Sunday, 3 June 2018

Queen - Greatest Hits 1, 2, and 3


Queen, like Abba, The Electric Light Orchestra and The Beach Boys, were, to a certain extent, a "singles" group. Yes, they released lots of albums, many of the very good too, but it is those great singles that they are known for me in many people's minds.

If you are more of a "hits" fan than an "album" fan than you really can't go wrong with this comprehensive collection of Queen's first batch of chart hits. My wife, for example, is something of a "greatest hits girl". She doesn't really want to trawl through the "Mustapha"s, the "Misfire"s and The "Millionaire Waltz"s. She wants all the hits and she wants them now. For her, and for many millions of others, judging by the record breaking sales of this compilation, it is ideal.

The hits we all know and love are there - "Killer Queen", "Bohemian Rhapsody", "Somebody To Love" and the irritating "Crazy Little Thing Called Love" and in fantastic remastered sound too. Glad to see "Flash" there and I have always had a weakness for "Seven Seas Of Rhye" and "Now I'm Here". Not so the preposterous "Bicycle Race" though. I do feel it is a bit of a pity they couldn't have found a place for their first single "Keep Yourself Alive" though.


The hits we all know and love from Queen's "Second Coming" are all here - "Radio Ga Ga", "I Want To Break Free", "I Want It All" and the David Bowie collaboration "Under Pressure" and in fantastic remastered sound too. I prefer "Greatest Hits 1" to be honest, but then the music on there coincides with my period of real Queen fandom. For many, though, this is what Queen were all about, for them. There are more big chart hits on here. There are also a couple of copper-bottomed Queen "rockers" in "Hammer To Fall" and "One Vision".


Unfortunately, after the glories that are "Greatest Hits 1 and 2" this one has the sound of barrels being scraped all over it.

Kicking off with a live version of "The Show Must Go On" (the original appeared on "2") and then a "rah mix" of "Under Pressure" which is pretty inessential, the "hits" are in short supply. Freddie Mercury's solo hits are in here too, maybe not a bad thing, in "Barcelona", "Living On My Own" and "The Great Pretender". There is also the Brian May solo hit in "Driven By You". A live version of "Somebody To Love". A remix of "Another One Bites The Dust" and the Christmas hit "Thank God It's Christmas".

All really not necessary for those wanting to sample the best of Queen. Bought as a part of the 3 disc "Platinum Collection" however, it serves as a useful tying up of loose ends. I have to say I have a weakness for the funky disco-ish "You Don't Fool Me”.


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