To quote Geoff Tate from Queensryche’s The Promised Land, “Where did it all go wrong?” I think it started back when Chris DeGarmo left Queensryche. They continued to put out albums, but nothing to the level prior to that. Tate was eventually fired in a public battle. His newest project is Operation Mindcrime. Unfortunately, their newest CD, Resurrection, just doesn’t come together for me.
Resurrection is the second part of a trilogy. The story? It started in The Key about a character named “H” who creates a “key” that allows people to see reality in a different way. The main question is if the “key” should be free or sold for profit. “H” wants it to be free, but his partners turn on him and attempt to kill him. That’s where The Key ends. Resurrection picks up with him surviving, recovering and attempting to recapture the “key.”
While The Key had some cohesiveness and good songs, Resurrection takes a step backward for Operation Mindcrime. “Left for Dead” (the first actual song with vocals at track five) is one of the better songs and had me hopeful. “Miles Away” and “Healing My Wounds” follow and are average. Then, “The Fight” and “Taking On The World” (featuring Tim “Ripper” Owens and Blaze Bayley) kick it up a huge notch as the best songs on the CD. Tate sounds especially good on “Taking On The World”. Maybe the presence of Owens and Bayley inspired him to push himself.
Unfortunately, the rest of the CD is downhill from there on in. “Invincible” is another average track that goes on way too long. The wheels fall off for the final four tracks. The songs are all over the place, making it hard to follow the story and that’s with seven or eight listens before writing this review.
The music is heavy with keyboards and bass, but not so much with guitars. The guitars are there, but they don’t stand out and, when they do, it’s with mixed results. I know Tate is going for a progressive sound, but the CD’s long instrumental breaks and interludes (it takes almost six minutes to get to the first actual song) don’t help tell the story of the trilogy.
The biggest miss for me is Tate’s voice. Other than “Taking On The World“, it doesn’t stand out. It’s just there while it should be the strongest aspect of the CD.
Contributing Operation Mindcrime band members include:
- Geoff Tate – vocals, keyboard, saxophone
- Kelly Gray – guitars, vocals, bass
- Scott Moughton – guitars, keyboards
- Randy Gane – keyboards
- Dave Ellefson – bass
- John Moyer – bass
- Simon Wright – drums
- Scott Mercado – drums
- Brian Tichy – drums
- Mark Daily – vocals
- Nick Greatrex – guitars
Resurrection is disappointing. There are some bright spots in the middle, but the way it starts and ends doesn’t have me chomping at the bit for the final installment of the trilogy.