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Queensryche/ Armored Saint

Date: 12/6/16
Venue: Irving Plaza, Manhattan, NYC
Report By: Rich Catino


With a great new album from 2015, the Saint opened their set with the title track ‘Win Hands Down’ to let people know new music is as important as the classics. Still with founding members in tow – singer John Bush, bassist Joey Vera, and Gonzo Sandoval behind the drums, Phil Sandoval and Jeff Duncan on guitars, the boys delivered an energetic nine song set covering their career. Bush running back and forth around the stage, Vera often jamming with Phil stage left and Gonzo pounding out the beats. “Raising Fear” the only album not represented with a track, title to “March Of The Saint” and ‘Can U Deliver’ to ‘Reign Of Fire’ and ‘Tribal Dance’ from the excellent “Symbol Of Salvation” were obviously crowd favs, and sung along to. Yet, glad they played ‘Control Issues’ from their strong return album “Revelation” in 2000. One of the underground bands who never quite made it to arena headlining status like other traditional metallers in the 80s, but none the less good.

On to second album (“Condition Human”) with Todd La Torre behind the mic, it is clear the Ryche are really comfortable with him in the band, and rediscovering their roots again in those classic albums from the 80s. It is scary how close Todd’s voice is to Tate in tone, yet with his own slightly grittier texture at times. Close your eyes and these classics like ‘Jet City Woman’, ‘Take Hold of the Flame’, ballad ‘Silent Lucidity’, and ‘Eyes of a Stranger’ will surely take you back to the time you first heard them. And guitarist Parker Lundgren (2009-) has settled in nicely and the best compliment to Wilton since DeGarmo.

Newer cuts ‘Guardian’, and ‘Arrow of Time’ are solid additions to the songs that made Queensryche famous, while bass and vocal effects, leads and harmonies on ‘Eye9’, and dynamics, recall “Rage For Order”. ‘Hellfire’ is surely a nod to the metal first E.p. and “Warning” albums – and yes, Todd can do those screams for ‘Queen of the Reich’. Speaking of said E.p., would surely like to hear ‘Lady Wore Black’ next time around. Great to see ‘Damaged’ from the underrated “Promised Land” still in the set. Looking forward to their return, always a nice balance of new and old, with room for rotated dusted off gems.

Armored Saint setlist:
Win Hands Down
March of the Saint
Control Issues
In an Instant
Tribal Dance
Left Hook From Right Field
Reign of Fire
Can U Deliver

Queensryche setlist:
Operation: Mindcrime
Best I Can
The Killing Words
The Mission
Silent Lucidity
Arrow of Time
Queen of the Reich
Jet City Woman
Take Hold of the Flame
Screaming in Digital
Eyes of a Stranger


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