Heavy Metal Power

A blog about Heavy Metal Music!

Metal Musings, Metal News

Queesnsryche Replaces Geoff Tate with Clone

Back in 1996, Judas Priest recruited Tim Owens as their lead singer, replacing the irreplaceable Rob Halford. Owens was discovered because of his involvement in a Judas Priest tribute band. This was a novelty at the time, a tribute band singer now singing for the actual band he was in tribute of, and the story was co opted by Hollywood and turned into a mediocre movie, generically titled Rock Star.

ripper owens

For many Judas Priest fans this move was both sad and distasteful. Undoubtedly, this was the lowest point in band’s history, lower then even the blatant commercialism of the Turbo album. When you replace a member who was a major creative contributor and the lead singer, you no longer have the same band. And getting a guy who was in a Priest cover band makes the whole thing appear like a big pathetic joke.

It looks like Queesnsryche ignored this whole wretched affair in Judas Priest’s history because they are treading down the same comically tragic path. For years they have plodded on after being decimated by the departure of their main songwriter Chris DeGarmo. They haven’t produced a worthwhile album since he left. At least they could still put on a decent show though, certainly not at the level they once could, but still worthy. Now they are replacing lead singer Geoff Tate. Lead singers are hard enough to replace, but Tate, as Halford, was a main creative component of the band, not to mention one of heavy metal’s most iconic and influential singers. But there’s another component to this that makes it even more comical than Judas Priest’s tribute band singer replacement. Queensryche is replacing Geoff Tate with a singer who replaced a Tate clone in a Queesnryche clone band. A clone of a clone if you will. Or a clone once removed? Let me explain.

Todd La TorreTodd LaTorre was (is?) the singer for Crimson Glory. He replaced their original singer Midnight and tries his darndest to sound like Midnight, basically a Midnight copy cat without the passion. Crimson Glory itself was a Queensryche clone band. When I first heard Crimson Glory’s Dragon Lady in 1986 I thought it was Queensryche. Not sounded like Queensryche, I thought it was Queensryche. Midnight was a dead ringer for Tate and their musical style was very, very similar. To their credit, Crimson Glory persevered and established a cult following. I like them; they are a good band with some great songs, just not very original. Actually extremely unoriginal, a clone.

And now the replacement singer of a clone singer is the singer for the band he was cloned from. That’s some funny shit.


  1. Crimson Glory was never a copy of Queensrÿche. Both bands had their own style in the same genre and Midnight doesn’t sound anything like Geoff Tate. Ok this LaTorre dude tried to copy Midnight and is now going to copy Tate But saying that Crimson Glory is a second hand copy of Queensrÿche is a big insult to the band and the genius of Midnight.If you think Midnight sounds like Tate you have a hearing problem. Both are amazing vocalists and that is the only thing that connects them

  2. Dan

    I’m not the only one who thinks that Midnight sounds like Tate:

    Midnight sounds like the little brother of Geoff Tate, whose voice never broke.

    Midnight sounds like a cross of Geoff Tate and Warrel Dane

    The vocals of Midnight are stunning , as his Geoff Tate inspired vocals reach for the stratosfear.

  3. Oblarg

    Sorry, I couldn’t disagree more with this article.

    Are there similarities between Midnight and Geoff Tate? Yes, of course there are. Find me an 80’s operatic prog/power vocalist (John Arch excluded, he’s on his own plane of existence) who doesn’t, in some capacity, resemble Tate. Calling him a “clone” is utterly misguided, though – he clearly has his own character and mannerisms, as well as his own tone. He never sounds like he is trying to be Tate.

    Crimson Glory itself takes obvious Queensryche influence, but they aren’t a clone band, either. In fact, their songwriting is markedly different in many ways: riff constructions and the extent of the lead guitar, to name a few.

    Now, I’m not that hopeful for the future of the band, largely because I haven’t heard anything from Queensryche that I truly love since The Warning. This is certainly a step in the right direction, though. Lack of DeGarmo aside, even a cursory glance at the available information shows that Geoff Tate had no longer had any interest in making remotely good music, and that the other members were tired of having no say in the songwriting process. Add to this the fact that Tate simply can’t cut it singing the old material live anymore, and I don’t blame them for kicking him out. Did they find a particularly unique-sounding replacement? No, but LaTorre certainly has quite a set of pipes and can handle the old material, which is more than can be said for Tate these days. I’ll wait until I hear some new material before I write them off. There’s a better chance of it being worth a damn now than there was before this move.

    • Dan

      Oblarg thanks for the great comment. Like I said I thought CG literally was Queensryche when I first heard them in 86, mainly because of Midnight, but partly because the style is so similar. Although I like CG I always think of them as a “clone”, and inferior to the original. Tate is one of the best. Midnight is excellent, such passion. La Torre doesn’t come close to Tate or Midnight. Rising West was sort of a fun little idea, do some old QR stuff with a new guy singing, but it wasn’t Queensryche. QR is now more like a tribute band and a joke. Wilton, Rockenfield, and Jackson should have just started a new band.

  4. Dean

    They did its called Queensryche!I saw them at Halfway jam last night everyone loved them! Big improvment they are worth seeing now! The future looks bright for Queensryche. Great concert!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  5. Say Tann

    Well at least is isn’t the lame dude in the new “Foreigner” AKA “Fat Mick puts together awful cover band – clones own act…”

  6. docedwards

    I think Todd is doing a good job except when he, like you say, flat out copies Tate on some songs especially Roads to Madness live. Its painful to hear. He does a great job on other songs but, its my one gripe. He also tends to conk out late in shows. Struggling mightily back in April of this year.

Leave a Reply

Theme by Anders Norén