George Starostin's Reviews



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Jean-Paul (29.05.2000)

The first album I bought in my life (aged 11, I think) was Queen’s Greatest Hits, so, yes, I listened to Queen before everything else. But right now, I’m into old Genesis, Tori Amos, Black Sabbath, The Beatles, Marillion, 10cc, Radiohead…Well, just about anything that sounds good to me. So I guess I don’t fit into your description of the average Queen-fanatic who refuses to even look at any music other than Queen. (But, then again, I’m not Russian, so maybe that’s the reason... ;-) )

And I still like Queen after all these years (although they’re not in my personal favorite bands top 5 anymore), partially because it was my first band of course (and one can never truly objectively judge one’s first band, I think), but also because most Queen records still sound great to me, not dated at all. “The band’s got musical skill”, as Paul McCartney once said. (Although usually, Mercury and May get all the praise, Taylor & Deacon know how to play too – granted, they’re no Moon & Entwistle, but they do know what they’re doing). And Queen also knew how to make coherent, accessible songs out of their ideas, which is worth a lot too, I think. Most of their music isn’t simple at all (for instance, it’s a lot easier to play Black Sabbath or Who than it is to play Queen songs), but they still manage to appeal to an extremely large audience (kind of like ABBA). Also, I think some of May’s lyrics are quite all right. <Ducks George's tomato>

All in all, I’d give them a higher general rating than you did, but, hey, it’s your page. ;-)

Ben Greenstein <> (30.05.2000)

Well, you also hate Pink Floyd, and you gave them one of your highest ratings... oh, never mind.

Queen were one of the big bands of my youth, and while I can see how they sort of served as a bridge for me when I wasn't yet ready for Genesis or ELP, they're still pretty good in retrospect. The songs are alternately funny and emotional - granted, a lot of the emotion sounds fake, but a more beautiful song that "You Take My Breath Away" has never been penned. The band are all fantastic muicians, yet the complexity of their music is very subtle (if "subtle" is a word that can be applied to a band this bombastic). Brian May's guitar solos are the most melodic ever played, and therefore are my favourites. Farookh Bulsura (his real name) has an over-the-top voice that just works. Deacon John's bass riffs are simple but incredibl memorable, and Roger Taylor - well, he did pen some of the most atrocious songs ever, but was at least a good drummer. He reminds me of Phil Collins.

And everywhere else in the world they have about four overplayed songs, so the factor of too much radio play doesn't bug me. And I never really noticed whether or not the lyrics are bad, but I guess they are. I don't give a damn, though. These guys were a glam group, a hard rock group, a progressive group, a funk group, and an awful eighties wuss rock group - quite a lot of territory for four guys to cover. Gets the kudos from me, if only for sentimental reasons.

Philip Maddox <> (28.06.2000)

I'm not sure what to think of Queen. I know they're still really popular outside of America, but they've kinda been forgotten over here. They're mostly known for writing 'We Will Rock You'/'We Are the Champions' (which gets played at sporting events) and 'Bohemian Rhapsody' (which had a revival a few years back when it was used in the movie Wayne's World. In fact, some of Queen's biggest international hits (like Innuendo) didn't make a splash in the US at all. Oh well, I've never heard any of their later stuff outside of the Classic Queen compilation. So in America, they aren't as overplayed.

Anyway, as for the actual music... I've only heard a handfull of Queen's records (as of this writing), but they're all alright. Freddie Mercury is a great singer, and Brian May's guitar tone was great (with all the multiple overdubs and such). I never noticed much about the bass and drum players, but they seem competant. I don't hate the lyrics quite as much as you do, but they admittedly arten't very good ("You call me sweet like I'm some kind of cheese" from Opera's 'Sweet Lady' is a particular low). The music was pretty diverse, though. I never cared for their campy music-hall type songs (hey, if I don't like songs like 'Honey Pie' and 'When I'm Sixty-Four' and they're by the Beatles, what chance does Queen have at attempting a similar sound? Though 'Killer Queen' is pretty good, admittedly), but they could rock pretty hard. As a hard rock band, they were at least the equals of Zeppelin. Thier ballads ranged from absolute beauty to occasional boringness. Their overblown, "progressive" sounding material was usually good ('The Prophet's Song' still blows me away). And like I said, all I've heard of their late period is a late period compilation, which has both good songs and bad songs on it. And if a compliation is uneven, I'll probably stay away from those records unless I see 'em cheap. 'Who Wants To Live Forever' is beautiful, though. Queen was a really good band, but they weren't really consistant - they never made an album that I would say has no weak tracks - all of the one's I've heard have at least one. All in all, I do really like Queen. A lot. Just don't THINK of making me sit through 'Body Language' (*shudder*).

Ivan Piperov <> (10.08.2000)

I think it's no coincidence that Queen are second popular to the Beatles. They are the only band that were as diverse while still sounding typically Queen. Their songs - come on - from beginning to end Queen had an unique songwriting quality, with each member contributing at least one timeless classic. Just like the Beatles! And don't you hate Queen just because they're too popular. Would you have hated the Beatles in 1965 too?

[Special author note: I hate Queen not because they're popular. I dislike the inadequacy of Queen's quality to their popularity.]

Sergey Zhilkin <> (06.10.2000)

I don't like Queen very much and not because they are famous. I dislike their style of playing on guitars. Too much crappy sound for me. Unfortunately, the same thing happened to Pink Floyd. Queen are good songwriters but, oh, how they kill great tune from the beginning of the song! Plus too much electric guitars and besides I dislike Mercury's style of singing (low voice in the beginning which suddenly turns to loud). I can find two or three good songs on their average album. The only album where I like more than half tunes is Jazz (the best one in my opinion). So I see your rating (2 stars if you forgot) rather fair.

Bryan Bals <> (22.10.2000)

OK, I hope you will take me seriously here. I say that because I am a Queen fanatic to some extent, but that does not mean I can't look at them objectively. Also, I do fit in with many of the generalizations you made. I liked Queen before I heard 'Stairway.' I never heard of King Crimson. Unfortunately, my knowledge of classic rock is based mainly on the radio. I simply don't have the money to buy all these CDs. But I have listened to many classics, and have a brain. I hope this isn't too long either.

Anyways, a few points I feel I should make. I can understand completely with hearing them too much, although that is not much of a factor in the US. Personally, I feel much the same way over Led Zep. I am sick of hearing 'We Will Rock You/We Are the Champions' and wish the station could play different music. However, would you hate the Beatles if you lived in the US in 1964? I would, and I still hate their early stuff (not Rubber Soul-onwards obviously). But you still give them a 5 with their popularity. I get the feeling that your bias played a part of your rating. Is this not supposed to be objective?

There's a rather obvious reason why people can like Queen and never heard of 'Stairway.' I have never heard Led Zep on anything other than a classic rock station. Queen, on the other hand, has many radio friendly songs that can be played on other stations. Outside of the classic rock genre, Queen is more popular than Zeppelin.

You complain about the lyrics. Have you ever heard 'Whiter Shade of Pale' and 'I am the Walrus'? Did you learn the lesson from those songs? They are basically there to laugh at anyone who overanalyzes rock music. If you think lyrics should be as meaningful as Shakespeare, you're slightly mistaken. I honestly, from an objective standpoint, don't see them as bad when compared to other artists. They are not simply cliches and Freddie making up stuff that sounds good. There is an underlying purpose to many of his songs. And of course most of it is completely unoriginal. So were the Beatles, Zep, Floyd, Jethro Tull, and everyone else. Rock came after thousands of years of philosophers and writers using up all the good ideas. I don't think there is any problem with Freddie using ideas already expressed. Besides, many of their lyrics are not that bad. Much of Innuendo is Freddie in a reflective mood (for obvious reasons, seeing as he was dying), and created some of the most meaningful songs he made. 'The Show Must Go On' is a prime example. He's explaining what Queen is all about. If you're going to complain that he uses cliches then fine. He still gets his point across.

I should point out that Queen had raw talent, although it appears you already agree with me. Although none of the members was utterly exceptional, they were all really great with their instruments. Furthermora, Freddie's voice is one of the best in the business.

Now I wish to point out something that most people miss about Queen. They have the ability to write great songs in practically any genre and on practically any subject. You don't believe me? Just look at side A of ANATO. 'Death on Two Legs,' a hard rock song that shows Queen at their angriest. 'Lazing...' fun, pure and simple. Tongue in cheek. 'You're my Best Friend'- simple, beautiful love song. One can go further incorporating songs like 'Bohemian Rhapsody,' (rock opera) 'Stone Cold Crazy,' (speed metal), and so forth. I'd like to particularly mention 'Lazing...,' 'I'm Going Slightly Mad,' and 'Millionaire Waltz.' These songs are not meant to be taken seriously. They are fun, silly, and succeed if taken that way. I cannot imagine such great and talented bands as Led Zep, Jethro Tull, Genesis, or any others playing a song like this. The only other song I've heard like this is 'Maxwell's Silver Hammer,' and they don't count because the Beatles did everything ;) You may argue that it contributes to Queen's stupidity, but I think it merely shows Queen's flexibility. I'd also like to point out the A Kind of Magic album. Queen perfectly captures the feel of the Highlander movie in those songs. The so called pomp rock like Princes of the Universe was able to capture the feel of Highlander.

Speaking of which, I get the feeling you don't like glam or pomp rock much. After all, you rated Styx poorly as well. I personally find the genre appealing. The perfection that these bands try to obtain is wonderful in my opinion. They try to make every detail important, which ends up turning the songs into beautiful, important sounding songs. Songs that you simply can't forget. It's hard to explain, but listening to 'Come Sail Away' by Styx may help you to understand. Like it or loathe it, it stands out.

Now for a few things you may or may not be aware of. Queen was actually quite influential in rock. Besides championing the glam rock, they did much more. For instance, they (along with bands such as Pink Floyd) helped turn concerts into visual as well as audio events. The impressive light displays Queen put on gave people something to see at concerts. Also they, more than any other band except maybe the Beatles, made rock international. Queen would play in area such as South America when no other bands would. You already say they are monstrous in Russia, and they are popular in many other places as well, such as Japan. In fact, Queen is popular pretty much everywhere except Britain and US. Whereas the Beatles gave rock to the British, Queen gave it to everyone else.

I think I've rambled on enough. Hopefully I've proven to you that not all Queen fanatics are mindless people who think Queen is intellectual. If you think these are just rantings of another pseudo-intelligent Queen fan then tell me. And please don't take offense. It may sound harsh in a few places, but I don't mean any offense. And I know much of what you said are just generalization but it seems as if it's put in a way that is to claim all Queen fans are like this.

George Starostin (22.10.2000)

Are my disclaimers actually working? Wow... that's good. Anyway, I feel I must clarify my position a little, since these pesky introductions never seem to get the whole point through. Maybe it's just a case of me trying to sound too poetic. Maybe not.

You didn't quite understand me. I gave Queen a rating of two (the same, by the way, that I gave Renaissance and ELP, bands that I consider to be slightly superior) because I managed to disregard the bias. Had I written "Queen are overpopular therefore they suck!", I would have without hesitation putten them in the roaches part of the MP3 section and never bothered to get their audio CDs at all. As for 'We Will Rock You', it is simply a bad song. A nasty, sleazy, simplistic and deeply irritating moment of Freddie toying with his audience. The fact that it is one of Queen's most popular songs only emphasizes its cheap nature. 'Let Me Entertain You' is far better in that respect, as it at least shows some irony.

I do consider Queen to be a very important band. But Bryan's letter is a typical fan letter. Face it, more or less the same text, with a few cosmetic adjustments, could have been appliable to any other good band. When I rate a band I try to see what makes it idiosyncratic and outstanding, vastly different from other bands and worthy to be judged in its own category. Queen certainly have a lot going for them, but what makes them unique? Certainly not the lyrics (which, I should point out are atrocious exactly because they are supposed to be meaningful - 'Whiter Shade Of Pale' and 'I Am The Walrus' are prime examples of absurdist poetry, while Mercury's words, at least on the early albums, are cliched exercises in fantasy imagery and Biblical stylisations, cheap pomp with too few humour about it. He did get better later on, though). Certainly not Mercury's voice; it's good, but so is David Byron's and Ian Gillan's and etc., etc., etc. Certainly not the raw talent - every band on this site had raw talent.

Diversity? Bryan points out at Queen's diversity, and their ability to tackle many genres, but they are actually not as diverse as it seems. Essentially, Freddie and Bryan exploited two major styles: Hard Rock and Music Hall. Granted, within the subgenres of these two styles they were pretty diverse and successful. But they were unsuccessful in others. For instance, most of their attempts at 'blues' sucked. As for 'fun and silly songs' like 'Millionaire Waltz', I suggest you listen to 'Harold The Barrel' or the 'Willow Farm' section off 'Supper's Ready' by Genesis, or to 'Mother Goose' and 'Fat Man' by Jethro Tull, etc.; these songs are different, but they are also not meant to be taken seriously, and they're fun and silly and succeed that way.

As for "pomp rock": I have nothing against pomp rock if it is adequate, i. e. the pomp of the song is matched by a complex, yet catchy structure, interesting and innovative instrumentation and a good drive throughout. Granted, Queen did that a lot of times, and I don't actually blame them for pomposity, except for a few miscalculated moves on the first two albums. But Styx? Please! Nothing Styx did was ever innovative or complex (although some of their songs were catchy - and as you may have noticed, I feel quite generous towards Styx when compared to the general critical attitude).

Finally, about Queen's influence: normally, when I judge a band, I disregard the fact about their being influential, as I'm more interested in their self-sustained value than anything else. Nevertheless, the points you stated out are, once again, insufficient to single out Queen as one of the most influential bands in history. The transformation of live shows into visual events began long before Queen; Pink Floyd were revolutionizing live shows with light effects and other stuff as early as 1966, six or seven years before Queen ever appeared on the scene. And prog-rock bands like Genesis, Yes, Jethro Tull, or ELP had their impressive and glamorous shows figured out long before Queen as well. Likewise, Queen's role in "internationalizing" rock is also overrated here. The Beatles had long before internationalized rock, and Queen were certainly far from the first British or US band to play in Japan. (I don't know about South America, really, though). A phrase like "whereas the Beatles gave rock to the British, Queen gave it to everyone else" is a thorough exaggeration. By the way, the Beatles played Japan in 1966. So who gave rock to the Japanese?

No, in all fairness, the main thing that makes Queen idiosyncratic and outstanding is the way they crossed hard rock with opera and operetta. This - I give - nobody did before and nobody would do afterwards like Queen did it. For that, Queen deserves a rating as high as two stars (and it ain't a low rating). All the other arguments can refer to multiple other bands as well.

<> (14.01.2001)

Sorry george your wrong again.

Queen desirves a much rating than 2. I think when you do these ratings you way over look they influence in music. You Stess on the bad points of a band and dont look into the good points, although you make sure to mention them. Did you ever sit back and really listen to some of those "random" lyrics of theres?? Well lets take the easist example 'Bohemian Rhapsody'. When you listen to that song you here random words and a incomplete story. What i hear is Freddy telling a story about himself. I dont know if you knew this but Freddy was a struggling homesexual who was fighting for personal freedom. Just to except himself and hope others will, and that is what this song was all about.

I mean ill give you songs like 'fat bottom girls' are really dumb. and if you want my honest opoinoin i really hate 60% of queens work, but i wouldn't go as far to say i didnt like Queen. They had Talent, amazing talent like it or not. Freddy could sing, like almost no one i have ever heard before. This band was complete and like them or not they play a signifigant role in Rock and Role history and not many will argue about that, and thats why i think they deserve far better than a 2.

Jose Pravia <> (23.01.2001)


It is really funny to see how deluded you are to believe that you have objective opinions about such and such band when you are so biased. You somehow think that not only have you listened to more music than everyone who visits your site, but that somehow your opinions are more valid. It's funny how you dismiss a fan's opinions of a band as lacking objectivity when you are the main culprit.

I read Bryan Bals opinion on Queen, and it's pretty right on. He obviously shows a deep understanding of the importance of Queen. But of course you don't know how to listen.

Did you know that "Another one bites the dust" is actually a lift from "Good times" by Chic? It's not a follow up to "get down, make love" as you claim. Of course you will probably come up with some ridiculous comeback.

It's nice to see reviews of The residents, Amon Duul, Camel, Iron Butterfly, Blue Cheer, The Pretty Things, The Nazz on this site. I was very sorry to see Grand Funk Railroad on your site since you don't have much of a clue on that band. When you haven't head Grand Funk (1970) and suspect that it must sound like Closer to Home you sure are lost my friend.

Your reviews are a disgrace to early heavy metal. I hope you never review bands like Budgie, Dust, Nitzinger, Head over Heels, Armaggedon, Hawkwind, Sir Lord Baltimore, or Highway Robbery. I hope you never get your hands on The Monks' Black monk time either.

Oh, by the way I am one of those guys who likes Trout Mask Replica just because it is weird. Not!

Tim Van der Mensbrugghe <> (05.02.2001)

You've probabbly heard this already more than you can stand, but I'll take the risk: Mercury's real name is, sorry, was, Faroukh Bulsara. Excuse me if someone already mentioned this in a 'reader's comment' but I don't read these things. Too boring, pretentious, subjective, irational, etcetera, you get my drift. (Since I'm nothing but an opportunistic coward, I don't consider this mail as a reader's comment)

Oh, and one more little thing. Greatest Hits was also my first record (it was a gift, but still), just like Mr. Jean-Paul. I got it five years ago, when I was fourteen. But now I ended up listening to The Beatles. And Floyd, and Led Zep, hell, even VDGG. Who'd expected that? Strange enough, I don't feel like you've said something untrue. Maybe just overgeneralized mankind. But then again, isn't that the purpose of mankind?

Palash Ghosh <> (06.03.2001)

Queen was HUGE back in the 1970's and for that very reason alone I ignored them for many years until I soberly sat down, listened to a ton of their music, and concluded that they were actually pretty good (unlike, say, Kiss). Freddy Mercury (the world's first and only Persian rock star) is someone I couldn't stand to meet in person, but I'll confess he was a compelling figure with a great voice. Queen is a group I wouldn't boast of liking, but they released some great songs, the irresistible 'You're my best friend' and the infectious 'Crazy little thing called love' being my favorites. I know many people who are homophobic and, yet, love Queen and Freddie (sometimes the message gets easily lost somewhere, doesn't it?). But I'd never deign to call Queen a 'rock and roll band.' I don't know what to call them! Freddie was just two mincing steps away from being a hideous Las Vegas lounge act (a 'poor man's Liberace', if you will). As such, Queen makes me a little queasy.

Eric Rogozin <> (07.03.2001)

Queen is a GREAT band! They are great! Their albums (especially, early albums) along with the albums of The Beatles are the highest achievements of rock music! Yes, first seven Queen albums (excluding News Of The World, which is a little bit worse, but also quite good) are true MASTERPIECES. But all their albums are very good!

They deserve a 5! Yes, of course, it's your page, but to my humble opinion, they're second after The Beatles. First of all, I have never seen a Queen fan, who was ignorant of ninety percent good rock music. Yes, there are a lot of people, who know only 4-5 songs of Queen (the songs, that are played on a radio) and think, that these songs are good, but those people never call themselves Queen fans. As for me, I guess, I heard ninety percent of good rock music and I still say, that Queen are GREAT OUTSTANDING band. And it's a real intellectual music, not "pseudo-intellectual".

Further, lyrics. At first, I will say, that I like their lyrics, if not to say adore. And I can't see why comebody can consider it as "atrocious, horrendous, abysmal". But, lyrics are a subjective thing, isn't it. But, like I said before, their lyrics are admirable.

Then, music, that is a basic criterion. Freddie Mercury is one of the BEST vocalists ever (Besides, he's a genius), Brian May is one of the greatest guitarists, who made a big influence on many other guitarists; John Deacon was very decent at bass playing and Roger Taylor is very decent drummer. It means, that they were supergood professional musicions. Besides, Queen were a very diverse band with great songwriting skills. Well, it's all been said before, but it's such an obvious thing, that I want to tell it one more.

That's all because, I'm sure, that they deserve a 5! And I will try to make my own general evaluation, proving it (but it's only to my opinion):

Listenability: 5/5. Yeah, these guys had a nutural gift for melody.

Resonance: 5/5. All of Queen's music is genuine and sincere, one can see it from a long distance, especially Mercury's stuff; and Brian May solo albums also have a nice feeling of sincerity.

Originality: 5/5. Original they were, it's obvious. And they were more original, than Pink Floyd, for example.

Adequacy:5/5. Form is great and essence is great - that's the adequacy. Overall: 5 on the rating scale.

Dave Rose <> (14.08.2001)

I'm afraid it's quite simple: you just don't 'get' Queen. The situation is similar in some ways (although for completely different reasons) to Bob Dylan: people tend to either get him or they don't. I actually get both of them (as much as anyone can ever 'get' Dylan anyway). They're my two favourite artists. OK, everyone's got their own opinions, but Queen have been unfairly slated throughout their existence for a variety of reasons, not least Freddie's homosexuality (he virtually came out in 1975 by the way, so your suggestion that the line in 'Good Old Fashioned Boy' was the first indication is off the mark - notwithstanding the nonsensical retrospective standpoint of the comment), but also because the music press hated them and slated them at every opportunity. They were too educated, too sophisticated and too damn good at making music to be fashionable in the mid-70s when loud, obnoxious and noise were in vogue. Ironically they developed a reputation for being pretentious when their ideas about music were probably the most unpretentious around. Freddie once said that he wrote disposable pop - records you listen to, throw away, and then move on to the next. Ironically if this was their attitude, Queen made some of the most enduring music ever created.

And as for Queen's lyrics: they're generally a damn sight better and more meaningful than a lot of the pretentious bull that was mistaken for having deep and meaningful or poetic content then and since. People find Queen very hard to understand because they were so varied. So they could release a song like 'Bohemian Rhapsody', the 'resonance' of which, in my opinion, is unparalleled by anything else written by anyone else ever - with the possible exception of Barber's Adagio - and twin it with the ridiculously tongue-in-cheek I'm In Love with my Car! I always thought Bo Rhap was fantastic; when I found out the background and circumstances in which it was written, it just blew me away and I don't think I've found my way back since. Bo Rhap is a most wonderfully complete song: superb lyrics; fantastic vocals; fantastic lead guitar, and damn fine backing from Roger and John as well. The 'gong' strike at the end bringing down the curtain on six minutes of unparalleled genius.

Unfortunately people can't understand a band who write such a wide mixture of songs: some serious, some silly; some about love (that old chestnut), some reflecting some Tolkien obsession; some sheer escapism, some serious, and only a few overtly political ones. One Vision's a good one - compare it to the religion-bashing pretentious claptrap of 'Imagine' (which is saved only by Lennon's beautiful vocal).

Now the downside: I think Queen have written some fantastic stuff, and lots of their albums have great tracks on them, but there's not really one Queen album that I can listen to without feeling a little lost at the end - even when it's one of their albums with all tracks that I like. I'm not exactly sure why - perhaps it's because all of their albums took in so many diverse styles that they never seemed to make a coherent whole. Other artists have managed to build different musical styles and songs into the same album and made it work (Sgt. Pepper's, Pet Sounds) but maybe it's because none of them ever had such radically different content. There's not many albums which build operatic rock, hard rock, ballads, and god-knows what else all into the same album. So thumbs up to them for achieving what they did.

Queen were more than anything else about fun. They weren't trying to change the world with their music, they were just trying to give their fans 40 minutes of sheer escapism on an album. That they did - magnificently. I won't go into detail on the albums - not least 'cos I haven't got access to my collection at the mo. - but Freddie had the most amazing voice ever. Compare him with whoever you like - Sinatra, Orbison (listen to Orbison's Great Pretender against Freddie's version and see which is best, and I am a great Orbison fan) - I can't think of anyone else who even comes close. His vocal range, ability to change key mid-flow, and the way he gets inside any song is unbeatable (Laurence Olivier once heard/saw Freddie singing one of the songs from the Time musical, and at the end he said, "Now there's an actor!") And then listen to Barcelona (the album) and hear him duet with one of opera's greatest mezzo-sopranos - it's a fantastic, unparalleled achievement. Don't even try to suggest another pop/rock singer who could pull that off. And if you think other collaborations between opera and pop/rock stars are similar fare, you obviously weren't listening properly. Caballe herself said he is still the only person to have successfully bridged the genres. Brian May was an astounding guitarist. John Deacon a great bass player - play The Game (the album) on a decent hi-fi, and you'll really hear him doing his stuff. I'm not an expert on drummers, but Roger Taylor always seemed to provide a perfect backdrop to me.

Points to note: Queen are the only ever band to have a Top 10 single written by each of their members. Another note: the multi-tracking: if I remember rightly, Bo Rhap harmonised vocals were Freddie, Brian and Roger's voices, multi-tracked on an 8-track tape. So there were effectively 24 vocals - not the 80 as suggested. I think Brian once explained this to one of the Led Zep boys who asked him about it - he also thought that there were about 100. Another note: Brian is on record as saying that when they played Bo Rhap live, the band used to leave the stage in the mid-section, which was played from tape, because it was impossible to reproduce on stage. Oh, and on the live shows, they may, may not have been the first to use light shows etc, but it's a bit like arguing whether Bo Rhap was the first video (i.e. utterly pointless). The point is that in an era when bands used to go on stage in jeans and t-shirts, play their songs and get off, Queen gave their fans a Show and an Event.

Now the ultra-downside: Queen and Five? Uggggh. Robbie Williams? Oh dear. Talk about selling themselves down the river - glad John Deacon had the sense to have no part in it! And, I agree, they are overplayed. I think Bo Rhap is the greatest song ever written, but it doesn't stop it getting on my nerves when it comes on again when I'm stuck in a traffic jam. Queen songs are radio-friendly, but radio abuses that by playing the same small sample over and over again. Queen is best listened to on a decent hi-fi at home, with no distractions. Made in Heaven!

Koka Chernov <> (13.07.2002)

Good day. Well, George, you compromised yourself from the very beginning. It looks very much like you are spreading vengeance over Queen and their fans...Rather indecent and dishonest vengeance.

By the way, you put Mercury in a one row with Gillan, Byron and other 'ordinary'(don't get me wrong) singers. Surely, Freddie was mile ahead of that guys, but I won't argue - you've already shown your extreme stubbornness.So sad.

Your generalizations about Queen fans are ridiculous and worthless - there are stupid Queen fans, there are intelligent Queen fans, etc,etc. Leave these generalizations to yourself - it's your own FUCKING experience.(Sorry, George, but you speak like an "all-knowing sir" - I can't stand such a boredom)

So, you see, George, your review has a certain seal of your bias against Queen. What objectivity are you talking about, I wonder then. I wish you've stressed, you've tried to be an objective. In my opinion, this time you failed. Your rebelling against Queen overpopularity is noticeable, even too noticeable...But it's your own business, of course.

I'm persuaded, that Queen is a magnificent and magnetic band. Kinda rock'n'roll jewel or something. My rock'n'roll journey started, when I heard (aged 8) "Live Magic". "What a loud bullshit",- I thought to myself. But anyway, I was completely buried by rock'n'roll stuff in a several years. Now I still enjoy listening Queen, although I've heard all their tapes for a hundred thousand times. Old friends, certainly, should never fall into oblivion. Surely, I'm their connoisseur, not a crazy fan.

Few words about lyrics. It seems to me that lyrics are quite suitable, sometimes funny or even wise-looking. Queen lyrics are transparent and not pretentious at all - take it easier, George, you squeak like a thousand years old bore. Oh, maybe, it's just beyond your linear understanding:))).Bad joke, I know. And, what is more important, they had sense of humour (You might remember their "... fried chicken"). Queen managed to communicate via intonations, emotional stresses - sometimes it has stronger effect, than even deepest inner feelings. Sorry, George, but in my view, you are too ...errr... sober-minded to get it.Ah?? Isn't it a main reason, you dubed their lyrics a total, atrocious fake.Ah??

Overall, Queen is matchless mixture of talent, grace and ...(George Starostin pales:)) intelligence. My apologies, but only Roger is as smart as all Sabs, except Iommi.

Considering all mentioned above, they deserve strong 4 out of 5.

pinter denes <> (24.07.2002)

Hi George,

Just some remarks. About Queen's originality behind mixing opera and rock. Original were Brain May's guitar orchestration. Surely not the first on the scene, but succededly he produced "the most creative guitar harmony of the year" right from their debut album. What he is doing in 'Good Company' is something top-original (big-band imitation). 'Procession' from Queen II too. Making many weakly repetitive more or less succesfull singles is quite an achivement. Queen were responsible for releasing the musically most creative UK No1 singles of the seventies ('Bohemian Rhapsody') and nineties ('Innuendo'). 'Under Pressure' is close to top in the eighties. On the songwriting level there is lot of original detail: interesting chord progressions, clever songforms. The trickery with variant sections and variant tunes in 'Killer Queen' can be hardly compared any other pop-songs. 'Bicycle Race' IMO is musically the most complex/creative three-minute pop-hit song ever written. (don't analyze its lyrics) That's quite original. The canon in 'The Prophet's Song' is too original and clever. Many don't like it because it doesn't rock. I could go on. As for "March Of The Black Queen": if you try to find the meaning of the lyrics of some Queen songs like 'MOTBQ', you will fail. They are often just coloring the atmosphere of the songs. Freddie Mercury told once lyrics were not relevant in his songs. Brian May wrote some more artistic ones. I grew into admiring Queen without having a clue what are their songs about. I wish you mentioned Queen's diversity: 5+. This is one of their most important characteristic. In the Beatles section you mentioned one cannot even dream of another band that is as diverse as Beatles. IMO Queen is at least as diverse if not even more. There's no avantgard, and hindu music in their songbook, but there is many others. For me Queen is what Beatles is for you: the etalon band with four-five 15 pointed albums (including Jazz, News), where even the "fillers" work as gems, many of them I learned to play on guitar. While I have nearly the full Beatles catalog, I'm about as critical to them as you are to Queen. On Sgt Pepper the lack of real rockers, the feel of fillers and the (for me) not particlularly enjoyable "Within You..." stick in my eyes enough not to rate it higher than 10-11, while I can "mercy" about 'Sweet Lady' on A Night At The Opera. That's why I partly tolerate, your "strictness" toward Queen.

Let me express my deepest respect on your project. It's huge work, and it's quite a helpful guide for people like me with less experience of those bands.

Best wishes


Andy <> (12.08.2002)

Queen are the ultimate rock Gods, Brian May is in my opinion the greatest guitar hero, and the personification of style (you've got to love the hair,) I don't think that the song writting was up to much, if you want song writing listen to my other favourite group, "The Beautiful South." However all of the musicans in Queen Fred (well, what can you say about Fred, how many 000's of musicans has he influenced ands still does,) Roger Taylor (a very good drummer, wrote some crap songs) John Deacon (a exceptional bass player who wrote some of the worlds most famous bass lines ie. 'Under Pressure' and 'Another One Bites The dust') and Brian May (the guitar God.)

Alexis Von Sydow <> (03.12.2002)

Well, of course Queen aren't the best band in existence, but I still think that they are really good. I will not try to persuade you to rate them any higher than you do, partly because I see where some people can't stand them (there are moments when I don't too), and partly because most of the commentators who try to do so fits in the category "pseudo-intellectual dumbass" just like you pointed out, and I wouldn't like to be regarded as one. I just thought that I could express some opinion. I really don't understand your problem with the guys' lyrics. They are so clearly tongue in cheek. Actually, the thing that bothers me most about Queen is that they are almost too tongue in cheek. I understand that this approach to music might be a chore, but the awfulness of the lyrics still escapes me. That doesn't mean that they are the best lyrics around, of course. Hey, why don't I do it the Starostin way and have a General Evaluation thing to see where they lack and where they win? Yeah, why don't I do that?

Listenability: Regardless of what I may have said of the guys, if I did say something negative in this department, THIS is Queen's main strength. They all had a knack for melody, and even if the orchestration and stuff could be a little disturbing at times, there's almost always a solid melody there. 5/5

Resonance: Often Queen overdo the tongue in cheek trick and end up sounding fake, and sometimes the lyrics are too much, but Brian May is a real heartwarmer, and most of the rockers are real kick-ass. 3/5

Originality: They did invent the opera-rock thingie, and apart from that they were really experimental, so they can be granted a 3/5

Adequacy: Well, one point off for A Night At The Opera, the most inadequate project in the history of man, and one point off because they aren't the Gods of Adequacy, and I wouldn't give them a full score even if they never had released that tripe. 3/5

Diversity: Yea, I know you didn't include in your Evaluation, cause you don't do that for some artists, maybe those you think would gain too much from it, or because they came after 1970, or whatever, but this is absolutely one of the things that make Queen such a good band. I really don't see how they are less diverse than the Beatles, who by the way are a band that don't exactly seem to have cared for diversity, as if they were diverse by accident, though they certainly are.Back to Queen, they tackled hard rock, opera, progressive, funk, gospel, rockabilly, folk, some punkish things, and whatnot. 5/5

Overall: 3,8 4 stars for Queen. Well, it's really a weak four stars, but I do think they are worth it. They were unique, by all means.

Richard Lewis <> (10.07.2003)

I agree with everything you said in your introduction about Queen. I have friends who are exactly the way you described. He only owns Queen Greatest hits and I think live at Wembley 86 and says he's a huge Queen fan. He believes (and I stress that word!) that they are better than The Beatles and uses the old one Queen had better hits than The Beatles and whatever reply you give like 'Sgt Pepper or Revolver or Rubber Soul or Abbey Road' he just shuns because he's never bothered to listen to them.

Queen were a good band but they weren't the best band of the 70s let alone ever, they never tried to be either but their fdans make out that they were. Brian May's guitar was tolerable, Freddie was an amazing vocalist but no lyricist (as you stated), John Deacon had his moments but was average on the whole and Roger Taylor was a decent pretty boy drummer. When you compare like for like with most great rock bands Queen will never come out on top.

Stephen Rutkowski <> (04.10.2003)

Queen was my first band (something like what other people have mentioned already). I was about 15 and attempting to venture in the wide world of rock music. In Australia, it is extremely difficult to learn about older music (60s and 70s) unless you have an older person to expose you to such things. There are a few older radio stations, but their playlists are so repetitive it’s almost impossible to hear something new. Certainly no genres such as prog rock (I didn’t even know of this genre until I got the internet).

Anyway, I am digressing. Back to Queen. They were one of the few older bands that I knew through my mum and I was mesmerised by Freddie’s vocals immediately. Anyway, I slowly started working on buying all the albums, and at the time thought Queen was the greatest thing on Earth. Now with a bit more exposure to other bands, I realise they aren’t, although they are still very very good. I find that I agree with most of your comments about Queen. Although as far as lyrics go, I tend not to listen to them. In Australia, we don’t have the same problem as in Russia – that everyone likes them. Although the recent musical We Will Rock You is really doing my head in. Brian May and Roger Taylor are out for another cash injection and all of a sudden everyone in Australia loves them! It also doesn’t help that the song at the centre point of the musical is one of my least favourite tracks (‘We Will Rock You’).

That said, all of Queen’s albums are enjoyable. (Including Hot Space but not Flash Gordon – I don’t consider that a Queen album anyway.) Obviously some are better than others, but every album features at least something amazing pouring out of Freddie’s vocal cords. He had the ability to turn an average song into something much more remarkable, definitely something that saves a lot of Queen’s substandard albums. The other three members had something to offer as well, although their instrumentation is more solid rather than spectacular. That said, Brian May and John Deacon will surprise you every now and then. And at least Roger Taylor provided the trademark Queen backing vocals (on Sheer Heart Attack he is credited for his screams). Queen’s greatest weakness is that all of their albums has at least one bad song (and in most cases more than one). This is disappointing as there is no album where I can sit down ! and just enjoy every song that is played. It feels as though the bad songs are spoiling the experience of the remaining great songs. Nevertheless Queen are a fantastic band to listen to and at least have provided a platform for me to get into bigger and better bands from the 60s and 70s.

<> (29.10.2003)

I'll keep this short and to the point. Every moron on this earth knows not to take Queen seriously. Mercury himself only took his lyrics seriously for the first two albums, afterwhich he wrote to have fun. You said yourself you didn't take them seriously. Given that, throw the lyrics out the window, and throw the bias against Queen taking advantage of their listeners out as well. What does this leave? The actual songs! Not why they were written, not how serious they were. And the songs Mercury, May, and Deacon wrote have some of the best melodies and harmonies ever written. Name one other group (except the Beatles) that wrote as many catchy melodies. Sure some prog rock groups used a ton of melodies, but most of 'em weren't accessible at all. "My Fairy King" has really shitty lyrics, but they're catchy and it has four or five different good melodies within it. "Teo Torriatte?" Shitty lyrics sure. Great melody for the verses, decent melody for the coruses, and a friggin great bridge. Imigine that you are alone in a room and that you haven't heard any song for a few days. You any Queen song and it will get stuck in your head. Queen had nothing important to say except, "Hey we're rock stars! Lets have fun with our music and our fans!" And they wrote some great songs along the way.

Fernando Henrique Canto <> (06.12.2003)

Can I say that you're wrong, 'cause you give 'em two stars only? Can I? Can I? Oh, no, I won't do it. Just forget it. Queen was the first rock band that I truly liked. Don't laugh! In Brazil, Queen were never that famous, really - though it's no wonder. In Brazilian radio stations, the definition of "classic rock" goes nowhere beyond Guns 'n' Roses, so all those big bands were never that hot in Brazil - not after I was born, anyway. My point is, the FIRST TIME I've heard 'Bohemian Rhapsody', 'We Will Rock You' and 'We Are The Champions' was on their Greatest Hits compilation when I was 14. Needless to say, those songs absolutely floored me. For some time, I was completely obsessed with them. But that was only until I got in contact with other rock bands (including Rush - Don't laugh!), and my album collection grew almost in a snap - thanks for Internet file-sharing. So I guess I'm not included in the group of blokes who confront "Queen vs Everything else", right? I feel relieved! I probably understand any "national bias" against something. I know how THAT is, believe me. But *I* would certainly give Queen a higher rating - a 3, most probably. But that's just me, alright? Eh.

I just can't cope with the complaints about Queen's lyrics. Indeed, nobody should care about Queen's lyrics - as in, who cares?! Of course Queen had their share of stinky lyrics, but MOST of Queen's lyrics aren't offensive in the least. I can't see why one should consider lyrics for 'Good Old Fashioned Lover Boy', 'Long Away', 'The Millionaire Waltz', 'Death On Two Legs', 'Keep Yourself Alive', 'Killer Queen', 'Bring Back That Leroy Brown' as "abysmal", just like many, many others. When lyrics are concerned, they were just a normal band. And I do think that there are a couple of Queen songs with rather excellent lyrics. But no, it does NOT help mentioning ONLY the Queen songs that have bad lyrics.

Lyrics aside, their musicianship is certainly something. Brian May is easily one of my favourite guitarists ever. He had the technique, as we can witness in songs like 'Brighton Rock' and the intro to 'Gimme The Prize' (I love that heavy metal immitation!), but he has an unmatched sense of melody, and his solos were always interesting and never show-offy. He's up there with Mike Oldfield in my book. And also, he was certainly innovative with the use of Guitar As Orchestra (Adrian Belew reference intentional). Queen was one of the bands that made best use of the studio, I think. The studio techniques are always subtle but effective. All those doubletracked Freddies and harmonies coming from every side were indeed result of masterful studio work. There's WAY too many things to be fond of about Queen, and I'm certainly very fond of this band. I DO think that you underrate them a little bit, George. But well, if every Russian loves Queen like you say, I can understand you.

Michael Lawrence <> (13.05.2004)

Oh ... I have to e-mail you something about Queen. By the looks of some of your other site commenters, I am not alone by saying that Queen was the first band that I ever fell in love with. Even though The Beatles were the first ones I started listening to, Queen followed soon after ... and I really thought they were the greatest! So, I almost turned into a Queen/everyone else music fan. It was about six months after that, I started listening to David Bowie and never looked back to Queen until very recently (I then became a David Bowie/Everyone else fan, but that's a different story).

Anyway, I am re-looking at Queen, and ... boy, do I like them! I like them *a lot*! I'd still say that they're one of my favorite bands. They might not have been the most sincere or moving songwriters on the planet, but they did know how to pen a good melody. Futhermore (and I think this is key), they knew how to enjoy themselves! Their stuff is FUN ... That's the element that made rock'n'roll popular in the first place, isn't it? There's stuff like Bob Dylan and John Lennon if you want serious music ... but every once in a while, you (I) need some stuff that you (I) can just sit back and enjoy.

Barry Stoller <> (01.06.2004)

ABBA & Queen: This comment is for the intro sections to BOTH bands.

It's almost the same band, with the same songs - only the package is a bit different: one is pop for little girls and the other is rock for little boys.

Just spin 'Mamma Mia' and 'Killer Queen' back to back and ... it's pretty obvious. Note that same processed electric guitar tone, that's the first clue.

Go on to the other tracks. Is not 'Bohemian Rhapsody' the perfect Abba track? Is not 'Chiquitita' the perfect Queen track? On and on, really. Queen doing 'Money, Money, Money' - hot! Abba doing 'Somebody To Love' - fantastic!

The second clue is the vocals: switch Freddie with Anni-Frid and Agnetha and you get the same deal: loads of passion (but) without emotional commitment - not an easy task ... but the key to understanding both groups.

Jeez, George, why didn't a genius like you figure this out?

Brian Dickson (04.09.2005)

I just thought I'd say that of the things you say about Queen the main thing I disagree with is their resonance. Glitzly contrived showbiz? Yes! Sometimes. But I'd say that's mainly with Mercury and Deacon. (And come on didn't even 'Bohemian Rhapsody' have a bit of pathos the first time you heard the ballad part?) Mercury's idea of rock was "enterainment" not "messages" Give the listener/ concert goer a good time. A big part of Queen's appeal.

But with Brian May you can clearly here some sincerity in his songs even if they seem naive at times. 'Save Me', 'Leaving Home Ain't Easy', 'Is This The World We Created', 'Who Wants To Live Forever' all have plenty of emotion in them IMO. Taylor too could pen a fairly heartlfelt tune about teenage years, even if it may not be quite Who standard. Even Deacon, the poppiest member of the group managed resonace with 'Spead Your Wings', both lyrically and musically.

So over all I think that there is more resonance to Queens music than is readily apparent IMO.

And no one could fake the sheer venom of 'Death On Two Legs'...

I'm just a casual fan now, but I still like them. Resonace? Maybe 2/ 5? Nudging 3/5 maybe.

The above remains solely my opinion not set-in-stone fact.

Alexey Provolotsky <> (06.09.2005)

You’re telling me the Moody Blues are pretentious? Ha-ha-ha!

George, why are you a slave of your own rating system? Give them their well-deserved 2 back!

Listenability: 4/5. That’s a weak 4, but also an undeniable one. Their melodies are mostly nice.

Resonance: 1/5. They are artificial, pretentious and are hidden behind their disguises. I don’t believe them. So, why a one? You know, I feel some emotions from time to time. After all, human beings are human beings.

Originality: 3/5. They brought something new with them, that’s for sure. Whether it was worth bringing or not, that’s another problem.

Adequacy: 0/5. Believe me or not, but I’m having a happy smile on my face at the moment. A total ZERO! Sure, I put much subjectivity into this zero, but I don’t mind. That’s me writing this comment.

Diversity: 4/5. There’s nothing I can do about it. Even if it’s me writing this comment…

Overall: 2,4. A two, a two, a two, a two, a two!

Even if it happens to be a three overall, why not give them a 12 maximum and say they, like, never did the best they could? I know, I shouldn’t pay so much attention to numbers, but I was surprised to see that upgrade. Of course, it’s all up to George and those were just my 5 cents.

The fact that I hate Queen doesn’t mean I hate their music. In fact, I enjoy quite a solid percent of their songs and even several albums. My favourite is either A Night At The Opera or Jazz.

Should I say something about their lyrics? I guess, no. Just read them.

Maybe I shouldn’t be so ironic, but see for yourself: Freddie Mercury, a great professional singer with a very rich voice. Brian May is a skilled guitarist and his solos are PERFECT, John Deacon and Roger Taylor while not virtuosos, are very solid and professional instrumentalists. Hmm. Well. So? They suck.

An absurd band.

Tim Blake (02.08.2006)

Well, for a long time I've held out from listening to Queen, but I got A Night At The Opera out of the library and burned it off (mmm, piracy), and whadda ya know...I really enjoyed it. It's a great fun album with some fantastic studio trickery, a monstrous opening track (Death On Two Legs (Dedicated To...) = WOW!), some fun ditties like 'Lazing On A Sunday Afternoon', a couple of fantastically enjoyable epics (Prophet's Song and Bohemian Rhapsody) nary a bad song in sight. Whoa! Maybe I like Queen!

So I got Queen, Queen II and News Of The World. Bad news, they're all bland bland bland. Which is what I expected because listening to the 'best of' my sister had I couldn't stand more than about a quarter of the songs. But that's not to say the music is bad, no...Queen are an incredibly consistent band with numerous reasonable songs, and they can be fun. But the problem is that only once (so far, in A Night At The Opera) have I found them to really break out of their mold and hit me with something ambitious and truly interesting. Queen and Queen II are not bad albums, but the productions for both = monotonous, and the songs tend to blend together, of course with a lot of standout moments to be sure. I'd give them like...7 and 6 respectively. A Night At The Opera on the other hand really grabs you and even the most innocuous songs are somehow extremely interesting regardless. Is it performance? Scope? Something there gets to me. I'm going to get A Day At The Races soon, because I'm sincerely anticipating liking the album. Well, really the only bad album I've heard from them thus far is News Of The World, which is totally atrocious in a moderate complacent middle of the road sense. Why did they throw all that ambition out the window? It's a shame they didn't develop on a great formula and instead went straight for 'shitty arena-rock'.

Queen were a good band with a wealth of potential that only partly tapped into it, in my opinion. And that's that. Make for good listening now and then but that's about it.


Rich Bunnell <> (29.05.2000)

Queen hadn't really completely found their sound here, and therefore the sound is more hard-rockish than anything they've released since. I'd give it a 7 because the tunes in the middle just sort of blend together. It starts off with a great triad of tunes ("Keep Yourself Alive," "Doing All Right," and "Great King Rat") and ends with one too ("Son and Daughter," "Jesus," "Seven Seas Of Rhye") but the stuff in the middle (including "Liar") is just sort of bleeeeeeeeeeeah. Still really good, and how Ben Greenstein gave it a freaking TWO on his page is beyond my earthly comprehension. Two???

Ben Greenstein <> (30.05.2000)

I don't dislike this album as much as I used to, but I still don't enjoy it. Hard rock just isn't my thing. And the cheesy makeout ballads, like "Doin' All Right," I find downright gross. "Keep Yourself Alive" and "Old King Rat" are classey rockers, and I guess "Liar" is okay, but I can't help but skip over the rest. A five.

Ivan Piperov <> (16.08.2000)

This album is so old, that it sounds quite untypical to me. Sure their trademarks are readilly apparent; but they are not as perfect as on later records. Some harmony guitars and vocals appear just too loud, and the wah-wah-solo on 'Great King Rat' is actually awful. In general the album lacks the overwhelming self-confidence that made the band so famous and outstanding. You're right about "Modern Times Rock'nRoll" being just fast; I believe Roger kind of wanted to outdo Led Zep's "Rock'n'Roll"...but you're not right about Roger as a singer/songwriter. He's vastly underrated...

Bryan Boyd Jackson Jr. <> (31.12.2000)

I agree with you George and disagree with the readers. This album is great. I'm not into Queen that much, but there's no denying that they had some unique and powerful songs. I still like Queen's debut album the most. All of these songs are catchy to me, and I mean all of them! "Great King Rat" and "My Fairy King" are the standout's, but they are all good. Oh yeah, "Jesus" is my favorite. "Liar" and "Doing All Right" took some time to get into, but they are great too. Now if only Queen could have continued with the style they used on this debut album, I would have loved them! All well, and hey, the album cover is my favorite from Queen. Buy it, but I guess if you are a Queen fan, you won't like it. I'd give it a 12.

Eric Rogozin <> (28.03.2001)

You wrote a good review about the first Queen's album. I give it a 10 as a record rating. All trademarks of Queen are apparent here (well, I will ignore your notes about "lyrical horror", which I will call lyrical beauty), all their talents are conspicuous here too. Solo in "Liar" is awesome and I enjoy wah-wah solo in "Great King Rat". "Doing All Right" (with acceptable middle part), "My Fairy King" and "The Night Comes Down" are nice ballads in typical Queen style. "Son And Daughter" is probably my favourite song from this album (By the way, some critics noticed, that this song is a little similar to Led Zeppelin's "Heartbreaker"). "Keep Yourself Alive" is a great opening track and it was a clever decision to begin a career with this song. "Jesus" is another groovy song and I like it. Good album.

<> (09.07.2001)

I like of  Liar , Great King Rat , Jesus , Son and Daughter e Jesus.

More heavy of the Led Zeppelin !!!!!!

Compare with the Black Sabbath !!!!!!!

OKAY ????????

Alexis von Sydow <> (25.12.2002)

Never understood why this puppy is so gruesomely underrated. Even among fans. I mean, even though the "Queen sound" is more strained here than on other albums, most of the people I know who like Queen are also into heavy stuff like Zep and suchlike. And well, does hard rock suck just because Queen does it? Not really, huh, judging not only by this album (then I wouldn't have many arguments) but also by later efforts such as 'Death On Two Legs', 'Flick Of The Wrist', 'Ogre Battle' and other stuff that pretty much everyone on earth seem to like. Well, well, people and their opinions. sigh.

Now that's off my chest, I'll go on and say that while the lyrics too 'Fairy King' and 'Jesus' at least in some way fits the music, a clear case of when they don't is 'Modern Times Rock'n'Roll'. I don't remember them (the lyrics) exactly, and I might just as well be wrong, but isn't that some kind of nostalgic sendup from Taylor acting Ole Fifties Rocker? Hardly fits the thrash metal sounds, that also sucks, by the way, along with 'The Night Comes Down', the other completely out of place, sucky (is that a word? If not, well, then I invented it) tune on this otherwise totally rousing record. (intentional overstatement)

A solid debut. It's quite revolutionary, too, the opera rock elements see the sun here for the first time. Even better things ahead.

Stephen Rutkowski <> (04.10.2003)

This album was actually the last Queen album I bought. At first I just thought “interesting, but is just a precursor to the bigger and better days”. Now I view it not as their greatest album, but somewhere around the middle. Queen had a lot of trouble getting this album recorded. They spent a lot of time going from record company to record company and were often knocked back because “the last thing the world needs is another Led Zeppelin”. Now the record company executive must have only listened to ‘Keep Yourself Alive’ and disposed of the rest. In any event, Queen finally secured a contract in 1973, and recorded an album with much of the material three years old. ‘Doing All Right’ was actually a song from Smile, a band that May and Taylor played in before Queen. This frustrated the band greatly because the music was so old to them by the time the album was released. One of the reasons the album might sound great is that they had thr! ee years to refine most of the songs. Compare that to Queen II which was prepared and recorded in quick time.

The album contains some wonderful moments. You are right George, the scratchy guitar at the beginning of ‘Keep Yourself Alive’ sounds really good. The whole song is pretty great except for that rather annoying interlude in which the music mostly stops and Brian May sings “Do you think you’re better ev’ry day etc.” Also I’m not too impressed with the rather unnecessary drum solo, but otherwise everything is good. ‘Doing All Right’ is a delightful ballad that hints at what a remarkable pair of vocal cords Freddie (his voice was always steadily improving). ‘Liar’ provides a wonderful introduction, with some enjoyable riffing and drumming. I wasn’t always so big on this song, but over time I have come to like it. However, I do feel it is a little too long and unlike you George I don’t enjoy the 'm-m-m-m-m-ama I'm gonna be your slave' lines. I would prefer is Queen cut this kind of stuff, but it’s ok. ‘The Night Comes Down’ provides ! some nice backing vocals but little else. ‘Modern Times Rock ‘n’ Roll’ is only short so it isn’t too much of a hassle. ‘Son and Daughter’ has a rather nice riff, but I’m not a huge fan of it. ‘Jesus’ is one of the few songs that exist in which the lyrics can actually ruin the song for me. Come on Freddie, anybody can write rudimentary lyrics about Jesus’ birth. The three songs I haven’t mentioned yet (the two ‘Fairy’ songs and ‘Seven Seas of Rhye’) all provide something, but there is nothing remarkable about them. All in all, an enjoyable listen, but there is much much more in future albums.

Fernando Henrique Canto <> (06.12.2003)

Hmm... Hmm... Not among Queen's best ever, but certainly a worthwhile listen. There are a couple of tracks here that I don't care much about ('Jesus' never attracted me), but there are a couple of tracks in here that I do care about a lot! 'Keep Yourself Alive' is easily among Queen's classic songs, as is 'Great King Rat' - excellent song! I've always liked 'My Fairy King', and 'Liar' is quite good, too. I guess this album is just kinda hit-and-miss. Maybe Queen didn't exactly know what to make on their first album, so they just threw stuff, like 'Doing All Right' from the embryo Smile band, when Freddie and John weren't on. It's a fun listen, but I wouldn't give it more than an 11.

Alexey Provolotsky <> (06.09.2005)

Hey, their debut is good! Sure, they are already pretentious and the percentage of emotions is already calculated, but the songs sound fresh and quite interesting. Also, they are all catchy. My favourites are the solid rocking opener, “Keep Yourself Alive”, the melodic “Jesus” with a pretty refrain, the hooky “Great King Rat” (the catchiness is somewhat dumb here, though) and “My Fairy King” with a great scream at the beginning and some nice piano. “Liar” is fine, but gets very pointless at some points. The others are not hopeless, but hardly great (and the catchiness of “Modern Times R’n’R” is a bit too damn dumb to be bearable).

All in all, I was pleasantly surprised by the good quality of this record. 11 balls.


Ivan Piperov <> (16.08.2000)

Yes, it IS a rip off... Except that the solos are somewhat shallow, because May limited the harmonies to two or three overdubs only. No FM choirs here too. Roger Taylor sings the second verse of 'Doin' Alright' (just like on the Smile original) which much as I like his singing, ruins the song. Note that his vocals on "Modern Times..." are much louder than on's not the same reverb! But you're right, that's something for collectors, or for those who want a shorter version of Queen in an even fresher Queen-sound.


Ben Greenstein <> (30.05.2000)

A lot more self-assured than the debut, they do a lot of that mystical mumbo-jumbo that might strike you as corny and pretentious, but strikes me as pretty cool! "March Of The Black Queen" is my favourite, for whatever reason, and I also dig the beautiful "White Queen" and "Ogre Battle," which rocks more convincingly than the entire debut. There are a couple of weak songs, though, so I only give it an eight. It's cool, though.

Rich Bunnell <> (30.05.2000)

Funny....I actually don't think that this album really picks up until the "Black Queen" side starts. "Ogre Battle" which separates the two sides is really cool, and "Some Day One Day" is pretty, but "Father To Son"? Nah. It starts the album like it's all important and wonderful but is really just six minutes of wasted time. The real neat tunes are the ones that point towards Queen's great future sound, like "The March Of The Black Queen" and "Seven Seas Of Rhye"(they turned the closing instrumental from the previous album into one hell of a pop song!). The "White Queen" half I'd give a 5, the "Black Queen" half (including "Ogre Battle") a 9, and I guess altogether it comes out to another 7. Their sound is definitely developing for the better, though.

Jean-Paul (03.08.2000)

Finally! A chance to correct George! It's Brian May that sings 'Some Day One Day', not Freddie Mercury! Another thing, did you notice all tracks on side 1 ('cept Taylor's thingie) were written by May, while all tracks on side 2 were written by Mercury? I wonder if that's a coincidence or part of the "concept"...

Ivan Piperov <> (17.08.2000)

It seems you don't quite like the Freddie Mercury-style songwriting. I actually think it's very McCartneyish: full of melodies and not too clever lyrics. This album is almost as ambitious as "A Night At The Opera" and not very much worse; and certainly a lot better than "Queen". Just listen out what a great band they are! And why does EVERYBODY hate "The Loser In The End" except me? I love it, Taylor's incredibly good vocals (for a drummer) and concerning the lyrics, this kind of song hasn't been written since "She's leaving home". Cool.

jeffrey b.good <> (06.10.2000)

Whaat you say,George?! Hey, guys, don't beleive him! It's one of two best Q's albums together with Night. "The fairy feller's master spoke" and "March of the black Queen" are best, I think, and "Ogre Battle" is overrated. I agree with two stars- first two LPs, Night and also Innuendo and Made in Heaven is all you'll need from Q. Of course, on the later albums you can dig about two dosens of pretty songs and number one hits, but they come with tons of filler. And Greatest Hits 1/2 compilation doesn't contain all of them.

Avner Goren <> (25.12.2000)

I'm very sorry that you don't seem to get the pure, unadultered escapism pleasure that I experience, every time I hear this album (which can be more than once a week!).

Granted, not all the songs are as fun and brilliant as the others ( I tend to skip "The loser in the end" as often as not), but that doesn't change the fact that this is one of the most beautifully complete albums I've found. I agree with Rich, that the two sides are not evenly balanced, with the "black" side my personal favorite.

It seems like you don't understand that Queen was MEANT to be showy and bombastic. Read any interview with the band and/or Freddie Mercury and you'll see that they loved the whole "performance" thing with the costumes and lighting and dramaticism (much like the early Genesis - remember Peter Gabriel's elaborate costumes and get-ups?). And what's wrong with the lyrics? The lyrics (especially in this album) are upbeat and have got a great rythym to them (like in "Fairy Feller"). They may not contain (in the most part) any cosmic eternal truths, but they are alot of fun, and, in my opinion, make the songs almost as much as the music. But the music, oh, the music!!!

"Nevermore" is one of the sweetest, most touching songs I know, and it's tiny size (about a minute and a half) makes it even cuter. "Fairy Feller" is a great song to get you in a good mood, and the "Black Queen" suite is a beautiful example of thematic music, with the songs melting into each other brilliantly.

In a nutshell, a masterpiece.

Eric Rogozin <> (28.03.2001)

If Queen's first album is excellent record, then the second one is great record. My favourites are "White Queen (As It Began)" and "March Of The Black Queen". When speaking about "White Queen (As It Began)", it's one of the best ballads ever composed, yes, and it sounds heartfelt.  "Ogre Battle" and "The Fairy Feller's Master-Stroke" are glorious and don't forget little beautiful ballad "Nevermore". Decent are Brian May-sung "Some Day One Day" and Roger Taylor-sung "The Loser In The End". Well, "The Loser In The End" is not so good as "Some Day One Day", but quite decent. And I can't unterstand why the most famous song here is "Seven Seas Rhye". Certainly, the track is good, but surely not the best here.

Alexis von Sydow <> (25.12.2002)

There is one thing about this album that strikes me now as I am sitting and trying to formulate an opinion on this album, Queen's second and a slight improvement over the first, and that is that the obvious fillers (still great though, filler in the objective sense), 'Fairy Feller', 'Nevermore', 'Some Day' etc actually works better than the obvious highlights of 'Father To Son', 'Seven Seas Of Rhye' etc. 'Father To Son' is some kind of not-too-pleasant singalong-stylish, overlong 'song' (chant, hymn, anthem), which is a good (bad?) case of Queen displaying their 'talents' in the Inadequacy field. It's at least twice as long as it needs to be, features atrocious 'universalist' lyrics, and on top of that the already mentioned Heavy section, which is good, but doesn't serve the song's supposed purpose, which seems to be some shitty kind of crowd-pleasing mockery. The track's redeeming factor lies in the fact that it is, musically speaking, really good. If you manage ignore the lyrics and the general sleaziness (it may not be really sleazy, but I hope you get my point) of the atmosphere, you might even like it. I do, for sure.

An example of filler being inspired and exciting, however is 'The Fairy Feller.'. Nobody ever seems to mention it (although, I once saw a website the only purpose of which was to elevate that specific number to new levels of worshipping, but I guess that I unashamed can call that 'overpraising', hehe), but it deserves mention, that's my humble opinion. It might be inessential and dumb, but you might have noticed that there is a general dumbness in the way Queen approaches musicmaking. Anyway, here the tongue-in-cheek trick works perfectly. Did you know that it was based on a painting by some obscure artist whose name I can't remember at the moment? It's basically a description of that painting. [I'll send it along, just for fun] It can't be completely serious then, now can it? It is filler, after all, but tasty such.

As a whole, this album is slightly better than it's predecessor, mostly because there ain't any bad songs on here, and most are great, except for, well, 'The Loser', 'Father To Son' and 'Funny How Love Is'. And it is certainly tons better than that wretched shite (intentionally using exaggerated phrases) A Night At The Opera. Why does that one receive all the praise, I wonder? Sick of it. Go for this one instead.

PS. Did I mention that 'White Queen' is really tear-inducing? So much for 'all of Q's music is showbiz'.

Stephen Rutkowski <> (04.10.2003)

Unlike Queen I enjoyed this album immediately. Queen originally wanted to title the album “Over the Top” because they had felt that they had gone too far with production, overdubs, harmonies etc. I’m not sure what you would think about that George? Anyway, I think I like this album more than you, but you are right that the album contains too much filler. We might just disagree as to what that filler actually is. I actually enjoy ‘Father to Son’ (lyrics excluded). It’s probably just Freddie’s voice that make it seem much greater than it really is. And those vocal cords are again exercised superbly on ‘White Queen’. Then Brian May steps in with a rather pleasant mostly acoustic track with ‘Some Day One Day’. Check again George, it has already been mentioned that May sings this song and you still haven’t corrected your review. Oh well, the next song is of course ‘The Loser in the End’. I believe that Taylor has written/sung some ! rather good songs, however this is not one of them. Then ‘Ogre Battle’ is one of the highlights of the album. I think you have stated all its good points. ‘Nevermore’ is a dull, fortunately short piece of filler. ‘The March of the Black Queen’ is long, pompous and bombastic, and doesn’t do it for me. ‘Funny How Love Is’ is another song that is saved by Freddie’s voice. I think it is fantastic, but if someone else sung it, it would probably be garbage. And the ‘Seven Seas of Rhye’ is a delightful pop/rock song. However, I disagree with you about ‘The Fairy Feller’s Master-Stroke’. The song in itself is quite silly, but Freddie’s voice is again on top form, and the band provide some good backing vocals. The lyrics are silly, but I like how all the ‘obscure’ words fit into the song. I’m not sure how many songs you would know that use these lyrics in such a way (but then again I don’t want to challenge your vast musical knowledge). Anyway, another good album, and a step closer to the ‘classic’ Queen sound of A Night at the Opera.

Fernando Henrique Canto <> (06.12.2003)

For some reason, this one has been my favourite Queen album ever since the second or third listen. I guess it's that dark, gloomy sound that runs through it. "Black side", "White side"... I think it should have been the other way around! Brian's side is certainly much darker, and Freddie's side is certainly much more playful. Whatever. I LOVE the stretch of Brian songs in side one. 'Father To Son' has always been a favourite of mine - that guitar effect in the descending riff always have been chill-inducing. 'White Queen' is indeed excellent, and features a wonderful acoustic guitar solo. 'Some Day One Day' is a sadly overlooked pop tune, in my opinion - and yes, it's Brian who sings in that song, not Freddie. It has a pretty melody and lots of great guitarwork. Whatever. I don't hold any bad feelings for Roger's song, anyway: how could I, when it has one of the most maniacal codas in the history of Queen? LOVE those drum attacks. Freddie's side holds up very well. Yes, 'Ogre Battle' is magnificent, isn't it? You mention the backwards drums in the intro - in fact, the intro is the outro of the song ENTIRELY backwards. If you listen to the intro backwards, you'll have the outro, and vice-versa! What a witty effect - how come no-one had ever thought of that? The stretch of 'The Fairy Feller's Master-Stroke', 'Nevermore' and 'The March Of The Black Queen' is something special. 'Nevermore' has always been a favourite of mine, as well. And the two closing songs are great! In general, the whole album has a great quality that I love. Queen would never try to do something similar - and that's good, I think. I don't think they would be able to reach this level of brilliance again.


Ben Greenstein <> (30.05.2000)

There's almost no filler on here! The only song that I don't care for too much, to be honest, is "Brighton Rock" which you love so much. The songs are all small, but they're melodic and memorable, too - I, for one, think that "Dear Friends" and "Lily Of The Valley" are far more pretty and memorable than anything by Bob Dylan. I give it a nine.

Rich Bunnell <> (31.05.2000)

I do like this album a lot, but my problem, like you, is that there're just too many uninspired tracks clogging up the mix. I mean, I love the guitar workout of "Brighton Rock," the bouncy, perfectly-harmonized radio classic "Killer Queen," and the short catchy ditties like "Bring Back That Leroy Brown" and "Misfire," but I could really do without those two boring one-minute ballads or the second "In The Lap Of The Gods"(a mistake, because the first one was so great). "She Makes Me" is really nothing special either. I'll have to go with another seven, but this one's closer to an eight than the first two albums.

Am I insane, or does the main riff of "Stone Cold Crazy" sound like the theme song to the first "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" Nintendo game?

Ivan Piperov <> (21.08.2000)

This belongs to the best Queen could offer at the time. Note that this is their second album for 1974! And it's even better... Here they prove that they're absolutely universal. Even these melody-less things manage to grow in you; you gotta dig that style! Note that even the silent and bland John Deacon was inspired by the band's flamboyant and convincing extravaganza and wrote a not too bad ditty, wonderfully harmonized by May. And thank you for finally recognizing Taylor's talent for songwriting, George. Isn't he great, a multi-talent? Even the lyrics are striking "Aaah, give me a good guitar!",this is one of the greatest lines I've ever heard! At last Queen demonstrate a unique Queen-anthem, the irresistable "Whoa-whoa-lallalla-whoa"...

Eric Rogozin <> (28.03.2001)

Celestrial! It's not only one of the best Queen albums, it's one of the best albums ever. I guess, it was the best album in 1974. Well, after my compliments I will try to explain why. First of all, the diversity here amazes and pleases. From hard rock ("Stone Cold Crazy", "Now I'm Here") and ballads ("Lily Of The Valley", "Dear Friends" etc.) to lounge jazz number "Bring Back That Leroy Brown" and "Brighton Rock" - the song, that fully demonstrates Brian May's guitar skills. "Killer Queen" is one of the eternal templates of classic rock. And I declare "Tunement Funster" as a best Taylor-sung song. And one more thing: how cool "Flick Of The Wrist"(another good song with good lyrics) melts into "Lily Of The Valley". "In The Lap Of The Gods...Revisited" is great closing track-anthem.  Oh, yeah, another cool moment; guitar/piano interplay in the end of "In The Lap Of The Gods", that moves into eternal "Stone Cold Crazy". I only don't understand why decent "Now I'm Here" is more famous, than excellent "Brighton Rock" or "Stone Cold Crazy".  

The quality of the songs makes this album one of the eternal template of classic rock, like I said before.

Alexis von Sydow <> (25.12.2002)

Filler? Qué? Where? Oh yeah, that filler. You mean that horrendous piece of dreck "In The Lap Of The Gods. Revisited", you mean that? Continuing the tradition of 'Father To Son', carrying it to the extreme and throwing away everything that made that number at least somewhat enjoyable. Toying with the audience has its upsides and downsides. Just can't think of any upsides now. This is one example of how things can really go wrong when you're doing that. That's one really off-turning song. Fortunately it's the last tune, so you can skip that along with the preceding track, 'She Makes Me' which is hardly offensive but goes nowhere and is too slow and has boring lyrics and makes me sleep and probably made Brian sleep as he recorded it as well and has too many verses and well, is dull, in short. And that silly throwaway blehe (nice word, huh?) Misfire, you mean that? Deacon hasn't really developed as a songwriter yet. But, ah, it's only the guy's first attempt. And he's five years younger than Fred, so I guess we can forgive him. It sucks badly, anyway. But those are the only fillers for miles around, and a few bad tunes are only to expect on a Queen record. True, not all of the other tracks are proverbially GREAT, but quite a few are, and the other ones are pleasant anyway. And I'm not even a Queen fan lickin' the dust off good ol' Farookh's grave! Hoo-hoo!

Apart from the first two tracks, which, as you said, are the best of the bunch, and the aforementioned bad songs, the 'filler' once again proves interesting. 'Tenement Funster' is Taylor's first Great Song, although I'm sure I've heard that riff somewhere else. Anyway, it is heavy rather than pseudo-heavy, like his earlier compositions, and that, coupled with that riff and the singing, scores points in my book. Great title, too. It segues into 'Flick Of The Wrist', which, as the title might suggest, is a torture'n'blackmail anthem, written by Freddie, of course. And the lyrics, oh boy, they are hilarious. "Seduce you with his money-make machine, cross-collateralize, reduce you to a muzak-fake machine, then the last goodbye". Oh, they're meaningless, but he sings them with the same venom that would reappear on the following album's 'Death On Two Legs', and, man, they sound cool. The segue then continues with 'Lily Of The Valley', which at least has a gorgeous melody, even if it is sung in a fake manner, and even as such it's only one and a half minutes long, so I don't pay much attention to it. 'Now I'm Here' is a pleasant glam-rocker, not much else to be said. Then comes 'In The Lap Of The Gods', and this is the first one, NOT to be confused with 'Revisited', which is another song, but I think I already mentioned that one. This one is sung through some dingus which twists his voice so that he sounds a like he's on clouds. This version of the song does also feature a refrain sung over and over again, but this time it's slower and druggy and doesn't seem that appealing to stadium hordes. Classy.

'Stone Cold Crazy' goes off at lightning speed, and then comes 'Dear Friends', a mini-ballad, which is nice albeit very short, but I suppose that's for the better, one could probably get tired of that one in a short while. As it is it's pleasant, not more and not less. Then comes 'Misfire', and then 'Bring Back That Leroy Brown' (hilarious), and then the two last shitty tracks, and then it's over. Overall it's about as good as the previous one, maybe slightly superior, because it isn't (or pretends to be) so deadly seriously all the time (relatively speaking, you understand that, huh). They're just goofing away here, and it actually works.

Stephen Rutkowski <> (04.10.2003)

This is a very good album, but as you and many people have stated it contains too much filler. I don’t need boring songs such as ‘Lily of the Valley’, ‘Dear Friends’ and the second version of ‘In the Lap of the Gods’. But the majority of the other stuff is good and at times excellent. The album opens with the ‘carnivalesque’ prelude of ‘Brighton Rock’ before Brian May and Roger Taylor kick in with some quality hard rocking. I’m probably one of the few, but I love Freddie’s falsetto. Catchy and oh so gorgeous. But of course it is all minor to May’s guitar on this track. And let’s give some praise to Taylor. He does a more than competent job behind the kit. Next is the instantly recognisable ‘Killer Queen’. It was Queen’s first major hit, and the first time in their career that they began making money. Freddie is again showing off his vocal abilities, and the remainder of the band back him up well. Then Taylor contributes one of his be! tter tracks in ‘Tenement Funster’ before segueing into ‘Flick of the Wrist’. The chorus is pretty cheesy but I love the beginning of the verses. They sound rather dark, but it’s all good fun in the end. ‘Now I’m Here’ is a pretty good rocker, nothing special by any stretch of the imagination. (Again, it’s probably Freddie’s vocals that save the track.) ‘In the Lap of the Gods’ has a wonderful ‘plodding’ feel to it, and the device used on Freddie’s voice gives it an interesting and almost comical sound. Out of the remainder of the tracks, ‘She Makes Me’ is a nice slow acoustic ballad, with some delightful guitar work and simple yet effective drumming. May shows us that Freddie isn’t the only member of the band with a quality voice. The rest are neither here nor there as far as quality goes.  At the end of the album you may feel a little dissatisfied because the filler can harm the remaining quality.

Fernando Henrique Canto <> (06.12.2003)

I think I know what the main problems with this album are - it sounds like a collection of outtakes! All those short tunes, you know? But the songs, individually, are quite good, indeed. No words about 'Brighton Rock' and 'Killer Queen' - you've said it all already. Among those disconnected tracks, I pick 'Stone Cold Crazy' (try to sing as quickly as Freddie, George - I doubt you'll be able to!), 'Misfire' (John's first song! And a good, catchy one), 'Bring Back That Leroy Brown' (so many harmonies)... and the others are just okay, when the full album is concerned. I like 'Now I'm Here' - show me ONE Bad Company song with such a complex sequence of chords. 'In The Lap Of The Gods' is certainly a great, weird song. And the final song? I can't BELIEVE you took that one seriously! Those chantings in the end are a friggin' JOKE! Do you think even THEY would be so stupid to take it seriously? When you think they already had enough of it, the "wo-wo- lah-lah-lah" comes back LOUDER and even MORE DISTORTED. Meh, what a thing, eh? You missed the point again! LOL. I'm joking, I got carried away. I give this one a... 14? Yeah, I guess I do. Now call me nuts.


Ben Greenstein <> (30.05.2000)

Not as good as A Passion Play (what is?), but still a really enjoyable, not to mention fantastic, Queen album. I'd say it's their best, but I've always been biasd towards the darker follow up. So I'll call it a tie. "Seaside Rendesvous" ain't Ragtime, but it is jazzy, and incredibly cute. "Death On Two Legs" is my favourite. And actually, Queen seem to be a band that somehow survived the onslaught of punk rock - as pretentious as they were, they always had this novelty factor which made them enjoyable to everybody. Maybe in Russia people take them more seriosly, I don't know. All I know is that I'd rather hear Freddie sing "Bicycle Race" than garbage like "Love Of My Life," a song I really don't care for. Still a great album, though. Ten!

Rich Bunnell <> (31.05.2000)

The band's first really really freaking great album. Even the little bouncy music hall ditties are well-written ("I'll be lazing in a Sunday afternoooooon!"), and if "Death On Two Legs" isn't the band's best song ever, I'm Grover Cleveland. I was president for two non-consecutive terms and you weren't! Nyeeeeah!.....Oh wait, it IS their best song ever. It's one of the most powerful, pissed-off songs I've ever heard, even if Freddie probably doesn't mean it. But he sure sounds like it! Why wasn't this song a huge hit? Were the radio stations too chicken to play it? What's the matter, McFly?

I too have heard "Bohemian Rhapsody" a few hundred times too many, but you have to think-- HOW did they write that middle part? It's so formless but so well-constructed! My English teacher made a connection to the song while we were reading Samuel Coleridge's "Kubla Khan" in that, like the poem, the song is just a jumbled mess of ideas that somehow manages to focus in spite of itself. "The Prophet's Song" is just as good if not better (awesome midsection!) and I also really love "I'm In Love With My Car," "You're My Best Friend"(a gorgeous, rolling classic) and basically every song except "Love Of My Life" because that one's boring. The closing rendition of "God Save The Queen" also doesn't strike me as great, but people in England probably feel that way about Hendrix's "Star-Spangled Banner." The album comes close to a 10, but I'll go with a 9.

Philip Maddox <> (28.06.2000)

I don't think that this one is significantly better than other queen albums - it just sounds like another Queen album to me. That being said, a lot of these tunes are great. 'The Prophet's Song' and 'Bohemian Rhapsody' are two of the absolute best overblown tunes in rock history - Freddie is one of the best vocalists of all time, and I stand firm behind that belief. Sure, it's puffed up, but the sound totally rules! As you said, '39' is unforgettable, though I've never heard the Dylan song - I'll get it on Napster later today. 'I'm In Love With My Car' is ok, but REALLY dumb. 'Love Of My Life' is highly revered by fans, but it kinda strikes me as boring. 'Sweet Lady' is forgettable, too. 'Death On Two Legs' is a great opener, with great lyrics - and Freddie is ACTUALLY angry at someone (I forget who, though). And as an American, the closing 'God Save the Queen' is pointless (actually, I would've preferred the Sex Pistols song of the same name - it'd be something to hear Freddie sing THAT one!). This one adds up to an 8 - really great highlights and not-bad-but-forgettable filler. Still, everyone should have this for 'Bohemian Rhapsody' and 'The Prophet's Song' (which isn't on any compilations, so get it here!). The CD re-release has remixes of 'You're My Best Friend' and 'I'm In Love With My Car', neither of which sound different enough to matter.

And I also recommend the Marx Brothers film of the same name - the Marx Brothers kick!

Ivan Piperov <> (21.08.2000)

Any record I've played as often as this one would have worn thin. But not the Opera album. It (and especially "Bohemian Rhapsody") is too fascinating to be overplayed! Now what's so atrocious about Roger's vocals on here? He offers a roaring as rocking as Freddie's; something you cannot say about Brian May. Now HIS lead vocals are really awful. The vocal harmonies in the Middle section of the "Prophet's Song", dear George, up to "..listen to the wise man..." COULD be done live! If you listen carefully enough, you'll realize that the "second and third Freddie" sing exactly the same stuff, but a bit more than a second DELAYED! It' s a delay they use here. As actually May does on his "Brighton Rock" solo. The other choirs and guitar orchestrations of course are massive overdubs. And I'm sure they've had a lot of fun doing them. And a product driven by fun cannot be "artificial entertainment".

Paul Stadden <> (07.10.2000)

Yes, you're right, it is glam trash. But as you said it is very well done glam trash. Who doesn't like 'Bohemian Rhapsody'?

<> (02.11.2000)

Does 'Bohemian Rhapsody' mean what I think it means? Maybe Freddie hadn't intended it this way, but it could be about sexually transmitted diseases. If you are up to it, listen to or read the lyrics. Even if that's not what the song was supposed to mean, even if it was supposed to mean nothing, 16 years later, Freddie puts some meaning into his own meaningless lyrics by dying the very death that song could be about. I'll refrain from actually annotating the lyrics, because that would involve crude language, and now that I pointed this out to you, you can do that on your own. I dunno. Maybe I just want the song to mean something.

Sergey Zhilkin <> (14.12.2000)

I feel rather cold to this one. It's amazing for me but A night at the opera contains some excellent songs among many dull and unlistenable (for me, of course). Such highligths as 'Death on two legs', 'You're my best friend' and 'Bohemian Phapsody' MUST be put on every Queen's compilation. But the other songs are very dull (except catchy '39' and 'Seaside rendezvous'). Nothing I can do with it. Besides, I don't understand the purpose of last track - 'God saves the Queen'. Is it a kind of protest? Well, actually I never dismiss such songs even if I don't understand them so my rating of 'Opera' doesn't suffer from mentioned track.

But, after all, three highlights pump the rating of Opera up to 9/10. Though the award of the best Queen's album, in my opinion, should go to Jazz.

Eric Rogozin <> (28.03.2001)

My favourite Queen albums are Sheer Heart Attack and A Night At The Opera, but if one had to be chosen, than it would be A Night At The Opera. Yes, it's one of the best albums ever! It's magnificent, gorgeous, glorious etc..! My favourite song here is "Death On Two Legs", I think, it's one of the best songs ever made! Plus, epic "The Prophet's Song" is awesome! I won't write about "Bohemian Rhapsody", it's all been said before about it. And Queen always can compile good order of the songs - "Lazing On A Sunday Afternoon" after "Death On Two Legs", "Love Of My Life" after "The Prophet's Song", "God Save The Queen" after "Bohemian Rhapsody. By the way, it was great to finish the album with "God Save The Queen". And we have catchy "You're My Best Friend" and "'39", gorgeous swing tunes "Lazing On A Sunday Afternoon" and "Seaside Rendezvous".

Robert Smith <> (13.03.2003)

Man, if I thought for a minute Queen took themselves seriously, I would have hated this album. However, as it stands, it is probably one of the most entertaining pieces of music to come from the 1970's. Is it perfection? No, with as much as I'd like to give it the highest possible rating due to the incredible quality of the better material, I just can't do it. Why? Well, my dear friends, we'll get to that in a minute. First of all, let us look at the flaws. Freddie Mercury is an amazing vocalist, hands down. His voice has command, whether he means what he is singing or not. Like I have said before, I have a soft spot for bloated entertainment, resonant or not. Brian May, while not particularly a virtuoso on the guitar, had a style that was quite unique, and was so professionally done, it always sounded great. Roger Taylor is an underrated bass player. Just listen to his thumping bass line on "Death On Two Legs," and you tell me that doesn't shake you. John Deacon, well, he's a fine drummer and all, but we'll get to him in a moment. First, let's discuss the songs. So, nice boy Freddie Mercury decides he'll start things out with a venomous rant we like to call "Death On Two Legs." Discordant orchestral noise begins the track, as it kicks into a jolly little piano line, then BOOM! Queen really rock out on this song, and any heavy metal song with operatic vocals is a unique marriage you just won't find anywhere else. Great melody, too. It may be my favorite song on the whole album. Next, Freddie changes pace with his jolly little 1-minute dance hall number "Lazing In A Sunday Afternoon." If the song wasn't so damn catchy, it would be classified as filler. As it is, I just can't dislike the song, damn it. I always have to sing along with it. Then we go into John Deacon's atrocious "I'm In Love With My Car." Man, my main problem with the song is its placement. I like my filler towards the end, but as the third song. Why the band ever agreed to let the man write or SING (if that's what you want to call it) is something I'll never understand. Not one single redeeming quality exists for this piece of shit. With whatever shortcomings Queen had as lyricists, they usually at least made their songs catchy. "You're My Best Friend," Roger Taylor's sole contribution to this record, comes along as a saving grace from the poison we just swallowed. With a gorgeous melody and heartfelt lyrics, it is essential Queen, for sure. "39" is another personal favorite. Maybe the folk melody is kind of generic, but Queen pull it off, and Brian May, while no Freddie Mercury, was never a bad singer. "Sweet Lady" is the only other song on here I don't like. The lyrics are horrendous and, well, the song just does nothing for me. Queen were rarely convincing when they tried this kind of hard rocking stuff. Then, we lead into Freddie Mercury's second jolly dance-hall number "Seaside Rendezvous," definitely the stronger of the two, with a melody that just makes me feel good inside. It's just so damn catchy, I want to put hoses in my brain to suck the damn thing out of my head. "The Prophet's Song" is Queen's prog-rock epic, and a mighty fine one at that. I dig that bombastic melody, and the middle section vocal workout is nothing short of amazing. This leads us into Freddie Mercury's gorgeous "Love Of My Life." I really think this song has a lot going for it, with its intimate piano setting, Freddie's vulnerable voice, and above all, generic yet still somewhat heartfelt lyrics. Next is Brian May's second attempt at a folk sound with "Good Company." While certainly inferior to the former, it's still a mighty fine tune, and I dig that bouncy coda. Next, is the mother of all bombastic, operatic, fuck-you punk rock songs, and this is "Bohemian Rhapsody." God, this song is brilliant. The melody is amazing. The lyrics aren't offensive at all (although pretty comical). Brian May's guitar playing is amazing. That vocal battle towards the middle is just a genius of record production. Everything about this song just works. The album closes with "God Save The Queen," which seems to serve no purpose but to close the album, so I'll leave it at that. Once again, this album gets a 3 and a half, maybe 4 star rating out of 5 for me. Some terrific songs marred by two really awful ones. Oh well. Queen would never be this great again.

Stephen Rutkowski <> (04.10.2003)

How can anyone not enjoy an album that begins with ‘Death on Two Legs’? The piano begins nice and slow, but menacing, before the rip roaring guitar and some noises that are made to sound like a siren (kind of anyway). Then a scream enters the fray before it all comes to a halt and leads into the song proper. And what a great song it is. As always Freddie’s voice is on top form and Brian May’s guitar is on fire. They all contribute to make the backing vocals sound really good. Thereafter, the album has a few pieces of filler. Most notably the ‘jazzy’ tracks – ‘Lazing on a Sunday Afternoon’, ‘Seaside Rendezvous’ and ‘Good Company’. The heavier tracks of ‘I’m in Love With My Car’ and ‘Sweet Lady’ are both pretty good but nothing special. ’39’ is nothing more than an average folk song (although Deacon does a good job with the double bass) and ‘Love of My Life’ is a short and sweet ballad. Perhaps I am being too critical though, even the ! filler has it’s moments of brilliance. None of these songs are bad by any means, just nowhere near as good as the remaining songs.

The highlights in addition to ‘Death on Two Legs’ are the two hits ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ and ‘You’re My Best Friend’ as well as ‘The Prophet’s Song’. I don’t think I’ll waste my time describing ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’, everyone would know it so well. ‘You’re My Best Friend’ is a delightful pop song, and again it’s dependable old Freddie with the great vocals. ‘The Prophet’s Song’ is a remarkable song that is underrated among Queen ‘fans’, but I put it right up there with the best. I used to really dislike the harmony interlude, but it doesn’t bother me that much anymore. This song contains almost everything that is great about early Queen – fantastic vocals and backing vocals, rip roaring guitar that has a few changes of pace and some of Taylor’s more memorable drumming. (He wasn’t a bad drummer, just more competent than memorable.) Unless you are an absolute Queen freak, you will probably be dissatisfied with the filler, but hopefull! y the great songs will sway you towards loving the album.

As an aside, Queen had some fairly interesting instrumentation on this album. In ‘You’re My Best Friend’ Deacon ditches his bass for the electric piano and plays double bass on ‘39’. Brian May plays a “Toy Koto” (I don’t actually know what that is) on ‘The Prophet’s Song’, harp on ‘Love of My Life’, and a ukelele on ‘Good Company’.

Fernando Henrique Canto <> (06.12.2003)

This is Sheer Heart Attack after a million revamps. They added the POMP element, and this is what came out! For one, I understand completely when you say this thing sounds like one big, puffed-up suite. I guess this was the point. AND, the general song quality has improved here big time. There ain't any song that I'd call below-average on here. The ones you mentioned, 'Sweet Lady' is certainly a throwaway, alas fun; and 'I'm In Love With My Car' is among Roger's best songs ever - a song that finishes with "string back gloves to my automolove!" is SUPPOSED to be dumb, isn't it? And I like Roger's stupid vocal delivery. All the other songs are fun, too. 'Seaside Rendezvous' has those hilarious brass immitations by Freddie and Roger, 'Death On Two Legs' is an absolute classic, 'You're My Best Friend' is absolutely adorable - easily among John's best songs ever! Oh, and there is 'Bohemian Rhapsody' - no words about that one. 'The Prophet's Song' is indeed excellent, too - by the way, the harmonies in the middle were all produced with a delay unit - you sing once, and the unit repeats it two, three or how many times you wish. Were the using Frippertronics for that one? See, THAT'S what (No Pussyfooting) was all about! 'Love Of My Life' is obviously humourous in its piano glory, and 'Good Company' has all those sounds done in the guitar! Cool stuff. This one gets a 13, just because I don't like it as much as Queen II.

Tim Van der Mensbrugghe <> (28.03.2004)

I have just read your review of Queen's A Night At The Opera and had a little remark about 'Death On Two Legs'. You say that Freddie sounds spooky when he is pissed off and then add that he is faking it. Well, he is not.

I looked around in the reader comment's to check whether anyone else already made this remark, but did not find any. So, here is a little bit of information.

The song is dedicated to their former management and originally the name of their former manager would be included in the title. But, due to legal problems, now there is only "Dedicated to ..." to be read. I think they must have been really angry to write such a ferocious song about in. I do not know exactly in what way the manager harmed the band, but I kind of like Queen's response. I have been asking myself whether taking legal actions against a former manager or bashing him in a song is the most childish reaction, but the latter certainly seems the most creative to me. Moreover, 'Death On Two Legs' may be the only real honest song they have penned in all those years. Who knows.

<> (02.09.2004)

In chapter 6 you can read about 'Bohemian rhapsody' and it's not so stupid song as you think about it

Alexey Provolotsky <> (06.09.2005)

Sure enough, this was their first album I bought. It’s strong and all, but I had expected more. How can people overrate some records so much? Couldn’t they notice that “Sweet Lady” has no melody (is the fact disguised by the heaviness?)? Do they seriously think that “Seaside Rendezvous” and “Good Company” are any better than merely decent? And, finally, how can they, people, be touched by such an artificial and silly ballad as “Love Of My Life”? All that is beyond me. Fortunately, the other seven tracks (the closer excluded) are all more or less great. Especially the oppressive dark opener, “Death On Two Legs”, the SOLID “The Prophet’s Song”, probably their best songs ever (those vocal overdubs are truly amazing) and, of course, “Bohemian Rhapsody” (it’s hard to put it down, so I won’t), with its majestic middle part. “You’re My Best Friend” and “’39” (yeah, it’s an evident rip-off, but “When The Ship Comes In” is, like, a traditional song, so we’ll forgive Mr. May, I guess) are very memorable pop songs; Taylor’s “I’m In Love With My Car” is very charming in its stupidity and “The Lazing On A Sunday Afternoon” is very charming in its humbleness. Very nice.

Just forget about all the hype and you’ll get a very diverse and very pretentious masterpiece. A high 12.

Gerlov van Engelenhoven <> (17.03.2006)

I wonder why you don't comment on the way the album opens, which is very interesting, very interesting indeed. Yes every time I hear it, it makes me quiver feel rather uncomfortable. It kinda gives me the feeling that I am bound with ropes on a highway and I see a great big truck coming right my way, there is nothing I can do about it. And then, just before it's gonna crush me, it vanishes in thin air without a sound and a bunch of pink easter bunnies come jumping around me, only to change smoothly in terror-rabbits with sharp teeth accusing me of being a hot air balloon etcetera.

And what about the way the two following songs follow on the previous ones? Because the terror-rabits vanish just like the truck vanished, very suddenly and without a real sound, and intstead of it comes the 1920 man on his bicycle in a black and white world, (they actually used a certain voice-transformer to represent the idea of the sound of radio in the twenties and thirties). And when you feel rather comfortable in this atmosphere of gentlemen with high hats and those bikes, you know, with one big wheel and one little, come on you know what I mean, anyway when you feel comfortable surrounded by all this, as I was saying, there comes the big red roaring formula 1 racingcar of Roger to terrorize you.

These three first songs are a very nice introduction to the album, it is even finished as an introduction with the slight reprise of the theme after that third song, and this introduction seems to show what this album is gonna give you. Hard rockin' monsters like i'm in love with my car (another example is sweet lady), stupid little thingies like lazing... (another example is seaside rendezvour). And death... just seems to have a bit of everything, the opera of the prophets song and of course bohemian rhapsody the classical piano all in the beginning which points at love of my life, shall I even continue?

What I really mean to say is that the first three songs of the album are quiet important to the album as a whole.

Andrew Zukoski <> (21.04.2006)

"the unforgettable melody of the Brian May-sung '39', all the more unforgettable since it's ripped off on a note-for-note basis off Dylan's 'When The Ship Comes In', and May even sings about ships!"

I believe that May is in fact singing about space ships, and that his lyrics are talking about how a dude goes off to find a new planet for the human race to live on, and returns within a year. While due to the relatavistic effects off his fast travel, many years pass on earth. As evidence, I propose: /"Oh so many years have gone/ Though I'm older than a year/ Your mothers eyes from your eyes cry to me." /Here the narrator has obviously aged much compared to those left behind on earth. Additionally, "sailing the milky seas" could be a reference to the milky way, and the lyrics about ships coming in from the blue could as easily refer to the sky as the sea. I beleive the plausability of this intrepetation is increased by the fact that May was a astronomy major before he left college for Queen.


Jean-Paul (03.08.2000)

Definately less interesting than A Night at the Opera, but a decent record. 'The Millionaire Waltz' is quite impressive; only Mercury could've written a tune like that and only Queen as a band could've turned it into an acceptable pop song. On this track, John Deacon shows he does know how to play bass (he's always good, but it's very easy to not notice his bass lines). Brian May's in good shape thoughout the record (as always); especially the guitar harmonies (kind of his trade mark, isn't it?) are a treat.

I don't think 'Good Old-fashioned Lover Boy' is intended to be about Freddie's gayness (not necessarily, at least), but if you're interested in these things, maybe it's interesting for you to know 'The Fairy Feller's Master Stroke' (on Queen II) is also considered by some people to be an "explicit declaration of Freddie being gay".

Anyway, I'd give this album an 8 or a 7 (but I'd give Queen a general rating of 3, so the overall rating would still be 10 or 11).

Ivan Piperov <> (21.08.2000)

This album shares the same fate as The Beatles' Magical Mystery Tour, which isn't really worse than Pepper but... You know, the fact that nobody could either write nor perform the way Queen did, makes them and this record legendary. Queen seem to say "Fuck You" to everyone hating operatic and pretentious stuff here, more intensely than they ever did, and they had the right to because they do it all perfectly. I'm quite surprised that you bash "Drowse". Taylor proves that he's every bit as harmonic and athmospheric (if not too melodic) as his bandmates. Ah, and after re-listening to "Teo Toriate" I understand why you call them a dumb band.

Ben Greenstein <> (06.09.2000)

This is more or less my favourite Queen album. Yes, I realize that Opera is far more fluid and consistent, but I've always slightly prefered this album's seriosness to that one's goofy fun. Even with semi-stinkers like "White Man" and "Drowse," this album puts me in a groovy mood whenever I hear it. Especially "You Take My Breath Away" - I don't care if the beauty sounds forced, fact is it WORKS, creating one of the most gorgeous songs this side of "Real Emotional Girl" by Randy Newman. The sole fast rocker is great, too, and "Lover Boy" has always been a favourite. "Millionare Waltz" scares the shit out of me, but is good. I give this album a very easy ten!

Rich Bunnell <> (20.09.2000)

Kind of like the previous album, except the meticulously well-crafted stuff on there is replaced by what is better described as loose, operatic pop-rock. It's a little less memorable on the whole, and "White Man" is absolutely horrible and ugly, but it's still deserving of an eight. I particularly like the reliance on weird, bouncy music hall piano stuff like "Millionaire Waltz" and "Lover Boy," and though it took me a while to get used to it, "Somebody To Love" is a great single. "Tie Your Mother Down" is a fun boogie too, but what's with that title?! Best song on the album: "Long Away." I almost forgot to mention it, too! Queen attempts sunny pop, amazes listener, listener writes positive reader comment, goes on to take over world.

Eric Rogozin <> (28.03.2001)

Not worse than previous, this album is such great as A Night At The Opera and deserves 15 the overall rating. Why do you all bash "White Man"? It's the best song from A Day At The Races to my opinion! And, George, why do you call "Teo Toriatte (Let Us Cling Together)" disgusting, cheap and corny? To my opinion, it's a good song. But I'm glad, that you praise "You Take My Breath Away", because along with "White Man" it's the best song here. Magnificent is classic rock number "You And I". And the music hall number "Good Old Fashioned Lover Boy" is frigging awesome. "Drowse" is not a bad song, by the way.

Federico Fernández <> (27.09.2002)

Good album! VERY good, though somewhat inferior to A Night At The Opera, basically because is more or less the same in style and there are not really new things here, but NOT because of weaker songwriting. Filler? Yes! "White Man" is dull and clearly inferior to, for example, "Sweet Lady" but I guess "Drowse" and "Teo Torriate" are OK although nothing spectacular. I'm really fond of the first moments of "Drowse" (then it drags), and Teo Torriate at least has got a nice melody. But the others are, surely, prime stuff.

"Somebody To Love" is almost as good as "Rhapsody" and Freddie delivers his best vocal performance ever. It gives me chills!!! And that is something I'm used with songs as "Gimmie Shelter" or "Hey Jude", not with Queen. But here Freddie simply sings his heart out, no matter if its fake or not, its great. "Millionare Waltz" is arguably one of their top opera-rock numers; the things they do here with the armonies, the melodies, the tempo changes and the instruments is really extraterrestrial. Also we have "Tie Your Mother Down", one of the best (if not the best) pure hard rock - non opera influenced tunes, and the breathtaking (funny isn't it) "You Take My Breath Away" which is a superior re-write of the already gorgeous "Love Of My Life". "Good Old Fashionable Lover Boy" is infeccious and catchy as hell and the pop numbers "And You And I" and "Long Away" are pop masterpieces, as well crafted and fine as many Beatles tunes. So, this is a good album and If you respect Queen (which is not so easy for the tradicional classic rock fan) you'll like it very much. That said. George. You feel the singing in Japanese (in Teo Torriate) is absolutely NECESSARY??? I think you put exactly the opposite of what you meant. Otherwise I don't get the point.

Stephen Rutkowski <> (04.10.2003)

The band felt under a lot of pressure before recording A Day at the Races. ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ has taken off like few songs before or after it, and Queen knew they had a big job in trying to keep the quality of their recordings that high. In the end they opted to release ‘Somebody to Love’ as the first single. Overall the song is pretty good but nothing special, but as you have stated George, it’s Freddie’s vocals that do the job. ‘White Man’ is prime garbage, a song that really annoys me. It sounds as though they are trying to recreate ‘The Prophet’s Song’ but accidentally left out everything that made that song so great in the first place. ‘You and I’ has appalling lyrics. (As I have said I don’t usually take note of lyrics, but these are so bad I must mention it.) For that matter, ‘Teo Torriatte’ has lyrics that are just as bad, and I really detest it’s sing-along nature.

But now onto the good points. ‘Tie Your Mother Down’ is a fast and energetic rocker. Listening to the songs I always get visions of Brian May leaning back in his trademark fashion. ‘You Take My Breath Away’ is a nice ballad but I can’t praise it as highly as you. Maybe it is too soft. May showcases his singing and acoustic abilities on a ‘Long Away’. As you have described ‘The Millionaire Waltz’ is a good song, but the funniest moment is when Freddie sings in a German accent. I really enjoy ‘Drowse’. I’m probably weird, but that’s the truth. Roger Taylor gives one of his best performances so far, and the song really does sound like a drowse. But the absolute highlight on the album is ‘Good Old Fashioned Lover Boy’. As usual it’s Freddie’s (and the backing) vocals that make the biggest impression. John Deacon puts in a memorable performance with the bass in this song. The bass coupled with the piano is what gives the song ! that pleasant bouncy feel. How many bands at that time made such great use of the piano?

A few notes on the instrumentation again. While not as diverse as A Night at the Opera there are a few surprises. Most notably Taylor plays the electric guitar and May plays the slide guitar on ‘Drowse’ (Hey George, isn’t that what you wanted to see on A Night at the Opera?)

Fernando Henrique Canto <> (06.12.2003)

What a strange follow-up to A Night At The Opera. This one is strangely serious. Yeah, it has the simply fantastic 'You Take My Breath Away' - probably one of the best songs in the album. I also like 'Tie Your Mother Down' a whole lot. But my favourite's got to be 'The Millionaire Waltz'. It IS an actual waltz! And it manages to be catchy, hilarious at parts, and even have that rocking part in the middle! Great, great stuff. The pop efforts in this album are also great. 'Long Away' is a GREAT pop tune. It could have been a hit if Freddie had supplied lead vocals - but in the other hand, it wouldn't have sounded alright. 'You And I' is a honourable John tune, and 'Good Old Fashioned Lover Boy' is also great! And I do like 'Drowse' quite a lot. I like the main vocal melody, and the slow, plodding rhythm gives the song an interesting effect. The only songs that I don't care much for are 'White Man' (a bit too trashy for Queen's standards) and 'Teo Torriate' (totally overblown and quite stupid). These two low points make the album certainly weaker than A Night At The Opera, so I give it a 12.

Alexey Provolotsky <> (06.09.2005)

Why make the same record, but with other songs? Okay, I’ll forgive them, ‘cause it’s a good album. Pretentious as hell, of course, but we’ve already gotten used to it, haven’t we? Oh, yes, we have. So, what’s the good news? The good news is that at least seven songs are as strong as ever. Hey, while listening to “You Take My Breath Away” I, like, feel some hidden emotions. No, no I must be mistaken. But even if I am, it is a gorgeously sung ballad with amazing piano lines. “Somebody To Love” (with that perfect guitar solo we’ve heard so many times, it’s not funny) is artificial in the best tradition of “Love Of My Life”, only it is a great song, grand and beautiful. But wait, there’ll be more. There’ll be amusing waltz, freakin’ catchy music hall, memorable pop, there’ll be some obligatory dumbness and absurdity. Sure, they wouldn’t be themselves if they didn’t spoil all the fun with the unlistenable “White Man” (putting a melody in a song is, like, not a bad thing) and two somewhat better, but still messy “ballads” (the closing pair, of course). They are not hopeless, but they put too much stress on the word “pseudo” to be very enjoyable.

You want me to give ADATR a 12? Okay, I think I can do that.


John McFerrin <> (20.08.2000)

I don't like these guys much at all, though I know some who somewhat enjoy them. I once bought a greatest hits album for the group, but I was horribly bored with it, so I traded it straight-up with a friend for Piper at the Gates of Dawn. Best trade I ever made.

Oh, about "We Will Rock You/We Are The Champions" ... these are good songs to blast over the PA system at a sporting event, especially when the hometeam is whopping some arse. But other than that, they are completely worthless. I suppose that _somebody_ had to write songs like those someday, but that doesn't mean I appreciate them for any more than their applied use.

Ivan Piperov <> (21.08.2000)

Have you missed the point, George? Completely?! Firs of all, this album is a totally fresh and unexpected shift from all the choirs and guitar orchestras and operatic, overblown stuff. Ever noticed that "All Dead, all dead" (a song written and sung by Brian May by the way) and "My melancholy blues" (now, who else than Mercury could pull off such a ditty?) feature no guitars? That "Sheer Heart Attack", after the previuos albums being punk's hate-records, is actually a punk-song beating out the guts of any punk group? That Taylor's "Fight from the inside" (Taylor performing almost everything) is actually great. I think only Roger could come up with a line like "You're just another picture on a teenage wall"...yes, Queen are a teenage band, but they've always got Taylor telling them how miserable these teenies really are! And those "ugly guitar tones" were played by Taylor himself ...that "Sleeping on the sidewalk" features NO OVERDUBS, not even a rhythm guitar, and that it has a great "storytelling" lyric...that "Who needs you" features Deacon and May as brilliant flamenco guitarrists...tons of new stuff for Queen! 'Get Down Make Love' is actually quite boring and disturbing. This is Queen's first "democratic" album by the way, featuring only three Mercury-written songs. It's also one of their most hard-rocking albums around, beating Queen, if only because Queen were better players by then.

Anyway I understand your dislike for the first two classics. You're completely right 'bout them. But still, come to see - such anthems, which grab masses of audiences - dumb as they might be - can only be written by a genius. Queen feature at least two of that kind. Why on earth did you give a two...

[Special author note: maybe I have missed the point, but if the point is that Queen shift from more complex to more simple (I don't say "more accessible", because Queen were always way too easily accessible) stuff, I'm glad I missed it. 'Simple' Queen either results in outrageously cheap arena-rock 'epics', or in just a generic, undistinctive sound - if you really mean that no overdubs on 'Sleeping On The Sidewalk' is an advance for Queen, this is ridiculous: overdubs are what made them special in the first place. Of course, you can still admire a peacock after ripping out its tail, but you have to have an acquired taste for tailless peacocks in that caste. Or an acquired taste for 1977-mark Queen, which is the same thing to me. Bah.

P.S. Atmosphere-wise and melody-wise, 'Get Down Make Love' is unquestionably the album's most unusual and striking point. Disturbing, yes - it's meant to be disturbing. But hardly more boring than the by-the-book rockers. But thanks for the May correction on 'All Dead All Dead' - this somewhat redeems him in my eyes.]

Rich Bunnell <> (20.09.2000)

If I'm going to be objective here, I'd give this an eight, because "We Will Rock You" and "We Are The Champions" are, at the core, quite good songs. But I've heard them SO FREAKING MUCH ON THE RADIO EVEN COMPARED TO FREAKING STAIRWAY TO HEAVEN THAT I FREAKING HATE THEM!!! So to me, the album gets a seven, though on its own merits it deserves an eight. Am I confusing everyone? Good. You all deserve it.

The rest of the album is the rest, and for Queen, it's pretty simplistic, but it works. I absolutely love the three-albums-too-late punk rocker "Sheer Heart Attack" though it's maligned by fans, and "Get Down Make Love" is bizarre and eeenteresting. Other good songs are "It's Late"(too long? Pishposh!) and "Sleeping On The Sidewalk." I guess some songs suck (like that lame Taylor attempt at funk) and like I said, I'm sick of the two mega-hits, but a seven or an eight or WHATEVER OR AAAAAAAAHHHHHHRRRHRRCONFUSING HELPP@@

Sergey Zhilkin <> (06.10.2000)

The main problem I see about your review is that album isn't fresh for you, and it even isn't fresh for average listener. I mean that you listened to two main songs ('We will rock you' and 'We are the champions') many times before bying them. 'We will rock you' is always (or almost always) played before sport games (football, hockey or basketball - no matter). And now, thanks to five young #$^@&*s from 'Five', it's even played on discos. 'We are the champions' is another famous song which can even beat Beatles' 'Yesterday' by it's popularity. Well, the same thing happened to 'Hotel California' (song, not album). Everyone knows it and it seems boring to every person over 13. But let's get back to 'News of the world'. Album itself isn't very good but it is no trash and surely worth bying. This album is so motley and it should be quintessential album of Queen. Everyone can find something good here (you see - you liked 'Get down' while I see nothing interest in it). 'All dead' and 'My melancholy blues' are great piano songs. One of my friends even likes 'Sheer heart attack' but I can see nothing interest here (Bad beginning+Bad ending+Bad lyrics+Bad voice+.....+Bad melody(if this word can be used here)=Very, very, ....., very bad song).

Well, maybe it's 7/10 but it really worths your attention (at least to say later:'Yeah, I heard News of the world and I don't like it').

Ben Greenstein <> (19.10.2000)

I actually like this one a lot. It's an interesting step away from the grandousity of the last few albums, but the wierd rockers (like "Get Down Make Love," and even "We Will Rock You" is sort of wierd when you look at it) work really well, and the pop ballads are pretty great, I think. Especially "Who Needs You" - that one has always gotten a bum rap that I don't understand. Other great songs are "It's Late" and "My Melancholy Blues," which I also seem to be in the minority for liking. The two Taylor songs REALLY suck, though, and I've always found "Spread Your Wings" to be kinda cheesy, not to mention potentially lude. 8/10.

Eric Rogozin <> (28.03.2001)

Yes, it's a little letdown from previous albums, but only a little letdown; this album is quite good. At one point, I agree with you, George: "Spread Your Wings" and "Get Down Make Love" are best songs here; but, you see, don't take "We Will Rock You/We Are The Champions" too seriously, well, even Brian May doesn't take these songs seriously. It's not bad songs, but totally overplayed. "All Dead, All Dead" is sung by Brian May and it's a good beautiful song, "Who Needs You" has a nice flamenco (I noticed, Deacon wrote good songs for Queen), "My Melancholy Blues" is also very good bluesy ballad.

Federico Fernández <> (07.10.2002)

No, no, no & no. I just can't manage to understand why many Queen lisiteners rate this album so low. For me, it turns out to be as good as the five previous ones, or even better. You give this album A NINE? And the inferiors Jazz & The Game AN ELEVEN??? That is... TWO points more??? It's not just that you're rambling, but it's not difficult to see that you didn't bother to take the CLOSE listening that this album deserves; otherwise how can you explain the gross mistake of calling "All Dead All Dead" a "Freddie-sung song" when the main vocal is Brian May, whose vocals, by the way, are not THAT similar to Freddie's. I mean, that mistake automaticaly disqualifies your rating to this album.

But personally, I have my reasons to love this record. First, the shift of stylistics works good for me; I adored their opera ditties, but this kinda rockin', dark side ain't bad at all! And the melodies are excellent as always. "Who Needs You" never goes far beyond cute??? Maybe, but how many bands can come up with such a melody and such an arrangement?. It's pure delight. The other Deacon-penned song, "Spread Your Wings" is easily his best ever, FAR superior to his upcoming poppy average rockers like "If You Can't Beat Them" or "I Need Your Loving". Taylor compositions, OK, maybe they ARE weak but they sound glorious compared to that "Fun It", "Rock It" and "Coming Soon" bullshit of the next two albums, especially "Sheer Heart Attack", which frightening and heavy chorus, specially in the end of the song, is really something. Also, "Sleeping By The Sidewalk" is filler, but not completely devoid of attractive; the chorus, for instance, is as catchy as anything. "Get Down Make Love", you said, is great, as it is the beautiful, haunting "Freddie-sung" "All Dead All Dead". And "It's Late"... HORRENDOUSLY OVERLONG??? I don't think so. The track is played so tight and it's so well constructed that those six minutes pass rather quickly for me... And you have to admit that that riff is prime stuff, and it flows extremely well with a beatiful vocal melody: hard rockers rarely manage to combine melody and riffage this good. The overplayed singles ain't bad either. I understand your passionate deslike of "We Will Rock You" (though I dig it), but "We Are The Champions" is much more that what you state. The melody is gorgeous beyond words, nevermind the actitude behind it. So overall, this is a great record, with great melodies, nice hard-rocking atmosphere (Is it me or the drums here sound extremely well compared to other Queen albums?) and the filler ranges from acceptable ("Sleeping On The Sidewalk") to really great ("Who Needs You"). I really can't see the reason why you give this such a low rating. An 11 would do much more justice and still, it is clearly superior to the forthcoming, 11-rated cuple of albums. Simply, because there is nothing as crappy as "Don't Try Suicide", "Rock It" or "Fun It" here. And the strong points ("We Are The Champions", "It's Late", "Get Down Make Love", "All Dead All Dead", "Spread Your Wings" & "Who Needs You") are unparalleled in those albums. Of course, I didn't convince you (WHO can???), but I like it; for me it's easily queen's second of third best album.

Stephen Rutkowski <> (04.10.2003)

The change in style is there for all to see. Much less production gimmicks on this album compared to previous efforts. I mean in ‘We Will Rock You’ there isn’t an instrument until the end of the song. I totally dislike the song in any event for the exact same reasons you have stated. ‘We are the Champions’ is much better though, doesn’t mean I don’t like to skip it every now and then, mostly because I have heard it so many millions of times. I don’t like ‘Spread Your Wings’ that much… but I don’t think I like many power ballads. I prefer the softer and sincere ones. ‘Sleeping on the Sidewalk’ is just so raw and boring… it just plods on and on. Someone has stated that it’s and achievement because it contains no overdubs. If that’s the case then give me more overdubs. I prefer my blues Led Zeppelin or ZZ Top style. ‘It’s Late’ is too long, as you have correctly stated. The riff is rather pedestrian, but great choruses, Freddie voice do! es it for me almost every time. Not on ‘My Melancholy Blues’ however. Even Freddie’s voice can’t save this bore fest.

Now that I have bagged almost all the songs, I’ll get onto the highlights. ‘Sheer Heart Attack’ is nothing special, and it seems as though the rhythm section is really low in the mix so all I can here is the guitar. A very fast song for Queen though, and the vocals are good as usual. ‘All Dead, All Dead’ is a tremendous song, (that is very much sung by Brian May). I’ve always been impressed by the drums on this track, but I don’t think they are anything special. ‘Fight from the Inside’ as you have said features some really ugly guitar noises, that sound great to my ears. Sounds like Roger Taylor was having a fight with his guitar or something. Anyway the rhythm section is good and it all equals another better effort from Taylor. ‘Who Needs You’ features some wonderful flamenco guitar from May and Deacon, it certainly adds to the variety on the album. The vocals are excellent as always. It’s good to see someone who likes ‘Get Down, Make Love’ as much as me. I remember when I was at high school trying to replicate the drumming on that song… since I am talentless musical wise, it didn’t work out too well. Anyway, that doesn’t matter, the song sounds spaced out, psychedelic or something similar. A big surprise on a Queen album. Overall the album has some great songs, some terribly annoying ones, and the usual amount of filler.

Fernando Henrique Canto <> (06.12.2003)

Oops. Queen are losing it? Well, that's what the album sounds like. Yeah, the rockers lose the competition against their past glories. Only 'It's Late' qualifies as a GREAT song on here. Well... I guess there just AREN'T many rockers on here. Roger's songs are rockers, I guess, but they were intended as attacks against the Punk movement, and they succeed. Damn it, THAT'S why they're so primitive, George! 'Sheer Heart Attack' is absolutely hilarious, the way it's so ear-destructive with its primitive arrangements. Just look at those insanely high-pitched guitar effects and the unbearable singing in the chorus. I love it! 'Fight From The Inside' is inferior, obviously, but I like that groove and the swinging guitar lines.

I do have problems with the two opening tracks. Not with the songs per se - but just because they're BACK TO BACK! 'We Are The Champions' should have closed side A, or something. The songs themselves... well, John up there is right on the money when he said "someone would have to write them someday". And who's better than Queen to do so? Eh? The Who? I don't think so! Among the other songs, I like the two ballads 'All Dead, All Dead' (with the guitar ensemble showing how the job should be done) and 'Spread Your Wings' (John just doesn't give up writing good songs, does he?). 'Get Down, Make Love' is a bit irritating, and so it 'Sleeping On The Sidewalk'. But I like 'Who Needs You' a WHOLE lot (John again!) and 'My Melancholy Blues'. I love that fake- depressed vocal delivery. Freddie is good at this! I guess this album gets a 10 from me.

Alexey Provolotsky <> (06.09.2005)

Even though I don’t have this album, I can’t miss the opportunity to write my comment on it since I listened to it. Truth to be told, it’s not a bad record. Despite the ode to dumbness “We Will Rock You” (and don’t tell me this song is great, but just overplayed; I’ve heard “Yesterday” more times and would still never put it down (I just try to avoid it)), there is nothing offensive about NOTW. “We Are The Champions” is a pretty song which main flaw is that it has lyrics very suitable for, well, you know, all kinds of crap. Unfortunately, only two tracks can be called great: the wonderful weird ballad “All Dead, All Dead” and the wonderful weird rocker “Get Down, Make Love”. The others are above average (well, maybe the unsubstantial “My Melancholy Blues” IS somewhat average, but the piano is rather nice, so I’m not really sure). A 10 overall would do.


Rich Bunnell <> (30.09.2000)

Thank god you like this one - I was afraid you were going to give it a 6 or something. Me, I'd give it a really high 9 and rate it as their second-best behind Night At The Opera. "Fat-Bottomed Girls" and "Bicycle Race" are the giddy classics, but "In Only Seven Days" and "Don't Stop Me Now" are gorgeous, pristine pop songs (a lot better than anything on the previous album). The latter, in particular, has one of the best-sounding slow-song-to-fast-song transitions since "Shangri-La" by the Kinks. I even like "Fun It" - it's a stupid and mindless minimalist disco-rocker that probably was the influence for most of the next two albums, but I personally think it's hilarious. I'm not sure if they meant a song like that to actually be serious disco - it's too silly. A nine.

By the way, a weird fact: None of the song titles start with any letter past "M." Weird. I wouldn't have even noticed that had my Explorer directory containing my illegal Napster-downloaded files not alphabetized the song titles, but what're you gonna do?

Glenn Wiener <> (10.10.2000)

Whereas this release was not the most groundbreaking album of the seventies, it does offer some pleasant pop songs and some unusual numbers. 'Don't Stop Me Now' stands out from those days with its spirited vocals and piano. 'Fat Bottom Girls' features some great guitar licks and more awesome vocals from the late great Freddie Mercury. The other songs add some interesting colorings not often found in pop music.

Ivan Piperov <> (10.10.2000)

This is a somewhat cold album. Perhaps I feel like this because I know the Greatest Hits outtakes already; anyway it gets to the point of the songs outdoing eachother. "If you Can't Beat Them" is such a silly song, and a bad one, and the band shows no enthusiasm on it. There are plenty of other bad tunes like "Dead On Time" (which is at least fast) and 'Mustapha' (which is at least weird). And although I am a bit of a Roger Taylor fanatic, I must agree, that his songs here are the worst of the lot. "Leaving Home..." and "Jealousy" and stuff are really great, but strange, they don't make this disc better!A weird affair: the melodies may be better, but this album offers a kind of exhausted Queen-personality, very unlike Sheer Heart Attack. I'd 7 it.

Ben Greenstein <> (19.10.2000)

Really good. They're at their most diverse here, but as wierd as the album is, the songs all still feel like whole songs, not little expiriments. Even the weak songs, like Taylor's funky ones, really aren't bad at all. And songs like "Bicycle Race" and "Mustapha" are awesome. A very high 9/10.

Sergey Zhilkin <> (10.12.2000)

The only Queen's album where I like more than 3/4 songs of the whole album ('The game' excepted). Huge improvement after 'News of the world'. Actually, I can't find Queen here - it's not their style. Here you won't find any horrible guitar chords, electronic sound or ANY bad songs. What had happened? These songs are not good - they are terrefic! I suppose it was really hard for you to define the best song here ('Mustapha'? 'Jealousy'? 'Bicycle race'? 'If you can't beat them'? 'Dead on time'? 'Don't stop me now'? 'More of that jazz'?).

But here's my question - why do you rate Jazz lower than A night at the opera? The second one doesn't have such melodical tunes. Besides, it's not so bright as Jazz (It's very hard to describe but I'll try. See, Night at the opera leaves rather gloomy mood (especially 'Death on two legs') while Jazz is more optimistic (but not jolly or funny!) and not so complicated as Opera). Though, maybe I like Jazz more only because I dislike too complicated albums and too heavy guitarwork....

Eric Rogozin <> (28.03.2001)

The band, that has two geniuses and two craftsman can't do something bad and in this case Queen does something great. Yes, Jazz comes to A Night At The Opera level. All songs are catchy, have a high quality, what else does a classic rock record need? I can't even choose the best songs, all songs are great (well, "More Of That Jazz" is worse, than others, but not very bad).

It's a big pleasure to listen to this album from beginning to end. "Mustapha" - excellent song, "Fat Bottomed Girls" - very good song, "Jealousy" - excellent song, I can go further...I don't know why some people dislike "Fun It", but I like it, especially Freddie's part of singing. "In Only Seven Days" - what a nice melting ballad (that proves Deacon's skills in songwriting)!  In one word, Jazz is a good present for any good music lover

Stephen Rutkowski <> (04.10.2003)

What a strange way to start an album… I am talking about ‘Mustapha’ of course. I must say I am not a huge fan of this album. Give me The Game any day. If I look through the track list, all I can see is filler, filler and more filler. Ok, maybe I am being too harsh. Let’s take a look at a few of the tracks. ‘Fat Bottomed Girls’ is a good song, a nice riff, some simple but very effective drumming. The choruses are a little annoying though. It seems as though it’s one of those songs that makes you want to sing along with it… you know what I’m talking about. The zenith of the album is ‘Bicycle Race’. A absolutely fantastic song that seems to move all over the place, but always comes back to the catchy chorus, with the mighty Mercury showing off his voice again. Mind you, the song is only three minutes long. ‘Let Me Entertain You’ is a lot of fun. (Does the beginning sound a little like ‘Get Down Make Love’?) ‘Dead on Time’ is very! fast, with a pretty good riff. Nothing special. Unlike the majority of people, I enjoy ‘Fun It’. Ok, it’s just generic disco/electronica/whatever but no other such song features such remarkable vocals (Freddie’s of course). ‘More of that Jazz’ isn’t offensive by any stretch of the imagination, just a slow, plodding rock number. ‘Don’t Stop Me Now’ is rightly regarded as a Queen classic. However, there is a really annoying drum solo.

To me the remainder all constitute filler. ‘Jealousy’ is an unremarkable ballad. ‘If You Can’t Beat Them’ is an unremarkable rocker (with oh so clichéd lyrics). ‘In Only Seven Days’ is inoffensive, but terrible boring. (And a story about what happens in a week is so hackneyed to me.) Freddie’s voice might possibly save the song (but how many times have I said that?) ‘Dreamer’s Ball’ can in no way compete with the vastly superior ‘The Millionaire Waltz’. And I feel that May was having a bit of a lull during this period as far as his ‘self-sung’ songs go. From the past he has given us delightful songs such as ‘Some Day One Day’, ‘She Makes Me’, ‘Long Away’ and ‘All Dead, All Dead’. On this and the next album he provides very lacklustre songs in ‘Leaving Home Ain’t Easy’ and ‘Sail Away Sweet Sister’. They are both so dull and boring… Anyway it’s still a pretty good album, just to hear ‘Bicycle Race’ and ‘Don’t Stop Me Now’. But someone like me might get drowned in the filler.

Fernando Henrique Canto <> (06.12.2003)

One of my favourites! And how couldn't it be? This is certainly at the same height as A Night At The Opera, but in a different way - it's got less pomp, fewer overdubs, it's more "lightweight"... but the songs are DAMN good! 'Mustapha' is tons of fun. Who could make a Muslim chant rock so hard other than Freddie Mercury? 'Fat Bottomed Girls' is a Goddamn classic, and I could never understand how many fans hate 'Bicycle Race'. Okay, it sounds silly, but it's SUPPOSED to! I love the guitar solo (it sounds like a guitar excercise - okay, do the D scale! Now the A scale! Now D! A! Heh heh, did Brian learn to play the guitar like that?). 'In Only Seven Days' has always been a big favourite of mine - absolutely beautiful. 'Dead On Time' is my favourite on here - fast, thrilling, energetic, rip-roaring, and features some of Brian's best guitarwork since 'Brighton Rock'. The weakest songs on here are 'Leaving Home Ain't Easy' (that's still good - it reminds me of Simon & Garfunkel) and 'More Of That Jazz' (a melody would have done some good in there, you know). 'Fun It' is absolute dorky fun, and 'If You Can't Beat Them' is one of Queen's most "straightforward" rockers, but it's totally cute. Oh, my, this is certainly a great album. A 13.

Alexey Provolotsky <> (06.09.2005)

Well, well, well, Jazz is a great happy little record. The songs are short, catchy and to the point. I would give it a 13, but “Fun It” irritates the hell out of me with its incredible dumbness and the closing track, “More Of That Jazz”, despite giving us the overview of some great songs, has very little to offer. But the rest are so cute, memorable and … not VERY pretentious. Honestly, I play this record more often than any other by the band: it sounds so humble in comparison with those monsters, it’s unbelievable. My favourite song is definitely the two-part “Don’t Bring Me Down”, where both parts are simply irresistible. Jazz is very recommendable even to the band haters (me included). A surprising effort.

<> (05.09.2006)

I would also agree and give this a number 9 rating. I would also put it up there as second best Queen album.

The sheer diverse quality of styles on this album are great. Excellent melodies and frantic hard rock combined with Freddie's sense of the dramatic. Jelaousy is a fine song in this respect. Even the last track is great, "All that Jazz" with it's retro snippets of the album cleverly done and some fine singing from Roger Taylor. There is no filler on this album. In Only Seven Days and Don't Stop Me Now are beautiful numbers, also. This is the last of the classic Queen run of albums 1974-1978, and one of the best. From now on it was not the same again in terms of quality. Also the party to launch tha album on the 31st October 1978 went down in legend as being one of their best. Must have been inspired by the album.


Jesse & Jen Sturdevant <> (27.10.2000)

Yes, George, Queen did actually walk off the stage and played a tape of "Bohemian Rhapsody" with an  accompanying light show. This was only during the "opera" part in the middle. There's no way they could have pulled it off live.  

Philip Maddox <> (26.10.2000)

I never liked this one that much. I'd give it a VERY low 6, and only because the track listing is pretty strong (even though they didn't include 'Fat Bottomed Girls'! A travesty!!! I love that song!) and the opening version of 'We Will Rock You' that opens the album. The rest is all painfully inferior to the studio versions, especially 'Bohemian Rhapsody'. The middle part was reproduced by the band leaving the stage and playing the record, coming back for the guitar solo. Dammit, hearing that part live was one of the reasons I forked over money for a double cd! On second though, I might even give this a 5, because you have to pay an awful lot for this. Dullsville, baby. I definately fall into the first camp you mentioned - Queen were a GREAT studio band, but I'm not so sure about their live ability. Brian does sound good, but then again, he always sounded good in the studio, too.


Eric Rogozin <> (28.03.2001)

I see no comments here, then I'll try to comment something. What can I say? Good album. Actually, it was released in 1979, then it was a close of Seventies, not a start of new decade. It's the first Queen record, when synthesizers were used. Probably, "Sail Away Sweet Sister" (groovy ballad of Brian May) is the best song here along with "Another One Bites The Dust"; well, all songs here are enjoyable ("Coming Soon" and "Don't Try Suicide" are a little bit worse, than others). I enjoy "Dragon Attack"(blend of hard rock and funk), "Need Your Loving Tonight" (traditional groovy rock song), "Crazy Little Thing Called Love", "Play The Game", "Rock It (Prime Jive)", "Save Me" (another groovy ballad of Brian May). I'm sure, this album is worth buying, it's not very outstanding, but rather good album.

Rich Bunnell <> (23.04.2001)

This one's just as stylistically-awkward as Jazz, but not nearly as fun since more of the songs aren't very good than I personally would like. "Crazy Little Thing Called Love," for example. Why was that such a huge hit? Sure, if they'd actually made it, y'know, sound like rockabilly, the song's great melody would stand out, but as it was produced by the band, it sounds like Freddie on Karaoke night or something. "Rock It (Prime Jive)" is pretty stupid too -- granted, almost every single song Roger Taylor ever wrote was stupid, but some of the time the stupidity somehow managed to make the song great, like with "I'm In Love With My Car." Not in this case, though.

Most of the rest is pretty good. "Another One Bites The Dust" has been played into the ground but is still killer, and "Play The Game" and "Save Me" do fantastic jobs of opening and closing the album respectively. It's definitely not one of Queen's stronger albums, but it's at least on about the same level as News Of The World. 7/10

Stephen Rutkowski <> (04.10.2003)

Finally a Queen album in which there is little filler. I can count three pieces of filler (‘Don’t Try Suicide’, ‘Sail Away Sweet Sister’ and ‘Save Me’) The rest is magnificent, apart from the middle of the road ‘Need Your Loving Tonight’. Your one line introduction is a fantastic summary of the album. Before I read your review I thought you were going to bag the crap out of ‘Rock It’ considering it is Roger Taylor and it featured synths, but I’m glad you like it as much as me. It really does rock (the ‘new’ style of rock at least), but in a much better way than garbage like ‘We Will Rock You’. But it is Freddie who sings the maligned introduction, and Roger sings the remainder. ‘Play the Game’ begins with some interesting, if not necessary synths, before becoming a fairly pleasant ballad. The same style of synths would be much better used on ‘Flash’s Theme’. However, the song does take a break of pace about half way through with some ripping synth noises, and May goes a bit crazy on guitar. To truly enjoy this moment, I think you will need to see the video clip. Freddie (complete with brand new moustache) steals May’s guitar before going a bit psycho. He then throws it back to May, which coincides with the aforementioned synth noises. A very funny moment for Queen nuts.

‘Dragon Attack’ is a wonderful funk kind of song. May’s guitars are absolutely fantastic, Deacon pins the song down in his characteristic function, and Taylor provides some delightful drumming. This leads into ‘Another Bites the Dust’ featuring Deacon’s famous bass line. May provides minimalistic, but fantastic guitars, Freddie is as strong as ever. This video clip features another very funny sequence (for me at least). The moment where there is only drums and bass, Freddie puts on a hat, which subsequently changes colour as the shots change. Then he does this funny duck walk. Sorry, I probably shouldn’t be talking about video clips, considering this is an album review site.

‘Crazy Little Thing Called Love’ is contains some catchy and delightful rockabilly. It is indeed a great side of music (‘Need Your Loving Tonight’ being a slight aberration). The second side is nowhere near as strong as the first, it contains all the filler. However, ‘Rock It’ is good and so is ‘Coming Soon’. It really is hard to say what is so good about this track, just a combination of good vocals, good guitar and what sounds like some ‘80s style’ drumming. ‘Sail Away Sweet Sister’ is dull, dull and dull, ‘Save Me’ is an annoyingly crap power ballad, and I’m not sure what’s going on with ‘Don’t Try Suicide’. Queen would later reprise the suicide theme on The Works with ‘Keep Passing the Open Windows’. But push the small amount of filler to the side and you have a great 25 minutes or so of music. An effort to rival but not better A Night at the Opera.

Fernando Henrique Canto <> (06.12.2003)

A bit hit and miss, if you catch my drift. I have something against 'Don't Try Suicide'. Meh. And I'm not much of a fan of Brian's power-ballads towards the end, though 'Save Me' has an unbeatable hook in the chorus. On the other hand, I think John and Roger were inspired by that time: 'Another One Bites The Dust' is an absolute classic, and 'Need Your Loving Tonight' is yet another cute pop tune in the likes of 'You And I'. Roger presents the cool 'Rock It' (the slow intro is truly funny!), with some great vocals; and 'Coming Soon' is truly... cool, too. I like the "yeeeah, yeeeah, yeeeah!" parts in the middle and in the end. 'Dragon Attack' is a true classic, and the other two Freddie songs are lovely, too. 'Crazy Little Thing Called Love'... who could ever guess Queen would make a song like this? Heh heh! Good use of synthesizers, too. I give it a 11. It's just not THAT strong, to Queen's standards. But I guess it goes without saying.


Eric Rogozin <> (28.03.2001)

I think, Flash Gordon is worth buying, at first, because of the fact of its existence, and, at second, because of "Flash's Theme", "Football Fight", "The Wedding March" and "The Hero" (brilliant hard rocking track). In general, not bad.

Dave Rose <> (14.08.2001)

OK, again it seems that you just don't get it. Flash Gordon was a very silly film, filmed in a comic book style. If you view it as a straight sci-fi film (3 years after Star Wars) then it's really appalling. But view it as a very, very tongue-in-cheek comic-on-big-screen film and it's actually quite funny (sort of like that old Batman TV series). Brian Blessed is a good laugh in it (as always), although Timothy Dalton would probably prefer to forget his part. But, back to the music, if you view the film as tongue-in-cheek comic fare, then Queen's soundtrack fits it perfectly - and it's very innovative in it's approach if you look at it objectively. The title theme, and the Hero theme at the end are wonderfully over the top songs with a wonderfully over the top vocal by Freddie. All in all it's a good half hour or so of fun. Oh, I suppose that's the problem with it.

Watch the film, then listen to the soundtrack - it's actually a good laugh, if you're prepared to give it a chance. People often compare Flash with the soundtrack for Highlander, but they are two completely different types of film, and two completely different types of soundtrack to match. Both fit their respective films perfectly - again showing Queen's skill and versatility.


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