Empire (Queensrÿche album)

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Empire
Queensryche - Empire cover.jpg
Studio album by Queensrÿche
Released August 20, 1990
Recorded Spring 1990
Studio
Genre
Length 63:23
Label EMI USA
Producer Peter Collins
Queensrÿche chronology
Operation: Mindcrime
(1988)Operation: Mindcrime1988
Empire
(1990)
Promised Land
(1994)Promised Land1994
Singles from Empire
  1. "Empire"
    Released: 1990
  2. "Silent Lucidity"
    Released: February 14, 1991
  3. "Best I Can"
    Released: June 1991
  4. "Jet City Woman"
    Released: August 1991
  5. "Another Rainy Night (Without You)"
    Released: November 1991
  6. "Anybody Listening?"
    Released: 1992
Audio sample
"Silent Lucidity"
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 4.5/5 stars[1]
Collector's Guide to Heavy Metal 7/10[2]
Entertainment Weekly D[3]
PopMatters 6/10 stars[4]
(20th Anniversary Edition)
Record Collector 3/5 stars[5]
(20th Anniversary Edition)
The Rolling Stone Album Guide 3.5/5 stars[6]

Empire is the fourth full-length album by the American heavy metal band Queensrÿche, released on August 20, 1990. The album stands as Queensrÿche's most commercially successful release, reaching triple-platinum status[7] and the primary single, the power ballad "Silent Lucidity", reached No. 1 on the Mainstream Rock Tracks and No. 9 on the Billboard Hot 100.[8] "Silent Lucidity" was also nominated for the Grammy Awards of 1992 in the categories Best Rock Song and Best Rock Vocal Performance by a Duo or Group.[9]

Reception[edit]

Empire has received generally positive reviews from critics since its release.

AllMusic praised the album, selecting the songs "Jet City Woman," "Empire," and "Silent Lucidity" as the album's best tracks. The review stated that the band went for "a song-oriented approach that is more art rock and less metal" with lyrics that talk about social and physical handicaps in "Best I Can" and issues such as poverty in regret in "Della Brown" and romance with "Another Rainy Night (Without You)" and "Hand On Heart." The reviewer concluded by praising the band's mature sound and the production done by Peter Collins.[1]

Record Collector gave the 20th anniversary edition of the album a positive review. The reviewer called the album a "very pleasant" listen, calling the songs "Best I Can," "Silent Lucidity," and "Jet City Woman" as being some of the band's best material. The review compared Empire's "boring moments" to the band's earlier album's The Warning and Rage for Order. The reviewer concluded by calling the live CD "flawless" and making it a "worthwhile reissue."[5] PopMatters reviewer Adrien Begrand also reviewed the album's 20th anniversary release. Begrand called the album an "enigma" that's "beautifully produced and features some of the band's quintessential songs, but at the same time it's a rather bloated, conceptually scattershot piece of work containing filler that honestly has not aged very well." Begrand praised the songs "Empire," "Another Rainy Night," and "Silent Lucidity," calling them the album's best tracks, favorably comparing "Silent Lucidity" to Pink Floyd's "Comfortably Numb." Begrand had a mixed reaction to the live CD and referred to the cover of "Scarborough Fair" as being "abysmal."[4]

Jim Farber of Entertainment Weekly was highly critical of the album. Farber criticized the album's progressive metal riffs, calling them "tuneless bombast" as well as the dire nature of the lyrics. Farber concluded his review by calling the band members "relentless killjoys."[3]

Track listing[edit]

Side one
No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. "Best I Can" Chris DeGarmo 5:30
2. "The Thin Line" DeGarmo, Geoff Tate, Michael Wilton 5:42
3. "Jet City Woman" DeGarmo, Tate 5:20
Side two
No. Title Writer(s) Length
4. "Della Brown" DeGarmo, Scott Rockenfield, Tate 7:04
5. "Another Rainy Night (Without You)" DeGarmo, Eddie Jackson, Tate 4:44
6. "Empire" Tate, Wilton 5:07
Side three
No. Title Writer(s) Length
7. "Resistance" Tate, Wilton 4:47
8. "Silent Lucidity" DeGarmo 5:45
9. "Hand on Heart" DeGarmo, Tate, Wilton 5:30
Side four
No. Title Writer(s) Length
10. "One and Only" DeGarmo, Wilton 5:52
11. "Anybody Listening?" DeGarmo, Tate 7:40

Personnel[edit]

Queensrÿche
  • Geoff Tate – vocals, keyboards
  • Chris DeGarmo – 6 and 12 strings electric and acoustic guitars, keyboards on "Best I Can" and backing vocals, lead guitar on "Best I Can", "Jet City Woman", "Silent Lucidity", and "Anybody Listening"
  • Michael Wilton – 6 and 12 strings electric and acoustic guitars, lead guitar on "Empire", "Resistance", and "Another Rainy Night"
  • Eddie Jackson – bass guitars, backing vocals
  • Scott Rockenfield – drums, percussion
Additional musicians
  • Michael Kamen – orchestral arrangements on "Silent Lucidity", conductor
  • Randy Gane – message left on answering machine on "Empire"
  • Robert Bailey – keyboards, programming
Production

Charts[edit]

Certifications[edit]

Country Organization Year Sales
USA RIAA 1994 3× Platinum (+ 3,000,000)[7]
Canada CRIA 1991 Platinum (+ 100,000)[29]
UK BPI 1993 Silver (+ 60,000)[30]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Henderson, Alex. "Empire - Queensrÿche". Allmusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved May 7, 2012. 
  2. ^ Popoff, Martin (August 1, 2007). The Collector's Guide to Heavy Metal: Volume 3: The Nineties. Burlington, Ontario, Canada: Collector's Guide Publishing. p. 356. ISBN 978-1-894959-62-9. 
  3. ^ a b Farber, Jim (October 12, 1990). "Empire Review". EW.com. Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved May 7, 2012. 
  4. ^ a b Begrand, Adrien (October 7, 2010). "Queensrÿche: Empire (20th Anniversary Edition)". PopMatters. Retrieved March 16, 2013. 
  5. ^ a b Pinfold, William (December 2010). "Queensrÿche - Empire: 20th Anniversary Edition". Record Collector (382). Retrieved May 8, 2012. 
  6. ^ Rolling Stone list
  7. ^ a b "RIAA Searchable Database: search for Queensryche". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved January 13, 2017. 
  8. ^ a b c d e f g h "Empire Billboard Singles". Allmusic. Rovi Corporation. Archived from the original on December 14, 2012. Retrieved May 7, 2012. 
  9. ^ "34th Grammy Awards - 1992". Rock on the Net .com. Retrieved May 7, 2012. 
  10. ^ a b c Empire (Single sleeve). Queensrÿche. EMI America. 1990. MT 90. 
  11. ^ "Empire Billboard Albums". AllMusic. Rovi Corporation. Archived from the original on December 14, 2012. Retrieved May 7, 2012. 
  12. ^ a b c d "Queensryche Official Charts". Official Charts Company. Retrieved January 13, 2017. 
  13. ^ "Queensrÿche - Empire (Album)". Norwegiancharts.com. Media Control Charts. Retrieved May 8, 2012. 
  14. ^ クイーンズライク - クイーンズライクのアルバム売り上げランキング (in Japanese). Oricon. Retrieved February 17, 2013. 
  15. ^ "Album – Queensrÿche, Empire". Charts.de (in German). Media Control Charts. Retrieved May 8, 2012. 
  16. ^ "Queensrÿche - Empire". Hitparade.ch (in German). Media Control Charts. Retrieved May 8, 2012. 
  17. ^ "Queensrÿche - Empire (Album)". Swedishcharts.com. Media Control Charts. Retrieved May 8, 2012. 
  18. ^ "Queensrÿche - Empire (Album)". GfK Dutch Charts (in Dutch). Media Control Charts. Retrieved May 8, 2012. 
  19. ^ "Top Albums/CDs - Volume 54, No. 1, June 08, 1991". Library and Archives Canada. June 20, 1991. Retrieved May 8, 2012. 
  20. ^ "Queensrÿche - Empire (Album)". Charts.org.nz. Media Control Charts. Retrieved May 8, 2012. 
  21. ^ "Top Singles - Volume 54, No. 2, June 15, 1991". Library and Archives Canada. June 15, 1991. Retrieved May 8, 2012. 
  22. ^ "Single - Queensrÿche, Silent Lucidity". Charts.de (in German). Media Control Charts. Retrieved May 8, 2012. 
  23. ^ "Queensrÿche - Silent Lucidity". Hitparade.ch (in German). Media Control Charts. Retrieved May 8, 2012. 
  24. ^ "Queensrÿche - Silent Lucidity (Number)". GfK Dutch Charts (in Dutch). Media Control Charts. Retrieved May 8, 2012. 
  25. ^ "Queensrÿche - Silent Lucidity (Song)". Charts.org.nz. Media Control Charts. Retrieved May 8, 2012. 
  26. ^ "Queensrÿche - Best I Can". Chart Archive.org. Retrieved May 8, 2012. [dead link]
  27. ^ "Top Singles - Volume 54, No. 11, August 17, 1991". Library and Archives Canada. August 17, 1991. Retrieved May 8, 2012. 
  28. ^ "Top Singles - Volume 54, No. 26, November 30, 1991". Library and Archives Canada. November 30, 1991. Retrieved May 8, 2012. 
  29. ^ "CRIA Gold and Platinum Search: Queensryche". Music Canada. Retrieved May 7, 2012. 
  30. ^ "BPI Certified Awards: Search for Queensryche". British Phonographic Industry. Retrieved May 7, 2012.