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Queensr˙che - Empire CD (album) cover

EMPIRE

Queensr˙che

 

Progressive Metal

3.74 | 299 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Gatot
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Yes, I knew the band from their groundbreaking concept album "Operation: Mindcrime" which I really like musically as well as lyrically. But, when I bought "Empire" I did not expect that this would repeat the success of its predecessor. It's because basically I believe that once a certain group created such a masterpiece concept album the band was subsequently very tight with touring schedule to support the album and they usually write the next album during the tour and coming back to studio once the tour is completed. So, my expectation was not really high with this album which was released two years after Mindcrime. So I was not expecting something fabulous coming out from this album. However, I consider this album as a very good sweet and melodic rock album. Yes, a very good one.

The Album

From its energetic opening track "Best I Can" (5:34) with a powerful singing style of Geoff Tate accompanied with nice music, the album brings us to the next track "The Thin Line" with the same energetic style but it has more accentuation compared to first track. The guitar solo is reminiscent of eighties hair band music: nice'n'cool. "Jet City Woman" (5:22) reminds me to the style of Mindcrime music with good composition, excellent guitar riffs and vocal harmonies followed with a blues-based music featuring stunning solo guitar in "Della Brown" (7:04). Yes, Della Brown is one of my favorite Queensryche songs that I keep repeating whenever I listen to this album. It starts off beautifully with solid bass lines and guitar sound effects followed with low register notes voice line with Tate's accentuated singing style. It has some prog elements especially through the sounds of guitar effects. "Another Rainy Night" (4:29) starts with excellent harmonies resulting from the double guitar work between DeGarmo and Wilton. The title track "Empire" (5:24) begins with people conversation followed with excellent harmonies of double guitar work. This time, vocals are performed in sort of dialogue with low register voice notes vocal. A wonderful track. "Resistance" (4:51) is an excellent melodic rock music in dynamic drumming and good guitar riffs, high register notes vocal line. "Silent Lucidity" (5:48) has now been a legendary track as it combines great acoustic guitar work with powerful singing by Tate augmented with soft keyboard sound - all are performed in mellow style. It's really a nice track with great orchestration.

"Hand On Heart" (5:33) starts with an excellent combination of guitar work and dazzling drums by Rockenfield and solid bass lines by Jackson. Vocal harmony is also excellent. "One And Only" (5:54) begins with guitar riffs followed with the blast of metal music featuring dynamic drumming and excellent guitar solo that brings the vocal line to enter the music. Another energetic track with good composition. The final track "Anybody Listening?" (7:41) is an excellent track with blues-based style featuring long sustain guitar solo, accentuated singing style, inventive bass lines augmented with percussive. Guitar is split into two roles: one to provide fills that serve as rhythm section while the other one playing in a howling style like those played by Steve Hackett (Genesis). The music moves slowly and it contains wonderful / catchy segments. I personally enjoy the electric guitar solo during interlude. It's a great one! This song really stirs my emotion in an uplifting mood even though it's overall a mellow track.

Summary

Overall, this is a straight forward sweet melodic rock music with excellent guitar riffs, stunning guitar solo, dazzling drum work and .. powerful vocal by Geoff Tate whom I consider one of the best rock lead singer. For those of you who love progressive metal can easily accept this album. And for those of you who love symphonic prog kind of music, use this album as a change. The music is accessible to many rock music buffs, I think. It's a recommended collection. The production quality (including the sonic quality of the CD) is truly excellent! You cam play it LOUD without having problems with your ears - provided that you play it with a decent stereo set with great loudspeaker (European made). This album is produced by Peter Collins for Jill Music Ltd. Keep on rockin', keep on proggin' ..!

Peace on earth and mercy mild: GW.

Gatot | 4/5 |

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