Everyone's Replaceable



Queensryche with new singer Todd La Torre, fka Rising West

One could argue that Queensryche became a measurably different band right around the 1997 departure of founding guitarist/visionary songwriter Chris DeGarmo. And now after 15 years of queasy detours and half-cooked albums and a recent series of scuffles, Queensryche has announced a second huge line-up change: Singer Geoff Tate is out. Shocker!

DeGarmo’s absence launched Queensryche’s move away from heavy music, so it’s funny that parting with Tate allows the band a return to heavy music: Taking the mic is Todd La Torre of Crimson Glory, the dude fronting the just-formed Queensryche self-cover band Rising West. That band allowed Queensryche’s non-Tate contingent to focus on their heaviest stuff (ie first five albums), and now presumably will do the same (tour plans are “on hold”) under a tattered but bigger banner — and net Queensryche-sized fees and booking power.

We can bet that Tate gets a share of that action cuz the fucker would never go quietly; just weeks ago he was springing from behind potted plants to karate guitarist Michael Wilton and waving knives at drummer Scott Rockenfield like goddamn Cato. So this change points all parties onwards and upwards: Concertgoers won’t be flummoxed by that nauseous, limp Queensryche revue — and will be excited cuz La Torre is a stud — while Tate and his manager/wife can focus on the singer’s current loves: solo albums, wine, and sexy vests.


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