front cover photo of: FATES WARNING – The Spectre Within

"The Spectre Within"Album Description:

The release of Fates Warning's "The Spectre Within" marked a pivotal moment in the trajectory of progressive metal, encapsulating the essence of the genre and solidifying the band's standing within the musical landscape. This second studio album, originally released as a 12" LP album on vinyl, continues to be a celebrated masterpiece among fans of the progressive metal genre.

Album Overview:

"The Spectre Within" was produced under the keen guidance of Brian Slagel and Bill Metoyer, adding to the album's allure. When it first hit the shelves captivating audiences with its intricate musical arrangements, thought-provoking lyrics, and a sonic journey that transcended conventional boundaries.

Musical Brilliance:

From the hauntingly beautiful melodies to the complex and skillfully executed instrumentals, "The Spectre Within" showcases Fates Warning's mastery of their craft. The album delves into a realm where progressive elements seamlessly blend with heavy metal, creating a sonic tapestry that is both innovative and timeless.

Artistic Expression:

The album cover, a visual representation of the musical odyssey within, reflects the artistic vision that Fates Warning sought to convey. European publications have often praised the band for their ability to marry profound lyricism with captivating visual aesthetics, and "The Spectre Within" stands as a testament to this artistic synergy.

Critical Acclaim:

Upon its release, European publications lauded "The Spectre Within" for its groundbreaking approach to progressive metal. Critics commended the band's technical prowess, the depth of the lyrics, and the overall cohesiveness of the album. Fates Warning's ability to push the boundaries of the genre while maintaining a sense of musical integrity garnered widespread acclaim.

Legacy and Influence:

"The Spectre Within" continues to exert its influence on subsequent generations of progressive metal bands. Its impact on the genre is evident in the way it has inspired musicians to explore the possibilities of blending intricate musicality with profound storytelling.

Collector's Item:

For avid vinyl collectors and enthusiasts, the original 12" LP album holds a special place. Its rarity and historical significance make it a prized possession for those who appreciate not only the musical brilliance of Fates Warning but also the tangible, vintage charm of vinyl records.

Music Genre:

  Heavy Metal / Ptogressive Metal 

Album Production information:

The album: "FATES WARNING – The Spectre Within" was produced by: Brian Slagel, Bill Metoyer

Brian Slagel is an influential figure in the world of heavy metal music. Born on 17 February 1961, in Los Angeles, California, Slagel developed a deep passion for music at an early age. Growing up in the music scene of the 1970s and 1980s, he played an instrumental role in shaping the landscape of heavy metal as we know it today.


In his teenage years, Slagel immersed himself in the thriving metal scene of Los Angeles. He attended numerous concerts and built a vast network of connections with musicians, fans, and industry professionals. Recognizing the immense talent around him, Slagel decided to channel his passion into something more substantial.

In 1982, at the age of 21, Slagel founded Metal Blade Records in his small apartment. The label began as a means to support and promote local metal bands who were struggling to secure record deals. Slagel's vision was to create a platform where these talented artists could showcase their music and gain wider recognition.

Metal Blade Records released its first compilation album, "Metal Massacre", in 1982. The album featured now-legendary bands such as Metallica, Ratt, and Slayer, among others. This groundbreaking release played a significant role in catapulting Metal Blade Records and its roster of artists into the spotlight.

As the label continued to grow, Slagel nurtured and signed a multitude of influential bands, including Mercyful Fate , Cannibal Corpse, Gwar, and Armored Saint , to name just a few. His keen ear for talent and unwavering support for the genre helped Metal Blade Records become one of the most successful independent labels in the music industry.

Throughout his career, Slagel remained committed to preserving the authenticity and integrity of heavy metal music. While other labels veered towards more commercial sounds, Slagel stayed true to his roots, signing and promoting bands that embodied the spirit of the genre. He played a crucial role in the rise of the thrash metal movement, which had a profound impact on the music industry and inspired countless musicians.

In addition to his work as a label owner, Slagel has also served as a producer, working on albums for bands like Flotsam and Jetsam, Exciter, and Trouble. His deep understanding of the genre and his ability to bring out the best in artists allowed him to make significant contributions to their musical journeys.

Over the years, Brian Slagel's contributions to heavy metal have been widely recognized and celebrated. In 2010, he received the "Lifetime Achievement" award at the Metal Hammer Golden Gods ceremony. His dedication to the genre has left an indelible mark on the music world, influencing generations of metal musicians and fans alike.

Today, Metal Blade Records continues to thrive under Slagel's guidance. His passion, perseverance, and unwavering belief in the power of heavy metal have cemented his legacy as one of the most influential figures in the genre. Brian Slagel's story is a testament to the transformative power of music and the immense impact that one person can have on an entire cultural movement.

Bill Metoyer a well-known American music producer and sound engineer who has worked in the heavy metal genre. He has produced and engineered albums for a number of notable heavy metal bands, including Slayer, Armored Saint, and Cryptic Slaughter.

Metoyer is known for his expertise in capturing the raw energy and intensity of heavy metal music, and for his ability to bring out the best in the bands he works with. His work has helped to define the sound of heavy metal and has had a significant impact on the genre.

In addition to his production and engineering work, Metoyer has also been involved in other aspects of the music industry, including music education and artist development. He is highly regarded by musicians and fans alike for his contributions to the heavy metal genre, and continues to be an influential figure in the world of heavy metal music.during the 1980s he was Vice-President and in-house sound-engineer of Metal Blade Records. As such he has produced and taken care of the sound of many Heavy Metal bands. Most notable: Flotsam and Jetsam, Fates Warning, Helstar, Savage Grace, Tyrant, Slayer, Trouble, Sacred Reich, Armored Saint, Atrophy, Abattoir, Bitch, D.R.I, Dark Angel, Cryptic Slaughter, Lääz Rockit, Morbid Angel, Omen, Lizzy Borden, Mentors and many others.

Brad Vance - Mastering Engineer

Don Adkins Jr. - Photography

Ioannis - Album Artwork

Ioannis Vassilopoulos a graphics artist from Athens, Greece who has during the 1980s illustrated a dozen of album covers for heavy metal bands like: Hallows Eve, Fates Warning and others.

Record Label Information:

  RoadrunneR RR 9737

Media Format:

12" LP Vinyl Stereo Gramophone Record

Total Album (Cover+Record) weight: 230 gram

Year & Country:

  1985 Netherlands
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 Note: The images on this page are photos of the actual album. Slight differences in color may exist due to the use of the camera's flash. Images can be zoomed in/out ( eg pinch with your fingers on a tablet or smartphone ).

Personnel/Band Members and Musicians on: FATES WARNING - The Spectre Within
    Band-members, Musicians and Performers
  • John Arch – vocals, arrangement, production

    John Arch - Kead Vocals, one of the founding members of the American Heavy Metal bands Misfit and "Fates Warning". He has been with "Fates Warning" from 1984 until 1987 and other bands he has played guitars together with his mate "Jim Matheos", are "John Arch (band)" and "Arch / Matheos". This is a chronology of the bands he has been with Misfit 1982-1984, Fates Warning 1984-1987, Arch / Matheos 2010-Today, John Arch (Band) 2003-Today.

  • Victor Arduini – guitar, arrangement, production

    Victor Arduini - Guitars, and one of the founding members of "Fates Warning", bands he has played guitars in are Misfit 1982-1984, Fates Warning 1984-1985, Freedoms Reign 2013, Entierro 2016-Today, Arduini/Balich 2017, Eleventh Hour.

  • Jim Matheos – guitar, arrangement, production

    Jim Matheos - Guitars, one of the founding members of the American Heavy Metal bands Misfit and "Fates Warning". He has remained with "Fates Warning" since 1984 and other bands he has played guitars together with his mate "John Arch", are "John Arch (band)" and "Arch / Matheos". This is a chronology of the bands he has been with Misfit 1982-1984, Fates Warning 1984-Today, Jim Matheos (Band) 1993-2014, OSI 2002-2013, John Arch (Band) 2003-Today, Arch / Matheos 2010-Today.

  • Jim Arch – keyboard, arrangement

    Jim Arch (real-name Jim Archambault) - keyboards, is the brother of John Arch and has been guest musician on the two "Fates Warning" albums "The Spectre Within" and "Awaken the Guardian".

  • Steve Zimmerman – drums, arrangement, production

    Steve Zimmerman - Drums, co-founder of the band "Fates Warning" and also coming from "Fates Warning" predecessor the "Misfit" band, timeline of "Steve Zimmerman": Misfit 1982-1984, Fates Warning 1984-1988, Image Beyond 1995, Enemy Remains 2005-Today, Eleventh Hour.

  • Joe DiBiase – bass, arrangement, production

    Joe DiBiase - Bass, one of the founding members of "Fates Warning" and has also played in "Fates Warning" predecessor band "Msifit".

Complete Track-listing of the album "FATES WARNING - The Spectre Within"

The detailed tracklist of this record "FATES WARNING - The Spectre Within" is:

    Track-listing :
  1. "Traveler in Time" Jim Matheos, Victor Arduini, John Arch 7:13
  2. "Orphan Gypsy" Arduini, Arch 5:59
  3. "Without a Trace" Arduini, Arch 4:49
  4. "Pirates of the Underground" Matheos, Arduini, Arch 7:07
  5. "The Apparition" Matheos, Arch 5:50
  6. "Kyrie Eleison" Matheos, Arch 5:25
  7. "Epitaph" Matheos, Arch 11:57
Index of FATES WARNING Vinyl Album Discography and Album Cover Gallery

  Fates Warning is an American progressive metal band that was formed in Connecticut in 1982. The band is often considered one of the pioneers of the progressive metal genre, alongside bands like Queensryche and Dream Theater.

 The original lineup of Fates Warning consisted of vocalist John Arch, guitarists Jim Matheos and Victor Arduini, bassist Joe DiBiase, and drummer Steve Zimmerman. The band released their debut album, "Night on Bröcken," in 1984, which showcased a traditional heavy metal sound. However, with their second album, "The Spectre Within" (1985), Fates Warning began to incorporate more progressive elements into their music, such as odd time signatures and extended instrumental passages.

 In 1986, Fates Warning released their breakthrough album, "Awaken the Guardian," which is considered a classic of the progressive metal genre. This album featured more complex song structures and a greater emphasis on melody and harmony, as well as the impressive vocal range and unique style of singer John Arch.

 After John Arch left the band in 1987, Fates Warning continued to evolve their sound, incorporating more experimental and atmospheric elements into their music. In the 1990s, the band released a series of acclaimed albums, including "Parallels" (1991), "Inside Out" (1994), and "A Pleasant Shade of Gray" (1997), which featured a single 52-minute song broken into twelve parts.

 Fates Warning has undergone several lineup changes over the years, with guitarist Jim Matheos remaining the only constant member. The band has continued to release albums and tour, with their most recent album, "Long Day Good Night," released in 2020. Fates Warning is considered one of the most influential bands in the progressive metal genre, and their music continues to inspire and influence new generations of musicians.