Queensrÿche -- The Verdict

QueensrÿcheThe Verdict

★★★☆ I’m shocked: not only is this the most not-bad Todd La Torre-era album the band have ever released, but it also finally halfway sells me on the very notion of a post-Empire Rÿche.  (Speaking of La Torre, he not only sings on this album, but he also plays drums on this album instead of Scott Rockenfield.

Operation_ Mindcrime -- A New Reality

Operation: MindcrimeA New Reality

★☆☆☆ This latest album from Geoff Tate’s post-Rÿche career has many of the overproduction flaws of “Empire,” without any of the quality songwriting, and a shadow of the musicianship. Also, and this needs to be said, the production makes it sound like Tate recorded this through a phone (a landline). This is actually not all bad news, as that lessens the impact when Tate’s singing goes flat.

Queensrÿche -- Condition Hüman

QueensrÿcheCondition Hüman

This album is a bit better than the band’s first attempt with vocalist Todd LaTorre, in two key areas: production and ambition. Everyone is in top form performance-wise, with the big prize going to LaTorre; he manages to both sound exactly like Geoff Tate when he wants to, and to self-assuredly avoid that trick when he doesn’t.