New Music Monday Blog Queensryche Self Titled (Todd La Torre Verision)


In this Music Monday blog,  we are going to get into the other verision of Queensryche.  I realize how confusing this is about the band.  It is what it is until their next court hearing.  Queensryche fired Geoff Tate and hired Todd La Torre as their new lead singer.  Let us get into the history of this band.

History

Queensryche was founded in 1982 in Washington.  Chris DeGarmo met Mark Wilton to form a band called Joker.  Mark Wilton met Scott Rockenfield and Chris met Eddie Jackson.  They changed the name to The Mob.  Geoff Tate joined but he was not interested in playing metal covers.  The band recorded their first EP called Queen Of The Reich.  The band discovered there was another band with the same name of The Mob.  They rename the band Queensryche from their first EP.  The key is they misspelled it.  Queensryche was signed EMI Records in 1983.  They supported the EP with a tour by opening up for Quiet Riot and Twisted Sister.  After the tour, they went into the studio to record The Warning, which is their first studio release, and it was released in 1984.  Their second record was called Rage Of Order in 1986. In 1988 Queensryche release their first Concept Record which is known as Operation: Mind Crime.  The band toured with Metallica, Guns and Roses, and Def Leppard.  After that successful record, the band put out in 1990 their must successful and most selling record known as Empire.  Just like Mind Crime, Empire pumped out several hits and the record reached #7 on the United States music charts.  The band appeared on MTV Unplugged and released Live record with Operation:  Mind Crime.  The band took time off but in 1994 they released the follow-up to Empire which is Promise Land.  Like most Metal bands, they took a hit when the grunge scene hit the mainstream.  The band put out their final record with original lead guitar player Chris DeGarmo.  The record was called Hear In The Now Frontier.  The record had two hits but record itself did not do good.  Chris left the band and it was not made public why he left the band.  He is now a full-time pilot.  Chris was replaced by Kelly Gray and he produced their next release called Q2K in 1999.  Just like Hear In The Now Frontier, the fans did not like the direction of the band.  The band was forced to play in clubs and theaters like most of their peers.  The band put out their second live record in 2001 and fired Kelly Gary for ongoing problems and personal habits.  In 2003, the band enter the studio to worked on Tribe and reports that Chris DeGarmo worked with the band again.  He helped co write four songs but he never rejoin or decline that he was part of the band.  However Kelly Gary’s replacement was Mark Stone, which work with Tate on his first solo record, Mark Stone finished the record as the second guitar player.  The band went on tour with Dream Theater to support in 2003.  In 2004, Queensryche got a ton of interested from fans when they announced they are going to do a follow-up to the 1988’s release Operation:  Mind Crime.  Operation:  Mind Crime II was released under new record label Rhino in 2006.  The band put a greatest hits called Signs Of The Time with Chris DeGarmo on one new song.  In 2007, the band put out a cover record that was called Take Cover.  Mark Stone left the band to work on his side project called Speed-X but there was reports that he was fired from the band.   Mark was forced to record both the lead and rhythm guitar parts for American Soldier, which was three concept record, that Queensryche put out.  It was released in 2009.  Dedicated to Chaos was the final record with Geoff Tate  and it was released 2011.  The band had a meeting without Tate and they decided to outsource their fan club and fire their band manager, who is Tate’s wife.  The band hired Todd La Torre as the lead singer.  Geoff Tate filed a lawsuit against the band on that he has the rights to the name.  The judge ruled that Tate and his former band mates could use the name until the next court date which is in November of 2013.  This blog is on the Todd La Torre version of the band.  Let us get into the music.

Song List

X2

The intro is almost something off their first few records.  I believe their EP.   I love it.  This is Queensryche.

Where Dreams Go To Die

I love the opening that blends from the intro track.  I love the guitar work and drums with the kick in from the bass.  This is a killer start.  Damn!  Holy Shit!  This is Queensryche!  I love the drop off into acoustic guitars like normal Queensryche.  The singer, who is Todd La Torre, sounds just like a young version of Geoff Tate.  This band will not loss beat but get better.  This song has anything to say about the rest of the record.  The lyrics are pretty good.  There is some pretty good music here and it takes me back to the first few records.  There is a great guitar solo towards the end of the song.  This is a great opening song.

Spore

I love the effects on the one guitar at the beginning of the song.  I love how Todd just jumps into the song.  I love the music and the lyrics.  I have listen to this great records a few times.  I did not like this song at first but it is really growing on me.  There is some nice lyrics.  The drumming is awesome with some great bass line to shadow it.  The guitar players have done a great job.  The music break and back to the main riff. It breaks up the song and give it a soul. It has a nice ending.

In This Light

The music on this song is so old school Queensryche when they first started.  Todd is singing very nicely on this song.  I love the lyrics on this record so far.   Mike and Parker have some nice guitar work on this song and so far on this record.  This song has a nice pace to it.  I love the drum roll before a great guitar solo.  There is a nice ending to a song.

Redemption

I love the guitar and drum action at the beginning.   I love the start of Redemption.  I love how it was short and to the point.  Todd’s singing is solid with some great lyrics.  I never thought I would hear another Geoff Tate in my time but here is Todd.  I am glad he is around and Queensryche found him.  I love melody in this song.  I love the guitar solo towards the back half of this song.  The effects on the vocals is perfect throughout this record.  I love the ending.

Vindication

I love the fast pace and the driving guitar riff with some great playing from the Scott, who is the drummer, and Eddie, who is the bass player.  I love the slight drop off when the singer comes in which just feels like it.  I love the time changes.  Todd has some nice lyrics and melody.  He so fits this song.  Damn!  Scott is playing his ass off on this song.  Nice touch on the guitar solo towards the end of the song.

Midnight Lullaby

Here is another intro track for the next song.  I love this one because it is pretty creepy in a good way.

A World Without

I love the acoustic guitar at the beginning with a slight overdrive guitar over the top.  Todd singing and melody is spot on in this song.  There is some nice lyrics on this track.  This song has a nice pace for being a slower song.  This is some great music from Queensryche in a very long time.  The drums, bass, and guitars are well done.  I just feel this guitar solo is a little forced but still good.

Don’t Look Back

I love the music at the beginning of the song.  It has a great fast pace to it.  Todd just jumps into with some great lyrics.  I have to say this is one of my favorite songs so far off this record.  I love the music break about the halfway point.  It might have been short but it is still a great song.  Nice ending.

Fallout

I love the drums, bass, and the one guitar playing at the beginning with a nice guitar solo over the top.  Todd might sounds like Tate but he has put his own twist to make it his own.  I love the lyrics and melody.  The back up singing is so much better on this record than the Tate’s version of Queensryche.  I love the guitar solo towards the end of the song.  It has a nice ending.

Open Road

I love the guitar work and perfect drum beat at the beginning.  Todd has some nice singing with some great lyrics.  I love the touch of the keyboard during the short guitar solos.  Man, this is a great song.  I love the long guitar solo towards the end of the song.  I love the ending of the song and perfect song to exit from this great record before the bonus tracks.

Queen Of The Reich (Live)

The music is spot on for a live performance.  When listening to this song, I would have never guess that was not Geoff Tate singing.  Todd has done a great job on this song.  When a band does not have their original singer, it is never the same.  Queensryche and Journey are one of the few bands I can say that can play their old songs like their old songs.

En Force (Live)

Just like “Queen Of The Reich” there is no drop off from the singing.  Everything is spot on from the original song.  I have always loved this song.  This is a nice live recording.

Prophecy (Live)

Just like the last two live song, this song is no different.  Todd is singing just like the original song.  The music is spot on like old Queensryche.  This is not one of my favorite songs from Queensryche but I am happy they are playing more of the older songs.

Orinigal Line Up

  • Geoff Tate – Lead Vocals
  • Chris DeGarmo Guitars, Backing Vocals
  • Michael Wilton – Guitars
  • Scott Rockenfield – Drums
  • Eddie Jackson – Bass, Backing Vocals

Current Line Up

  • Todd La Torre – Vocals
  • Michael Wilton – Lead And Rhythm Guitars
  • Parker Lundgren – Lead And Rhythm Guitars
  • Eddie Jackson – Bass, Backing Vocals
  • Scott Rockenfield – Drums, Percussion, Orchestral Arrangements

Here is their website and twitter addresses:

Website:  www.queensrycheofficial.com/intro.cfm

Twitter:  @queensryche

In closing, I am pretty impresssed with this record with the new lead singer.  I have been doing a ton of thinking on the older records from this great band.  I have to say Mike was not lying when he said they are going back to “The Warning” and their EP music.  Todd gives them power to it.  I have always loved their old records.  Do not get me wrong.  Opertional Mindcrime and Empire are great records.  I just felt as a huge Queeensryche fan that the first few greats were better than those big selling records.  I also realize that put them on the map to the mainstream music scene.  Queensryche came into my life with the record, which was “Hear In The Now Frontier.”  I am not old school metal head and I wish I was.  I am in my mid 30’s and grew up with sisters that love the hard rock and metal scene.  I loved that record and started to explore their record.  I understand most fans of this band feel about that record and I agree.  I have always put that record to my heart.  I love this record and I will play the crap out of this record.  I just might have to but a new one and that will be the first since Van Halen’s Balance record.  The music is Queensryche and they did a great job writing on it.  Todd did a great job on this record. He is replacing one of the best metal singers of all time.  Tate is in my top five metal singers of all times.  It is hard to replace a guy like that, however, I believe he has done it.  He does not like sound like Tate but Todd comes extremely close to it.  He has his own twist and uses it in the right ways.  This is a Queensryche record.  It is not like that Tate version of Queensryche.  Just what I said in that blog, Geoff needs to take some time off.  I believe he is burn out and needs a long vacation.  I know what that does to a rock star, however, “quality is always better than quantity,” said Todd La Torre (www.blabbermouth.net.)  I have to agree with what Todd has to say.  After listening to this record, there is no doubt that this Queensryche will win the court case this fall.  Geoff Tate was last member of the original five to join the group and has put out three solo records (The third record is his version of Queensryche.)  I am proud of this band I really hope I can see them on tour.  I highly recommend this record.  Go get some!  Drink it!  Enjoy it!  Metal it!  \m/

Cheers!

Bill DJ Weiser

Email:  djweiser13@comcast.net

Twitter:  @djweiser

Credit Source:  (I pick up the history part from wikipedia.)

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