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Queensryche

March 14 @ 7:00 pm - 11:30 pm

$25
Queensryche

Queensryche, with:

  • Fates Warning

@Concord Music Hall
Thursday, March 14
Doors = 7:00 pm
Ages = 17+
Tickets = $25

Queensryche

Queensryche (OLD picture!)Although they were initially grouped with the legions of pop-metal bands that dominated the American heavy metal scene of the ’80s, Queensrÿche were one of the most distinctive bands of the era. Where their contemporaries built on the legacy of Van Halen, Aerosmith, and Kiss, Queensrÿcheconstructed a progressive form of heavy metal that drew equally from the guitar pyrotechnics of post-Van Halen metal and ’70s art rock, most notably Pink Floyd and Queen. After releasing a handful of ignored albums, the band began to break into the mainstream with the acclaimed 1988 album Operation: Mindcrime. Its follow-up, Empire, was the group’s biggest success, selling over two million copies due to the hit single “Silent Lucidity.” Queensrÿche never sustained that widespread popularity — like most late-’80s metal bands, their audience disappeared after the emergence of grunge. Nevertheless, they retained a large cult following well into the ensuing decades.

Guitarists Chris DeGarmo and Michael Wilton formed Queensrÿche in 1981 in the Seattle, Washington, suburb of Bellevue. Both guitarists had been playing in heavy metal cover bands and had decided to form a group that would play original material. The duo recruited high school friends Geoff Tate (vocals) and bassist Eddie Jackson (bass), as well as drummer Scott Rockenfield. Instead of hitting the club circuit, the group rehearsed for two years, eventually recording and releasing a four-song demo tape. The cassette came to the attention of local record store owners Kim and Diana Harris, who offered to manage Queensrÿche. With the help of the Harrises, the tape circulated throughout the Northwest. In May of 1983, Queensrÿchereleased the EP Queen of the Reich on their own record label, 206 Records. Queen of the Reich sold 20,000 copies and, in the process, earned the band major-label attention. By the end of the year, the band signed to EMI, which released an expanded version of the EP as the Queensrÿche LP later in the year; the record peaked at number 81.

At this stage, Queensrÿche sounded closer to British metal bands like Iron Maiden and Judas Priest. Over the next few years, the group continued to refine its sound, opening for hard rock acts as diverse as Bon Jovi and Metallica. Their next two albums — 1984’s The Warning and 1986’s Rage for Order — sold respectably, with the latter reaching number 47 on the U.S. charts. Rage for Order also demonstrated a flowering of progressive rock influences, an idea that would reach its fruition with 1988’s Operation: Mindcrime. Boasting orchestral arrangements from Michael Kamen, the album was Queensrÿche’s most ambitious and focused effort to date, earning both positive reviews and strong sales. Operation: Mindcrime stayed on the American charts for a year, selling over a million copies during its run.

Queensrÿche returned in the fall of 1990 with the equally ambitious Empire. The album proved to be their commercial high-water mark, peaking at number seven on the U.S. charts and going double platinum in America; in the U.K., the album also cracked the Top Ten. Empire’s success was instigated by the stately art rock ballad “Silent Lucidity,” which received heavy airplay from MTV and album rock radio. All the exposure eventually sent “Silent Lucidity” to number five on the U.S. singles charts. Following the long Empire tour — which included a spot on the 1991 Monsters of Rock tour — Queensrÿche released the live Operation: LIVEcrime in the fall of 1991. Recorded on the Operation: Mindcrime tour, the album replicated their live performance of the rock opera that represented their 1988 artistic breakthrough; the package also included a video and a thick book. (Source)

Fates Warning

Fates WarningWhen prog rock first reared its head during the early ’70s, it contained elements of hard rock, but few bands crossed the line into heavy metal. This all changed during the ’80s, when bands such as Dream Theater, Queensrÿche, Watchtower, and Fates Warning merged their love of Yes and Rush with their admiration for Iron Maiden and Judas Priest. As pioneers of the progressive metal movement, the band achieved international success in the ’80s and ’90s via career-making albums like Awaken the Guardian, No Exit, Perfect Symmetry, and Parallels. Despite enduring numerous lineup changes — guitarist/songwriter Jim Matheos is the only original member still active — and a substantial recording hiatus that began in 2004 and ended in 2013, the group’s penchant for pairing innovation and might hasn’t wavered throughout the decades, with later releases like Darkness in a Different Light and Theories of Flight continuing to push the boundaries of both heavy metal and progressive rock.

Formed in Hartford, Connecticut in 1983, Fates Warningstarted off as a straight-ahead metal band (their progressive side didn’t show up until a few years later) and built up a regional following, which soon led to a recording contract with Metal Blade. With vocals being handled by John Arch, the group issued such titles as 1984’s Night on Brocken, 1985’s The Spectre Within, and 1986’s Awaken the Guardian, the latter of which became the first record from the group to appear on the Billboard album charts. (Source)