Well. That was fast.

Queensryche lead singer Geoff Tate, from June 15, via Blabbermouth.net on the 18th:

This past Friday, June 15, Jolene of the Seattle station KISW 99.9 FM conducted an interview with QUEENSRŸCHE singer Geoff Tate. You can now listen to the chat using the audio player below.

When asked if he had a message for QUEENSRŸCHE fans who are “perplexed over the status of the band right now,” Geoff said, “Just hang in there. Everything’s moving along and everything’s looking good. And I’m very happy to be playing my hometown tonight; I’m very excited about it.”

Today:

Rock band Queensryche is continuing forward without vocalist Geoff Tate, who will be replaced by Crimson Glory singer Todd La Torre, Billboard has exclusively learned.

“Over the past few months, there have been growing creative differences within Queensryche. We want our fans to know that we hoped to find a common resolution, but in the end parting ways with Geoff was the best way for everyone to move forward in a positive direction,” drummer Scott Rockenfield said in a statement. “We wish him the best of luck with all of his future endeavors. We can’t wait to bring Queensryche to our fans with Todd behind the microphone.”

(More from Blabbermouth.net)

Gotta say, it’s been a long time coming, though with Rising West I did not expect it to come like this. Speculation among the fans was that Rising West would do their thing and Geoff Tate would do his as perhaps Geoff Tate of Queensryche. My two cents on the band continuing without Geoff Tate are as follows.

I don’t mind seeing this development at all. The way I see it, it isn’t that much different than Van Halen with Sammy Hagar or Black Sabbath with Ronnie James Dio. I can understand the POV of those who think “no DeGarmo or Tate = no Queensryche”, but there are a couple of things that make me not fully agree with that.

No DeGarmo = no Queensryche. If you think that “no DeGarmo = no Queensryche,” well, I could probably get behind that. He and Tate arguably balanced each other pretty well, and after he left was when a lot of fans, including myself, think Queensryche went off the rails.

No Tate = no Queensryche. I do not agree with this at all. If what I’ve heard is true, that Geoff and Susan have pretty much taken over the QR operation to the point that it’s basically a GT solo thing, then getting rid of GT in favor of Todd La Torre is going to be the best thing that ever happened to Queensryche.

And that’s not even taking into account Geoff’s (as of late) dismissive attitude towards metal and its fans — you know, the people who put food in his kids’ mouth and a roof over their heads for the last 30 years. To me, that has to be the most disgusting aspect of this whole thing, that and how he tries to play the whole thing off — as if it was “obvious,” in the man’s own words, that he wasn’t into metal even back in the days of the EP and The Warning.

But yeah, bring on Queensryche with Todd La Torre! I was thinking as I watched the Hard Rock performances that if I couldn’t have seen them with Geoff Tate, seeing them with TLT would definitely be the next best thing. Can’t wait to see what’s next for them.

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2 Responses to “Well. That was fast.”

  1. Albatross Says:

    Re: No DeGarmo v. No Tate — Good observation. Something similar can be seen with Iron Maiden, regarding Adrian Smith and Bruce Dickinson.

    At some point, guitarist Adrian Smith left Iron Maiden, and he was replaced with Janick Gers. Though this was something of a big deal, Gers ended up being a positive addition to the band. So much so that when Smith came back, they kept Gers on, and now Iron Maiden has three stellar guitarists in their line-up. So, No Smith = No Maiden? Nah.

    At another point, Bruce Dickinson left the band, to be replaced with some Whoisthis Nobody. This was a big deal, and the few Maiden songs sans Dickinson that I ever listened to just didn’t sound quite like Maiden. Though Dickinson was himself a replacement singer, he has become integral to the Maiden sound, and any effort without his wailing is just not quite “there”. So, No Dickinson = No Maiden? Pretty much.

    Of course, Steve Harris IS Iron Maiden. If he ever left, they would have to fold the band immediately, and any attempt to continue the band without him would be ridiculous.

  2. southtexaspistolero Says:

    So, No Dickinson = No Maiden? Pretty much.

    I never heard any of the Blaze Bayley-era Iron Maiden, but from what I’ve heard about him, he wasn’t the best match for Maiden as his voice had a rough-edged sound to it, much like Lemmy Kilmister’s. I would probably agree that no Dickinson = no Maiden, although I think it would be interesting to see what they’d sound like if they were in Queensryche’s situation. Regarding QR: from what I understand, the rest of the band wrote some more hard-edged songs but Geoff Tate rejected them in favor of whatever you’d call what was on Dedicated to Chaos — which is but another reason I am interested in seeing what they’ll come up without him. People talk about the band dying when Chris DeGarmo left, but there are a bunch of great songs from Queensryche’s early days that didn’t have DeGarmo’s name on ’em. “Deliverance,” “Warning,” “I Dream In Infrared,” “Spreading the Disease,” and “Empire” all rank very high on my list of favorite songs from the band. And yeah, most of those did have Geoff Tate’s name on ’em, but there was still the post-DeGarmo decline that many of the band’s fans think Tate is largely responsible for.

    But I do think that your observation re: Steve Harris is spot-on.

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