Sunday, 3 June 2018

Queen - News Of The World (1977)


Released October 1977

Recorded at Sarm West Studios, London

By October 1977, I had seen The Jam, Elvis Costello and Ian Dury live, I owned the first Clash album and was listening to The Ramones and The Stranglers. So, my favourite band of 1974-76, Queen, all of a sudden started to feel just a little “old hat”. Four great albums in row and huge popularity was now being tested by the maelstrom of punk.


1. We Will Rock You
2. We Are The Champions
3. Sheer Heart Attack
4. All Dead, All Dead
5. Spread Your Wings
6. Fight From The Inside
7. Get Down Make Love
8. Sleeping On The Sidewalk
9. Who Needs You
10. It's Late
11. My Melancholy Blues

The double 'A' side lead-off single, “We Are The Champions” with its terrace chant chorus and the unusual, quirky, metronomic “We Will Rock You” was a good start and went to number two, as I recall. The album didn’t really match those two though. Granted, “It’s Late” was an extended, big production rocker, but those were no longer de rigeur in 1977. Roger Taylor’s “Sheer Heart Attack” (named after Queen’s third album, which now seemed an age ago) was a contrived attempt to be “punk”. All fast thrashing guitars and breakneck drums.

“Get Down Make Love” was a somewhat bizarre piece of experimentation but there was no real place for songs like “Spread Your Wings”, “Who Needs You”, “All Dead All Dead” or “Sleeping On The Sidewalk” in 1977’s musical milieu.

The closer, “My Melancholy Blues” was a Freddie Mercury piano-driven blues that would have sounded good in any era, but overall, this has the feel of an album released in the middle of changing times.


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