Of all the albums on my top ten list, this is probably the anomaly. Though there were definitely hits like 'Eyes of a Stranger' and 'I Don't Believe in Love', it was the album as a whole concept that, from first note to last, immersed you in a story.
Like a great novel or movie, this album was able to transport fans to a (possibly) imaginary world where the characters Nikki, Mary and Dr. X are as important as the music. Philosophy and psychology combine in a scathing critique of society, religion and politics.
Rarely, if ever, has an album had such a cinematic quality, each song a scene progressing the story. I've been fortunate enough to attend several concerts over the years where Queensrÿche performed 'Operation Mindcrime' in its entirety and I can honestly say these were some of the most memorable shows of my life.