In progressive metal circles, the names of guitarist Jim Matheos and vocalist John Arch are spoken with due reverence. With the former having been a driving force in Fates Warning for thirty-five years, and the latter the original front-man of that band, they also have a single seminal work under the Arch / Matheos banner, 2011’s Sympathetic Resonance . In 2019, they have reunited to follow that record up with Winter Ethereal , a more stylistically varied and perhaps deeper collection that explores a lot of sonic territory over the course of nine immersive tracks. Upon completion of Sympathetic Resonance , the duo neither declared it a one-off work nor planned on making a follow up, and rather than force anything, they waited for the right timing to present itself, opening the door for a sophomore release. Having commenced writing for the record in the spring of 2017, nothing included was at any point destined for a Fates Warning record, and everything was penned specifically for Arch / Matheos. This contributes to the record’s distinctive feel, and had it not come so naturally, there would be no Winter Ethereal .One thing is certain, with Winter Ethereal , fans of Arch / Matheos will feel that the long wait endured for new
music has been worth it. The natural manner in which it all came together makes it all the more special.