Music Review-Geoff Tate-Kings & Thieves

“Kings & Thieves” track listing:

01. She Slipped Away
02. Take A Bullet
03. In The Dirt
04. Say U Luv It
05. The Way I Roll
06. Tomorrow
07. Evil
08. Dark Money
09. These Glory Days
10. Change
11. Waiting

Review-It is always sad to see a band’s dirty laundry get aired in front of us. If people thought the debates for President were cut throat and tried to divide people, the fights between Queensryche and Geoff Tate were just as brutal to watch and listen to unfold. I am not alone in my feeling that it has been a long time since either Geoff or Queensryche really put out good music, or both seem to stick around more for their past then anything they have accomplished in the last decade. That being said, the new Geoff solo record is a lot better than anything he has done in a decade, but by no way is this a record I would recommend. Say U luv it shows that Geoff still has an amazing vocal range and can pull off Empire style songs. That may be the song the old school fans, may warm up to. Songs like The Way I Roll and Tomorrow are a clear example of what fans have got so sick of, when Geoff feels the need to try and experiment with the sound, and instead of trying to showcase his or the band’s strengths, instead they showcase their shortcomings or how they are trying to modernize this sound. Evil comes across as the sequel to Last Time in Paris, and it was a little better than I was expecting.

I mean he has a capable band backing him on this cd, Bobby Blotzer on drums, Glen Drover, Sarzo, and then Kelly Gray, whose guitar playing I felt dragged Queensryche in the day. I mean songs like She Slipped Away is a catchy little pop tune which I think Geoff tried to go into a Journey feel with an old school U2 I Will Follow sound. Take a Bullet is a decent enough song to keep your attention that sounds like it could have come out of the Q2K sessions. I just wanted more to stand out to me, this sounds exactly what you would expect from a Geoff Tate solo record, I just wish he would have tried to break the stereotypical sound and at least go into a heavier route, or maybe a Rage for Order route. Why is it when people say they are going back to their roots, it is always the bad part of their career more than the one the fans want to see them go? To be honest, in 2012 this is what we can expect from a Geoff Tate, the man thrives more on his legacy then anything he puts out these days. And I felt that since Tribe that he is this stubborn person that does not listen to the fans and just seeks his own validation and keeps putting out mediocre records that have some scraps that are decent but could have been so much more, because he thinks trying to modernize the product will draw more fans, but he is too blind to see that these albums are killing his and the band’s legacy. Well, I guess he may not be that blind because he took the band out of it, and is now doing these releases under his own name.

There is an interview floating online with Glen before he did this solo record, that he was asked what he thought of Geoff Tate as a person, and he claims” I never met the guy, nor do I really follow his band”. And, this was after he was hired to be the man’s guitarist. Glen, just trust me on this go listen to Tribe and Q2K, and get the basic riffs down pat off those two records, because that is the long term plan with this band. Well, now the jury is out on this 2013 forthcoming Queensryche cd, and let’s see if they want to respect the legacy, or go the Geoff way and keep on dragging it further down. All in all, it was ok in parts but I would have expected that since he was kicked out of his band, that he had something to prove and a statement to make, instead he is just giving us the same shit as before.

4 out of 10

  • nnz

    Doesn’t really sound like his previous solo album. At one point, the Geoff Tate everyone knew was a clear minded person who take of his voice and gave the people he worked with space to be creative and adapted himself to the song rather than being a stubborn fool and demanding the music be written for him. This was before he enlisted a producer that succumbed to his every whim and fancy, effectively making himself a solo artist rather than part of a real band for the past 9 years of his career.