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Queensrÿche in their Prime - 100%

xQueenxofxthexReichx, April 21st, 2008

The name Queensrÿche is actually synonymous with video, which is ultimately what makes this VHS and Laserdisc release so sought after. They were - to may knowledge - the first band to create an entire album (Op. Mindcrime) in video format to accompany its audio counterpart, and they've done several other innovative video home releases as well. So what makes Live in Tokyo different? It's long out-of-print, with no prospect of being re-released in the near future, but beyond all of that logistical hoo-ha, this is the band's finest hour.

Now, taking into account my own obvious bias (I mean, just look at my user name) in a performance setting, this period of Queensrÿche blows the socks off of similar bands (such as Iron Maiden). They don't sound *like* the record. They sound *better* than they did on the record. Geoff Tate outclasses his contemporaries in every category. Where Bruce Dickinson would drop down on a high note, Tate doesn't shrink away from going even higher than the notes he originally recorded, and vocal cracking and flaws of any kind seem completely non-existent.

The guitarwork of Michael Wilton and Chris DeGarmo blazes, a twin guitar attack that, here again, makes mincemeat out of similar duos. The bass work of Eddie Jackson is solid, and Scott Rockenfield gives a typically incredible performance behind the set.

Obviously, the best way to get this is on Laserdisc. The VHS is old, and any copies you manage to track down at this point will likely be warped or in possession of other flaws. This is recommended to hardcore Queensrÿche fans and Metal fans alike, but again, the trick is actually getting your hands on a copy.