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Queen - Live Killers CD (album) cover




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3.54 | 169 ratings

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3 stars Queen had been touring strong and regularly from 1973 and had never released an official live album! The fans were crying for live material and were somewhat satiated over the years with dozens of GREAT bootleg releases, some of which still command a sick amount of money on collector sites!!!! Without question one of the greatest live bands of all time (the same goes now, as their NJ show in 2005 was an amazing experience, and I'm sure the Philly show In March '06 will be just as amazing), how could they release 7 studio discs without a live release?

They initially recorded shows at the Rainbow Theatre, London, England in 1974 for a possible live release that never happened. Still not officially released on CD, this is one of Queen's most heavily bootlegged shows. An edited video was released in 1992 in their "Tricks" box set. Again in 1977 there were shows recorded in both Houston, Texas and Earl's Court in London for a possible release...again, bootlegged copies are all that exist, althought several are great soundboard recordings!!!!!!!!!

Finally in 1979 this double release was issued, and although I can't speak for other Queen fans, this is a letdown!!!!! The setlist had at this point gone beyond most of their early material and instead included only hits and newer album tracks. I prefer to hear the album tracks as Queen often dropped songs quickly, and here is a great version of "Spread Your Wings" that was gone from their set by 1981, never to return. Other great inclusions are the 12 minute "Brighton Rock" with full guitar solo by Brian May, and "Keep Yourself Alive", the only track from Queen's debut still to feature in the live show. Also, nothing from "Queen II", perhaps the best and most progressive of their 70's releases, appears here at all! Without consulting setlists of the age I can't be positive if anything was included in their set at this time from "Queen II." Many of the tracks only lasted until the Japanese shows in 1976 and never returned.

This could have been drawn out to a triple release, as fans would have spent the extra money to include a full show!! This release is a mixture of a bunch of shows from their '79 tour and lacks somewhat in continuity. Some of the greatest live tracks were left off this release completely, inculding "It's Late" and "Somebody To Love" to name just 2.

The sound quality is also not that great, and the 1991 remaster did not rectify this situation. It was no secret in 1979 that even members of the band, most notably Roger Taylor, disliked this release and made no qualms about saying so in interviews. If you are looking for some great Queen shows, e-mail me and I can point you in the right direction, but you won't get a full 70's concert unless you hit the bootleg market!!

silversaw | 3/5 |


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