"The New Reality" 

By The Gil-Man

  I have personally been a huge Geoff Tate fan for a long time now, going back to the first 5 Queensryche studio albums, beginning with their 1984 release, "The Warning", and continuing on with "Rage for Order", Operation: Mindcrime", "Empire" and "Promised Land".  From Queensryche's early metal sound to their more familiar prog rock/concept albums, I really got into those records and still listen to them, and other popular prog rock bands, to this day.  Fast forward to Tate's current band, "Operation: Mindcrime", and their 3rd studio release, and final installment of their musical trilogy, "The New Reality", and I'm feeling a little less interested.

 As I mentioned before, I am a fan of a number of prog rock bands and albums, even though it's not my absolute favorite genre of rock music, but "The New Realityr" is, well, definitely a new reality for me.  That's not to say I didn't enjoy any of the songs on the record, I did.  The 5th track in particular, "Under Control", is more of a true rock song with heavier, more melodic guitar riffs that brought me back to the "Empire" days, and "The Wave" was also a song I could get into, although it was teetering on the overwhelming prog side of the other songs on the album.

 Where the album does shine is in it's musicianship, with some top-notch players backing up Tate's unmistakable vocals.  The song writing is equally impressive, both complex and technical, which, if you're really into prog rock to the nth degree, is something you may really enjoy and is worth a listen.