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Queen - Jazz CD (album) cover




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3.49 | 446 ratings

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4 stars The last of the classics.

Perhaps not on the same level as two most progressive band's masterpieces, "Queen II" and "A Night At The Opera", but it's a classic nonetheless. Don't let the horrible cover distract you. This album is good just as any other QUEEN album from the 70's. Everything is here: band's trademark multi-vocal harmonies, unmistakable Brian's multilayered guitar parts with it's own characteristic sound, "no synthesizer" policy, one track sung by Taylor and elements of progressive rock. Yes, ladies and gentlemen, this one is worth having in your collection. Perhaps "Jazz" is got nothing to do with jazz itself, but here a less fashionable songs then on its predecessor, "News Of The World".

The album opens with "Mustapha", nice tune with oriental feel - but I don't think the lyrics are in Arabic, it's more likely that it's just Freddie's "arabesque" gibberish. Funny and good track. "Fat Bottomed Girls" is a good rock track, utilising only few simple chords and almost no solos. It's not progressive at all, but it's a god rocker with slightly country feeling and good vocal harmonies. "Jealousy" is gorgeous ballad written in typical QUEEN style, utilising extraordinary good Deacon's bass line, and Brian imitating the sound of sitar on his guitar. "Bicycle Race" is a short pop tune. Clocking at no more than 3 minutes, perhaps it's a pop song with most tempo and harmony changes in one pop hit, ever. And all that within 3 minutes! "If You Can't Beat Them" is yet another typical QUEEN rock track, but this time an average one. "Let Me Entertain You" is excellent hard rock song with furious guitar part and complex melodies and rhythm (within a more or less ordinary hard-rock tune). Good lyrics too. "Dead On Time" - well, the same goes for this one. This one is in an ultra-fast pace, it sounds almost like an hard-rock tongue-twister. "Another pretty ballad is Brian's "In Only Seven Days", with nice melodies, chorus, good atmosphere provided by effects on vocals, but the text is somewhat banal, utilising typical rock 'n' roll cliche "from-monday-to-sunday" lyrics. The best blues that band ever did is called "Dreamer's Ball". If you are curious how it sounds like when QUEEN play the blues, here you go. "Fun It" is one of those gems sung by Roger. It is a strange song, some sort of funky with almost mechanical rhythm, good old Roger is screaming his lyrics as usual, and Brian's guitar is beyond description. One of my favourite tracks. "Living Home Ain't Easy" is another average ballad, based on the same formula as "In Only Seven Days". "Don't Stop Me Now" is a well-known piece of every Queen's live performance and I won't say much about it. It's a good song, but it's so overplayed that I can't stand it any more. "More Of Than Jazz" is closing the album and it could be considered as a filler, but I like it a lot. It's another Roger's agony, this time about the music itself ("Rock 'n' roll just pays the bills").

In conclusion, I think that this album should be in every serious rock collection. It's one of the best non-punk albums of the late seventies (save for the "pure" progressive rock), and it's worth your pennies because it could easily grow on you every time you give it a spin.

clarke2001 | 4/5 |


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