Monday, November 9, 2009

New Album: Queensrÿche - American Soldier

I like Queensrÿche, I've seen them live with Alice Cooper and Heaven And Hell (Black Sabbath with Dio) and it was a good show. But I have only really listened to two of their albums repeatedly, throughout my life; Empire and Operation: Mindcrime, both simply superb albums. A few months ago (maybe a year ago at this point), I listened to their debut EP/album (depending on the version), Queensrÿche, and more recently I listened to their cover album, Take Cover, and last week it was Operation: Mindcrime II, which was pretty decent, a far cry from the original, but who really expected something of that level?

Now, I am listening to their latest release, American Soldier, and it's an alright album. Nothing really strong on it, but nothing too bad. It just seems like they are trying to ease back into popularity, with radio-friendly songs with moderate tempos and themes. Maybe all of their albums are like this, as I said I've only heard their progressive years, so perhaps they have merged to an alternative rock band with metal influences. It even follows the current trend to mix in some industrial themes throughout - not enough to be annoying, but still.
One song catches my notice, "Middle of Hell" seems to be reusing some lyrics, with subtle changes, from their hit song "Empire" of the album of the same name. It's kind of nice, as an homage, and kind of annoying, I started singing the "Empire" lyrics, not the new ones.

American Soldier is a decent album, by a band that has been around for a while. I would have like to seen some of the older elements coming into play, but bands evolve and change - I get that. I'm glad these guys still got it, and I hope to be writing another article next year.

Track Listing
1. Sliver
2. Unafraid
3. Hundred Mile Stare
4. At 30,000 Feet
5. A Dead Man's Words
6. The Killer
7. Middle of Hell
8. If I Were King
9. Man Down!
10. Remember Me
11. Home Again
12. The Voice
*Bold denotes my pick

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