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Ganondox
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Joined: Tue Mar 11, 2014 4:43 am
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 14, 2014 3:34 am 
 

What are your favorite progressive metal vocalists? Here is what I'd put for top five progressive metal vocalists:

5. James LaBrie
Sure, he can push himself too far and get annoying sometimes, and he doesn't always hit the right notes live, but his voice was definitely a defining part of early progressive metal, and he sounds just amazing on Images and Words.
4. Tim Charles
I'm probably rating him way higher than he really ought to be, but I really really like the way he sings on As Icicles Fall. I know a bunch of people complain about it, but I love it, and while Ne Obliviscaris would still awesome, my interest in it would be greatly diminished if they moved entirely to screamed vocals.
3. Russel Allen
Symphony X wouldn't be complete without his powerful voice to compliment their classical-esque compositions. Not only is he a great singer in opera and metal styles, but his work with Adrenaline Mod shows his mastery of hard rock as well, even doing an aggressive groove/hardcore/nu metal/what-is-the-proper-term-for-this-type-of-singing vocal style on tracks like Undaunted which serves as enormous contrast to his other work.
2. Mikael Akerfeldt
His clean vocals are beautiful and haunting, sorta remiscent of Peter Steele in my opinion, but his growling style is equally noteworthy. When I heard him expertly slip from singing into death growls on Aryeon's The Human Equation was the first instance of the the vocal style which I considered to sound truly frightening. Without him, there wouldn't be an Opeth.
1. Devin Townsend
His voice was impressive enough to land him with Steve Vai, and that's how he started his career. He is one of the most versatile vocalists I've ever heard, just contrast any random Strapping Young Lad song with any DTP song. Not only can can he seamlessly go from singing to screaming and back again, but he can also scream melodically. He can also scream like an insane demon thing that I haven't heard anything like by any other singer. Truly just an all around awesome musician.
Honorable Mentions:
Maynard James Keenan: While most his music is far more based in alternative than progressive metal, Tool often gets lumps in the genre. If they were more of progressive metal band, I'd probably place him at the top of the list. Despite Tool being known for technical "wankery", they have some of the most emotional songs I know. His voice is utterly unique and versatile, he can whisper, he can scream, he sing with groove, and while very different it's all distinctly Maynard. He's one of my favorite singers of all time.
Geoff Tate: He sorta sucks now, but he used to be one of the best power metal vocalists, which worked great for Queensryche. In his prime I'd place him above LaBrie.
Ashe O'Hara: :P

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PvtNinjer
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 14, 2014 6:27 am 
 

John Arch on the classic opening trio of FW albums is superb, of course, definitely one of my favourites. My love for Arch goes so far beyond his crystal clear voice though, his melodies and harmonies are out of this world.

Absolutely adore Roy Khan in Conception, and he sounds really good on the couple of Kamelot album's I've heard (Karma, Epica and The Black Halo). Really rich and smooth vocalist with really great precision and control in his voice. Very dynamic as well, which is great from a progressive vocalist.

While Anubis Gate have had a few great vocalists in their time, I was really pumped with Henrik's performance on their self titled album. I find his smooth, croony voice fits a little bit better with their current lush, smooth, quasi electronic sound a little bit better than the high pitched wail of their previous vocalist. Their new album is probably the album I'm looking forward to the most this year.

I also really like Michael Eriksen from Circus Maximus, just a really accomplished vocalist with a keen ear for melody. Really, Circus Maximus might have some of the catchiest vocal lines I've ever heard!

Honestly, I could probably go all day: the guy from Andromeda is great, although I can see why some metal heads find him a bit too "boy band"ish. Jorn Lande has done some great work with progressive material with Ark, Beyond Twilight and even some Masterplan stuff. Early James LaBrie is also really good, a bit of a poor man's Arch, though. Progressive metal is rife with tons of accomplished singers.

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Temple Of Blood
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 14, 2014 11:10 am 
 

John Arch is the master of the vocal melody.

I don't think LaBrie is anything like Arch. They each have their strengths.
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narsilianshard
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 14, 2014 11:57 am 
 

Agreed on Devy. Some of the operatic stuff he pulls out of nowhere is absolutely stunning.
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SoundsofDecay
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 14, 2014 1:25 pm 
 

ALAN TECCHIO!

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Temple Of Blood
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 14, 2014 1:43 pm 
 

SoundsofDecay wrote:
ALAN TECCHIO!


Absolutely. While not perfect by any means, a lot of the stuff he did on "Control and Resistance" was awesome.

Singing over all those chromatic parts and key changes is very, very hard and most metal singers couldn't do it.
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By_Inheritance
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 14, 2014 1:57 pm 
 

Charles Sabin from Toxik's Think This era. Amazing vocalist. Those high notes he hits are incredible.
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colin040
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 14, 2014 2:09 pm 
 

Kelly Carpenter is my favourite vocalist in the progressive metal genre. The dude's got some serious pipes. With an incredible commanding voice he's able to scream belt and roar with a lot of power. Still, I find his more restrained singing to be excellent as well. Definitely one of the best singers in the genre and of the last years, too.

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Empyreal
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 14, 2014 2:12 pm 
 

Arch, Russell Allen and others have already been mentioned, so I'll throw out Martin LeMar from Lalu and Shadrane: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w68ev49RXZQ
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Temple Of Blood
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 14, 2014 2:27 pm 
 

By_Inheritance wrote:
Charles Sabin from Toxik's Think This era. Amazing vocalist. Those high notes he hits are incredible.


Yeah. Total pro. It's a shame he didn't do more in the metal genre.

Actually that's true for all those guys in TOXIK. I wish Christian had ended up in DEATH or TESTAMENT or something.
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Thiestru
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 14, 2014 2:38 pm 
 

John Arch goes without saying, so I'll add Buddy Lackey (or Devon Graves). His vocals on Psychotic Waltz's early recordings were incredible, and as far as I can tell, his voice has held up fairly well.

Another absolute favorite of mine is the late, great Mike Baker, of the wonderful and sorely underrated Shadow Gallery. He didn't have the most extensive range in progressive metal, and he wasn't the most powerful vocalist, but he sounded so damn good. I love his timbre; I think it's rather soothing, although he could get a bit of grit in his voice when needed. His death was a true tragedy. R.I.P.

Russell Allen has been mentioned for good reason - a top-notch singer.

I almost hesitate to name Geoff Tate, considering what a joke he's become, but his early abilities cannot be denied. He really used to be one of the very best. *sigh*
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Woolie_Wool
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 14, 2014 2:55 pm 
 

Temple Of Blood wrote:
By_Inheritance wrote:
Charles Sabin from Toxik's Think This era. Amazing vocalist. Those high notes he hits are incredible.


Yeah. Total pro. It's a shame he didn't do more in the metal genre.

Actually that's true for all those guys in TOXIK. I wish Christian had ended up in DEATH or TESTAMENT or something.

Death, maybe, but Testament are most distinguished by their utter averageness and don't even deserve Alex Skolnick, never mind Josh Christian.
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MARSDUDE
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 14, 2014 4:16 pm 
 

Daniel Gildenlow, hands fucking down. Dude's got a set of pipes on him, and can go from sounding like a real deep-voiced manly-man to a girl at the tip of a hat.
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Arkhane
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 14, 2014 10:55 pm 
 

Dan Swano has a pretty good clean voice, almost sounds like he has a southern accent when he sings. Crimson I, during the lyric "Can you hear the angels of sadness sing WITH BROKEN WI-IIIINGS" fucking sends chills up my spine.

Otherwise, the only prog metal vocalist I like is Mikael Akerfeldt, and that's with a grain of salt considering where his voice is going nowadays. As stated already, his cleans are the definition of haunting and his growls were just beastly.

Too bad Atilla Dorn isn't a progressive metal vocalist, I'm sure he would fare very well with all the options prog metal offers. He's one hell of a singer.
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Scourge441
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 15, 2014 2:57 am 
 

I've always been partial to Kjetil Nordhus and Stein Roger Sordal of Green Carnation. The former's baritone is perfect for their darker, goth-tinged sound, while the latter is just naturally emotive.

Also, Mike Scalzi, because Hammers of Misfortune are incredible and he's Mike Fucking Scalzi. Though, Joe Hutton is pretty good as well, and I have to give credit to Sigrid Sheie and Leila Abdul-Rauf as well. The vocal interplay is one of the best things Hammers have going for them.

I'll also mention Tim Aymar of Control Denied, but I'm picking him based on his work with Pharaoh. Is that cheating? Ehh, I don't really care, because dem high notes on Castles in the Sky.
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Ganondox
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Joined: Tue Mar 11, 2014 4:43 am
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 15, 2014 7:19 am 
 

PvtNinjer wrote:
J
Progressive metal is rife with tons of accomplished singers.


Which is why I decided to go specifically with progressive metal. Anyway, I think the biggest thing I got out of this thread is I really need to listen to more Fates Warning, as well as check out some of these other guys. Also, more Masterplan, not progressive metal, but it was mentioned in this thread, and for all I've heard about them I've only heard one song by them.

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A_Dreamer_In_The_Theater
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 15, 2014 8:28 am 
 

Jogi Kaiser who sang on Sieges Even's A Sense Of Change album possessed such great tone and a range with which he was vastly comfortable. He could emote and keep it sublime and he could soar ably enough and keep it human.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DuoxFRW6u7s

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Empyreal
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 15, 2014 9:29 am 
 

Scourge441 wrote:
I'll also mention Tim Aymar of Control Denied, but I'm picking him based on his work with Pharaoh. Is that cheating? Ehh, I don't really care, because dem high notes on Castles in the Sky.


Eh, Pharaoh's pretty proggy too!

Quote:
Also, more Masterplan, not progressive metal, but it was mentioned in this thread, and for all I've heard about them I've only heard one song by them.


Nah, you can probably skip em. :p
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Opus
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 15, 2014 1:05 pm 
 

Empyreal wrote:
Scourge441 wrote:
Also, more Masterplan, not progressive metal, but it was mentioned in this thread, and for all I've heard about them I've only heard one song by them.

Nah, you can probably skip em. :p

Have you gone completely bonkers?! Masterplans s/t is amazing! Jorn at his best!
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Empyreal
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 15, 2014 1:10 pm 
 

The only good Masterplan album is MK-II. Jorn sounds good and all but the music is always pretty second rate aside from that one album - which he wasn't on...I just always found the self-titled and Time to Be King such average albums, and I never remember any of the songs too well. There are some good tunes here and there though.

You really think the s/t is better than Beyond Twilight's The Devil's Hall of Fame? I really like Jorn on Avantasia too. Haven't heard much of his solo stuff though.
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Opus
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 15, 2014 4:04 pm 
 

Empyreal wrote:
You really think the s/t is better than Beyond Twilight's The Devil's Hall of Fame?

Absolutely! It just suits his voice perfectly.
I also think Kelly Carpenter was a much better fit for Beyond Twilight.
His solo albums are just collections of hard rock songs of very varied quality.
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Necroticism174
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 15, 2014 5:36 pm 
 

Yeah, no, as much as I love Jorn Lande and really quite like some of Masterplan's work, none of it approaches The Devil's Hall of Fame quality. That album is special.
Also, the two people who mentioned Kelly Sundown Carpenter are right on the money. There's really very little that man can't do vocally. Insane range, almost absurd lung capacity, extremely powerful high notes, versatility etc.
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PvtNinjer
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 16, 2014 12:16 pm 
 

Empyreal, MK-II is certainly a great album, but what do you think about the debut? I can totally see not liking Aeronautics, although I happen to find it pretty enjoyable, but I find the debut to be a genuinely good album. It's been a while since I heard it, though.

As for Beyond Twilight, I think I might like Section X more than The Devil's Hall of Fame, but they are both superb albums.

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Empyreal
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 16, 2014 12:28 pm 
 

The debut has some good tunes, sure, but a lot of it is just so unmemorable for me. The songs never really come together as cohesive wholes. Jorn's vocals are pretty good there, but the music is too confused and disjointed overall. Just feels like a lot of their ideas didn't really gel as catchy songs.
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Samoroth
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 16, 2014 12:50 pm 
 

How on earth can the OP compare Akerfeldt to Peter Steele....they sound completely different and Akerfeldt's voice is not even low when singing.

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TheMizwaOfMuzzyTah
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 16, 2014 9:19 pm 
 

Roy Khan is to prog metal what Nat Cole was to jazz.
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Oblarg
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 17, 2014 11:13 am 
 

Roy Khan was top-notch in Conception; I think he actually peaked on Flow, where he stopped relying so much on his high range and wrote better vocal lines in general. The super-catchy, poppy prog-rock sound on that album was perfect for him.

I think Jesse White from Antiquus deserves mention; he's got this idiosyncratic nasally warble that reminds one of The Spectre Within-era John Arch, but with a booming presence a la Harry Conklin. His performance on In the Land of the Blind is one of the best I've ever heard out of a metal vocalist.
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colin040
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 17, 2014 12:51 pm 
 

Roy Khan was amazing in Conception. I think he was at his best on the first 3 albums where he knew exactly when to show off his high notes slighty more often than usual (i.e on ''Solar Serpent'') and when to restrain more.

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Empyreal
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 17, 2014 12:53 pm 
 

Oblarg wrote:
I think Jesse White from Antiquus deserves mention; he's got this idiosyncratic nasally warble that reminds one of The Spectre Within-era John Arch, but with a booming presence a la Harry Conklin. His performance on In the Land of the Blind is one of the best I've ever heard out of a metal vocalist.


Ah yeah, he's awesome. Love his bizarre phrasings and weird, warbly voice. In the Land of the Blind did have a great performance from him, more focused and pro sounding than before, but still awesome.
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Mistereyedee
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 18, 2014 5:45 am 
 

No love for Midnight of Crimson Glory? Shame on you all.

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PvtNinjer
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 18, 2014 5:49 am 
 

Midnight is, of course, an amazing vocalist. I guess a lot of people don't really consider him a prog vocalist, but I guess it's safe to call Crimson Glory (from Transcendence on) a prog metal band. But yeah, he's pretty incomparable.

EDIT: Empyreal, I went back and gave the Masterplan debut a listen and you are right. I remembered the great songs on the album and forgot the boring or mediocre ones. The good tunes are really good, though.

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Mistereyedee
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 18, 2014 5:51 am 
 

PvtNinjer wrote:
Midnight is, of course, an amazing vocalist. I guess a lot of people don't really consider him a prog vocalist, but I guess it's safe to call Crimson Glory (from Transcendence on) a prog metal band. But yeah, he's pretty incomparable.

I would say Crimson Glory's first two albums are definitely power/progressive metal. Listen to "Azrael", and then get back to me. Some of the greatest screams ever recorded in USPM history.

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SleightOfVickonomy
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 18, 2014 6:42 am 
 

Here's a Prog band no one ever talks about!

EMPYRIA from Canada!
http://www.metal-archives.com/bands/Empyria/8991

Their vocalist Phil Leite is awesome. Great range and dynamism, he eats James LaBrie and Ray Alder for breakfast.
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PvtNinjer
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 18, 2014 7:01 am 
 

Mistereyedee wrote:
PvtNinjer wrote:
Midnight is, of course, an amazing vocalist. I guess a lot of people don't really consider him a prog vocalist, but I guess it's safe to call Crimson Glory (from Transcendence on) a prog metal band. But yeah, he's pretty incomparable.

I would say Crimson Glory's first two albums are definitely power/progressive metal. Listen to "Azrael", and then get back to me. Some of the greatest screams ever recorded in USPM history.


Yeah, the debut definitely has some flashes of that 80s prog/power sound, but over all the album feels like more of a straight ahead (if elegant) heavy metal album. Both are amazing records, though I do prefer Transcendence for it's dynamic song writing and mystical atmosphere.

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mitchell271
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 18, 2014 11:18 am 
 

Greg Puciato from Dillinger Escape Plan

Rody Walker from Protest the Hero

Both of these guys can scream, growl, shout and sing really fucking well. Rody shows off his skills on their most recent album, Volition, and everybody already knows how insane Greg is.

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JT Rager
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 18, 2014 11:59 am 
 

MARSDUDE wrote:
Daniel Gildenlow, hands fucking down. Dude's got a set of pipes on him, and can go from sounding like a real deep-voiced manly-man to a girl at the tip of a hat.


Came here to say this, why the hell is this the only mention? He is Easily the most emotional prog metal singer I can think of. Pretty pompous though :p
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Ganondox
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 18, 2014 12:22 pm 
 

Samoroth wrote:
How on earth can the OP compare Akerfeldt to Peter Steele....they sound completely different and Akerfeldt's voice is not even low when singing.


Subjectivity, my friend. Let's look at the quote again.

Quote:
His clean vocals are beautiful and haunting, sorta remiscent of Peter Steele in my opinion


There you go. His voice isn't that similar to Peter Steele's, but it reminds me of him. No, his voice isn't the low, but it's deeper than most metal vocalists I listen to.

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Kveldulfr
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 18, 2014 6:34 pm 
 

Arch is the absolute best of the genre. Not only his voice is godlike in terms of range but he's tremendously creative with his vocal lines. He also writes great lyrics and his discography is absolutely flawless with some timeless classics never to be topped. He still sounds excellent, almost untouched by the sands of time.

To add someone else, I say Nils Patrik Johansson for his work with Wuthering Heights. The guy has the power, range and emotional delivery to be among the best of the best.
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Empyreal
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 18, 2014 7:16 pm 
 

PvtNinjer wrote:
EDIT: Empyreal, I went back and gave the Masterplan debut a listen and you are right. I remembered the great songs on the album and forgot the boring or mediocre ones. The good tunes are really good, though.


Yes, well on my path to being right about everything...

The singer for Anguish is seriously awesome. Sweet, midrange vocals with a lot of charisma and control - really great vocal hooks and harmonizing. It's mesmeric: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZffnLm3nDqw

How about Oddleif Stensland from Communic? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CL--pn_q4Lo
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Jimmy Calhoun
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 18, 2014 10:56 pm 
 

Albeit possibly stretching the definition of "prog" a bit, I'd say Geoff Tate, Warrell Dane (Nevermore), and maybe D.C. Cooper in his Royal Hunt phase(s). The latter is a band I've just started getting into very recently - normally keyboard-laden "melodic" metal is not my thing to say the least.

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