We travel back to 1989, when guitarist Chris Lotesto armed with a handful of songs puts up an ad at the local music store that vocalist Tom Sobczynski eventually answered. The two of them hit it off and things started rolling. Tom, being also a guitarist/songwriter himself, had an instrumental song called “Latent Fury” and it was decided that the band would take on that same name.
Over the next year they recruited bassist Ken Green, guitarist Travis Ritter and drummer Angelo Triolo and the five of them began working diligently to get into the studio to record the first demo some time in 1991. Five hundred cassettes were initially pressed (followed by a few more runs of batches of 500) with one eventually making its way to a German fanzine. The positive reviews and letters started pouring in. Dan Charatin replaced Travis in early 1992 and John Ashe replaced Angelo in late 1992, and while the band was doing great on stage – with an opening slot for METAL CHURCH being one of the highlights – the band was never able to make it back into the studio and eventually came to an end in 1994.
This is pretty much the story of LATENT FURY from Chicago, Illinois, USA. I guess that if you are reading this you are already familiar with their 1991 demo tape and you somehow realize how important this reissue from Arkeyn Steel Records is. If you are not familiar with it, nevermind go on reading because you will discover an absolute Progressive/Power metal jewel.
I will turn on the time machine going back 7 years ago when I was writing about this tape on the Forgotten Scroll blog:
“One year after their first formation they delivered a three track demo tape. Three tracks that can be described as a perfect mixture of Crimson Glory and early Fates Warning enforced by some Iron Maiden touches here and there but all this under a melodic, brilliant, high quality musical background the same that can be enjoyed only in US Metal releases. What I am enjoying most in this release is the melodic interlude in “The Messenger Of Death” and the one in “The Visionary”. “Messenger Of Death” is nothing but a US Power Metal anthem touched by the magic hands of mother melody and still remaining pounding enough to make our fucking heads bang. Will you live to see tomorrow? hehehe…
“Streets Of Fire” is the more traditional Metal piece of this release with no melodic interlude mostly carrying a Maiden / Priest touch but still the US Metal way. Search for a little Crimson Glory influences in a more up tempo version and you will find something in this song.
The epilogue belongs “The Visionary” which is the most technical song in this release enforced once again by a beautiful melodic interlude that will soon finish to let the ultimate riffs of this song to fill the air enforced by amazing lead themes and vocals. You would also enjoy the melancholic breaking in the middle of the song followed by a magnificent lead part before the song gets wild again, great song for sure, a mysterious Power / Prog anthem only for those who had good taste in Metal. I am still not able to choose which one is my favorite “Messenger Of Death”, “Streets Of Fire”, or “The Visionary” . Anyway it does not matter”.
Well yes. I am NOT changing even a single word, seven years later, cause this masterpiece still signs and will sign forever. On the Arkeyn Steel Records reissue we can FINALLY here the unreleased LATENT FURY material. Those songs were recorded live as the band unfortunately never managed to return to studio and record them, but still – thanks to the remastering of Kostas Skandalis (WARDRUM) – you will be able t realise that we are dealing with first class stuff.
Lotesto moved forward and formed ION VEIN. An early version of the band existed with John and Dan but it was the co operation with vocalist Russ Klimczak that finally gave the band its first solid shape.
The “Beyond Tomorrow” debut was released in 1999, representing an evolved, more melodic and complex sound combining the vibes of SAVATAGE and QUEENSRYCHE on a solid and inspired musical result. Here you will discover the final version of “Bridge Of Dawn” that LATENT FURY used to play live; you will also be able to hear its live version on the bonus tracks of this re issue. In my opinion this is one of the best songs that Lotesto ever composed showing his native songwriting talent and his magical guitar playing. But there are plenty of other songs included in here that can only be described as masterpieces. “Reflections Unclear”, “Fading Shadows”, “Static Vision” etc.
The album generated a huge impact on the underground and it is considered today as one of the best releases of the 90s US Power Prog Metal scene. It was released by the band’s own Majesphere Records and it became out of print very quickly, remaining without a reissue until today.
Arkeyn Steel Records presents the LATENT FURY demo and the ION VEIN debut on a combo release. Adding as bonus the unreleased LATENT FURY originals. The combining link to all this music if of course the guitarist Chris Lotestp and this is actually the first era of his creative saga. If you are deeply into US Power Prog Metal this release is for you. It simply contains first class music, a result of talent and passion. Everything is remastered for the best possible sound and the Lotesto vaults have been opened in order for lots of never before seen photos to be included in here.
For me this is one of the most important re issues ever made for the genre of Us Power Prog Metal. Don’t do the mistake and miss it.
1 – 3 Latent Fury – Demo 1991
4 – 11 Ion Vein – Beyond Tomorrow 1999
12 – 17 Latent Fury – Unreleased Live Tracks 1994