Concert review: Queensrÿche and Armored Saint | 04.06.24, Delmar Hall (with photo gallery)

Photo of Todd La Torre of Queensrÿche by Laura Jerele

“Me, I’m just a young soul looking for a good time tonight.” Such a fitting lyric for not just me, but for pretty much everyone in the crowd for the Queensrÿche and Armored Saint stop at Delmar Hall.

Was it a sea of black concert T-shirts? Yes, myself included, donning a local, heavy metal royalty Anacrusis t-shirt much to the delight of the people that caught a glimpse of it under my camera bag strap. These fans were not here to relive the past, they were very much in the now, much like both bands.

Armored Saint proved to be better than ever, with as much power and volume as you would expect. But as any fan will tell you, their music has a groove. It was so cool that they threw “March of the Saint” and “Can U Deliver” in the middle of their set. Vocalist John Bush has pipes for days. And for me, being a Los Angeles kid, it was super cool to see Jeff Duncan on guitar (only Odin fans know what this means to me). Founding brothers Phil and Gonzo Sandoval never disappoint, and along with bassist Joey Vera, have quite honestly only gotten better with age.

And I gotta say it, no, this is not the Queensrÿche that you would know with original singer Geoff Tate. It is one hell of a great band. Michael Wilton’s presence on lead guitar was spectacular. Paired with the incredible talent of rhythm guitarist Mike Stone, they tore through the setlist, igniting the stage with “Warning,” “En Force,” and “Deliverance.” Each song was nothing short of astounding, holding the crowd in a metal-meets-prog trance with their thought-provoking lyrics and mind-piercing power metal. Todd La Torre’s vocals were nothing short of extraordinary, flawlessly hitting every pitch and octave. Among the highlights were, “Take Hold of The Flame” (resonated deeply with me), showcasing Eddie Jackson’s reverberating bass licks. And let’s not forget the haunting melodies of “The Lady Wore Black,” which transported us (ok, me again) to another realm altogether. Drummer Casey Grillo’s impeccable timing, solidifying the band’s mastery on stage, proving they’re still aces. | Laura Jerele

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