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Queensr˙che - The Warning CD (album) cover




Progressive Metal

3.69 | 259 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
3 stars Queensr˙che's full length debut (their eponymous EP was already making waves) hit in 1984 and lid the foundations for progressive metal. To me, Geoff Tate is the greatest singer in heavy metal. The man took the Rob Halford screams and gave them emotion besides rage. The Warning is a very solid album, especially for a debut, but it is not the ideal starting point for newcomers.

The album opens with its title track, with reverb-soaked vocals that might be annoying on anyone else's album (see AC/DC's atrocious late 80s output, it sounded like they recorded in a well) but work great with Geoff. It a rather anthemic piece filled with the fantasy lyrics of power metal.

En Force keeps the momentum going with great guitar play from Michael and Chris. The song takes too many cues from Maiden, which isn't a bad thing, it's just not as original as later works.

Deliverance is another track with Geoff's soaring vocals and fantasy lyrics.

No Sanctuary shows the band pulling loose from its influences. A great ballad, it shows how well the band can craft beautiful songs (see Silent Lucidity)

NM 156 continues the band's venture into originality with its proto-industrial musings on the threat of machines. It's a testament to the band that they could pull that ludicrous subject matter off without a hitch.

Take Hold of the Flame is Geoff Tate's finest vocal performance. Ever. The song starts with a his mid tempo semi-whisper over a clean guitar. The song builds to a crescendo and the band comes in with a bang The song takes Geoff's soaring vocals to another level.

Before the Storm features another one of Geoff's best performances with its addictive chorus that rises with each repeat. After you listen to this song I can almost guarantee you be singing "Before the storm, before the storm, before the storm, oh oh oh"

Child of Fire combines Diamond Head with Maiden and shows the band slipping back into the shadow of its forefathers.

Roads to Madness is the most progressive track on this disc and it is a great way to close the album. One of Geoff's top 5 performances, he adds a sense of agony and despair to his vocals. The song is a nine minute journey with sudden time changes, incredible vocals, and a fine display from each member of the band.

The Warning is an assured debut but shoddy production (which has since been rectified) hampered the album. The band had yet to become the creative force they now are and they never strayed too far from Iron maiden and Diamond Head, which I believe keeps this from being a perfect album. Queensr˙che are a prog metal band, but they had not yet embraced this. Rage For Order showed them delving deeper into prog, but it would take a band from Connecticut called Fates Warning to truly establish prog metal and to raise the bar for Queensr˙che, who mastered prog with their magnum opus Operation Mindcrime. For beginners, pick up Operation Mindcrime, Promised Land, Rage For Order, and Empire. If you like what you hear, give this a spin.

Grade: C+

1800iareyay | 3/5 |


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