Promised Land (Queensrÿche album)

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Promised Land
Queensryche - Promised Land cover.jpg
Studio album by Queensrÿche
Released October 18, 1994
Recorded August 1992–May 1994
Studio At home, The Dungeon, and Big Log Studio, Seattle, Washington,
Triad Studios, Redmond, Washington,
Music Grinder Studio, Hollywood, California
Genre
Length 48:03
Label EMI
Producer
Queensrÿche chronology
Empire
(1990)
Promised Land
(1994)
Hear in the Now Frontier
(1997)
Singles from Promised Land
  1. "I Am I"
    Released: 1994
  2. "Bridge"
    Released: 1994
  3. "Someone Else?"
    Released: 1995
Music sample
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 3/5 stars[1]
Chicago Tribune 3/4 stars[2]
Collector's Guide to Heavy Metal 5/10[3]
Entertainment Weekly C+[4]
Q 4/5 stars[5]

Promised Land is the fifth studio album by the American heavy metal band Queensrÿche and their highest charting record to date. It was released by EMI on October 18, 1994, four years after their successful Empire album. The album was re-released on June 10, 2003 in a remastered edition with bonus tracks.

Song overview[edit]

The songs on this album are tied together firmly by the theme of success and how to deal with it, and reflections on American society and how that shapes our goals in life.[citation needed]

The album opens with "9.28 a.m.", a musique concrète sequence put together by drummer Scott Rockenfield. The band wanted to have a cool intro that was cinematic and moody, and Rockenfield was given complete freedom to make something.[6] Rockenfield went out to record natural sounds using a portable ADAT tape recorder, which he sent through a rack of effects in his apartment and started designing his own sound effects out of it.[6] Some of the recorded sounds also appear on other tracks on the record, such as the sound of a train on "Disconnected".[6] "9.28 a.m." follows a soul from death through the ether into a reincarnation, and rebirth, followed by the sound of a crying baby. The title refers to the time Rockenfield was born.

"9.28 a.m." floats into "I Am I". This song is driven by a heavy riff and Geoff Tate's trademark vocals to a background of percussion instruments. Chris DeGarmo performs cello and sitar parts on this song as well as the guitar solo. After almost four minutes it merges into "Damaged", a more straightforward heavy rocker.

"Out of Mind" and the subsequent "Bridge" are more quiet acoustic pieces, both of whose lyrics were written by Chris DeGarmo. The last one deals with the relationship with his father, who died during the Promised Land sessions.

The eight-minute title track is the first track in the Queensrÿche catalogue to be credited to the entire group. It is a rather dark piece, full of Rockenfield tape effects, DeGarmo/Wilton twin guitar work and it marks Tate's first appearance as a saxophonist. On this track, the theme of the album is most present, as it deals with the drawbacks of success. It ends in a bar scene of people talking and drinking (slightly reminiscent of the ending of "Welcome to the Machine" on Pink Floyd's Wish You Were Here, which deals with a similar subject matter). These sound effects merge into "Disconnected," a rather alienating piece dealing with the American consumerist society. It features Tate on sax again.

The subsequent "Lady Jane" deals with the similar theme of the influence of commercials. It is a heavy ballad featuring DeGarmo on piano and another twin solo.

"My Global Mind" is another more straightforward rock song dealing with globalization. After that, "One More Time" is an acoustic rocker, with lyrics much in the vein of the title track.

The album's final track, "Someone Else?", features just Tate on vocals and DeGarmo on piano.

Legacy[edit]

In July 2014, Guitar World ranked Promised Land at number 23 in their "Superunknown: 50 Iconic Albums That Defined 1994" list.[7]

Track listing[edit]

All credits adapted from the original liner notes.[8]

No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. "9:28 a.m." Scott Rockenfield 1:44
2. "I Am I" Chris DeGarmo, Geoff Tate 3:57
3. "Damaged" DeGarmo, Tate 3:58
4. "Out of Mind" DeGarmo 4:35
5. "Bridge" DeGarmo 3:29
6. "Promised Land" DeGarmo, Eddie Jackson, Rockenfield, Tate, Michael Wilton 7:58
7. "Disconnected" Rockenfield, Tate 4:45
8. "Lady Jane" DeGarmo 4:14
9. "My Global Mind" DeGarmo, Rockenfield, Tate, Wilton 4:21
10. "One More Time" DeGarmo, Tate 4:18
11. "Someone Else?" DeGarmo, Tate 4:44

Personnel[edit]

Queensrÿche
Production
  • Queensrÿche - producers, engineers, mixing at Bad Animals Studio, Seattle, Summer 1994
  • James Barton – producer, engineer, mixing
  • Phil Brown – assistant to the producer
  • Tom Hall – engineer
  • Eric Fischer – assistant engineer
  • Matt Gruber – mixing assistant
  • Don Tyler - digital editing
  • Stephen Marcussen – mastering
  • Hugh Syme – art direction, design, illustrations

Charts[edit]

Certifications[edit]

Country Organization Year Sales
USA RIAA 1994 Platinum (+ 1,000,000)[23]
Canada CRIA 1994 Gold (50,000)[24]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Erlewine, Stephen Thomas. "Promised Land - Queensrÿche". AllMusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved February 17, 2013. 
  2. ^ Webber, Brad (December 15, 1994). "Queensryche Promised Land (EMI)". articles.chicagotribune.com. Chicago Tribune. Retrieved May 10, 2013. 
  3. ^ 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. 
  4. ^ Eddy, Chuck (October 21, 1994). "Album Review: 'Promised Land' Review". EW.com. Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved February 17, 2013. 
  5. ^ "Queensrÿche - Promised Land". Q. December 1994. p. 142. 
  6. ^ a b c "Scott Rockenfield (Queensryche) 2013 Interview on the Signals of Intuition". The Signals of Intuition. 99.1 CJAM-FM. May 25, 2013. Retrieved June 14, 2013. 
  7. ^ "Superunknown: 50 Iconic Albums That Defined 1994". GuitarWorld.com. July 14, 2014. Retrieved July 14, 2014. 
  8. ^ Promised Land (CD Booklet). Queensrÿche. EMI Records. 1994. 7243-8-30711-2-8. 
  9. ^ Promised Land (CD Booklet). Queensrÿche. EMI Records. 1994. TOCP-8396. 
  10. ^ Promised Land (CD Booklet). Queensrÿche. Capitol Records. 2003. 72435-80529-2-3. 
  11. ^ "Promised Land Billboard Albums". AllMusic. Rovi Corporation. Archived from the original on December 14, 2012. Retrieved February 17, 2013. 
  12. ^ "Queensrÿche - Promised Land (album)". Swedishcharts.com. Media Control Charts. Retrieved February 17, 2013. 
  13. ^ "Album – Queensrÿche, Promised Land". Charts.de (in German). Media Control Charts. Retrieved February 17, 2013. 
  14. ^ a b c "Queensryche Official Charts". Official Charts Company. Retrieved January 13, 2017. 
  15. ^ "Queensrÿche - Promised Land". Hitparade.ch (in German). Media Control Charts. Retrieved February 17, 2013. 
  16. ^ 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. 
  17. ^ "Queensrÿche - Empire (Album)". GfK Dutch Charts (in Dutch). Media Control Charts. Retrieved May 8, 2012. 
  18. ^ "Top Albums/CDs - Volume 60, No. 16, November 07 1994". Library and Archives Canada. November 7, 1994. Retrieved February 17, 2013. 
  19. ^ "Queensrÿche - Promised Land (album)". Austriancharts.at (in German). Media Control Charts. Retrieved February 17, 2013. 
  20. ^ a b c "Promised Land Billboard Singles". AllMusic. Rovi Corporation. Archived from the original on December 14, 2012. Retrieved February 17, 2013. 
  21. ^ "Top Singles - Volume 60, No. 18, November 21, 1994". Library and Archives Canada. November 21, 1994. Retrieved February 17, 2013. 
  22. ^ "Top Singles - Volume 60, No. 26, January 30, 1995". Library and Archives Canada. January 30, 1995. Retrieved February 17, 2013. 
  23. ^ "RIAA Searchable Database: search for Queensryche". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved January 13, 2017. 
  24. ^ "CRIA Gold and Platinum Search: Queensryche". Music Canada. Retrieved February 17, 2013.