Upon my introduction into progressive music with the likes of Emerson,Lake and Palmer, Kansas, and Queensryche (to name a few), I was fortunate to come across this CD in a pawn shop; I had some idea who Fates Warning was but I had no solid remembrance of them through their music. Oh my, what I was missing..Up to this day, thanks to Parallels, I have several of the Fates Warning catalog, and continue to enjoy most of them.But to me, this album is the most emotionally dark and lyrically challenging of them all, speaking clearly, when you listen, of relationships beginning to fail. ‘Leave the past behind’ begins the album, and one can already feel the tension that is about to unfold in each of these amazing songs. Between the focused drumming of Mark Zonder, the subtle and melodious guitar-playing of Jim Matheos, and the stunning vocals of Ray Alder, an almost perfect combination develops between these musicians, complemented also by guitar work from Frank Aresti and Joe Dibiase. Forget the reviews you read here about the commercialtones of this recording: this band has never sounded better and appeals to a larger group of fans with Parallels. I found myself captivated by the melody and meaning of ‘Life in still water’ which reminds us where all relationships go to in time, troubled yet intact. And just when you think that no more could be said about it, along travels the rest of the album, always inviting the listener to keep listening..’Eye to eye’ probably being the most radio-friendly of all of the compositions but its meaning still emotionally connected to the rest of these wonderful songs.When ‘The Eleventh Hour’ appears, one feels the frustration of the performers, and I sometimes wonder which band member or members have gone through this painful process to speak the messages so clearly and at the same time, lets the listener feel it as well. ‘Point of view’ can be self-explanatory but none-the-less effective, and then we are brought to ‘We only say goodbye’, which remains one of my favorites. You finally feel the overall frustration and negativity that arises from our faltering connections with people in ‘Don’t follow me’ and concluding with a not-so-happy, but highly touching ending in ‘The Road goes on forever’, a song that unexpectedly has become a personal favorite of mine by Fates..By the time you finish listening to this remarkable album, you feel a certain reality about your own relationships and a strength and understanding that as long as we all are here, this is the way it is meant to be.. Listen to ‘Parallels’.. I assure you it will become a part of what you are and what you will encounter..