Queensrÿche – American Soldier [Review]

American Soldier is the tenth (yes, tenth) full-length release from the US prog metal band Queensrÿche. The album’s set release date is March 31, 2009 on Rhino Entertainment.

This album might be the most bland and boring album I have ever reviewed. This is the first album in recent memory that it took me multiple tries to simply listen through it. It simply did not draw my attention. Before I had even heard the album, though, this is aout what I expected. After the letdown that was Operation: Mindcrime II, and the fact that this album is a concept album themed about American soldiers (go figure), I was ready for a thrill ride of suck. To my surprise, however, there was no suck to be had, nor is there any good to be had. There’s simply nothing.

Queensrÿche seem to have wandered far off their unbeaten path from the days of the original Operation: Mindcrime and found their way on to the highway that is modern-day cock rock (with added wailing vocals). Queensrÿche, in my mind, was a purely progressive metal band. Over the years, they have not really lived up to this, it is even more clear now. The most progressive element on this album is the use of a saxophone for about four seconds to round out one of the solos on the album.

It’s always hard to come up with anything to really write about an album with no real notoriety. I can deal with an album that doesn’t being anything new to the table, but when you use old and tired material with no passion or excitement, it makes for an extremely boring listen. Almost unbearable at times. I’m sure there are people out there who will love this, people who will hate it, but I can find any basis for either emotion.

Track picks: “Man Down!” and “Hundred Mile Stare”

Overall Score: 5/10 devil horns

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8 responses to “Queensrÿche – American Soldier [Review]

  1. It’s worth noting that despite this, “Queen of the Reich” still remains one of the best metal songs ever.

  2. Two words:
    Chris. DeGarmo.

    Mend the fence, guys.

  3. I think too many of you compare any any QR albums to OMC and Empire. No QR album is good unless it sounds like these two album. If you would take these two out of the equation and compare it to albums from Promise land through OMC II, it is clearly this is the best album they made. How anybody say that these are boring songs. Promise land maybe had 3 heavy soung and rest were laid back. QR has never made the same record twice. They been doing this for 20 or more years. Put away your old QR CDs and focus on the New CD in front of you. It sounds like most you play OMC and Empire right before you listen to american soldier.

    • The problem is not that this album is not another O:M, but that they have strayed from the music they are best at making. I just don’t think that Queensrÿche is capable at putting forth a great effort at this style of music, and should at least keep the style from the old days in which they did so well.

  4. Open-minded listeners will either like or dislike this album on the basis of some reason, (but need to give it 5 or 6 listens, by the way). The review states there is “nothing” and yet hails the most progressive part the “4 second saxophone part” that is actually a throwback riff to the end of a song on Promised Land (QR started this “riff from a past album” with Mindcrime 2), so undermines it’s accuracy and worth, IMHO. The progressive aspect of the album would be the experimental style that distinguishes this from other QR albums (each QR album is distinct but none more so than this) and seems to disappoint the most vocal critics of their music for the simple reason it isn’t Mindcrime, Empire, Rage or , as the posts above demonstrate, “Queen of the Reich”. I found it a strange beast but it is growing heavily on me, and my girlfriend who has no love for the band, but enjoys good music. Please give it 6 spins on headphones and don’t dismiss the chance to enjoy an album that has a lot to offer.

    • I will say this, I would mind less that it was not like O:M if it were actually a good album, but the album just isn’t that good in my opinion. If bands “evolve” and change their style, the least they could do is do it well. If you’re going to change your much beloved style and create bad albums, don’t change at all.

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