So if you get fired from a job, what do you do? Well, if you’re a fucking rock star, you start another company and name it the same goddamn thing as the company that just fired you. Makes a lot of sense right? Of course it doesn’t. It was recently announced that former Queensryche singer Geoff Tate and “his version” of Queensryche have signed a record deal with Cleopatra Records. Geoff Tate’s Queensryche will feature Tate along with bassist Rudy Sarzo (OZZY OSBOURNE, DIO, WHITESNAKE, QUIET RIOT), guitarist Kelly Gray (QUEENSRŸCHE 1998-2001), keyboardist Randy Gane and new additions, guitarist Robert Sarzo (QUIET RIOT, HURRICANE) and drummer Simon Wright (AC/DC, DIO, RHINO BUCKET). I know right? Are those your eyes I hear rolling around in your head?
Tate’s version of the band is currently readying material for an album that will be recorded some time in 2013 but before that, Geoff Tate’s Queensryche will be hitting the road sometime in late April to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Queensryche’s now legendary 1988 release, “Operation: Mindcrime”. The band will be performing the album in its entirety along with other well-known hits and rarities from the catalog they’ve compiled over the past 30 years. Why are they choosing to do this? This album has been done in its entirety more times than it really needs to be in my opinion. Yeah, it’s a great album but c’mon guys.
On the other side of the Rycheuverse (yes, I made that up thank you) you have the core original members of Queensryche who are carrying on with new vocalist Todd LaTorre and guitarist Parker Lundgren who is oddly enough Geoff Tate’s son in law (I’m sure that’s a happy marriage these days). That version of Queensryche has been hitting the road as well delivering a nostalgic set list of some of Queensryche’s most iconic songs like “Queen of the Ryche”, “Roads of Madness”, and “Take Hold of the Flame.” They are also prepping a new record so sometime in 2013 there will be two different Queensryches putting out two different albums. WHOA! Put on the fucking breaks a second.
How the fuck did we get to this point? This is not the shit that I would have ever expected in a million years from Queensryche. This is the kind of shit I expect from bands like Warrant, LA Guns, and Quiet Riot but Queensryche? The classy Queensryche. How did this happen? How and why do we have two different Queensryches? On one side, we have a Queensryche that wants to be the band that it once was by using a new singer. The other side, we have the singer who says he wants to move forward yet puts together a new band to go out and play it’s most iconic record live. I’m so confused and as a fan I feel disheartened.
At what point does a band get so jaded and so wrapped up in the “business” that they forget the brotherhood pact that they entered into so many years ago. These guys were a small band that went from nothing to being legends yet here are dividing things in the middle and bickering through lawyers and judges. As for both sides, I see a huge loss of integrity. It’s really not about musical integrity anymore. It’s still all about making money and keeping numbers. In a nutshell, the band didn’t like how Tate was running things so they sent him packing. They get a new singer and continue to call it Queensryche. Geoff should lick his wounds and carry on doing his own thing. I can totally see how he’s upset though as it was just as much his band as it was theirs but hey, as it is in life, the majority rules.
I can say what I want about both sides but at the end of the day, I’m a fan. I’m a Queensryche fan, and I’m a Geoff Tate fan. I love Geoff’s solo stuff because it was so different from Queensryche. His stuff is risky, kitschy, and just kinda out there. I dig it even more than some of the later Queensryche stuff. As for Queensryche with Todd LaTorre on vocals, I like them too. They sound like they’ve got an old energy back in them and they’re going where they wanted to go. I’m really curious to see what will become of both sides. As a fan, I’m just sad that it had to come to ending up with two Queensryches fighting for the attention of their fan base. Either way, best of luck to them both and may the best Queensryche win.