On October 25, Jay Nanda of San Antonio Metal Music Examiner and AXS.com conducted an interview with FATES WARNING singer Ray Alder and Bobby Jarzombek in San Antonio, Texas. You can now watch the chat below.
Speaking about his gradual move away from high-pitched heavy metal screaming, Alder said: “I did an interview before and I said a stupid thing: ‘High vocals are silly.’ It’s not silly. I mean, that’s the headline they put on Blabbermouth. And I didn’t mean it that way. I’m not disrespecting anyone that sings that way. Chris Cornell [SOUNDGARDEN] sings in a high voice, and he sounds great; it’s fine. But that was what was going on at the time [when I first joined FATES WARNING]. That was what I wanted to do. In fact, I was a huge fan of [former FATES WARNING singer] John Arch and Geoff Tate [QUEENSRŸCHE]. And Rob Halford [JUDAS PRIEST] was one of my biggest influences… Steve Perry [JOURNEY]. That’s what everybody did. And as I grew older, I started changing my voice; I started going lower and I wanted more of a soul to my voice; not just screaming. It doesn’t make any sense. And the weirdest thing [was that] my voice just started changing that way; like it didn’t want to do that anymore…. When you get old, you can’t do the same thing forever; you can’t. But I really do like where I am. I love how my voice is. It’s not what it used to be, but I’m totally fine with it — as long as everybody else is fine with it.”
Regarding the fact that the “Awaken The Guardian” lineup of FATES WARNING will celebrate the 30th anniversary of the album with a couple of festival appearances next year, Alder said: “As far as I know, we release [the new FATES WARNING] album in June, and we wanna hit the road as soon as possible — probably in June. Whether that be America or Europe, I’m not sure. But we wanna hit the road… When ‘Darkness In A Different Light’ came out [in 2013], it was out for one day when we went on tour in Europe, so we wanna kind of do the same thing — get the ball rolling and promote it. So I’m sure they’ll take a break for that thing and do whatever.”
Added Jarzombek: “Actually, they’re doing two shows for that under the ‘Awaken The Guardian’ lineup, and that’s some rehearsals and shows, but it’s not gonna take away from anything we’re doing as FATES WARNING. Just because we’re doing the longer touring, plus we’re working on a new record — that whole thing. But, you know, that particular lineup is the ‘Awaken The Guardian’ lineup for that. And it’s cool. You know, Ray has REDEMPTION, I’m playing with Sebastian Bach. Joey [Vera] does the ARMORED SAINT thing, which he has been doing for a while. So if people understand that that’s the ‘Awaken The Guardian’ lineup and people get excited about it, ’cause it’s a one-, two-time thing, whatever. But this lineup of FATES WARNING is a working lineup. We are touring, [putting out albums], doing the whole thing, and we hang out together and stuff, and we have a goal that’s more than just the nostalgic thing. And I think that that’s the more important thing to me.”
Continued Alder: “As far as any rumors of the band breaking up or whatever, it couldn’t be further from the truth. I mean, I’ve had people ask me before: ‘What do you think about this, man? They’re going behind your back or something?’ I’m, like, ‘No.’ Look, we’re all working musicians. We all need to make money: Bobby, Joey, Jim [Matheos]… Everybody needs to make money. We don’t have normal jobs; you know, this is what we do. So if they’re gonna do that, [that’s] absolutely fine. They’ll make a lot of money. But we all know that this lineup is FATES WARNING and this is our band and this is what we do to support our families, to support ourselves. There’s no going anywhere else in the future.”
Added Jarzombek: “I think the only thing that’s a little confusing about it is the fact that the band has stayed with the name FATES WARNING [for the ‘Awaken The Guardian’ lineup performances]. So if people don’t understand, read the rest of the print and see exactly what that is.”