Queen: First Five Albums Reissued - 14th March


“We aimed for the top slot and we were not going to be satisfied with anything less.” Freddie Mercury

March 2011 sees the re-release of Queen’s first five albums – one of the most exciting and influential back catalogues of all time. Recorded in the maelstrom of the early 1970’s London music scene Queen created a groundbreaking and unique soundtrack that remains globally influential today. Theatrical, imaginative, diverse, melodic and unpredictable they had a sound and a look all of their own. Sitting alongside their contemporaries like Led Zep and David Bowie, Queen set the standard for British rock in the 1970’s and became one of the most thrilling, glamorous and downright rock n roll bands of all time, directly influencing a contemporary roll call of artists from Foo Fighters & Axl Rose to Lady Gaga and Katy Perry.

“Queen”, “Queen II”, “Sheer Heart Attack”, “A Night At The Opera” and “A Day At The Races” have been specially re-mastered and each will be released as a standard CD as well as a deluxe 2 disc set which will feature new bonus content. Each deluxe album will be released on iTunes featuring bonus tracks plus additional sleeve notes, unseen pictures and videos. The albums also set the scene for their bands forthcoming Stormtroopers In Stilettos Global exhibition that launches in London on 25th February.

From the pure raw rock of “Queen” through to the majestic anthems on “A Day At The Races”, the first five albums highlight the diverse talent, musical ambition and already global success of a band made up of some of the best songwriters, musicians and performers of all time.

‘Queen’, recently nominated by Dave Grohl as his favourite album of all time, was recorded in the same studio that David Bowie was recording Ziggy Stardust. Because they didn’t have any money, the album was recorded on Bowies downtime, so Queen were literally recording at 3AM after Bowie had gone to bed. ‘Queen’ is their heaviest album, influenced by The Who, Hendrix and Led Zep and contains some of their hardest rocking songs, and also some of their most imaginative. Like all subsequent Queen albums, no two songs sound the same and there are mixtures of light and shade, the band teasing one minute with a lullaby, then blowing your head off.

‘Queen II’ is the real beginning of Queen as we know it. It’s the first time we hear the multi layered overdubs, the harmonies, the varied musical styles (ballads, folk, blues, thrash metal, pop and rock, it’s all there). It also includes their first hit single ‘Seven Seas of Rhye’, which led to the first of many iconic performances on Top of the Pops. The band recorded ‘Queen II’ in just over a month in 1973 ahead of its release in 1974. The album cover was shot by legendary photographer Mick Rock and inspired by a Marlene Dietrich portrait. The image was later brought to life in the revolutionary Bohemian Rhapsody video.

‘Sheer Heart Attack’, Roger Taylor’s favourite Queen album, was released in 1974 and reached Number 2 in the UK. Prior to this Queen were mostly considered a heavy rock band, but this album experimented with a variety of musical genres, including music hall, heavy metal, ballads and ragtime. At this point Queen started to move away from the progressive tendencies of their first two releases into a more radio-friendly, song-orientated style, illustrated by ‘Killer Queen’, which was their biggest hit at that point reaching No 2 in the UK. It also went to No 12 in the US Billboard Charts, the first of many hits there. A song about a high-class call girl, it contains the guitar solo that Brian May is most proud of and won Freddie his first Ivor Novello Award.

‘A Night at The Opera’, named after the Marx Bros film, is widely acclaimed as one of the greatest albums of all time. Exceptional on every level, musically, lyrically and artistically, Queen took the strongest elements of their previous two albums to make the ultimate winning combination. The most expensive album ever recorded at that time, it delivered rock, opera, heavy metal, romance, ballads, pop, sci-fi folk, music hall, ‘trad jazz’ and even the National Anthem. The album contains perhaps the most famous rock song of all time, ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ which went on to spend fourteen weeks and number one, be voted Song of the Millennium, become the only song in history to reach Xmas No 1 twice and sell a million copies on two separate occasions. Queen also recorded the first official pop promo for ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ as they were on tour and could not appear on Top of The Pops and this video paved the way for MTV and VH1.

By 1976, Queen were back in the studio recording ‘A Day At The Races’, which was written and recorded by Queen at their happiest, riding on the crest of a wave and loving every second. The album is an infectiously jubilant piece of music full of love, optimism and good old fashioned rock and roll. Like ‘A Night at the Opera’ it again borrowed the name of a Marx Bros movie, and its cover was similar to that of ‘A Night at the Opera’, a variation on the same Queen Crest. It reached number one on the British charts and features the classics ‘Tie Your Mother Down’, Freddie Mercury’s personal favourite composition ‘Somebody To Love’ and ‘Good Old-Fashioned Lover Boy’



1. Keep Yourself Alive 

2. Doing All Right 

3. Great King Rat 

4. My Fairy King 

5. Liar 

6. The Night Comes Down 

7. Modern Times Rock ‘n’ Roll

8. Son And Daughter

9. Jesus

10. Seven Seas Of Rhye


Bonus Tracks

1. Keep Yourself Alive (De Lane Lea Demo, December 1971)

2. The Night Comes Down (De Lane Lea Demo, December 1971

3. Great King Rat (De Lane Lea Demo, December 1971)

4. Jesus (De Lane Lea Demo, December 1971)

5. Liar (De Lane Lea Demo, December 1971)

6. Mad The Swine (June 1972)


Queen 2 

1. Procession 

2. Father To Son 

3. White Queen (As It Began) 

4. Some Day One Day 

5. The Loser In The End 

6. Ogre Battle

7. The Fairy Feller’s Master-Stroke

8. Nevermore

9. The March Of The Black Queen

10. Funny How Love Is

11. Seven Seas Of Rhye


Bonus Tracks

1. See What A Fool I’ve Been (BBC Session, July 1973 – 2011 remix)

2. White Queen (Live at Hammersmith Odeon, December 1975)

3. Seven Seas of Rhye (Instrumental Mix 2011)

4. Nevermore (BBC Session, April 1974)

5. See What A Fool I’ve Been (B-side version, February 1974)


Sheer Heart Attack 

1. Brighton Rock 

2. Killer Queen 

3. Tenement Funster 

4. Flick Of The Wrist 

5. Lily Of The Valley 

6. Now I’m Here

7. In The Lap Of The Gods

8. Stone Cold Crazy

9. Dear Friends

10. Misfire

11. Bring Back That Leroy Brown

12. She Makes Me (Stormtrooper In Stilettos)

13. In The Lap Of The Gods . . . Revisited


Bonus Tracks

1. Now I’m Here (Live at Hammersmith Odeon, December 1975)

2. Flick of the Wrist (BBC Session, October 1974)

3. Tenement Funster (BBC Session, October 1974)

4. Bring Back That Leroy Brown (A cappella Mix 2011)

5. In The Lap of the Gods..Revisited (Live at Wembley Stadium, July 86)


A Night At The Opera 

1. Death On Two Legs (Dedicated To…) 

2. Lazing On A Sunday Afternoon 

3. I’m In Love With My Car 

4. You’re My Best Friend 

5. ’39 

6. Sweet Lady 

7. Seaside Rendezvous

8. The Prophet’s Song

9. Love Of My Life

10. Good Company

11. Bohemian Rhapsody

12. God Save The Queen


Bonus Tracks

1. Keep Yourself Alive (Long-Lost Retake, June 1975)

2. Bohemian Rhapsody (Operatic Section A cappella Mix 2011)

3. You’re My Best Friend (Backing Track Mix 2011)

4. I’m In Love With My car (Guitar & Vocal Mix 2011)

5. ’39 (Live at Earl’s Court, June 1977)

6. Love Of My Life (South American Live Single, June 1979)


A Day At The Races

1. Tie Your Mother Down 

2. You Take My Breath Away

3. Long Away 

4. The Millionaire Waltz 

5. You And I 

6. Somebody To Love

7. White Man

8. Good Old-Fashioned Lover Boy

9. Drowse

10. Teo Torriatte (Let Us Cling Together)


Bonus Tracks

1. Tie Your Mother Down (Backing Track Mix 2011)

2. Somebody To Love (Live at Milton Keynes, June 1982)

3. You Take My Breath Away (Live in Hyde Park, September 1976)

4. Good Old-Fashioned Lover Boy (Top of the Pops, July 1977)(Mono)

5. Teo Torriatte (Let Us Cling Together) (HD Mix)


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Queen: First Five Albums Reissued - 14th March


long live the queen (American review from1974)

By J Glitterwart Poet: Almost a year ago elektra records sent me a HI platter simply entitled Queen, tres spiffy all red album cover with a gold inlay title. Queen, the Q had a lil crown Inside it. i musta been in one of my acoustical moods cause the record left me cold, george hall cum ovr my pad an flashed out on it, bein a heavy brittish rock n roll freek. so i laid the l.p. on him. time passed, one nite i went ovr to his house for dinner, cigarette butt stew, (all us big shot record revuers have our lil in jokes, bear with me), after dinner george turned on the ol stereo full blast and blew me into the next room with sum of the most futuristic ethereal gonad frabbin rock n roll i evr herd. i forced my way back into the room against a wailing wall of unearthly high voices and screaming guitars, tears of shell shocked rock n roll joy jumped outta me eyes and trickled down my cheeks as i listened to the music, took my breath away, if they play electric guitars' in heaven- this is what it will sound like, a choir of pure high golden voices hung in the air. insane brittish drug crazed angels busting the heartstrings of the universe with the majesty of their song. - who are these guys? i screamed, jumpin up and down in time to the music. he flipped me the record and i flipped out. twas the very record (Queen) that i had carelessly given away, needless to- say i. wasnt able to talk him out of it. even tho i offered him two rare dave van ronk l.p.s. in trade, (both out of print) i ran home an scribbled off another letter to good ol carolyn greiner at elektra re--cords begging for another copy, i was tortured by the tunes of the Queen runnin round in my brane. as i was waiting around one day a new Queen record came in the mail, unfortunately fer me geo. happened to fall buy just as i opened the package before ya could say-hey look a new queen l.p. geo had slipped -it under his coat and made off with it. thats the last i saw of said l.p. till abt a week ago. the day i managed to pry it Movies off his turntable i also receivet the new copy of queen number one in the mail, both of them have been blasting out of my stereo for abt a week now. let me proceed with a rave revu. Queen and Queen II on elektra records and tapes. if yer lookin for the music of the future look no further, queen is hear, these records are so fantastic that i hardly know where to start, perhaps KEEP YERSELF ALIVE the first track on the first l.p. if ive ever herd a fan-fuck-ing-tastic lead guitar riff then brian may plays it on this record, how he gets those sdunds out of his axe (as us musical types call it) is beyond me. the feedback the fuzztone the zooming jetplane sounds that zap back an forth betwixt speckers are enuffto make evn the most jaded of califloured ears perk up. its downrite psychadellic is what it is. the next track, also one a my faves, is DOIN ALL RITE, its as sweet an lovely as the first track is mean an low down. « from the back of the l.p. i assumed freddy mercury is the lead singer, ive nevr herd a voice that could keep up with a heavy guitar, till now. where that boy gets his pipes i cant begin to imagine, unless he is an angel, (on the second l.p. there are sum vocal tracks that shatter glass, no shit.) and do he play sum nice tasty piano. (after i rap down two tracks im usually at a loss, newsprint bein short a 48 page revu wont get printed, then how much can i rite abt a record? the proof of the pudding is in the grooves.) side two is every bi( as good as side one. its a real muthafukka of a rock n roll record. 4 semis. QUEENII is evn more fantistic. the vocal harmonies on the songs ar so fuckin incredible that they must be herd, i wanna scream with breathless envy and ecastasy when they twine their voices on SOMEDAY ONE DAY. such a song. some other thots. this record must be played LOUD! the louder the better, the recording itself is perfect, the sound so icy clear as the eyeball of a demented snow budda. brian mays guitar goes from golden acustical harp like crystal figurines to ogres of overamplified feedback in the twinkling of an ear. and it works, freddie mercurys piano likewise can swing frm the near subliminal to the overwhelming in a trice. th throbbs of john deacons bass almost bring on cardiac arrest and the drummer roger meddowstaylor is an earthquake an a half, there are sum bass an snare riffs on LOOSER IN THE END (a nice lil socially consious ditty by the by) that once more bring on the shrieks of rock n roll madness, in fact this band has so much goin for them i dont think they could not help but be one of the biggest groups of the seventies (my goddess, the 70s are almost half ovr poetfans! have you flashed on that lately? seems like only yesterday i was a flourchild and here i am me hairs turnin grey an me teeth goin....where was i? ah yes ) queen, a band to be reconed with, according to melody maker, a brittish pop trade, they just' tear it up all over brittan. they were gonna be on tour, an event i was looking forward to with panting eardrums but freddie came down with a bit of the ol hepatitis, hope its not all that hi livin catchin up with em. hope he gets well soon an back on the road, nuthin short of a vinal shortage will keep queen frm goin all the way. queen II is also a 4 semis record.

Fred?.... is homosexuality a gimmic? they seem to be as macho in a wierd way as john wayne is in his wierd way. who cares whomr what ya fuck anyway as long as u make interesting music.


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