I’m partial to a nice bit of 80s Heavy Metal and the more progressive the better.  One of the primary exponents of such music are the inexplicably umlauted Queensrÿche.

They were due to tour last year with a reformed — but let’s hope not a completely reformed — Thin Lizzy.  The show was cancelled, perhaps due to Phil Lynott still being dead, and they rescheduled a solo show for last night.  My mate, Stoobs, had discovered on the Rÿche’s website that the show was going to be a “Full American Production” of their concept works, Operation: Mindcrime and, imaginatively enough, Operation: Mindcrime II.

Mindcrime 1 was one of the albums of my youth.  I love that album.  It tells a somewhat contrived tale of a junkie who becomes embroiled in a mindcontrolling cult and bumps people off for them for reasons never fully explained.  At somepoint, he’s told to kill a priest and a nun.  The nun used to be a hooker.  Or something.  He loses his mind, mourning for this nun/whore type thing and the album closes with out hero in the loony bin.  I’m making it sound rubbish, but it really is a cracking album.

Mindcrime 2, released nearly 20 years later, picks up the story with the hero from MC1 getting released from jail and in the most glowing terms I can offer, the album is shit.

Anyway, according to the website, they were going to play, in their entirety, in order, from start to finish, both Mindcrime albums.

So Stoobs — who incidentally doesn’t particularly like either album — and I toddled off to the Carling Academy in Glasgow to see what this Full American Production really meant.  Seemingly, it meant Rock Opera.  It was quite horrible to watch.  To listen to, they were immense.  But why lead tonsil jockey Geoff Tate tried to act the story when his acting capabilities seemed limited to shocked and perplexed and I’m trapped in a box I’ll never know.  Stoobs reckoned that maybe Tate was having a midlife crisis.  I suggested that could only be true is Tate was planning on living until he was 98.

Last time I saw Queensrÿche was in 1991, during the Empire tour, and they played Mindcrime 1 from start to finish during that, and I don’t remember it being so ropey.  Or cheesy.  Or shitty.

Plus, last night, during the silly video montages that were playing above the stage, they changed the bloody story!  All of the sudden, the nun killed herself!  It wasn’t the junkie dude after all!

Shaking our heads, Stoobs and I left shortly into the second set — along with half of the crowd, it seemed — and made our ways back to a nearby pub where we managed to see the last five minutes of the same football game we saw prior to the gig.

Stoobs and I are still to see a complete concert together.

Can’t beat live music, though.

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