Geoff Tate speaks!

…or, Okay, so here’s one side of the story

…and what a side it is. I thought Tate was an egomaniacal dick before, but this…is…epic. Some choice snippets:

“Queensryche is about albums. It’s about concepts and themes, and those concepts were mine.”

“I am the creative energy in the band…”

“All the lyrics and the directions of the albums and the concepts, that is all from me.”

“These are my ideas, my concepts, my life, that I’m writing about. What are they gonna do – hand it to some kid to sing?”

As the good folks at fan community The Breakdown Room are saying, does Tate really think any of the band’s fans are going to believe that line of shit? To read that interview you’d think Chris DeGarmo never existed. And you know it’s all posturing. It has to be. Tate says his new solo record is going to be “very metal, very hard rock,” but in more than one previous interview he has said he was never a metalhead and that metal fans were in effect a bunch of boneheads.

Speaking of that, I remember how in that same interview Tate said something to the effect that “fans don’t define metal, the bands do,” and then there was all that nonsense about “chunkchunkchunk riffs” or whatnot.This is what I’d say if I got the chance:

“Well, like it or not, Tater, Queensryche defined itself as a metal band, boneheaded riffs and all. The genre was already defined by God only knows how many bands before Queensryche, and it’s obvious you were all too happy to follow along in that groove. Face it, metalheads were who you marketed yourselves to. Who the hell did you think you were gonna be playing in front of when you opened for Metallica, Guns’n’Roses and Def Leppard? And then to come along all these years later when your band is just a shell of what it was and claim Queensryche was never a metal band? What a cop-out. Your tastes changing is fine, but to cast aspersions on the fan base just because they didn’t follow you when you decided to go after an audience that at best was indifferent (and at worst outright hostile) to metal is just asinine in the extreme. Face it, buddy. Fans have expectations, and Queensryche hasn’t met them in years.”

And as for the rest of the band not offering any creative input — how in the hell does he square that with, among other things, Michael Wilton saying the band members offered input for Dedicated to Chaos but that those ideas were basically rejected? It’s not as if that’s the first time such has happened in the band’s history; as I recall, the other band members had writing credits on 4 of the 15 songs on Operation: Mindcrime II, and only 2 of 12 songs on American Soldier were co-written by band members other than Geoff Tate. Who’s to say it hasn’t been that way since Chris DeGarmo left? Who’s to say the band members’ input hasn’t been rejected because of Tate wanting to take the band in a different direction after Chris DeGarmo left?

As for this:

And also with the live shows, trying to make them interesting and unique and different, rather than just five guys up there playing songs, I tried to create a theatrical environment for the presentation. And I think people like that. They want to keep seeing that. Without me, that won’t happen. I can guarantee that. It won’t happen.

He’s talking, of course, about the Queensryche Cabaret. From most accounts I have read, the fans saw that as quite a disgusting spectacle, not least of all because it flew in the face of everything the band was about. And I can certainly understand that, too. A lot of people bitched about the hair/glam metal movement because of its objectification of women, and even though they got grouped in with that crowd by a lot of people, if you listen to their music you know that Queensryche was above every bit of that. Then along came Tate’s cabaret idea, which apparently featured, among other things, band members’ scantily-clad wives (Susan Tate and — I think — Misty Rockenfield) and that sort of thing. And I’m sorry, but I’ve seen footage of the Building Empires tour, and they were packing houses internationally with just a straight-ahead, no-bullshit metal show. And if the footage from the Rising West shows is any indication, the fans are going to react to a theatrics-free presentation just fine.

This, though, this was perhaps the worst of it:

These are my ideas, my concepts, my life, that I’m writing about. What are they gonna do – hand it to some kid to sing?

Of course they aren’t any of that, but dismissing 38-year-old Todd La Torre as “some kid” shows an appalling lack of respect for the man’s abilities. Even if Queensryche’s early brilliance was all Tate’s doing, the fact is that those songs haven’t been given their proper treatment since Tate’s let his voice go to shit. One wonders what Tate would have said had the interviewer referred to Parker Lundgren in such a disdainful manner. (No doubt that would have taken the interview in an exciting direction, as Lundgren is Tate’s former son-in-law…)

As bad as I hate to say it, it seems that Mike Portnoy’s comments on Geoff Tate were pretty much right on the money:

“Geoff was, and is, the two-faced BS [bullshit] artist to everybody he comes in contact with…either professionally (or ‘un’ for that matter) as well as to his poor fans that still believe his bullshit after all these years.”

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5 Responses to “Geoff Tate speaks!”

  1. PISSED Says:

    Thanks for the updates, I have been following this off and on when I get a moment or hear about in on XM. I gave up on them after Empire when they didnt seem to have the Queensrhyce sound that I grew to love. I heard the demo of the new guy and he is amazing!

  2. southtexaspistolero Says:

    I heard the demo of the new guy and he is amazing!

    Yeah, PISSED, yeah he is. The guys were lucky to have found him. Hearing him made the hair stand up on the back of my neck. I do agree Queensryche lost their mojo after Empire, but Promised Land was still pretty good. Everything after that was just not the same.

    You might check out that link to The Breakdown Room; that’s where I was alerted to that RS story. Lot of good QR info & discussion there.

  3. PISSED Says:

    Great Thanks! 🙂

  4. That Guy Says:

    “Don’t slam the door on your way out
    Don’t leave without saying goodbye”

    Here is hoping they come out with a killer album with the new guy.

  5. southtexaspistolero Says:

    If the new album is anything less than the best the band has done since at least Empire, That Guy, I am going to be very surprised.

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