Ruben Mosqueda of Oregon Music News recently conducted an interview with vocalist Geoff Tate of Seattle progressive rockers QUEENSRŸCHE. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.
Oregon Music News: “Dedicated To Chaos” raised some eyebrows with critics and hardcore fans. You guys threw a curve ball with this album. “Dedicated To Chaos” hasn’t been as well received by the some of the fan base as previous efforts that were a departure, like “Hear In The Now Frontier”, “Promised Land” and “Tribe”. What do you think of the feedback that the new album has received by fans and critics?
Tate: I think all of our albums have been crucified! (laughs) We’ve always done things different, with the exception of our first album, because you didn’t have anything to compare it to. I remember when “Operation: Mindcrime” was released, it was critically taken apart. These days with the Internet being a sounding board of every disgruntled fan worldwide, everyone’s opinion is clocked. In the past only we were privy to fan letters that came to our management’s office. It’s a different kind of thing these days. You can’t judge things on the past; all the rules have changed anyway.
Oregon Music News: In hearing the album, there’s a lot of diversity in there. I remember reading a review early on that mentioned that the songs sounded like they could have been the follow-up to your solo album. Is that fair to say?
Tate: I write all the songs! (laughs) Everything that I do will have a similarity about it. It will sound like something that people have heard before because I’ve written just about every song we’ve ever done, except the stuff that [former guitarist] Chris [DeGarmo] wrote on his own when he was in the band years ago. There’s going to be some level of continuity simply because I’m involved in it. I don’t know how to answer any other way! (laughs)
Oregon Music News: QUEENSRŸCHE performed a string of cabaret dates a few years back. What inspired these? What was the reception since the idea was so out of the box?
Tate: That was a show that was originally designed for a two-night stand in a casino here in the Seattle area for Valentine’s Day. We originally planned on doing two shows a week or two later. We started getting calls from promoters across the country. They said, “Hey, we’ve heard rave reviews about this cabaret show you did. Would you be interested in bringing it to my city?” We ended up doing 28-30 dates with it. It was very fun for us to do; it was a theatrical presentation. It was more than just the five of us getting up on stage and playing music. We had dancers, acrobats to jugglers to comedians to aerialists. It was really a fun show.
Oregon Music News: QUEENSRŸCHE, like many of your contemporaries, have ventured into alternative ways to promote your albums. QUEENSRŸCHE has played fairs, rock festivals, casinos and most recently, a cruise (ShipRocked).
Tate: Like I was saying earlier, the music business has changed radically. What we used to do doesn’t really apply anymore. If I had my way, I’d only play casinos. They are wonderful places to play from a performer’s standpoint. They treat you really well, they pay you very well, the accommodations are top-notch, the stages are fantastic and the equipment is top of the line. Oftentimes when you go into some of these clubs, their PA is blown out. It doesn’t work and you spend half of the day getting it to function. The lights are not sufficient and the dressing rooms are full of disease! (laughs) Honestly, our fans are at the age that they prefer to go to a nice place; they want to go to a casino, they want to go to a place where they can see a good show, have a good dinner and have a great time. They don’t want to go to a stinky club that has a bathroom full of vomit — they don’t want to go there, right. We want to accommodate our audience and treat them to a good show. We want them to have a great time and want to come see us again. We don’t want them to suffer through some place that should be condemned! (laughs)
Read the entire interview from Oregon Music News.