The only way it could be more apparent at this point that losing Geoff Tate
was the best career saving decision Queensryche ever made was if the current
line up performed some Frequency Unknown songs in the set and did a better
job at those as well. Understand that every time I have to write something
like that about Tate-ryche and the fall from grace of one of metal’s once
towering voices, a little part of the kid in me who fell in love with every
track on Empire dies. But the new band have made me believe again, along wth
many others. Geoff Tate is grasping at straws with his distastefully named
Operation: Mindcrime band, a move that cheapens the iconic album’s brand more
than a new Queensryche line up that kicks ass and has a classic sound ever
And I feel for Tate. It’s gotta hurt. But make no mistake…Condition Human is hands down the best Queensryche album in
20+ years, the best since Promised Land by far and the first to finally once
and for all make you say ,“Chris DeGarmo who”?
To be fair, I liked moments of Tribe and even Dedicated To Chaos had a few late Tate great moments where his better character shone through like “Get Started” which sounds a little like Pearl Jam doing a mid tempo Queensryche song but was fun. But the “we don’t suffer fools” lyric from that song and “Time to change the view” line turned out to fit Tate the best.
Read on BELOW.
From vest-ryche to spitting on people to having family members in a creepy cabaret show, dude’s instincts have just gone the way of the dodo. I hate writing things that mean about the dude who sang “Take Hold Of The Flame”, trust me. But for real, even Metal Sucks would prob lighten up on dude a bit if he’d just named his new band the Geoff Tate project and followed his muse/chilled on the hubris.
Instead, the remaining and newly reinvigorated Queensryche camp post Tate have been re-asserting their classic sound while growing as well. The biggest criticism I have of Condition Human is the print on the CD is hard to read. Other than that I can’t think of a single complaint. This is a watershed moment where the faith of fans has been rewarded even when all hope seemed lost, like the fucking giant eagles arrived and saved Middle Earth’s heroes in their darkest hour, hahaha.“With the air of freedom the flame grows bright”, as they say.
The first post-Tate record was good but people were still reeling and wrestling with mixed feelings. With Condition Human, I dare any real fan to be able to hold back tears of joy. There may not be a “Jet City Woman” break out hit but there is more than enough killer no filler stuff here to ensure the band can tour and make fans ecstatic. From the opening one two punch of “Arrow of Time” and the heavy singalong anthem “Guardian” to the truly beautiful ballad/ rocker “Just Us” that I got totally lost in and had to pick up an acoustic and jam along to, to the infectious mid tempo groove of “Toxic Remedy” (my vote for their best bet for a hit single off this baby should they release it as one), this is just fucking fantastic.
Zeuss and the band together have done the unthinkable and surpassed or at least matched some of their halcyon days best material. Todd La Torre sings anything in the band’s discography like it is easy, like someone casually slipping on briefs without a care in the world instead of someone pulling said briefs tight around the nads to still hit the highs. Scott Rockenfeld and Eddie Jackson prove once again their rhythmic solidity is night unmatched when allowed to shine. Parker Lundgren really comes into his own and Michael Wilton gets to finally, FINALLY truly step out of the Degarmo shadow that has long biased people unfairly from seeing how fucking rad he is.
I could not recommend this more for fans of classic heavy metal. Huge cheers to Century Media for backing these dudes so hard during transitional times. It’s so obviously worth it. This shit is “bulletproof” and half of that is from the band just having a better attitude and fire back. I wasn’t against the experimental side that Tate was favoring, but losing what people loved about the band in the process was idiotic.
Now, the band that once was considered the prog metal cousins to Pink Floyd in some circles in the early 80’s have proven that they can again do ANYTHING without losing site of the core sound that makes them instantly recognizable. And I never believed that would be without Tate, but Todd La Torre is far from merely aping Geoff and seems to get what Queensryche ought to be about more than Tate has in years.