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Queensr˙che - Queensryche CD (album) cover

QUEENSRYCHE

Queensr˙che

 

Progressive Metal

3.64 | 60 ratings

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UMUR
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars "Queensr˙che" is the self-titled 13th full-length studio album by US metal/progressive metal act Queensr˙che. The album was released through Century Media Records in June 2013. The standard version of the album features 11 tracks, while the limited edition features 3 bonus tracks, which are live versions of classic Queensr˙che songs. "Queensr˙che" is a key album in the band´s discography as it´s the first Queensr˙che release not to feature original lead vocalist Geoff Tate who was replaced by Todd La Torre before the writing and recording of the album. Tate was fired from the band and in the wake of that a lot of nasty accusations flew from both camps and a legal dispute over the ownership of the Queensr˙che name is presently being dealt with. Until that dispute is over, this version of the band has opted to continue under the Queensr˙che monicker while Geoff Tate has opted to continue with hired guns under the Queensr˙che Starring Geoff Tate the Original Voice monicker.

"Dedicated To Chaos (2011)" was quite the disappointment for the majority of the band´s fans and it sold relatively poorly compared to earlier efforts by the band. Compared to that album, and actually compared to any album released between "Promised Land (1994)" and this album, "Queensr˙che" is an improvement and a welcome return to a more heavy metal oriented sound. It´s not exactly a new "Operation: Mindcrime (1988)", but stylistically I guess it´s somewhere between the semi-progressive heavy metal of the early releases by the band and the more mainstream heavy metal of "Empire (1990)". The prominent use of harmony guitars is one of the first things that I noticed was different from the band´s post "Promised Land (1994)" period, but there are several other elements in the music that points in the direction of the "classic" Queensr˙che sound, and not the more alternative/mainstream sound that the band adopted after "Promised Land (1994)".

New lead vocalist Todd La Torre has a voice and singing style that are very similar to the voice and singing style of Geoff Tate, so in that respect there hasn´t been a significant change in the band´s sound, which was what you would normally expect when a band changes lead vocalist. The musicianship is generally, and not surprisingly, on a very high level. The change on the lead vocalist spot seems to have revitalized the rest of the band and they sound both tight and fresh. Especially drummer Scott Rockenfield delivers a very convincing performance. It´s like he has been waiting for an opportunity to "let loose" after playing in a more restrained style for a number of years. The fact that all members of the band have contributed to the songwriting probably also helped ignite all member´s interest in the project as opposed to using outside writers like Queensr˙che have done for now a number of albums.

The album is well produced and the sound production manages to successfully bring out the more hard edged qualities as well as the more polished elements of the band´s sound. Upon conclusion it´s fair to say that "Queensr˙che" is a bit of a comeback for Queensr˙che. It´s a well thought out and well written album delivered with passion, which certainly can´t be said about "Frequency Unknown (2013)" by Queensr˙che Starring Geoff Tate the Original Voice. This version of Queensr˙che have won the first round and a 4 star (80%) rating is deserved.

UMUR | 4/5 |

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