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QUEENSRYCHE

Progressive Metal • United States


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Queensr˙che biography
Quite simply, Queensryche was one of the essential bands in the development of progressive metal. Merging the metal of Iron Maiden with the atmospheres of Pink Floyd, the band created what may still be the quintessential metal concept album, OPERATION: MINDCRIME. The band's sound has centered on the operatic vocals of Geoff Tate singing over numerous versions of heavy rock over a 30 year career.

Starting in the early 1980's in Seattle, Washington, guitarists Chris Degarmo and Michael Wilton, along with bassist Eddie Jackson and drummer Scott Rockenfield, were in a cover band, the Mob, cutting their teeth on the work of Judas Priest and Iron Maiden. Singer Geoff Tate of local progressive bands Babylon and the Myth was brought in sporadically for gigs and then an EP. The EP, fueled by the anthemic "Queen of the Reich" gained the band national exposure. The band acquired Tate permanently, changed their name in honor of their then signature song, and were signed to EMI.

Initially tagged as an Iron Maiden descendent, Queensryche folded in more and more progressive influences under Tate and DeGarmo's direction on the LPs THE WARNING and RAGE FOR ORDER. The latter is one of several albums that may be considered the first true progressive metal album, as it melded keyboards, conceptual themes, and more complex song structures. However, Queensryche's defining moment was the full concept album from 1988, OPERATION: MINDCRIME. Its ambitious story covered government, religion, sex, drugs, and mental illness. The interconnected songs included an over ten minute epic, several MTV hit singles, and fueled the band's rise supporting several of the top metal tours of the time.

The following album, EMPIRE, took an intentionally more commercial tone and catapulted the band to major arenas where they performed MINDCRIME in its entirety as a headliner. The Pink Floyd influenced single "Silent Lucidity" was one of the major hits of the year. This would be the band's peak with eclectic PROMISED LAND being the last of the band's classic era. Musical tastes had changed, and the band attempted unsuccessfully to accommodate to alternative / grunge with HEAR IN THE NOW FRONTIER. DeGarmo left the band soon after, and Queensryche has had an up and down career. TRIBE and OPERATION: MINDCRIME II were much better received than their predecessors, and the band's continuing tours have included co-headlining with fellow prog-metal pioneers Dream Theater. Though never reac...
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QUEENSRYCHE shows & tickets


  • Hard Rock Hell VIII on 13 Nov 2014

QUEENSRYCHE discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

QUEENSRYCHE top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.63 | 205 ratings
The Warning
1984
4.00 | 259 ratings
Rage For Order
1986
4.23 | 786 ratings
Operation: Mindcrime
1988
3.75 | 302 ratings
Empire
1990
3.98 | 277 ratings
Promised Land
1994
2.45 | 148 ratings
Hear In The Now Frontier
1997
2.05 | 132 ratings
Q2K
1999
3.14 | 141 ratings
Tribe
2003
3.25 | 190 ratings
Operation : Mindcrime II
2006
2.17 | 91 ratings
Take Cover
2007
2.84 | 140 ratings
American Soldier
2009
2.03 | 117 ratings
Dedicated To Chaos
2011
2.02 | 59 ratings
Frequency Unknown
2013
3.61 | 69 ratings
Queensryche
2013

QUEENSRYCHE Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.68 | 47 ratings
Live Evolution
2001
4.50 | 90 ratings
Operation: Livecrime
2001
2.62 | 25 ratings
The Art Of Live
2004
3.00 | 27 ratings
Mindcrime at the Moore
2007
2.50 | 2 ratings
Extended Versions
2007

QUEENSRYCHE Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

4.41 | 57 ratings
Operation: LIVEcrime
1991
3.90 | 21 ratings
Live Evolution
2001
4.51 | 84 ratings
Operation: LIVEcrime
2001
2.15 | 23 ratings
The Art Of Live
2004
3.73 | 28 ratings
Mindcrime at The Moore
2007

QUEENSRYCHE Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.64 | 36 ratings
Greatest Hits
2000
1.40 | 11 ratings
Classic Masters
2003
1.50 | 2 ratings
Face To Face
2006
3.41 | 22 ratings
The Best Of Queensryche: Sign Of The Times
2007

QUEENSRYCHE Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

3.32 | 108 ratings
Queensr˙che
1983
3.87 | 15 ratings
Anybody Listening?
1992

QUEENSRYCHE Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Empire by QUEENSRYCHE album cover Studio Album, 1990
3.75 | 302 ratings

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Empire
Queensr˙che Progressive Metal

Review by siLLy puPPy
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Gaining huge popularity with the success of OPERATION: MINDCRIME that actually spawned a few MTV hits, I guess it was inevitable that the scope of that project burned them out and QUEENSRYCHE decided to make a light and less complex follow-up to their intense rock opera. Overall it's less impressive on every level. There is no unified theme or concept. Geoff Tate's vocals have less range and passion. The songs are a mixed bag with some being much more interesting than others. Chris DeGarmo was the man behind this album and he steered the mighty musical vessel firmly into the Billboard charts with catchy less progressive tunes that MTV played to death. They even scored a top 10 hit with 'Silent Lucidity.'

This is one of those albums that I don't love but have to admit that I do like many tracks. If some of the filler was trimmed off it might actually be an excellent album albeit inferior to the previous releases. I'm particularly fond of 'The Thin Line,' 'Resistance,' 'Hand On Heart,' 'Anybody Listening?' and the title track. The rest is actually ok but pretty weak if you think of QUEENSRYCHE as even remotely progressive metal. I haven't listened to this in quite some and it brings back memories of the 90s and all and serves that purpose but if I have to rate this on the music alone and trying to judge its merit on a timeless basis then I just don't think this release qualifies to be overly praised, however they do succeed in keeping this album just interesting enough that I wouldn't want to throw it out of my collection either.

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 Rage For Order  by QUEENSRYCHE album cover Studio Album, 1986
4.00 | 259 ratings

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Rage For Order
Queensr˙che Progressive Metal

Review by siLLy puPPy
Prog Reviewer

4 stars RAGE FOR ORDER is the third release (counting the debut EP) from QUEENSRYCHE and the point in their discography where they decided to break away from the blatant NWOBHM influences and started to incorporate many progressive elements to their music. These elements include liberal use of keyboards and more social and political lyrics with an overall futuristic feel to the album. Very cutting edge for a metal band in 1986. Looking at the photo of the band in the liner notes they look like a typical glam metal band of the era but they were anything but.

This band was strong from the start always writing well crafted songs with adrenoline soaked energy to drive them hard and heavy. Geoff Tate's vox box is still the star with the chugging riffs (still of NWOBHM influence) but the unorthodox sound effects and keyboards take a greater role in the ideas and song structures. Although I wouldn't call this full-fledged progressive metal I would call it a sort of proto-prog metal where the band was in transition from their earlier sound to that which would be more developed on OPERATION: MINDCRIME. Still for me this is a solid release where despite seeming like it hasn't developed its full potential I still find almost every track memorable.

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 The Warning by QUEENSRYCHE album cover Studio Album, 1984
3.63 | 205 ratings

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The Warning
Queensr˙che Progressive Metal

Review by siLLy puPPy
Prog Reviewer

3 stars THE WARNING is the first full album by QUEENSRYCHE following the self-titled debut EP that was released the year before. This is very much NWOBHM with few progressive elements that would start to really take off on the following album, however at a time clocking in at 9:40, the final track "Road To Madness," is the band's first dip into the prog territory that they would later become known for.

I actually find this album a little disappointing. After the dynamic debut EP where every song was a catchy metal powerhouse, I just don't seem to be able to connect to the songs on this one as much. It starts off with the first track "Warning" that I just find a little weak and that continues throughout the album. It seems to me that the fury of the first album has waned a bit and at the same time I can hear the proto-sounds of the proto-prog metal that the next album would be. It's an OK listen and some of the tracks like "Deliverance" really do it for me. Just turns out to be one of my least favorite early albums.

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 Operation: Mindcrime by QUEENSRYCHE album cover Studio Album, 1988
4.23 | 786 ratings

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Operation: Mindcrime
Queensr˙che Progressive Metal

Review by siLLy puPPy
Prog Reviewer

5 stars A milestone in the progession of metal! By successfully combining their NWOBHM influenced traditional metal with the asthetic atmospherics of Pink Floyd, QUEENSRYCHE created a metal masterpiece of the sort that combined all the drama of an opera with a storyline about a disillusioned recovering drug addict named Nikki who joins a revelutionary group and all the twists and turns that such dramatic events involve.

The storyline is succint and to the point and doesn't get off on any tangents. What impresses me more than the storyline is the music itself. The tightness of the band and the perfection of Geoff Tate's vocals make this album feel like one continuous track. Every moment seems like it fits the mood and the added cast characters, choir and sound effects make this one of the best albums of all the 80s if not of all time. The one thing that bugged me for the longest time is that the last track "Eyes Of A Stranger" begins sounding almost identical to the progressions in "Welcome To The Machine" on Pink Floyd's WISH YOU WERE HERE. I have come to terms with it realizing it to be a simultaneous nod to both the band and the theme of a song since both convey healthy doses of paranoia. It only lasts until the band begins to play so I got over it and it does sound really well done.

The argument of whether this is progressive or not doesn't matter to me. This is great music. I would call this for the most part melodic traditional metal with some clearly progressive tracks ("Suite Sister Mary" being the most so). One of the best concept albums ever to emerge in any genre.

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 Queensr˙che by QUEENSRYCHE album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 1983
3.32 | 108 ratings

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Queensr˙che
Queensr˙che Progressive Metal

Review by siLLy puPPy
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Originally starting out covering Priest and Maiden songs under the name THE MOB, it's no wonder they sound like a NWOBHM band, but even at this stage I can hear a scant few progressive leanings such as the atmospheric sound effects and the outro of 'Blinded.'

'Queen Of The Reich' was a minor MTV hit and immediately put the band and their newly adopted name QUEENSRYCHE on the metal radar, allowing this energetic band to snag spots opening up for bands like Quiet Riot, Twisted Sister and Dio. And in 1983 that meant huuuuuge exposure.

I have always loved this debut EP and listening to it now, I still do very much. Although it does sound somewhat dated, it was an important release in the evolution of metal. Although hardly considered progressive at this point the seeds were planted to sprout a few years later.

The original album only had 4 songs, but later releases included a 5th track 'Prophecy,' which was recorded during the RAGE FOR ORDER time period but left out for whatever reason. This track actually plays quite nicely with the other ones and i'm happy I have a copy which includes it.

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 Queensryche by QUEENSRYCHE album cover Studio Album, 2013
3.61 | 69 ratings

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Queensryche
Queensr˙che Progressive Metal

Review by 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.

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 Queensryche by QUEENSRYCHE album cover Studio Album, 2013
3.61 | 69 ratings

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Queensryche
Queensr˙che Progressive Metal

Review by metalrob4662

4 stars I have been a Ryche fan since the EP came out 30 yrs ago ( I was 21) they are amongst by top 5 favorite bands ( The others being Priest, Maiden, Sabbath & Led Zeppelin) When I heard that Queensryche was coming out with another album I was praying for something decent, since the last few albums have really not grabbed me at all, I heard some of Tates Queensryche music and was totally turned off. ( plus him being a jerk now). But then when I heard the samples first coming out of this new album there was a energy I havent heard from the band since the late 80's! Todd has givin the band the boost it needed to keep the music alive I heard pieces of Mindcrime and Empire and even a little Warning! Now we are talking! then when they streamed the entire album for the fans I was blown away! They are back! I understand there will always be fans of Tate ( I have been since the beginning and his one of my vocal mentors), but the realization that his vision was on a different path that the rest of the band and you can hear it on this album, the fans have been screaming for some of those classic QRyche sounds and I must say it's on this album! So give it a chance, I think you will enjoy the hell out of it ( I am)!! I can say I am wearing my Tri-Ryche tattoo with pride now! Some of my faves on this album are:

Spore In This Light A World Without Don't Look Back Open Road

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 Frequency Unknown by QUEENSRYCHE album cover Studio Album, 2013
2.02 | 59 ratings

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Frequency Unknown
Queensr˙che Progressive Metal

Review by UMUR
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

2 stars "Frequency Unknown" is the debut full-length studio album by US hard rock/heavy metal act Queensr'che Starring Geoff Tate the Original Voice. The album was released through Deadline Music in April 2013.

After Lead vocalist Geoff Tate was fired from Queensr'che he opted to create his own version of the band with a new backing band including seasoned musicians like former Queensr'che colleague Kelly Gray (guitars), Rudy Sarzo (Blue 'yster Cult, Ozzy Osbourne, Quiet Riot, Whitesnake) on bass and drummer Simon Wright (AC/DC, Dio). In addition to those guys, the album features quite a few guest appearances by artists like K. K. Downing (Judas Priest), Chris Poland (Megadeth) and Lita Ford (Lita Ford). The band started recording "Frequency Unknown" in January 2013. The recording sessions ended in early March 2013.

The recording and the release of the album have been surrounded by quite a bit of controversy. First of all Geoff Tate's booting from Queensr'che was anything but amicable and as a result both parties now lay claim to the Queensr'che name. A legal twist that at this moment is still not resolved. Secondly the release date of the album was announced mere hours after the other version of Queensr'che announced the release date of their album. A move that from the outside seems a bit calculated and as a rather pathetic attempt to "beat the others to it". The decision to release "Frequency Unknown" sooner than it was probably scheduled backfired on Tate and Deadline Music though as the early pressings of the album featured a much criticized mix, that resulted in the label having to offer to send dissatisfied customers a replacement CD containing the remixes upon showing their purchase receipt. Thirdly and lastly "Frequency Unknown" features, in addition to the 10 original tracks on the album, 4 re-recorded tracks from "Empire (1990)" and "Operation: Mindcrime (1988)" as bonus material. That's not as such an issue. The issue is the motivation behind recording and including the bonus tracks as Tate has openly admitted that Deadline Music offered him a lot of money to do the re-recordings and that the money was the motivation behind recording the 4 tracks. They even asked him to record them as true as possible to the originals and he obeyed. Now that's what I call a corrupted motivation for creating art...

...the actual music on the album is not surprisingly a rather formulaic and polished hard rock/heavy metal style with Geoff Tate's distinct, strong and warm vocals in front. There are little if any surprises in store for the listener, if you've tuned your expectations to the music on the album sounding like a pale version of some of the more accessible and least heavy material released by Queensr'che post-"Promised Land (1994)". There are a riff here and a guitar solo there, that do their part in trying to save what is overall a rather lacklustre affair completely lacking energy and bite, but that's just not enough. How so many seasoned and prolific musicians can write and play music this tame and almost completely forgettable is just sad. The unpleasant and flat sounding original mix with no dynamics worth mentioning is another show stopper and overall there's very little positive to say about "Frequency Unknown". If this is the way Geoff Tate is going to carry the Queensr'che torch in the future, I hope he loses the right to the band name, because the music on "Frequency Unknown" is sub par to anything produced by the band in the past. A 2 star (40%) rating is warranted.

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 Queensryche by QUEENSRYCHE album cover Studio Album, 2013
3.61 | 69 ratings

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Queensryche
Queensr˙che Progressive Metal

Review by kev rowland
Special Collaborator Crossover Team

4 stars For those who are unaware, we are currently in the 'interesting' situation of having two bands using the same name, at least until a further court case to settle the dispute, which is due to take place in November. In April 2012 there was a backstage altercation at a show in Sao Paulo, Brazil, between original members drummer Scott Rockenfield, guitarist Michael Wilton and bassist Eddie Jackson with singer Geoff Tate. The band then fired Tate, who took them to court and there have been a few court appearances since then. Tate has released a solo album (which I reviewed with comments such as "There are little or no redeeming features to this album") and an album as Queensryche Starring Geoff Tate The Original Voice, so now it is time for the 'other' band to release something. There is an argument that Scott, Michael and Eddie are the 'true' Queensryche as they had already formed a band and asked Geoff to join, but Geoff has for many been the face as well as the voice of the band, so how to replace him?

This version of Queensryche has been completed by singer Todd La Torre of Florida band Crimson Glory, and guitarist Parker Lundgren, who joined the band in 2009 before the split. I wasn't sure what to expect when I put this on as not only is Tate an incredible singer, but the last album of theirs that I really listened to was 'Tribe' and I didn't think a great deal of it at all. So, was this going to be a painful experience or something that would lift them back up to the heights of 'Mindcrime'? Well, it was never really going to be the latter was it, but what we have here is an album of power and depth, something that made me smile the very first time I played it, and the only thing to do then was just put it on repeat.

It starts slow, with an atmospheric introduction, but it soon grabs the listener and the result is something that is dramatic and powerful, with progressive elements combined with the melodic metal. It is dark, it is brooding, and is the best thing this band have done for years. There is a quality that just pervades this album, it is in every song, and really the only negative about it is that it is quote short in length. It is only 35 minutes long, which is just like being in the old days, but that was when bands were restricted by vinyl so it is certainly unusual in the digital age.

However, what we have here is of the highest quality and it is highly recommended.

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 Hear In The Now Frontier by QUEENSRYCHE album cover Studio Album, 1997
2.45 | 148 ratings

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Hear In The Now Frontier
Queensr˙che Progressive Metal

Review by Progrussia

3 stars This album is much maligned as the beginning of Queensryche's downfall. While their subsequent albums are indeed bad, this is quite enjoyable. This is not prog, and not metal, but polished hard rock with dense sound a la grunge rock. And multi-range Tate's vocals are still in top form. If you disregard the albums that followed, you could actually view this one as another in Queensryche catalogue that is different from one another.

I will admit that half of the album's songs seem like filler. But the ugly truth is that even the classic Queensryche had their share of fillers. But the other half I would include in my personal collection of Queensryche hits: the pop rock of Sign of the times (with its gorgeous acoustic break) and The voice inside, the brooding Spool, ironic Cuckoo's nest, hard-hitting Get a life, Rolling Stones-y dirty rock of Anytime/Anywhere, Beatlesque Miles away. The value is maybe not in originality, but diversity - it makes you anxious to hear what's next.

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