Queensryche -- Chicago, IL -- September 16th, 2006
TOUR: Operation: Mindcrime II
VENUE: House of Blues -- Chicago, IL
DATE: September 16, 2006
REVIEWED: September 17, 2006
1. I Remember Now
3. Revolution Calling
4. Operation: Mindcrime
6. Spreading the Disease
7. The Mission
8. Suite Sister Mary
9. The Needle Lies
10. Electric Requiem
11. Breaking The Silence
12. I Don't Believe In Love
13. Waiting for 22
14. My Empty Room
15. Eyes of a Stranger
16. Freiheit Ouvertüre
18. I'm American
19. One Foot In Hell
21. The Hands
22. Speed of Light
23. Signs Say Go
24. Re-Arrange You
25. The Chase
28. If I Could Change It All
29. An Intentional Confrontation
30. A Junkie's Blues
31. Fear City Slide
32. All The Promises
33. Walk In The Shadows
34. Last Time In Paris
Spoiler Note: Spoilers will be marked at the end, but there are no spoilers during the review.
The show was fantastic. Geoff seemed a bit restrained during the first Mindcrime set – not much, but a little (he really pulled out all the stops during II though.) This was my fourth time seeing that whole album live, and it’s always a lot of fun – although at this point I’d much prefer hearing other Queensryche material. There’s not much else to say about the first set. Very good, as always.
We waited about 20 minutes during the intermission and then Mindcrime II started. They changed the intro a bit – there’s more guitar. It’s very cool, and the video is very fitting that goes with it. The videos for the Mindcrime II set seem to be slightly better than the first ones (although pretty comparable.) “I’m American” is also much more refined live than it was last summer. Very good tune.
I wasn’t sure how the album would work live, but it was great. “Hostage” totally mowed me down and “The Hands” solo is purely awesome. At this point, I don’t care what anybody says… Stone was the star guitarist of the Mindcrime II set. In fact, I’d say he has something like 70% of the leads – and they’re great! His tone and everything was perfect. He was pretty animated and came over our way quite a bit. “One Foot In Hell” is just a perfect stage song – and again, features Stone’s great lead work.
“Re-Arrange You” is played at normal speed as best I can tell. Geoff isn’t on stage for “The Chase,” but I don’t really see the problem with that. If he had been singing, it would’ve been very hard to hear him down in front, because we were mostly getting a face full of drums and bass. “Murderer?” is amazing live,and the highlight of the whole show for me. It seems like the story of both albums just really come together in this song. Eddie kicks it off with a little slap bass that was very impressive. I won’t spoil anything in this song, but let’s just say the theatrics are pretty sweet as well. “Murderer?” was a very impressive song live and the entire band did a very good job with it.
Hands down the new “Circles” is better. It’s a different vibe – it almost has a western/country feel to it, but it works very well. Same lyrics as the original, but the voices only show up at the end. Hopefully this version is captured on a live album.
Last night’s show was the best I’ve heard from Pamela as well. Usually she’s a bit buried in the mix, but I could hear her loud and clear and she seems like she’s really been working hard – her parts sounded great. “If I Could Change it All” and “Intentional Confrontation” were very nicely done – and again, especially Stone’s solo at the end of the latter.
“Fear City Slide” and “All The Promises” worked well live too. ATP is a very fitting closer to the Mindcrimes, but I’m glad they come back with encores; otherwise the show would end on a rather depressing note.
The production was very tight and they didn’t seem to have any hitches pulling it off. Some of it is irritating, like the actor Dr. X and Dio both sing in “The Chase” video. I don’t like that, it seems needlessly confusing. They probably should’ve just had the actor do all of it and credit Dio (I’m sure he wouldn’t have minded.) I still don’t really like having an actor as Nikki either. It’s weird when you have him and Geoff on stage and both of them in the videos. It’s one character, but two people… blah. Otherwise, II has a very solid production. There were lots of people on stage for “Hostage” (I really dug the “State of Mindcrime” banner that was up for it.)
The audience was very enthusiastic; especially considering it was the third night of Chicago. I heard a lot more people singing along to Mindcrime II than I expected. We sang along to everything and really got into the show. Eddie came over and gave us thumbs up at one point – and we had plenty of guitar solos played in our faces.
It was a great show, and much better than I was expecting, because honestly the second half of Mindcrime II can get a little tiring to listen to (at least for me), but it went over just fine and seemed perfect live. I didn’t mind seeing Mindcrime I again either. In fact, now I’m really looking forward to seeing both again in two months!
They played “Walk in the Shadows” and “Last Time in Paris” for encores. I’m glad they do the encores, because the band – especially Geoff – seems to connect more with the audience, as they’re more relaxed when they’re not doing the production. Ending the show on a lighter note is definitely a good thing.
Here Be Spoilers!
Okay... Mindcrime I is performed the same as before - Mary blows her brains out after a phone call from Dr. X.
Mindcrime II... the story is pretty interesting, the end is rather predictable though. As far as the songs... during "I'm American" there's people wearing formal clothes drinking wine and laughing. Geoff gets these people to the ground at gun point and knocks out a woman. He also throws out fake money during the song. For "One Foot In Hell" Nikki/Geoff is walking around on the street singing. "Hostage" has Geoff in court. There's a lot of people on stage for this. There's a judge, two laywers, and a jury. The prosecutor is pretty animated - slamming his notebook and pointing at Geoff, etc. Geoff sits in the middle of the lawyers in front of the judge, but moves around during the song. The jury holds up paper with "Guilty" written at the end of the song.
"The Hands" basically has "The Hands" video in the background... I don't remember anything too interesting acting wise for this. "Speed of Light" has a decent video with masked men walking quickly back and forth across stage several times. For "Signs Say Go" there isn't much to say.. it was either during this song or "Re-Arrange You" (I think Re-Arrange You) Geoff gets out a big chest and suits up in a combat vest during the solo. I think it's during one of these songs, Geoff throws a crumpled memo from Dr. X into the audience.
"The Chase" has a video with X in a limo and GT on a motorcycle singing back and forth, at the end of the song they crash.
During "Murderer?" Nikkie drags a blindfolded Dr. X out tied to a chair. This song is incredibly intense. It's really one of the band's best in terms of blending music with performance. After the end of the rapid snare in the song where you can faintly hear gun fire if you listen on the CD, Geoff shoots Dr. X in the head, which sends blood flying out of X's mouth. My arm actually got quite a bit of X blood on it! With a bloody X on the floor Geoff closes the song "And what now?"
For the slower songs, Geoff looks pretty dejected and sits on a couch. Mary remains at the top of the stage most of the time on a platform. The videos work really well here.
During "Intentional Confrontation" Geoff pulls a bunch of tools he could use to kill himself out of a chest, including a noose, which he briefly puts around his neck. He finds a needle and sits back down.
During "Fear City Slide" he injects... and dies of an overdose in the middle of the song. The solo really cliamxes the whole deal.
Mary comes back down with Geoff/Nikki - now dead, and they sing "All The Promises" together.
12/7 - Jon Oliva
Last edited by EvilCheeseWedge; 09-18-2006 at 01:39 PM.