GEOFF TATE Talks New Solo Album, 25th Anniversary Of QUEENSRŸCHE’s ‘Operation: Mindcrime’ editor-in-chief Rick Florino recently conducted an interview with QUEENSRŸCHE vocalist Geoff Tate. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below. Did you approach [your new solo album] “Kings Thieves” with one vision or vibe in mind?

Tate: Typically, when I make a record, I have an idea of what I want to try to accomplish. I go about making that happen by making lists. I’m a list maker. I jot down all of these ideas I’ve got and I form those ideas into an outline. Then, I start using it as a punch list to take care of all these details I’d like to do. I knew I wanted to make a really solid rock record. I didn’t want to stray too far into other musical endeavors. I wanted to keep it more rock-oriented with traditional rock instruments. I also knew that I wanted it to be more of a live record where all of the musicians get in a room and actually play together. A lot of it was recorded and written at the same time. That was very fun, and I’ve never done that before. It has an effect that makes the music seem more immediate and raw rather than being a polished, rehearsed-into-the-ground record, which I’ve done throughout most of my career. Making this record was a different process for me, and I made it very quickly. It flowed from the moment I started until the time I was done with it. It only took about six months to make. By comparison, QUEENSRŸCHE records have taken years to make. Was there any connection to your fist solo record?

Tate: Well, it has been a long time. It’s been a long time coming too. They’re two really different records to me. On that first solo record, I really wanted to stretch outside of the QUEENSRŸCHE box and do everything I could never do. I wanted to explore my influences in my writing. That first album has RB influences, which I’m very into. It’s got classical and electronica influences, but it doesn’t have a lot of rock. “Kings Thieves” is really a rock record. I focused on that aspect. What’s the first thing you think of now when you think of [QUEENSRŸCHE‘s classic album] “Operation: Mindcrime”?

Tate: It’s interesting. It’s not our most popular record as far as sales go, and it didn’t really sell well when it came out. For a year, it sold exactly what our other albums had sold. Then, when “Empire” came out, it made a huge impact on radio. It got a lot of airplay. There were a few singles on that record. So, the sales for “Operation: Mindcrime” started skyrocketing as a result. I have to say the first thing that pops into my head when you bring up “Operation: Mindcrime” is 2013 is the 25th anniversary of that record. Isn’t that hard to believe? It’s a very melodic record. It’s not what one would consider “metal” by today’s standards at all. It’s melodic hard rock. It’s not a political story. It’s a love story between a man and a woman.

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