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SYMPHONY X

Current Members

Past Members

Biography

SYMPHONY X is an outrageously Progressive Metal band formed during 1994 in South Amboy, New Jersey by the ex-PHANTOM'S OPERA duo of guitarist Michael Romeo, world renowned for his 8 finger tapping technique, and bassist Thomas Miller. SYMPHONY X's main markets would appear to be in Japan and continental Europe, especially France. Raised in South Amboy, New Jersey, the group's self-titled first album was first released in Japan in 1994. The catalyst for SYMPHONY X had actually been positive media response to a Michael Romeo solo undertaking, a demo dubbed 'The Dark Chapter', issued that April. Branded SYMPHONY X, first product came in the form of the 'Danse Macabre' demo.

The self-produced 'Symphony X' record scored distribution across Europe through an arrangement with Inside Out Music and into the Far East via Japan's Zero Corporation. Musicians employed for this set involved Romeo, Miller, one-time PHANTOM'S OPERA man Rod Tyler on vocals, keyboard player Michael Pinnella and drummer Jason Rullo.

Shortly after the album arrived in stores, Rod Tyler, was replaced by RUSSELL ALLEN. Oddly enough, a few months prior within the confines of a New York clothing facility, Tyler had kindly introduced singer RUSSELL ALLEN to bassist Thomas Miller. With that specific vacancy to fulfill, the incomplete group initiated contact with remarkable success. November 1995's 'The Damnation Game', laid down at Trax East Studios, South River and produced by Eric Rachel and Steve Evetts, marked his inaugural album appearance.

SYMPHONY X's 'The Divine Wings Of Tragedy' March 1997 album included the near twenty one minute long epical title track. In addition to work on a brand new album for March 1998, entitled 'Twilight In Olympus' and was the first album to feature new drummer Thomas Walling, of DYERS EVE and MAJESTE. Michael Romeo also found time to release his first solo album. This was a package originally laid down as a demo in the early 90's that gained the guitarist a great deal of interest from the likes of Shrapnel Records' Mike Varney.

Both Walling and Miller opted out and 2000 marked the introduction of Michael LePond on bass guitar and the re-nstatement of drummer Jason Rullo.

During 2001 drummer Jason Rullo would participate in guitarist Nick Van Dyk's REDEMPTION project. Michael Romeo would guest session on STRATOVARIUS frontman Timo Kotipelto's KOTIPELTO debut solo record 'Waiting For The Dawn'. A lavish double live album 'Live In Europe' arrived in 2001. The same set would see a re-release in Japan through the Toshiba EMI label retitled 'Live On The Edge Of Forever'.

Although the band would be announced for the 2002 'Bang Your Head' festival in Germany SYMPHONY X pulled out when frontman Russell Allen was found to be suffering from intestinal bleeding requiring emergency medical treatment. An extensive run of North American dates in November and December saw the band operating as support act to BLIND GUARDIAN.

An all new act featuring SYMPHONY X man Michael Lepond was announced in August of 2003 as the bassist united with HELSTAR, DESTINY'S END, FLOTSAM & JETSAM and SEVEN WITCHES vocalist James Rivera and DESTINY'S END guitarist Eric Halpern in DISTANT THUNDER. This trio soon scored a deal with Germany's Massacre Records.

SYMPHONY X, promoting 'The Odyssey' album, would headline US shows throughout November with Canadian eccentrics the DEVIN TOWNSEND band as openers. Allen also came to attention outside of his priority band activities, portraying the character "Dream League Commander" for a 2004 GENIUS outing 'In Search of The Little Prince'. MICHAEL PINELLA found time to cut a solo album entitled 'Enter By The Twelfth Gate'. Meantime Michael Romeo guested on 'The Burning' album from Finnish Power Metal band THUNDERSTONE, appearing on the track 'Drawn To The Flame'.

Live work in April of 2004 found the band putting in several supports to QUEENSRYCHE. Later that year RUSSELL ALLEN crafted a duet album with MASTERPLAN vocalist JORN LANDE and LAST TRIBE guitarist Magnus Karlsson. Mike Lepond stood in as temporary bassist for PAINMUSEUM's album release party concert, held on 20th November at the Cup Complex in Linden, New Jersey.

RUSSELL ALLEN debuted on the solo front in April 2005 with the 'Atomic Soul' album, a 70s Hard Rock outing featuring Michael Romeo on guitar and bass. The guitarist also guested on ICARUS WITCH's version of ALICE COOPER's 'Roses On White Lace' included on the Magick Records release 'Welcome To The Nightmare: An All-Star Salute To Alice Cooper'. Romeo also aided KANSAS vocalist STEVE WALSH for his solo album 'Shadowman, handling orchestration on tracks 'After', 'Shadowman' and 'Hell Is Full Of Heroes'.

SYMPHONY X joined the MEGADETH and DREAM THEATER headlined 'Gigantour' festivals that Summer, cementing a bill also comprising FEAR FACTORY, NEVERMORE, DRY KILL LOGIC, THE DILLINGER ESCAPE PLAN and West Virginians BOBAFLEX. In July the band issued the 'Rarities And Demos' recordings to fan club members. Included would be two unreleased tracks with Rod Tyler on vocals, 'A Winter's Dream Part II' and 'Disillusioned', plus Michael Romeo's thirteen guitar interpretation of the 'Star Wars Suite'. Later that same year Michael Romeo contributed guest guitar solos to EIDOLON album recordings.

SYMPHONY X announced 2006 European festival appearances in June, at the 'Lorca Rock' event in Spain and 'Sweden Rock', but would be forced to cancel these when bassist Michael LePond was diagnosed with Crohn's Disease requiring surgery. Recordings for a second RUSSELL ALLEN / JORN LANDE album, billed 'The Revenge', commenced in August.

Inside Out Music issued the 'Paradise Lost' album, a conceptual work based on the John Milton poem, in June 2007. A bonus DVD disc added video footage of the band live filmed in Paris, Tokyo, Milan, Madrid and Hollywood. North American headline concerts throughout July and August 2007 saw SANCTITY and ECHOES OF ETERNITY as support acts. The following year the SYMPHONY X pairing of Michael LePond and Michael Pinella guested on Boston, Massachusetts-based "shred" guitarist Todd Seitz's debut album from his STYGIA project.

On 4th November 2008, InsideOut Music released a 5.1 edition of SYMPHONY X's album 'Paradise Lost'. The double disc package included a DVD 5.1 mix by Jens Bogren of the entire album as well as two enhanced HD videos for tracks 'Set the World on Fire' and 'Serpent's Kiss'. 

The group signed with Nuclear Blast Records in 2009, recording album tracks in November.

Garry Sharpe-Young

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