Todd La Torre

Todd La Torre

What happens when you take the members of the ‘Yellow and Black Attack’ and introduce the lead vocalist for a similarly respected progressive metal band on drums?

The audience aboard this year’s Monsters of Rock cruise found out during Stryper‘s performance aboard the ship last Monday (April 20) when Queensryche singer Todd La Torre manned the throne typically maintained by Robert Sweet for a strong rendition of “Soldiers Under Command.”

Such a collaboration isn’t entirely out of left field; Stryper mainman Michael Sweet has previously expressed a high regard for La Torre, as indicated during our exclusive interview with Sweet back in December of 2013.

Responding to whether there was any new bands or albums that had caught his attention, Sweet replied, “Well, you know I am a big fan of most recent albums, like the Queensryche album. The new singer, Todd La Torre, I think is incredible. A great singer and a great human being, and a good friend of mine.”

The members of Queensryche have similarly acknowledged that La Torre’s expanded musical abilities has benefited their songwriting chemistry as a unit.

Explaining how he came across La Torre, guitarist Michael Wilton told Music Enthusiast back in 2013, “We got a mutual friendship going, and I liked what he was doing. And my tunes, these were a composition of tunes that weren’t even touched for Queensryche, because I guess they were too heavy or whatever.

“And the whole thing just kind of blossomed from there. Then in the course of events and what transpired, I just introduced Todd to the band. I mean, he was a fan of Queensryche, and obviously I found out he could sing like Queensryche. He’s very passionate, and he’s a drummer as well, and plays guitar. So there was this musicianship that I really latched onto.”

The vocalist has also addressed the possibility of manning the skins during a Queensryche show while having drummer Scott Rockenfield stand at the main microphone. “That could be. Scott and I talk about doing something and they’ve never done that before,” La Torre explained. “They’ve never been able to do that before. So, I think visually it would be something great for me.

“It would be awesome, because I love drumming, and miss drumming, in a live situation. And I know the material. So, we’ve talked about, maybe doing a really cool dual drumming thing. So it wouldn’t be impossible to see me out there on a drum set sometime.”