MENU
Progarchives, the progressive rock ultimate discography
Progarchives, the progressive rock ultimate discography

SHADOW GALLERY

Progressive Metal • United States


From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Shadow Gallery picture
Shadow Gallery biography
Shadow Gallery is a progressive metal band, which formed in Pennsylvania (USA) in the 1980's, originally under the name "Sorcerer". After changing their name to Shadow Gallery, the band recorded an 8-track demo, which helped them sign to Magna Carta Records in 1991. The band released their first proper EP of tracks a year later, with copies being sold in Europe and Japan aswell.

In late 1993, the band recruited a new musician to their course - Keyboardist and guitarist Gary Wehrkamp, and in 1994, added another virtuoso to their palette, drummer Kevin Soffera.
In 1995, the band released their second proper studio recording: CARVED IN STONE.
Shortly after, Shadow Gallery released another full length recording, titled TYRANNY (1998). This is a concept album, concerning itself deeply with politics. This album also features a guest appearance from vocalist James LaBrie (DREAM THEATER).

To follow up their latest hit, the band released LEGACY in 2001. Many fans consider this to be a marked change, displaying a more progressive, technical and focussed Shadow Gallery. This was the band's last recording under Magna Carta Records. This album also features many tracks with a more commercial taste, and although released between to concept records, stands as a collection of songs.

In 2005, the band returned with ROOM V, another concept record made to pick up where Tyranny's narrative left off. Many consider this album to be the band's ultimate success, only challenged by their 2009 release, DIGITAL GHOSTS. ROOM V also featured more guest work, mainly in the form of Arjen Lucassen (AYREON) on vocals for sections, and also contributing a guitar solo.

The band followed up their dark concept record with 2009's DIGITAL GHOSTS, another smash hit amongst metal fans. Many consider this to be their best album, and this also features a new member, vocalist Brian Ashland. This album blends symphonic rock, metal and progressive technical metal seemlessly.

Shadow Gallery can easily be enjoyed by any (prog) metal fan, and is one of the best prog acts of the decade.


Current Lineup:

Gary Wehrkamp - Piano, guitars, keyboards, vocals
Brendt Allman - Guitar, acoustic guitar, vocals
Carl Cadden-James - Bass, vocals, flute, fretless bass
Chris Ingles - Piano, keyboards
Joe Nevolo - Drums
Brian Ashland - Vocals

Former members:
Mike Baker - Vocals
Kevin Soffera - Drums


DISCOGRAP...
read more

Shadow Gallery official website

SHADOW GALLERY MP3, Free Download (music stream)


Open extended player in a new pop-up window | Random Playlist (50) | How to submit new MP3s
No MP3/Stream available for this artist.
Collaborate with Progarchives.com, learn how to submit new MP3s.

SHADOW GALLERY forum topics / tours, shows & news


SHADOW GALLERY forum topics Create a topic now
SHADOW GALLERY tours, shows & news Post an entries now

SHADOW GALLERY Videos (YouTube and more)


Showing only random 3 | Show all SHADOW GALLERY videos (1) | Search and add more videos to SHADOW GALLERY

Buy SHADOW GALLERY Music


Room VRoom V
Import
Imports 2010
Audio CD$6.99
$9.90 (used)
Shadow Gallery: Double FeatureShadow Gallery: Double Feature
MAGNA CARTA RECORDS 2015
Audio CD$9.59
$13.29 (used)
6th New Album6th New Album
Extra tracks · Import
Marquee Inc Japan/Zoom 2009
Audio CD$21.58 (used)
TYRANNYTYRANNY
Import
MAGNA CARTA RECORDS 2014
Audio CD$9.05
$2.49 (used)
LegacyLegacy
MAGNA CARTA RECORDS 2014
Audio CD$9.98
$5.49 (used)
CARVED IN STONECARVED IN STONE
MAGNA CARTA RECORDS 2014
Audio CD$17.64
$2.40 (used)
Digital GhostsDigital Ghosts
Inside Out U.S. 2009
Audio CD$40.60
$5.50 (used)
Prime CutsPrime Cuts
Import · Limited Edition
MAGNA CARTA RECORDS 2014
Audio CD$3.71
$0.61 (used)
Shadow GalleryShadow Gallery
Import · Remastered
King Japan 2011
Audio CD$53.80
$46.03 (used)
Right Now on Ebay (logo)
Shadow Gallery Tyranny CD album (CDLP) UK RR8695-2 USD $33.12 Buy It Now 12h 35m
Shadow Gallery / Legacy JAPAN w/Sticker Dream Theater *M USD $33.24 Buy It Now 1 day
METAL HAMMER MAGAZINE 11/2009 IMMORTAL NILE SHADOW GALLERY RAMMSTEIN BARONESS USD $12.99 Buy It Now 1 day
Primitive Weapons - Shadow Gallery [New CD] USD $9.30 Buy It Now 1 day
SHADOW GALLERY Tyranny RRCY-1037 CD JAPAN 1998 NEW USD $167.33 Buy It Now 1 day
Shadow Gallery - Prime Cuts [New CD] Ltd Ed, Digipack Packaging USD $13.49 Buy It Now 2 days
SHADOW GALLERY - Tyranny - CD - Import USEDGOOD USD $9.95 Buy It Now 2 days
SHADOW GALLERY APCY-8083 CD JAPAN 1992 OBI USD $66.71 Buy It Now 2 days
SHADOW GALLERY - Room V - CD ** Brand New ** USD $55.75 Buy It Now 3 days
SHADOW GALLERY - SHADOW GALLERY - CD - PROGRESSIVE METAL FROM U.S.A. USD $6.75 [0 bids]
3 days
Shadow Gallery: Carved In Stone ~ CD ~ 1995 Magna Carta ~ MA-9001-2 USD $11.99 Buy It Now 3 days
Legacy by Shadow Gallery (CD, Apr-2001, Magna Carta) MA 9047-2 USD $9.99 Buy It Now 3 days
Room V by Shadow Gallery (CD, May-2005, Inside Out Music, Germany) SPV 085-40952 USD $9.99 Buy It Now 3 days
SHADOW GALLERY - Digital Ghosts - CD ** Very Good Condition ** USD $17.95 Buy It Now 4 days
Superior - Ultima Ratio (PROGRESSIVE METAL / Shadow Gallery / Dream Theater) USD $41.99 Buy It Now 5 days
Progressive Metal: 6 CDs! Shadow Gallery / Explorer's Club / B. Twilight / more! USD $15.95 Buy It Now 5 days
SHADOW GALLERY - Carved in Stone - CD ** Very Good Condition ** USD $12.95 Buy It Now 5 days
Shadow Gallery - Shadow Gallery (1992 - Magna Carta) USD $29.99 [0 bids]
5 days
SHADOW GALLERY - LEGACY USED - VERY GOOD CD USD $13.94 Buy It Now 5 days
Room V - Shadow Gallery 5052205009024 (CD Used Very Good) USD $9.38 Buy It Now 5 days
Shadow Gallery-Room V CD NEW USD $15.99 Buy It Now 5 days
Digital Ghosts - Shadow Gallery 5052205050323 (CD Used Very Good) USD $9.43 Buy It Now 5 days
SHADOW GALLERY KICP-91572 CD JAPAN 2011 NEW USD $147.40 Buy It Now 6 days
Shadow Gallery-Digital Ghosts CD NEW USD $15.99 Buy It Now 6 days
Shadow Gallery / Tyranny JAPAN+1 Dream Theater OOP!!!!! B5 USD $28.49 Buy It Now 6 days
Shadow Gallery - Tyranny CD - Prog Metal band USD $2.99 [0 bids]
USD $4.99 Buy It Now
6 days
SHADOW GALLERY Room V MICP-10523 CD JAPAN 2005 NEW USD $98.65 Buy It Now 6 days
SHADOW GALLERY Carved in Stone KICP-91573 CD JAPAN 2011 NEW USD $180.42 Buy It Now 7 days
Shadow Gallery-Prime Cuts CD NEW USD $19.41 Buy It Now 7 days
SHADOW GALLERY - DIGITAL GHOSTS * NEW CD USD $18.30 Buy It Now 7 days
@ CD SHADOW GALLERY - CARVED IN STONE / MAGNA CARTA 1995 / PROG METAL USA USD $9.99 Buy It Now 8 days
SHADOW GALLERY CARVED IN STONE VERY RARE UKR ORIGINAL TAPE CASSETTE USD $14.68 Buy It Now 8 days
Shadow Gallery: Double Feature - Shadow Gallery CD-JEWEL CASE USD $20.17 Buy It Now 8 days
SHADOW GALLERY - TYRANNY USED - VERY GOOD CD USD $14.48 Buy It Now 8 days
SHADOW GALLERY RRCY-2013 CD JAPAN 1996 USD $51.16 Buy It Now 8 days
Room V SHADOW GALLERY CD ( FREE SHIPPING) USD $10.57 Buy It Now 8 days
SHADOW GALLERY Legacy RRCY-11145 CD JAPAN 2001 OBI USD $67.56 Buy It Now 8 days
SHADOW GALLERY - ROOM V NEW CD USD $13.14 Buy It Now 9 days
SHADOW GALLERY / CARVED IN STONE JAPAN CD OOP USD $13.99 Buy It Now 9 days
SHADOW GALLERY s/t CD Japan NEAR-MINT w. Obi & Bio Progressive Metal USD $22.00 Buy It Now 9 days
CHALICE Persistence of Time CD: THE SYGNET, POVERTY'S NO CRIME, SHADOW GALLERY USD $8.05 Buy It Now 9 days
SHADOW GALLERY - Shadow Gallery 1993 Korea Vinyl LP INSERT USD $29.76 Buy It Now 10 days
OCEANS OF TIME Faces DIGIPACK CD Shadow Gallery Dream Theater USD $12.99 Buy It Now 10 days
OCEANS OF TIME Trust DIGI CD Shadow Gallery Dream Theater USD $12.99 Buy It Now 10 days
@ CD Shadow Gallery - Tyranny / MAGNA CARTA ROADRUNNER 1998 USD $12.99 Buy It Now 10 days
Shadow Gallery - Digital Ghosts [New CD] Holland - Import USD $11.43 Buy It Now 10 days
SHADOW GALLERY NEW USD $20.16 Buy It Now 10 days
Shadow Gallery - Digital Ghosts [New CD] Holland - Import USD $18.02 Buy It Now 10 days
Shadow Gallery - Carved in Stone JAPAN CD 1995 (APCY-8236) OBI USD $6.99 Buy It Now 11 days
SHADOW GALLERY - SHADOW GALLERY: DOUBLE FEATURE 2 CD NEW+ USD $25.52 Buy It Now 11 days
SHADOW GALLERY S/T 1992 JAPAN CD OBI 2600yen APCY SEALED 1ST PRESS MIKE BAKER USD $49.99 Buy It Now 11 days
Tyranny by Shadow Gallery. USD $27.01 Buy It Now 11 days
Shadow Gallery - Digital Ghosts (CD 2009) USD $8.10 Buy It Now 11 days
SHADOW GALLERY - TYRANNY NEW CD USD $17.71 Buy It Now 11 days
@ CD Shadow Gallery - Tyranny - MAGNA CARTA ROADRUNNER 1998 USD $9.99 Buy It Now 13 days
SHADOW GALLERY - PRIME CUTS [DIGIPAK] NEW CD USD $12.86 Buy It Now 14 days
SHADOW GALLERY - PRIME CUTS [DIGIPAK] USED - VERY GOOD CD USD $5.96 Buy It Now 14 days
PRIMITIVE WEAPONS - THE SHADOW GALLERY [DIGIPAK] * USED - VERY GOOD CD USD $2.90 Buy It Now 14 days
PRIMITIVE WEAPONS - THE SHADOW GALLERY [DIGIPAK] * NEW CD USD $8.94 Buy It Now 14 days
Primitive Weapons - Shadow Gallery [New CD] USD $9.27 Buy It Now 15 days
Shadow Gallery, Digital Ghosts, Very Good Import USD $9.39 Buy It Now 15 days
Shadow Gallery ?- Tyranny [1CD, Japan 1st Press, OBI] RRCY-1037 USD $20.00 Buy It Now 16 days
Shadow Gallery ?- Shadow Gallery [1CD, Korea 1st Press] Dream Theater USD $10.00 Buy It Now 16 days
Shadow Gallery - Room V [New CD] Holland - Import USD $11.38 Buy It Now 16 days
Shadow Gallery - Room V [New CD] Holland - Import USD $10.56 Buy It Now 16 days
Primitive Weapons - The Shadow Gallery CD USD $6.75 Buy It Now 16 days
Shadow Gallery - Shadow Gallery (Cassette) BMG Russia SEALED USD $34.50 Buy It Now 16 days
Shadow Gallery - Carved In Stone (Cassette) BMG Russia SEALED USD $16.50 Buy It Now 16 days
NEW Shadow Gallery: Double Feature (Audio CD) USD $21.56 Buy It Now 16 days
Shadow Gallery - Legacy (Cassette) BMG Russia SEALED USD $16.50 Buy It Now 16 days
Shadow Gallery-Legacy (UK IMPORT) CD NEW USD $18.69 Buy It Now 17 days
Shadow Gallery CD Tyranny Magna Carta 1998 USED USD $3.99 Buy It Now 17 days
Shadow Gallery - Shadow Gallery / TH Cassette USD $9.99 Buy It Now 17 days
Shadow Gallery - Carved In Stone / TH Cassette USD $9.99 Buy It Now 17 days
SHADOW GALLERY - Room V - CD ** Very Good Condition ** USD $18.49 Buy It Now 18 days
PERSONA NON GRATA-Confirm Your Humanity CD Dream Theater,Shadow Gallery,Private USD $13.99 Buy It Now 19 days
SHADOW GALLERY - Digital Ghosts - CD ** Brand New ** USD $64.95 Buy It Now 19 days
SHADOW GALLERY - Legacy - CD ** Very Good Condition ** USD $16.95 Buy It Now 19 days
Primitive Weapons-Shadow Gallery (UK IMPORT) CD NEW USD $13.63 Buy It Now 19 days
SHADOW GALLERY - LEGACY NEW CD USD $17.92 Buy It Now 19 days
Carved in Stone by Shadow Gallery (CD, Jul-1995, Magna Carta) USD $5.99 Buy It Now 20 days
Shadow Gallery - Room V (2005) - 2CD Special Edition - Dream Theater, Ayreon USD $6.75 Buy It Now 20 days
Carved in Stone by Shadow Gallery (CD, 1995, Magna Carta) prog metal USD $6.99 Buy It Now 20 days
Shadow Gallery ?- Digital Ghosts SEALED CD! WITh OBI! RARE! FREE SHIPPING! USD $16.00 Buy It Now 21 days
Shadow Gallery-Digital Ghosts (UK IMPORT) CD NEW USD $14.02 Buy It Now 21 days
Shadow Gallery-Room V (UK IMPORT) CD NEW USD $15.67 Buy It Now 21 days
Shadow Gallery-Tyranny (UK IMPORT) CD NEW USD $18.69 Buy It Now 22 days
SHADOW GALLERY - Carved In Stone - CD - Like New / Mint Condition USD $26.49 Buy It Now 22 days
The Shadow Gallery, New Music USD $16.26 Buy It Now 23 days
SYRINX - CRYSTAL CLIFFS 2000 1PR NEW! BLIND GUARDIAN MANTICORA SHADOW GALLERY USD $7.99 Buy It Now 23 days
SHADOW GALLERY "ROOM V" CD NEW+ USD $13.15 Buy It Now 23 days
SHADOW GALLERY "DIGITAL GHOSTS" CD PROG METAL NEW+ USD $18.31 Buy It Now 23 days
PRIMITIVE WEAPONS - THE SHADOW GALLERY CD+++++++++++++++7 TRACKS++++++ NEW+ USD $20.79 Buy It Now 23 days
Primitive Weapons - The Shadow Gallery (NEW CD) USD $14.52 Buy It Now 24 days
Shadow Gallery / Carved in Stone JAPAN Dream Theater *K USD $18.99 Buy It Now 24 days
Room V, Shadow Gallery, Good USD $6.74 Buy It Now 24 days
WARZONE VIII SHADOW GALLERY MIND'S EYE CD USD $1.99 Buy It Now 25 days
SHADOW GALLERY CARVED IN STONE RARE OOP CD USD $9.99 Buy It Now 25 days
@ CD SHADOW GALLERY - ROOM V / INSIDEOUT MUSIC 2005 / PROG METAL USA USD $9.99 Buy It Now 26 days
SHADOW GALLERY - Tyranny - CD ** Very Good Condition ** USD $17.49 Buy It Now 26 days

More places to buy SHADOW GALLERY music online Buy SHADOW GALLERY & Prog Rock Digital Music online:
SHADOW GALLERY has no upcoming shows, according to LAST.FM syndicated events and shows feed

SHADOW GALLERY discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

SHADOW GALLERY top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.41 | 163 ratings
Shadow Gallery
1992
3.79 | 209 ratings
Carved In Stone
1995
4.06 | 283 ratings
Tyranny
1998
3.75 | 190 ratings
Legacy
2001
4.13 | 405 ratings
Room V
2005
3.89 | 234 ratings
Digital Ghosts
2009

SHADOW GALLERY Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

SHADOW GALLERY Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

SHADOW GALLERY Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

1.84 | 17 ratings
Prime Cuts
2007

SHADOW GALLERY Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

SHADOW GALLERY Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Legacy by SHADOW GALLERY album cover Studio Album, 2001
3.75 | 190 ratings

BUY
Legacy
Shadow Gallery Progressive Metal

Review by martindavey87

4 stars Having really hit their stride with the 'Tyranny' album, Shadow Gallery are back with 'Legacy', an album that is similar stylistically, though does away with the concept album format and features only six songs, and some rather ambitious ones at that.

Shadow Gallery's brand of progressive metal has always taken a more melodic approach than other bands of the genre, and while their guitar riffs can elicit plenty of headbanging, it's in the vocals and melodies that the groups strengths lie, with 'Legacy' being chock-full of catchy chorus's and interesting harmonies. Expertly produced to give the music the punch it needs, yet straying away from being too heavy or brutal. The Pennsylvania-based band have the right blend to appeal to fans of metal and softer rock alike.

The true centerpiece of the album is 'First Light', a 34-minute epic that serves as a smorgasbord of every possible element that gives Shadow Gallery their defining sound. The track can lull from time to time, but the highlights more than compensate for that. The middle section of the song features some of the bands finest musical virtuosity and vocal harmonies, making it a challenging yet rewarding listen.

Songs like 'Colors', 'Society of the Mind' and the title track 'Legacy' are all shorter songs that can be considered some of the bands best work. As per usual, the musicianship is incredible, finding a perfect balance between heavy and melodic, and Mike Baker's beautiful vocals are an absolute joy to listen to.

The duration of the songs can make for some demanding listens, which will ensure that while 'Legacy' contains some of Shadow Gallery's best compositions, it's probably not their best album overall. But hey, it's still a damn good one, and that's what matters!

 Tyranny by SHADOW GALLERY album cover Studio Album, 1998
4.06 | 283 ratings

BUY
Tyranny
Shadow Gallery Progressive Metal

Review by martindavey87

4 stars Concept albums.

The very words can send shivers down your spine. The most hardened of prog fanatics will shudder at the thought of another rock opera and the potential pretentious self-indulgence that awaits them.

Fear not, however, for this is Shadow Gallery, one of the finest progressive metal bands out there, and you can rest assured that this will be an engaging, story-driven affair full of excellent performances by all involved. It might seem a bit cheesy at times, but then, what concept album doesn't?

At 73 minutes in length, 'Tyranny' can feel a little long-winded at times, but the music is so damn good that sometimes it's worth the sacrifice. Telling the story of a man who discovers a plot involving his government selling weapons to the middle east, it's an interesting narrative that doesn't get too boring despite the albums duration. The playing is superb and incredibly tight, and Mike Baker's vocals are full of emotion and sincerity, easily one of the most versatile and talented singers I've ever heard.

There's one or two brief instances where the album does tend to lull momentarily, but otherwise this is a solid release with some exceptional tracks. 'War for Sale', 'Roads of Thunder', 'Hope for Us?' and 'Spoken Words' are all amazingly well-written pieces, and then there's 'Mystery', which, in my opinion, isn't just one of Shadow Gallery's best songs, but one of the genres, too.

Well-received by fans and critics alike, Shadow Gallery's 'Tyranny' is a true gem that belongs in the collection of every prog metal fan.

 Carved In Stone by SHADOW GALLERY album cover Studio Album, 1995
3.79 | 209 ratings

BUY
Carved In Stone
Shadow Gallery Progressive Metal

Review by martindavey87

3 stars 'Carved in Stone' is Shadow Gallery's second album, in which the performances as a whole seem a lot tighter and polished, but the quality of the compositions don't quite surpass that of their debut. However, fans will instantly notice the improvement in production, which sounds a lot richer and "cleaner", giving the music the punch it needs, and which would go on to become the bands somewhat "signature" sound.

However, despite the improvements in production, the album is still fairly average at best. While it may contain one of Shadow Gallery's best songs ('Crystalline Dreams' is just so damn catchy!), the rest of the music can seem fairly lackluster at times. The biggest letdown has to be 'Ghost Ship', which, similar to the group's debut, is the "epic" of the album (clocking in at a total of just over 20 minutes). Broken into seven smaller parts, most of the highlights last no longer than a minute or two before going into the next section, making the whole piece feel mostly disjointed.

As for the other tracks, we have 'Cliffhanger', 'Don't Ever Cry, Just Remember', 'Warcry' and the previously mentioned 'Crystalline Dream', as well as a couple of highlights from the 'Ghost Ship' piece. These are all good songs that definitely make this album worth getting, but honestly, most of them just pale in comparison to some of the bands later material.

As per usual with Shadow Gallery, the musicianship is spectacular and Mike Baker's vocals are truly a thing of beauty. Overall though, it's just a "good" album. Nothing to write home about, but a worthy addition to the collection if it can purchased cheap enough.

 Shadow Gallery by SHADOW GALLERY album cover Studio Album, 1992
3.41 | 163 ratings

BUY
Shadow Gallery
Shadow Gallery Progressive Metal

Review by martindavey87

3 stars It's the early years of progressive metal, Fates Warning and Queensryche have been going from strength to strength over the years and Dream Theater have released their debut album, but are yet to unleash its follow-up 'Images and Words' upon the world, which would pretty much lay out the blueprint for every prog metal album to follow. So with that, Shadow Gallery's self-titled debut release came at a time when the genre was still establishing itself.

All the enduring qualities of the genre are here in their infancy, and they work well. Lengthy songs with complex structures and vast musical passages, Mike Baker's incredible vocals, which add so much depth and credibility to the band, their trademark vocal harmonies (which would be expanded upon and perfected on later releases) and some of the finest musicianship around. It's no wonder they would go on to become one of prog metals most beloved cult bands.

In fact, the biggest detriment is the "epic" of the album, 'The Queen of the City of Ice'. Perhaps the metal world just wasn't quite ready for these 20-minute odyssey's just yet, or perhaps it was a trait best left to the old-school Yes's and Genesis's of the music world, but either way, this song is BORING!!! It's slow, uninteresting, and features a spoken dialogue section which goes on for way too long. It's a massive blow to what would be an otherwise stellar debut, as 'Darktown', 'Mystified', 'Say Goodbye to the Morning', 'Questions at Hand' and 'The Dance of Fools', in fact, all the songs on this album are early classics that really makes this a solid release, but it's all hindered by that 17-minute track that completely brings everything to a standstill.

Still, don't be deterred by that, as otherwise this is a great album that helped lay the foundations for progressive metal by firmly distinguishing all the early traits the genre would adhere to.

 Shadow Gallery by SHADOW GALLERY album cover Studio Album, 1992
3.41 | 163 ratings

BUY
Shadow Gallery
Shadow Gallery Progressive Metal

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE & JR/F/Canterbury Teams

3 stars Although they merely started out as a cover band called Sorcerer in the 80s covering Yngwie Malmsteen and Rush songs, this Allentown, PA band found a little lovin' for their favorite graphic novel "V For Vendetta" and changed their name to SHADOW GALLERY. While the early days of progressive rock was a European phenomenon, progressive metal was wholeheartedly an American sensation and SHADOW GALLERY was one of the earliest bands to open those doors in the early 90s along with contemporaries like Dream Theater and Symphony X following in the footsteps of the proto-progressive metal bands of the 80s such as Queensryche and Crimson Glory. It didn't take long after writing their own tracks that they would be one of the earliest acts to sign on to the Magna Carta Records which displayed virtuoso and neoclassical oriented metal bands although SHADOW GALLERY never achieved the success that many of their contemporaries would.

At this stage on their eponymous debut SHADOW GALLERY was more of a mix of symphonic progressive rock that happened to include some 80s power metal that sometimes fused together but most often did not. Although the metal would become the dominating force on subsequent albums, on this debut there are large tracts of playing time that sound much more like symphonic prog than metal. In fact the leading track "The Dance Of Fools" sounds more like a neo-prog track that wouldn't sound out of place on an early Arena or IQ album. There also segments of interactive flute action which like Psychotic Waltz of the same era was quite rare in the metal universe. Add to that the often sugary sweet melodic developments and the Queen inspired harmonic singalong vocal style and it's easy to forget that this is indeed a metal band however when the metal aspects are taken off their leashes then there is no mistaken that this indeed is an 80s neoclassicallly inspired speed metal band that has more than mastered all the chops to earn that title. Even within the very first neo-proggy track Brendt Allman stuns us with his lightning blitzkrieg of neoclassical guitar runs as the track fades out.

"Darktown" takes over and introduces the more familiar sound of the majority of the album. That being melodic catchy tunes that alternate between sweet ballad parts then followed by more rarer hard rockin' segments that display quickened keyboard runs, high register vocals and lead guitar workouts. The tracks are also of considerable length where after the verses and choruses play out there are lengthy instrumental wankery sessions that are of the same type of extended play as heard on Dream Theater and Symphony X albums of the same era. The band play together quite well and the trading off of the different ideas flow together very well as the band never once misses a beat in keeping the tracks interesting. While the album is a great mix of prog rock and 80s metal, the true progressive behemoth comes toward the end as "The Queen Of The City Of Ice" starts off with light fluffy guitar arpeggios accompanied by sweet synths and a lulling flute with narrative harmonic vocals telling the tale of a fantasy land that soars on for 17 minutes and 11 seconds. Surprisingly the clean guitar arpeggios and symphonic accoutrements carry on close to the nine minute mark before they erupt into the more energetic side of the track and even thereafter never really erupts into really heavy territory save the guitar shredding under the symphonic scaffolding. There is also a lengthy spoken narration in the middle.

While SHADOW GALLERY certainly had their musician hats on and had more than developed their techniques to stun the listener, at this point there are a few things i find a little unsettling about this debut album. First of all, the opening track "The Dance Of Fools" sounds totally out of sync with the rest of the album. Although it's a decent track, its style makes a very bad first impression and as mentioned already, sounds more like it would be fitting on a neo-prog album with Allman doing a guest shredover. Secondly, "Mystified" sounds too much like "The Mission" on Queensryche's "Operation: Mindcrime." While a decent track it fails to sound original in any way and Mike Baker even sounds like a convincing Geoff Tate clone. The production is also lackluster as Magna Carta was founded by Mike Varney who was notorious on his Shrapnel Records label for hosting some of the best guitarists of the days but equally making them suffer some of the worst production heard in the music industry and SHADOW GALLERY likewise is diminished by the same tinny and muffled dynamics that could have added a lot to the final product. Given all these quirks that this debut dishes out, i'm still quite fond of it although they would improve greatly in every way on their second release "Carved In Stone." With better album arrangement, a nip and tuck in the editing department and a stellar production job, this could have been an outstanding album back in the day but for what it is, i still find the music satisfactory enough to bring me back for repeated listening pleasure.

3.5 rounded down

 Tyranny by SHADOW GALLERY album cover Studio Album, 1998
4.06 | 283 ratings

BUY
Tyranny
Shadow Gallery Progressive Metal

Review by Prog Leviathan
Prog Reviewer

2 stars This is my first taste of Shadow Gallery's highly rated discography. Tyranny fits right in alongside the prog- metal stylings of the late '90's era; however, it does not strike me being anywhere near as close to the masterpiece it's currently scored at. It's not bad, in fact, the album's vibe, instrumental performances, and varied songs are artistically executed. The songwriting is highly competent and involved, but the result doesn't strike me as strongly as many other prog-metal groups out there. It's good, but not great or even that memorable.

Overall the band plays well. They're very tight and the production is crisp. Soloing is fair, regrettably not standing out among the various interweaving riffing and synthesizer textures. For a band that plays as fast and with as much complexity as Shadow Gallery, there aren't moments that make your hair stand up with excitement. This is probably my biggest issue with the album; the songs aren't memorable, and the instrumentalists rarely grab my attention, even though I can tell they're talented. Maybe this is a failing of the songwriting? Compare this to Metropolis II: Scenes From a Memory, which was released only a year later, and Tyranny's complexity and moments of frenzied riffing seem even more underwhelming. Again, they aren't bad, just sort of bland.

Let's talk for a minute about vocals. Baker gets credited as lead vocalist, and he's passable at best. His high-pitched vocals are typical of the era, in fact, they even have a strong '80's feel. His range is poor, phrasing tedious, but inflection strong and there's actually some emotion behind his singing. I don't care for his voice, but that's totally subjective; he's not for me. What's definitely not for me is this album's awful lyrics. Yes, I said awful. They're overly direct, unevocative, without rhyme, devoid of memorable choruses, trite, and pretentious. And there's so, so many of them. There's simply way too much singing on this album, and because all of the lead duties are handled by Baker... that's a problem. Some reviewers have commented about how Tyranny is thematically similar to Queensryche's Operation Mindcrime, which is totally understandable. The themes about technology and the internet feel very anachronistic and campy at this point, which is fine; what do not, are the songs about the second coming of Christ. Those lyrics just fall flat, but then again I'm bias in that regard. Again, not enough here to make me want to listen again.

One thing that Tyranny does have going for it is its variety. The first half is mostly fast-paced rocking that may appeal to more straight-ahead metal fans. Throughout we're given transitional songs that play like lush power ballads, pulling at the narrative's emotional heartstrings. The second half experiments more, with songs like "New World Order" and the exciting instrumental "Chased" standing out as highlights. In the end though I suffered from fatigue after the album's bloated 73 minute running time.

I didn't hate Tyranny, not by a long shot, I just didn't care about what it was accomplishing. To me, that says that it's one for prog-metal diehards or fans of the group (probably one and the same).

Songwriting: 3 - Instrumental Performances: 3 - Lyrics/Vocals: 1 - Style/Emotion/Replay: 2

 Legacy by SHADOW GALLERY album cover Studio Album, 2001
3.75 | 190 ratings

BUY
Legacy
Shadow Gallery Progressive Metal

Review by javajeff

4 stars This is an excellent album despite the last 10 minutes of air and junk. Bands have a right to be creative, but it just detracts from an amazing album. Fortunately, it is at the end so you can move on easily. I really think this release is very close to masterpiece status, and should be rated more like 4.5/5. Any fan of Shadow Gallery or Progressive Metal should pick it up. The title track Legacy is excellent along with the two stellar tracks that anchor the album: Cliffhanger 2 and First Light. There are no bad tracks. I am enjoying it along with the two successors and expect to get the early releases next. This album is solid and should not be missed.
 Shadow Gallery by SHADOW GALLERY album cover Studio Album, 1992
3.41 | 163 ratings

BUY
Shadow Gallery
Shadow Gallery Progressive Metal

Review by b_olariu
Prog Reviewer

4 stars First release selftitled from 1992 of already legendary prog metal band Shadow Gallery is a very promising debut in prog metal realm. I really like a lot this one, being very close in consistency of what they will offer later on. Even the sound is not exactly a very solid one, the compositions really smoke from start to finish. Pieces like The dance of fools, Darktown and the lenghty The queen of the city of ice are strong prog metal pieces with nice changes in tempo and some killer keyboards. The keyboards arrangements here are really great, and the vocal parts and guitar aswell. Bombastic symphonic passages are very well melted with prog metal elements all in good measure and with fine musicinship. This is more then ok material, oftently unnoticed in prog metal circles, all the eyes were on Dream Theater second album Images and words back then who re invent the prog metal scene with that album and Shadow Gallery debut released same year were kinda left in the shadow. Definetly one of the best debut albums in prog metal scene for sure. From me easy 4 stars, in same league with their later releases. Carved in stone btw remaining to me at least, their most acomplished work and one of top 5 prog metal albums ever .

 Tyranny by SHADOW GALLERY album cover Studio Album, 1998
4.06 | 283 ratings

BUY
Tyranny
Shadow Gallery Progressive Metal

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Shadow Gallery's first concept album presents a near future techno-thriller plot and a musical style that is best described as a mingling of the complexity and virtuosity of Dream Theater with the ballsy grit of classic Queensryche. It's an entertaining listen which will please most fans of those giants of prog metal but doesn't really expand the bounds of the genre much; on top of that, it begins to lose steam towards the end, with songs such as Spoken Words and New World Order getting downright repetitive and in dire need of a bit of editing. Still, if you want a cheesy conspiracy thriller concept album I'm sure there are worse choices.
 Prime Cuts by SHADOW GALLERY album cover Boxset/Compilation, 2007
1.84 | 17 ratings

BUY
Prime Cuts
Shadow Gallery Progressive Metal

Review by SouthSideoftheSky
Special Collaborator Symphonic Team

2 stars Excellent, but almost completely unnecessary

Two stars is the default rating for compilations that primarily contain only previously released material. The present compilation features only one previously unreleased track and this track is the sole reason why anyone should bother with this release at all. This previously unavailable track is a demo from the recording sessions of my favourite Shadow Gallery album, Carved In Stone. The rest of the tracks here were taken from Shadow Gallery's studio albums on the Magna Carta label. That is, their first four albums. All of these albums are excellent and the music found on Prime Cuts is thus of the very highest quality. But even if they work surprisingly well outside of their original settings, these songs are better heard on the original studio albums.

The self-titled debut is represented with two tracks: The Final Hour and Say Goodbye To The Morning. Carved In Stone, too, is represented with two tracks: Deeper Than Life and Don't Ever Cry, Just Remember. Four tracks from Tyranny are featured, one of which is mislabeled Mystery. In fact, it is not Mystery but Out Of Nowhere that opens this compilation. The other three tracks from Tyranny are Ghost Of A Chance, Hope For Us? and New World Order. Finally, Legacy is represented with three tracks, two of which are edited versions (The Crusher and Colors) of the original album tracks. The third inclusion from Legacy is the title track. The previously unreleased demo is called Rule The World and is good but not up to par with the cuts that actually made it onto the Carved In Stone album.

In my opinion, the albums from which these tracks were taken are Shadow Gallery's best albums and the selections are indeed excellent music. But I strongly recommend to get the original studio albums instead on this compilation. Only if you are a true fan would you need to get this in order to hear Rule The World.

Thanks to ProgLucky & Joel for the artist addition. and to E&O Team for the last updates

Copyright Prog Archives, All rights reserved. | Legal Notice | Privacy Policy | Advertise | RSS + syndications

Other sites in the MAC network: JazzMusicArchives.com — jazz music reviews and archives | MetalMusicArchives.com — metal music reviews and archives