Ex-DREAM THEATER drummer Mike Portnoy, who was involved in a messy split with his former bandmates less than two years ago, has taken to Twitter to comment on the legal battle between QUEENSRŸCHE and the Seattle progressive rock band's ex-singer, Geoff Tate, over the rights to the group's name.
After apparently checking out some of the latest BLABBERMOUTH.NET articles on the ongoing QUEENSRŸCHE saga, Portnoy wrote, "WOW!!! What a read... This QR split makes my DT split look like a walk in the park! Wow..."
Portnoy and Tate engaged in a minor public feud in 2006 over Tate's alleged "bashing" of DREAM THEATER following the two bands' co-headlining tour in the summer of 2003. (See previous BLABBERMOUTH.NET stories: Story#1, Story#2, Story#3.) The two progressive hard rock giants had originally intended to join forces for a package tour in 2000 — a plan that failed to materialize after QUEENSRŸCHE decided to take the middle slot on IRON MAIDEN's "Brave New World" tour instead. This move infuriated Portnoy, who told Metal Sludge several months later, "I have a bone to pick with [QUEENSRŸCHE]... We had a summer tour in the works being booked with them which I think would have been cool for the fans and they backed out in the 11th hour which fucked us over....I think maybe they realized that having to play after us would make their fans realize how much they suck now!"
When a DREAM THEATER fan suggested back in April 2006 in a posting in "The Forum" section of Portnoy's web site that Tate was in New York City doing press for QUEENSRŸCHE's then-new album and that he may join DREAM THEATER on stage at their April 1, 2006 concert at New York City's Radio City Music Hall, Portnoy had the following response: "I'm tired of being politically correct... For the record, Geoff Tate is a two-faced douche bag. Since he has begun doing 'Operation: Mindcrime II' press, he has been consistently bashing DREAM THEATER and even me personally in the press... (why, I have no idea?). But I'm tired of biting my tongue when he obviously can't.
"When he was on Eddie Trunk's show [on Q104.3 FM in March 2006], he was incredibly rude and insultful [sic] when talking about me off the air to Eddie and [FOZZY singer and former WWE wrestler] Chris Jericho (he having no idea they're my bros)... Eddie and Chris were FUMING at him and Chris immediately texted me from the studio saying he was ready to body-slam him on the spot.
"His new name on this board should be Geoff Taint...
"Screw him...he's now on my shitlist..."
During an appearance on Eddie Trunk's "Friday Night Rocks" radio show on New York's Q104.3 FM in October 2006, Portnoy had the following response when asked by a fan regarding his "war of words" with Tate:
"I've gotta choose my words carefully or else I'm gonna end up on the front page of Blabbermouth tomorrow morning. [Laughs]
"There's no hard feelings. I think that the things that were said between me and Geoff, a lot of it got blown out of propotion, a lot of those feelings and… whatever. When I went and saw them in New York a few weeks ago, they were all totally open arms to me, and Geoff was cool. And the next night when they were here on Eddie's show, they were totally cool about it.
"You know what it is? I think when we toured together with them, it was a co-headlining thing — we were sharing the lights and the video and the sound. We had to work together on a lot of things. And I'm very used to running our band and our organization and our live touring situation a certain way, and I guess Geoff is used to it his way, so inevitably, as much of a great time we had, there was also moments where I wanted something some way and he maybe wanted it the other, so as kind of the two heads of our organizations, inevitably, maybe, he got turned off by my headstrongness and same vice versa. I guess when you're kind of a perfectionist, or a controlling person, and you have to kind of share that situation with another band, it's tough, and maybe some of it rubbed him the wrong way. But I've had nothing but good stuff to say about that tour we did together — it was a lot of fun, every night we jammed together, and I thought it was a great thing for the fans, and we had a good time. There were little things here and there in terms of the whole behind-the-scenes thing, but it was really all a very, very good-spirited tour.
"It's hard in the age of the Internet to keep things cool and not get blown up. After what went down here with Geoff and me, it was all over Blabbermouth the next day and then from there it was on every web site from here to Australia, and the fans get into it with each other, and they blow it up, and every word is dissected. That's the scary part. I know I did a Metal Sludge interview back in 2000 — it was like six years ago — and I still get heat over that. Because everything you say on the Internet gets spread around and people just blow it up into the biggest thing."