Queensryche Starring Geoff Tate
The Cotillion Ballroom
August 28, 2014
By Jeb Wright
Photo Courtesy of Blabbermouth
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Geoff Tate is no longer in Queensryche...well, that Queensryche. As of August 28th he was still in a band called Queensryche, but soon that very band will be called Operation Mindcrime. The other Queensryche has a different singer. Neither band has original guitarist Chris DeGarmo, yet both, from all accounts that I have seen, are tearing it up live.
Truth be told, it will be nice to get the band name controversy over, and Tate will have no problem reaching his fans despite changing the name of his group to the title of Queensryche's biggest selling album. There is even a rumor there will be a third part of the Operation Mindcrime recorded in the studio. Whether that is fact or fiction remains to be seen.
What can be reported as fact is that this version of Queensryche, sometimes referred to as Tate'sRyche, is one hell of a live band that has no problem delivering the goods on stage. Before we even begin discussing the band members, it must be mentioned that vocalist Geoff Tate sounds, looks and acts like a new man compared to the darker days he lived through with the other Queensryche. There was no hitting on or spitting on band members or berating the crowd. Instead, there was simply rock music and his vocals. His performance on all levels was impressive and strong. He is the obvious leader on stage, but he guides the music, the crowd and the overall feeling of the event with ease. If he had lost anything at all, as some people have taken to the Internet to report, he fricking found it once again.
The ONLY complaint on this evening was that there was no “Revolution Calling.” Leaving that song out hurts. However, the songs performed were done so with expertise precision. Drummer Simon Wright, formerly of AC/DC and DIO, is a joy to watch as this is not easy music to recreate in a live setting. Between Simon and bassist extraordinaire Rudy Sarzo, this band has a groove tighter than vestal virgin. They kept the groove so solid that guitarists Kelly Gray and Robert Sarzo – yes, he is a relation to Rudy...they are brothers – had an easy time bashing out their parts. Robert seemed to excel at the softer moments while Gray seems to like distortion. However, the best parts are when they play together; their harmony passages really take the energy of the songs onstage to a new level.
This was a band performance, not a light show with music. Tate and Company proved just how good they are as a musical unit on this night in Wichita. They may go on to have huge stage productions, but rest assured they don't need it. In fact, I would challenge Tate to knock it back a notch and keep this thing going where the music is what bashed one over the head... and that’s a good thing.
The bottom line is that tonight in Wichita, what they did worked... and it rocked.