I've often said that Mindcrime is Queensr˙che's best album, but Empire contains their best songs. After Geoff Tate's rock opera put them on the map, Chris DeGarmo's epic hits put them into the mainstream.
This is the album that contains Silent Lucidity. For many, many years--back before the internet and songid software could identify anything you heard on the radio-- I thought it was a Pink Floyd song. It's sad that Silent Lucidity became such a smash hit because it over shadowed the better tracks on this album. Best I Can, Empire, and Another Rainy Night are the true gems from the record, despite losing out on airplay to the aforementioned ballad, and Jet City Woman, which is alright, but nowhere near as great.
Side note...DeGarmo's solo in Another Rainy Night is probably 5-6 on my all time favorite guitar solos list.