with Andrew Blake
Friday, May 04, 2012 9:00 PM CDT
(7:00 PM Doors)
Viper Alley, Lincolnshire, IL
21 years and over
When most musicians record solo albums, it's because they need an outlet for material that doesn't fit the scope of their band. That wasn't the case with Geoff Tate. While there's very little on his solo debut that couldn't fit within the ever-evolving musical scope of Queensrÿche, the difference for the vocalist lies in the expression of those songs, and how they actually came to fruition.
The problem when you're in a creative environment is keeping things fresh and invigorating, and after working with the same people for twenty years, it gets very difficult—You walk into the room, and everybody knows what everybody is going to do," explains the frontman. "There's no spark of new blood, the chemistry is very tried and true, and you just keep coming up with the same ways of expressing yourself. What's nice about doing a side project with new people, is that it's a whole new breed, and a bunch of new ideas, musical backgrounds, emotional baggage, and whatever else it takes to create. It's a whole new set of parameters, so it's all new, everyone has ideas you haven't heard before, and everyone is throwing them against the wall. It takes on a whole new life."
For Tate, that "whole new life" is a vibrant tapestry of human emotion and expression, the culmination being his eponymous 11-track offering on Sanctuary Records. "The songs are all about the strongest passion of life, which is love. It's all about the feelings that you have for somebody, how relationships work and don't work, the misunderstandings, and all that it takes to keep a relationship working. That said, it's also about stepping out on you're own and trying new stuff, and not being afraid to take that big step. That makes it kind of autobiographical, because I'm taking that step, moving out from where I've been and stepping into other areas, and that's important for people to do."
While a "peaceful" vibe may seem a bit askew from the voice behind Queensrÿche's Operation: Mindcrime epic, there's not a rock band around that has had the bravado to take their music in as divergent directions as Tate's full-time outfit, and that fact isn't lost on the singer. "I never tried to have a box thrown around myself and be a 'heavy metal' singer," he explains. "If you listen to a lot of Queensrÿche records, especially since Empire, we've done many different types of music and vocals, all based around guitars. 'Silent Lucidity' and 'Jet City Woman' aren't heavy metal anthems, they're just good songs, and I think this new record of mine is a greater extension of where Queensrÿche went in those directions."