ARMOURED SAINT  With their debut EP, a band from Seattle revolutionized music a long time ago—41 years ago, to be exact. Queensrÿche decided it would be a good idea to relive that period of time by performing both the EP and their debut album, The Warning, on a tour aptly named The Origins tour. They added Armored Saint as their opening act specifically for the event.

This Saturday could not arrive soon enough; I had highlighted this date on my calendar for some time. The Théâtre Beanfield was completely booked, with a huge queue of eager attendees awaiting the doors to open, so I wasn’t the only one wondering about this concert for a while.


ARMOURED SAINT  The evening began with Armored Saint, and the audience quickly pumped their first to the rhythm of the song “End Of The Attention Span”. On stage, Joey Vera is as dynamic as ever, and the same is true for Jeff Duncan and Phil Sandoval’s guitar work. They trade places on innumerable occasions and interact with the crowd non-stop. John Bush has a loud voice and is blazing with passion. John was joined on vocals by the fans during the songs “Tribal Dance” and “Raising Fear.” The crowd was kept engaged by the crushing riff of “The Pillar,” and it was wonderful to hear this beloved song making a comeback in the set list after all these years.

Gonzo Sandoval, the drummer, appeared to be quite pleased with what he was seeing, but it was during “March Of The Saint” that the audience simply blew the roof off the venue when singing the chorus. John is always entertaining to watch because he is constantly moving and engaging with the audience. “Aftermath” showed off the band’s more technical side and showed that they were firing on all cylinders. The hour-long set concluded with a bang as fans showed their appreciation for “Win Hands Down,” “Can U Deliver,” and “Reign Of Fire.” This was an amazing performance, even though many fans would have preferred a few more songs.

ARMOURED SAINT  After the audience had warmed up, Queensrÿche took the stage to perform their Origins set. There are no surprises here; the band performs The Warning and the EP in the same order as it appears on the LPs. When Todd La Torre entered the stage during the opening scream of “Queen Of The Reich,” the crowd went crazy and I got chills. He was wearing a Montreal Canadiens shirt. His clear and strong voice transported everyone back to 1983. Along with singing the original high-pitched vocals exactly as they were recorded, Todd dances about the stage and engages with the crowd all the time. The same goosebumps took over as “Nightrider” and “Blinded” came on.

It’s true that watching Todd perform is engrossing, even hypnotizing; it’s easy to lose track of the other band members in favor of him. His voice is really incredible, and he is an incredibly talented performer. After rejoining the band a few years ago, Mike Stone and original guitarist Michael Wilton clearly clicked well together. Their characteristic twin solos, performed at the front of the stage, are the result of their regular trading of guitar solos.

The EP flew by, and when it came time for “Warning,” the audience went bonkers once more, showcasing Casey Grillo’s amazing drumming prowess.


ARMOURED SAINT  during this song. It is also possible that he modified the heads of his kick drums to match the album cover. That was a lovely subtle touch that was fitting for this particular tour. Another song you don’t often hear is “Deliverance,” and it was so moving that the audience joined Todd in song once more. The first line of “Take Hold Of The Flame” was also sung by the crowd, which caught Todd off guard. He let the crowd to sing until the first shout. Now it was time for another classic that hadn’t been included in the set list in forty years, and I have to admit that the band did a fantastic job of playing all the nuances of “Before The Storm” with precision. Naturally, their set came to an end ending on a great note with the fantastic performance of “Roads To Madness.”

With the songs “Prophecy” and “Screaming In Digital,” the band returned for an encore, and it was evident that the audience was eager for more. But we all knew that this fantastic night had to come to an end at some point.

After just a few songs, everyone with any reservations about Queensrúche’s magnificence had them dispelled. I’m very sure this will rank among my favorite concerts of all time since I’ve never had so many goosebumps in one performance. All I can hope for is that the band will soon realize how much the fans enjoyed this tour and decide to play Promised Land and Rage For Order in its entirety.

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