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Live at Wembley '86

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★★★★½
(30 Reviews)

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  • Queen have churned out a few excellent live albums in their time but I didn’t expect this box set to be so special. No matter what kind of music you like (and I’m not counting R&B or classical here) you’ll find something you’ll listen to again and again in this compilation. From the first juicy riff of the immaculate ONE VISION, used as a sort of flamboyant intro and quite possibly the best live adaptation of a song ever to have been recorded, to the final few chords of GOD SAVE THE QUEEN, the concert is a trip through the very heart of rock n’ roll and captures the spirit of Queen. The best songs by a street are ONE VISION, as mentioned above which leads into TIE YOUR MOTHER DOWN, a sort of mood-setter which gets the stadium rocking with that catchy quitar rhythm and superb vocals by Freddie, A KIND OF MAGIC featuring solos for all four members of the band in an all-out seven minute wonder of a song, WHO WANTS TO LIVE FOREVER, a heartfelt ballad that somehow made it on to the stage (where it sounds a whole lot better than on record let me tell you), BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY that needs no introduction as Queen’s best-known song ever, HAMMER TO FALL where Brian excels himself in several stunning solos and where Roger Taylor cements his status as one of the world’s greatest drummers, CRAZY LITTLE THING CALLED LOVE, a catchy little ditty that develops into a pedal-to-the-metal hard rock chant halfway through, RADIO GA-GA involving the ritualistic hand-clapping of all 72000 spectators, and of course WE ARE THE CHAMPIONS. Add to that the sublime rendition of ANOTHER ONE BITES THE DUST, the bone-crunching guitar solos on WE WILL ROCK YOU, the superb and all-too-shor SEVEN SEAS OF RHYE, the live staple NOW I’M HERE, a few golden oldies (TUTTI FRUTTI et al), a crackling atmosphere and some hilarious and eerily prophetic comments from Freddie and you have what is surely the best live performance ever caught on tape. This is an absolute must-have for anyone remotely interested in Queen or even just rock music on the whole.

    Posted on January 11, 2010