Review : Queensryche - American Soldier
HeavymetalMusically, American Soldier is typical Queensryche. It's progressive, but also accessible. The band's sound has matured over the years, becoming a little less intense. Horns and keyboards add depth and texture to the songs.
Songs like the opening track "Silver" are punchy and focused, while tracks such as "Middle Of Hell" are more progressive with lengthy instrumental sections. The songs with the most emotional impact are the ones where the soldiers' voices are used to tell their stories, such as "If I Were King."...full text
QueensrycheIn this era of iTunes and YouTube the notion of a concept album has been all but killed as a function of digital technologies and the Internet. Gone are the days of “Tommy” and “The Wall” when a listener would drop the needle and let an album to play all the way through. (The LP format demanded it as much as facilitated it. A scratch was forever.) Now music fans browse their favorite e-commerce sites and choose what tracks to download based on 30-second snippets.
Not that I’m judging, of course. I’m as guilty as the next Web surfer. I have hundreds of albums, cassette tapes, and CDs strewn across my home office, but I seldom, if ever, download complete albums. This phenomenon isn’t lost on the minds that create the music. The market drives artist activity and resultantly few of them think in terms of relating dimensions of a single story across an album’s tracks.
But all is not lost for those valiant holdouts who still have attention spans that last longer than, say, four minutes and twenty seconds. Queensryche’s latest effort, “American Soldier,” is a concept album in the tradition of the greats — one that merits end-to-end consideration. What Jerry Lewis used to say about his telethon holds true for “American Soldier”: “If you miss a little you miss a lot.”...full text
AllmetalresourceQueensryche is one of those bands that is largely hit or miss for me, leaning more towards the miss. I can understand people’s interest, but in large part, Queensryche is a progressive rock/metal band with aims to create powerful, epic albums which usually end up lacking substance leading me to use the term “vapid” to describe their sound. On 2009’s American Soldier, Geoff Tate maintains his stance on creating epic-minded albums, with this one being an ode to the “american soldier” and the struggles that those who have experienced war must go through. Realistically, you can’t get much better than that as an idea for epic-hood, but the result is unfortunately quite expected from the Queensryche camp; more of the same boring songs.
What best describes the concept that Queensryche seems to miss out on is dynamics. When you are playing a genre as critical as progressive rock is when examining technique and bombast, its so important that a band keep the listener interested with continuous evolutions from not just one song to another, but within each song too. I hate to use Dream Theater as an example because they are the stereotypical progressive metal band that everyone looks to, but they maintain that reputation for a good reason. Dream Theater are an interesting band. They write songs that keep the listener wondering, even long time fans. How many Queensryche fans were last surprised by a new album? I sure am not on this one, and that’s critical error....full text
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