The Todd La Torre-fronted version of QUEENSRŸCHE is currently working on material for its new studio album for a tentative early 2013 release via an as-yet-undetermined record label.
In a posting on his official Facebook page, La Torre — who is also a member of Florida melodic metallers CRIMSON GLORY — writes, “[I am] listening to our demos and finishing arrangements, etc.
“Trust me, you will hear a severe difference in sound, style, and writing in the new QUEENSRŸCHE record as compared to the last several albums.
“We are very proud of what is being accomplished, and we hope the fans will find it refreshing. It’s got some prog elements, heaviness, soul, darkness, and even something very radio-worthy.
“[I] can’t wait to have this out early next year!”
In a recent interview with Metal-Rules.com, QUEENSRŸCHE drummer Scott Rockenfield stated about how the addition of La Torre and guitarist Parker Lundgren has affected the musical direction of the band’s new material. “I think we’ve just found a good chemistry between the five of us,” he said. “I mean, Michael [Wilton, guitar], Eddie [Jackson, bass] and I have had chemistry for such a long time, and Parker has been with us now for many years, playing our old material. And we’re always thinking and looking at the future, and we’ve talked about what to do and how to do it, and rolling Todd into the equation, he’s just stepped in and fit the role of what QUEENSRŸCHE wants to achieve and what we wanna do.”
He added, “The proof will be in the pudding when everybody can hear it when it finally comes out. But I think our fans are gonna be really pleasantly surprised and they’re gonna have something that I think they’re gonna consider some good work by us that they’ve been missing for quite a while.”
Speaking to a radio station in June, La Torre stated about QUEENSRŸCHE‘s plans to record new original music, “Obviously, we wanna try and write something that’s heavy, but also has a common thread of what is QUEENSRŸCHE‘s sound — very melodic guitar parts. Vocally, I’m in a very unique position because a lot of people like to throw around, ‘Oh, he’s a clone, he’s an imitator, he’s this, he’s that.’ And I feel like I’m damned if I do and I’m damned if I don’t.
“My style of singing and phrasing is very similar to [that of original QUEENSRŸCHE singer] Geoff Tate and Bruce Dickinson and Rob Halford. I mean, a lot of my high metal screams are grittier and dirtier, like Rob Halford. My vibrato is more similar to Bruce Dickinson or Geoff Tate. A lot of the crying and ways of entering a vocal phrase and phonating, the way I say words, are very similar to Geoff Tate.
“I wear my influences on my sleeve, but I also think that I have a heavier vibe than Geoff Tate ever had. With a lot of the heavier, gritty, thrashier metal style… I mean, I love to do some of the death growls like Chuck Billy [TESTAMENT] does. Is that QUEENSRŸCHE sound? No. But if they want it kicked up and give it a heavier edge, I think that I have that, and that’s something that Geoff Tate never did. Not taking anything away from him, but I think I do show a wide range of versatility.”
Tate, who was fired from QUEENSRŸCHE in June after fronting the group for three decades, recently sought to prevent his former bandmates from touring and operating under the QUEENSRŸCHE name without him. While ruling against Tate, the presiding judge determined that there was no legal hurdle in Tate also using the name with an all-new lineup of musicians. “I don’t see any reason that Mr. Tate can’t have the benefit, if he gets other members, of whatever name he uses of using the brand,” Superior Court Judge Carol A. Schapira said during the July 13 court hearing. “I think [doing that would be] inherently confusing, although I’m sure the market can get these things sorted out,” she added.
On September 2, Tate announced that he was launching his own version of QUEENSRŸCHE with RATT drummer Bobby Blotzer, former QUIET RIOT, OZZY OSBOURNE and WHITESNAKE bassist Rudy Sarzo and former MEGADETH and KING DIAMOND guitarist Glen Drover. Also on board in the new group are returning QUEENSRŸCHE guitarist Kelly Gray — who played with the band from 1998 until 2001 and also produced several of their albums — and keyboardist Randy Gane, who has toured and recorded with QUEENSRŸCHE and Geoff‘s solo group in the past.