Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Dr. Evil Dissects the Drama that is Queensrÿche


It’s been a rough 16 years being a Queensrÿche fan. Since the release of “Hear In The Now Frontier”, albums have progressively gotten worse in terms of sound, style, production. The latest album by Geoff Tate’s Queensrÿche, or as I call “Taterÿche” has reached an ultimate low and it signifies that the heyday of Queensrÿche has been dead since their first bad album. To me, the “Hear In The Now Frontier” album was the start of the band wanting to remain a radio band.

Geoff Tate during his infamous meltdown
during Rocklahoma in 2012
(Photo by Cveckian)

The latest album “Frequency Unknown” or “FU” to the other Queensrÿche band, that I call “Toddrÿche”, was rushed and poorly written. This is actually an understatement. It’s like Geoff Tate took on a new lineup to purposely upset the Queensrÿche fanbase just to amplify his attitude and personification. I don’t care if he’s trying to be hard-ass, this new album makes him look like a dumb-ass. Once again, Geoff Tate hiring back Queensrÿche’s old producer and ex guitarist Kelly Gray made the latest album sound horrible as expected. I’m actually glad former guitarist Chris DeGarmo left when he did after 1997, because if he was still on board—the last 7 albums wouldn’t have been hard on the ears and spirit. I did not make it through a full listen of “Frequency Unknown”. The last four songs are old Queensrÿche songs that the new lineup redid. These remakes sound like karaoke quality and I don’t know what Geoff was trying to prove. He can’t even hit those high notes anymore. Normally I don’t rate albums as a writer for the Bigfoot Diaries, but if I did—this album deserves a straight 0/100. Don’t buy this album. 


Not too many Queensrÿche fans were aware of new singer Todd LaTorre’s existence as the frontman of Crimson Glory, post Crimson Glory singer Midnight’s era and death. Crimson Glory would be considered a cult progressive power metal band that was under the radar for a bit even with Midnight fronting the first few albums. From what I’ve heard online, the other Queensrÿche, “Toddrÿche”, is going to release the new album as a self-titled album—“Queensrÿche”. The tracks that I have heard so far are very outstanding and what should’ve been released before “Hear In The Now Frontier” was even written. This album is going to be the album that puts the last 8 albums to shame (I’m not a fan of “Hear In The Now Frontier” whatsoever). Not only does Todd have the range that Geoff used to have, he’s a perfect clone of Geoff. Not to be biased, but Queensrÿche to me will always be the rhythm section before the vocals. There are metal fans that like Queensrÿche’s rhythm section and despise Geoff’s vocal style. I can guarantee that most Queensrÿche fans wanted the “Operation:Mindcrime” through “Promised Land” sound instead of what we had to deal with “In The Hear In Now” on out. The new self-titled album will deliver their old style, guaranteed. Check out the new songs “Redemption” and “Where Dreams Go To Die”. This is what we’ve been waiting for.

Todd La Torre


The fact that there are now two Queensrÿches to follow makes the band name seem a bit tarnished. There are two Great Whites, two Alcatrazz's, two Bang Tango’s, two Sweet’s, two L.A. Guns’, and I could probably go on. Geoff Tate has done solo work and “Frequency Unknown” still comes off as something that should’ve been a solo album. Hiring the Sarzo brothers (bass and lead guitar) and Simon Wright (drums) did not help make this album sound like Queensrÿche as we know them. Queensrÿche used to be a radio friendly band up to the mid 1990’s and then continued to try to be radio friendly with no real success. The attempt to continue to be radio friendly has complicated things for the band, caused emotional drama for band members, and has upset many traditional Queensrÿche fans. It’s going to be annoying seeing that Queensrÿche is going to be booked in your nearest city and we have to figure out which singer is involved. I have had enough of Geoff Tate’s attitude towards his former lineup, considering they are what most Queensrÿche fans enjoyed listening to initially before hearing the first vocal line. Whatever side you pick is up to you, but Geoff can continue to be a washed up vocalist trying be the radio sensation he used to be up until 1997. I feel the former rhythm section is making up to us Queensrÿche fans for the last 8 albums recorded. At least I was able to stomach the “Tribe” album from 2003 for its awesome rhythm parts and live show. Maybe things will look up with “Toddrÿche”.

-Dr Evil (Or the writer formerly known as Mr. Clean)

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