Release Date: June 28th, 2011
Having discussed the concept of the band’s new album, briefly with Geoff Tate in previous interviews, I’ve been pretty excited to hear where Queensrÿche would go with the new album sonically.
This represents the band’s first album for Roadrunner/Loud & Proud. The album was produced by former band guitarist, and longtime friend and sound guru Kelly Gray.
I will say right up front, Dedicated To Chaos is their best album in years. Not that there has been anything wrong with anything they’ve ever recorded, but the new record sees them breaking fresh ground for the band, in a familiar way. Sort of that ‘everything that’s old is new again kind of way’.
Dedicated To Chaos is something of an auditory dreamscape that musically spans the 60’s through the 80’s, bringing in elements of everything the band grew up with. Don’t worry though, modern elements are all in place as well. Queensrÿche remind us they are still progressive and experimental, perhaps just less on the metal side than in years past.
When we look at what technology has wrought on the fabric of world cultures, especially here in America, where it has done more to divide us then bring us together, Queensrÿche take us on a journey of remembrance to what binds us– music.
Families sitting together at the dinner table lost in Blackberrys and iPods instead of conversation. Our lives have been entwined with technology and it has robbed us of our social connections, even while we lay our souls bare on social networks. “I want what I want when I want,” Geoff sings on the gritty ode to gratification overload, “Retail Therapy”.
Before listening to this record I must first advise you to throw out your preconceptions of what Queensrÿche are “supposed” to sound like, and listen to it with ears wide open.
“Life’s too short for slowing down,” on the album opener, the apply titled “Getting Started”. We have a classic rock feel here, very melodic and even anthemic.
The band continues to get their groove on with the intoxicating “Hot Spot Junkie”.
Any classic Queensrÿche fan who hasn’t set aside their idealism of aural expectations will likely be thrown off by the radio ready “Got It Bad”, but again they’d be missing the point. The middle eastern vibe fits nicely on this track.
“Around The World” makes you want to throw on your tie dye shirt and pull out your Beatles albums. You can download this track right now for free just by LIKEing their Facebook page.
Listen to “Around The World”:
For a more traditional QR feel, crank up, “At The Edge”. For atmospheric melancholy try on “Broken”. For something of a jazz flavored feel (yes, I said jazz) try on “Hard Times”.
Bassist Eddie Jackson gets into his own groove to start off “I Believe”, and the band gets back to the classic rock theme on “Luvnu”.
Dedicated To Chaos also features four bonus tracks, including the psychedelic “The Lie” and the Pink Floydish “Big Noize”.
Music is the universal language, and Queensrÿche has recaptured that with its most diverse and creative effort to date. I can already hear classic Queensrÿche purists decrying this record and clamoring for another Operation Mindcrime, and I say get over yourselves. Dedicated To Chaos is another side of Queensrÿche, equally good, but self-challenging in a unique and vibrant way. This is Queensrÿche at their most colorful, willing to put their legacy under fire for what they believe in, and coming out the other side renewed and inspired.