Tate bewildered by lack of Queensryche violence
First punch: Geoff Tate
Sacked Queensryche singer Geoff Tate says he doesn’t understand why his former bandmates weren’t more violent.
He was fired after tensions within the prog-metal outfit erupted into an altercation ahead of a performance in Brazil, during which he attacked several members. Once the show commenced he was seen spitting in drummer Scott Rockenfield’s face.
Asked who would throw the first punch in a theoretical situation, Tate tells Uber Rock: “Probably me. Those guys can’t fight their way out of a paper bag. I’ve never seen such a bunch of… how can you be a man and not, like, defend yourself? How can you do that? I don’t understand it.
“Americans are really touchy about that stuff. I spat in Scott’s face and that is an ancient act of defiance and contempt. It’s a symbolic gesture. It’s ancient – people have been doing that for centuries and Americans can’t wrap their head around that.
“They think it’s juvenile, like it’s something a kid does. They can’t understand guys getting in a punch-up. They fear that, they’re appalled by it. In other countries – Ireland for example: the Irish don’t see anything wrong with it at all.”
In court depositions following Tate’s dismissal, several band members alleged the singer had been violent in the past. But he claimed he’d also been the victim of an assault in 1988, when bassist Eddie Jackon delivered a “kung fu kick” to his head.
Tate has formed his own version of Queensryche following a court decision that both parties should be entitled to use the name head of a final hearing in November next year. His former colleagues are working on their first album with new frontman Todd La Torre.
But the singer holds out some hope that the disagreement might not go back to court. He says: “There is a chance, if both parties agree to mediation, going in and actually sitting in a room and talking about it. Yeah, absolutely – I’m very interested in that.”
And he doesn’t feel that fans should be made to take sides between the two parties for emotional reasons. “You can make up your own mind what you want to listen to,” he says. “If it was me, and my one of my favourite bands had split up and formed two bands, I’d probably check out both bands to see what they were all about, and see if there was something about each one that I liked.”