The story is known, Queensryche were in the eighties one of the best bands around and one of the founders of Progmetal as we know today. The first three albums can be considered Classics in the genre and ironically enough their best selling album Empire was their first hint of loosing "it". Promised Land raised our hopes again, but hereafter some very disappointing and some reasonable albums were released. Geoff Tate also showed through the years that he could not reach his old form anymore, which even started impacting live setlists and styles on new albums. So yesterday the Effenaar was packed with people hoping to see that new vocalist Todd la Torre would make the eighties come back to live. And wishes can come true, since we saw a very convincing Todd on vocals and easily the best Queensryche show since the early nineties.
The band opened smart with Queen of the Reich. Their hit from the debut EP long disappeared from live shows and did set the pace, the vocals and the atmosphere. Standing fairly far to the back I could notice the whole place was more than a bit pleased noticing old Queensryche are back. Hereafter we got Speak and Walk in the Shadows and basically nothing could go wrong anymore. We were taken on a trip along the first 4 albums and some of my favorites like The Needle Lies or Roads to Madness passed by. It was also nice to see and hear that the three songs from their last album blended in easily, without any remarkable drop in quality. Actually it was nice to see that the ballad Silent Lucidity was dropped and replaced by the new slowsong A World Without. Definitely hope for the future. If I have to make one small complaint it should be that one of their lesser songs Jet City Woman still made it to list even as an encore (I thought this a Geoff Tate fave, due to easy vocal lines) The fact that hereafter they ended the show like any Queensryche show should end with Take Hold of The Flame, made all ending on the same high as they started. Apart from all fans present I even got the impression that the band were enjoying the evening a lot.
So Queensryche are back and we can only hope that they find inspiration for releasing many more new albums. For their live shows in the future they still have many oldies to surprise us with, so variation should not be a problem. I did see Todd La Torre two years ago already putting the Glory back into Crimson Glory. Now he managed to do the same with Queensryche. Concluding I can only state that the American judges never saw such an easy case, when (if) they ever shall decide who should keep the name. Just ask any fan. Queensryche over the past twenty years had this habit of auto-destruction. With the new CD and now this tour they regained all goodwill build up in the eighties.