Queensryche – ‘Operation: Mindcrime’ Super Deluxe Edition – Box Set Review

What is one of the greatest concept albums of all time? That is right! It is the Queensryche masterpiece, ‘Operation: Mindcrime’. The band is celebrating this album with a Super Deluxe Edition Box Set and it is full or wonderful things. You get 4 CDs, 1 DVD and a book all included in a wonderful and sturdy box. It look like a lot of time was spent on the packaging. And if you look at the back cover, it tells you everything you are going to get…or does it? More on that later.

Before we get to the meat of the box set, the CDs and DVD are housed in a tri-fold cardboard sleeve that is all black with the exception of the logo on the front. The CDs slide in to slots on each side while the DVD is housed in its own mini-cardboard sleeve which slides in to its slot in the middle fold. It is not my favorite way to house CDs as you have to be careful not to scratch them when you insert or pull it out.

The Front Cover
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Queensryche – “Speak the Word” – 12″ Interview Disc

Have you ever seen Interview Disc out in the wild? I normally steer away from them as they were usually never of any interest. Over the last year, for some strange reason, I have come across two that wound up in my collection. The first was because it was a cool picture disc. The second was this one. I mistaken bought it without paying attention to what it really was. I thought it was a 12″ Single for the Queensryche song “Speak the Word”, but instead it was actually an interview disc.

From what I can gather, the purpose of interview discs were so radio stations around the country could have an interview with the band without the band actually having to go to each city to do an interview. It was all done for promotion. And I believe there are two types of interview disc. One is a disc that has all the answers from the band, but no questions. The questions are given to the radio station so the DJ can read the question and play the answer on the vinyl so it looks like the DJ is actually interviewing the band. That is what this disc is. The other disc is the whole interview with both answers and questions that the radio station can play the whole thing.

This interview disc is the one with only answers and I believe it is Chris DeGarmo, but I could be wrong. It was recorded on the road in Europe in 1988 while the band was touring in support of the amazing album ‘Operation: Mindcrime’. Both sides are the same answers so it didn’t matter what side the DJ played.

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Queensryche – “Eyes of a Stranger” – 12″ Single (Limited Edition Gatefold: Video Story Board)

When I hit up Noble Records for the big metal collection he was selling, it wasn’t all Def Leppard Singles I purchased. There was a Queensryche in there as well and it was a single from my favorite album ‘Operation: Mindcrime’. The single was for the song “Eyes of A Stranger” which was only moderately successful as it only reached #35 on the US Mainstream Rock chart. It was played on MTV, but for me it was played constantly as that album was on repeat for most of 1988 and has been played every year (multiple times a year) ever since.

For those that don’t know, ‘Operation: Mindcrime’ was a concept album and this song, “Eyes of a Stranger” was the final track on the album and a culmination of the whole album story. This 12″ Single is a Limited Edition Gatefold that contains a Video Story Board of the video shot for the song. The gatefold has pictures from the video and sums up the story as seen below.

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My Sunday Song – “Silent Lucidity” by Queensrÿche

For My Sunday Song #79, “Silent Lucidity” by the progressive metal band Queensrÿche will be the point of discussion.  The song was released on Valentine’s Day in 1991 and was on their triple platinum selling album ‘Empire’.  “Silent Lucidity” was the band’s top selling single ever in the U.S. where it reached #1 on the Album Rock Tracks and all the way to #9 on the Billboard Top 100.  The song was even nominated for a Grammy for Best Rock Song.

“Silent Lucidity” was a ballad, which was not something the band was known for doing.  The song is absolutely beautiful with the whole lullaby feel to the song, the wonderful orchestration added and lastly, Geoff Tates vocals perfectly fit the mood of the song.  It felt like you were in a dream state while listening to the song which was exactly the impact the band was going for with the song.

The song was supposedly inspired by the book ‘Creative Dreaming’ by Patricia Garfield, PhD which explains how to control your dreams…which I don’t think I have ever been able to do that.  The song is about lucid dreaming which is the where you are actually aware that you are dreaming and as the book states, you can actually have control over parts of the dream.  During the song, there is actually a voice that is explaining how to do just that.  They state…”Visualize your dream. Record it in the present tense. Put it into a permanent form. If you persist in your efforts, you can achieve dream control.”

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