Queensryche-Promised Land (1994)

To say the musical landscape had not changed in 1994 would be the understatement of well, the ’90s.

Queensryche released Promised Land in 1994 and it wasn’t until 2019 I finally heard it for the first time. 

How about some Backstory on why it took me over 2 Decades around to getting this on vinyl. 

Queensryche was a band whose stuff I always bought in the 80s on cassette tape. The Ryche never made the same album twice as I can attest to that and once 1990 rolled around I purchased the latest release from these guys Empire on CD.

Empire of course sold tons and was a good hard rock album.

But then something funny happened. 1994 rolls around and Promised Land showed up in the records shops and I ignored it. Why?  I have no idea. You think with me liking Empire I would have pounced on the latest works from the Seattle boys.

Nope. I passed.

Fast forward to the Spring of 2019.

I was in a local record shop that had all used stuff but they had some stuff still sealed from a previous owner and two records that I noticed that had sat there for a while was Promised Land with a $28 tag and KISS Animalize with a $25 tag.

I talked to the owner if he would be willing to come down on the price and if so I would walk out with both. He said name your price. I told him I would give him $40 cash for both. He said sure and that was that.

A few months earlier I bought a used copy of The Warning the 1983 album by Queensryche and that was a great rediscovery for me as a listener.

So seeing that Promised Land needed a good shelf to reside on (lol) I took the plunge.

What are my findings at listening to this after I snubbed it for years?

A pretty damn fine album that is out there lyrically and sonically. Basically,  if you were to dump Pink Floyd and Queensryche into a blender. Promised Land is what would come out.

A pretty trippy album actually and that’s perhaps the best thing I can say about this album. Lead Singer Geoff Tate sings for his supper on this album but gone are the days of Queen of the Reich where the double bass drums and Tate were in a race for the over the top award in speed metal. That stuff was from 83. 11 years on the band has evolved.

Chris Degarmo has a huge presence on this album. Basically writing or co-writing all of the tracks that make up Promised Land. Degarmo a few years later quit and was never heard from again. 

The flow of the album from track to track is neat as some tracks are linked together and as well Tate blasts around some sax on a couple of tracks which believe or not you wouldn’t think it would work in the context of a Ryche Tune but it does. 

Anyone up for some Queensax?

The title track which clocks in over 8 minutes is wicked, somewhat heavy but tunes like Lady Jane are the counterbalance as it features piano but has some catchy guitar work courtesy of Degramo and Micheal Wilton.  

I have to add that drummer Scott Rockenfield plays all kinds of styles on this. Almost 80s Peart like in spots. Percussion is huge on this recording.

Course all things are not soft on this album. Damaged and I Am I are the heavy ones so if you think its a soft hard rock album it isn’t as Promised Land picks its spots between Ryche Heavy and Ryche Mellow (not too mellow mind you)

Promised Land sold well back in 94. Platinum in the U.S and Gold In Canada considering it was Grunger time on the charts.

This is not your over the top Metal Record. It’s a very diverse album and come to think of it this may be a headphones kind of album with everything going on sonically.

I’m really glad I finally came around on this album umm 26 years later! 

 

 

41 thoughts on “Queensryche-Promised Land (1994)”

    1. Yeah I did and I’m hear to say I’m sorry! lol It’s wierd as if they had put out something beforehand that sucked that’s different but they didn’t as Empire was very good.
      I need to get that one on vinyl.
      Thanks for dropping by.

      Like

  1. A really good album, their most impenetrable and layered work to date. The production by James Jimbo Barton is stellar, which makes the absolutely horrific sounding follow-up Hear in the Now Frontier that much more disappointing. Sounds like the drums are cardboard boxes on that album.

    But this one is bombastic, and subtle when it needs to be, great bass, clarity, pounding! Tate’s in fine vocal form, and sax form too. I’ve got the Japanese CD that has a full band version of “Something Else” as a bonus track, and “Real World” from the Last Action Hero soundtrack.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Promised Land is their last great album I think. I quite enjoy Q2K though, despite Kelly “Oven Mitts” Gray. Tribe is passable, and after that it was awful until Todd joined. Ever since then it seems like they’ve been treading water, playing better music, and more in a metal style, but whatever was pushing them to progress from album to album just isn’t there anymore.

    Really, the two most important members of the band (DeGarmo and Tate) were the first to go. I think they were the one’s pushing the innovation, but it was clear that they’d lost that even by Hear in the Now. They went back to basics on that one, they went grunge after it had already died as opposed to going grunge in 1994 when it was at its peak. I respect them for not doing in in ’94, and I’m just confused as to why they went for bland alternative in ’97 when the scene had already become a whiny parody of itself and died.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. DeGramo was a huge part of the Ryche Sound that’s for sure. I can’t get into any of there recent stuff nothing personal just not my deal.

      Like

    1. I watched a show on youtube from 94. Big production and almost Floyd like in its presentation at times. This one is sonically brilliant and the fact that it sold in Grunge Mania is even more impressive.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. This was one of the last Ryche albums I bought. I loved it. I AM I is one of my favorites and the way it ends with that fast skipping, repeating the I I I I and then blasting in to the next song. DeGarmo was on fire. When he left, so did I.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Just ok for me. A band I need to check out. For whatever reason they bugged me when Silent Lucidity blew up. But, I just saw a billboard with them in concert so I need to check the date, see if it’s happening and figure out what version of Queensryche is playing. Lol.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s kinda weird how that can happen but at times it does. It sucks now that It’s two versions of this band. If I had my choice I would go and see Tate. I always prefer the original cat singing.
      I’ll get off my soapbox now!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Had to come here for an ear cleanse after reading Harrison talking about Ed Sheeran!

    HEY! How are ya. I’m fine. I love this album, it is my favourite QR and the only tour I saw them on.

    I agree it’s their softest and I’m glad you came around to it eventually. It’s not just soft, but very technical, like Rage for Order was. Listening to Dis con nec ted and you’ll really heard that technical aspect, but also mixed with that stoned ’94 vibe they had.

    I still have the video game too, where you can walk around the cabin and watch videos of them playing.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. This album is a favorite for me as my tastes in 1994 were exactly like this album. I still wanted some hard rock but something a bit different and lyrics a bit grittier. Songs like Bridge, the title track, Lady Jane, One More Time And Someone Else? (There is also a band version of it which is better in my opinion) tick all the boxes.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I don’t know much about this band…the song that pops in my empty head is “Silent Lucidity”… I do remember them being very good musicians. I remember seeing them more on videos than hearing them on the radio.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That was there big hit for sure. Great players back in the day and they sold some serious numbers in records.
      Promsied Land selling in 94 from a band from the 80s was impressive to say the least. Maybe its because they were from Seattle lol

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yea being from Seattle didn’t hurt during that time lol.
        You are right though..The 90s weren’t easy on 80s bands

        Liked by 1 person

      2. All the bands that survived Bon Jovi kept on trucking. Keep The Faith was a great record in 92 and may be there best in my opinion if that matters,lol

        Liked by 1 person

  8. So I confess that when Queensryche first came out, I lumped them into the generic hair-band category, but after I listened to them, I realized they are definitely talented and not your run-of-the-mill band. Thanks for the post. Cheers!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. There debut EP was Priest like heavy than once the full-length albums came out they kept changing up their sound.
      In other words no two Ryche records sound the same which for them worked to there advantage as they had a loyal following.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. These guys did which is what I respected about them. Why I ignored this for all these years is beyond me. Especially when I purchased all their stuff from the EP in 83 to Empire in 90.
        Unsolved Mysteries better to stay Unsolved I suppose. lol

        Liked by 1 person

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