It’s been 25 years since the music world was bestowed the gift, the story, and the concept album from the Seattle, WA based band Queensryche titled “Operation Mindcrime”. The story that became that concept album was of a young man brainwashed by a religious figure who uses him to become an assassin. If you’re familiar with the album, I don’t need to continue. If you’re interested in learning more, get the album. For now we need to move on to the present and Queensryche’s amazing performance, 25 years later.
The world has changed immensely in the past 25 years, and so has the line up of Queensryche. That being said, I am not in the business of choosing sides. If you’ve been following Rock/Metal bands from the 1980’s/1990’s, you probably know there are currently 2 versions of LA Guns, Great White, etcetera. There’s also 2 versions of Queensryche – and this version of Queensryche I’ll be talking about is fronted by the original lead singer of the band, Geoff Tate. This Queensryche is celebrating 25 years of “Operation Mindcrime” and that is what I wanted to see, partly because when the original tour came around to my area, I was a broke college student who couldn’t afford a ticket. I do own the DVD of that tour, which, ironically, was filmed at the show I was too broke to see in person. A live DVD, or anything for that matter, cannot capture the live experience of a concert so for me, this was my last chance to see what I so desperately wanted to see – 25 years later.
When Geoff Tate re-built Queensryche to celebrate the 25th Anniversary of “Operation Mindcrime”, he did so with an All Star line up that includes brothers Rudy Sarzo (Bassist – Quiet Riot & others) & Robert Sarzo (Guitarist – Hurricane & others), Kelly Gray (Guitarist – originally worked with Geoff Tate in the late 1970‘s band Myth and is a Record Producer for Queensryche, Dokken, and many more), Drummers Tishi or Simon Wright (Simon Wright has been the drummer for AC/DC, Dio, and more), depending on the tour schedules for each drummer who had prior commitments, and Randy Gane (Progressive Metal Keyboardist for Queensryche since 1986 and previously with Kelly Gray and Geoff Tate in the band Myth).
I’m not judging the other Queensryche, without Geoff Tate, by saying that Geoff, to his credit, put together an immensely talented group of musicians that played “Operation Mindcrime” to perfection. Again, it’s not my business to pick 1 Queensryche line up over another, but it is my job to judge what I saw and heard first hand, without any political opinion. In my judgment as a writer/reviewer/ and fan of Queensryche for over 30 years and a fan of their album “Operation Mindcrime” for the past 25 years, the show that I’m writing about (June 28th in Pauma Valley, CA) exceeded my already lofty expectations. Does Geoff Tate still have the flawless voice he did 25 years ago? No. Is it (Geoff’s voice) better today than virtually every vocalist who had success in the 1980‘s & 1990‘s? Absolutely. I can’t explain in words, without sounding like a slobbering idiot “Super Fan”, how good this show, Geoff Tate, and his band was. Whether you are a new or old Queensryche fan, don’t miss this tour. Check http://www.Queensryche.com for the few remaining tour dates left in the U.S. in August & September.
Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoy the slideshow pics. Visit us at http://www.ROCKwellUnScene.com where our motto is “From Locals to Legends, Your Premium Source for Music Media Content”. This months issue features Gemini Syndrome, Great White, Y&T, Warner Drive, Faster Pussycat, Faded Sun, & dozens more articles, hundreds of pictures, and lots of exclusive live performance videos.
Written by: Wes “Rockwell” Anderson, http://www.ROCKwellUnScene.com
Photos by: Melissa & Wes Anderson, Rockwell Anderson Media