How do you make a bona fide classic better? EMI certainly has an idea. There was no way they could let Rhino steal the glory -- and the money -- with their fine issue of Operation: Mindcrime II
. That recording had all the elements that made the original great -- using '80s studio technology to create a seamless sequel to the original. EMI has hustled out (a mere three months later) two editions of the original Operation: Mindcrime
. This double-disc package offers a remastered edition of the original with pair of live bonus tracks, one recorded at the Hammersmith Odeon (on the 15th of December 1990) and one from London's Astoria in 1994, along with a bonus disc of the entire album performed live at the Hammersmith on December 14, 1990. While the bonus cuts on disc one are essentially throwaways -- and were already issued on CD previously -- the live disc is not, and features a stellar performance by Queensrÿche
, inspired and on fire.