Sunday, 19 May 2019

Queen - Queen Rock Montreal (1981)


Recorded live in Montreal, November 1981

This was a Queen live album from the period that saw them at the height of their irrelevance (comparatively), for they were still able to sell out an arena/stadium. However, the punk, new wave, post punk, two tone and new romantic genres had left the band as a bit of a cultural beached whale. Their 1984-86 renaissance was yet to take place and the set of this live album was the bridge between 1979's "Live Killers" and the summer of 1982's "Queen On Fire". Where it is preferable, for me, over "Queen On Fire" is that there are none of the clumsy funk offerings from "Hot Space" that are in that set. The 1974 Rainbow concerts and the 1975 Hammersmith Odeon one are still the best live Queen albums, in my opinion. That was my favourite phase of the career.

Of course, Queen always played live with a vigour and vibrancy that made them an irresistible live act and this is certainly true here, although what is odd about this one is that the Canadian crowd are not familiar with a lot of the material, so songs are introduced to relatively sparse cheers, not the rapturous receptions they got in Milton Keynes the following summer, for example. It means that although the sound quality and performance is very good, a little of the electric live atmosphere is lost. That sound quality, however, is eminently superior to both "Live Killers" and "Live At Wembley". One low point of the album, it has to be said, is when "Keep Yourself Alive" morphs into the dreadful "drum and tympani solo" followed by the messy "guitar solo". Queen should have left the worst of the seventies back in the seventies. There were always messy parts in Queen shows, the early set "medley" was another infuriating one. The sets often lacked continuity because of this. This one is no different.


1. We Will Rock You (Fast Version)
2. Let Me Entertain You
3. Play The Game
4. Somebody To Love
5. Killer Queen
6. I'm In Love With My Car
7. Get Down, Make Love
8. Save Me
9. Now I'm Here
10. Dragon Attack
11. Now I'm Here (Reprise)
12. Love Of My Life
13. Under Pressure
14. Keep Yourself Alive
15. Flash
16. The Hero
17. Crazy Little Thing Called Love
18. Jailhouse Rock
19. Bohemian Rhapsody
20. Tie Your Mother Down
21. Another One Bites The Dust
22. Sheer Heart Attack
23. We Will Rock You
24. We Are The Champions
25. God Save The Queen


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