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THE GAME

Queen

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ttaylor102003
2 stars actual rating- 1.5. This is the album where Queen started to be crappy pop junk. It has its (very few) ok moments, including the Opening semi title track, which features melodic Queen at its best. However the rest of the album is all pop junk, with a few alright moments. If you're expecting the fantasy riff laden metal of their second album in Dragon Attack, I'm sorry to disappoint, but its like some bass driven funk pop crap. By the way, this is probably Queen's least progressive album. Another One Bites the Dust is an overrated piece of crap, however its somewhat catchy, therefore its about a centimeter above the other pop songs. Need your loving tonight is typical pop junk. Crazy Little Thing Called Love gets my repesct for being different, although I do not like the song. Its like a 50's rock song, with all its swingin' rhythms and such. I do not care for this song, but at least its not pop crap like the rest.

Rock it is another lame song. Not creative in anyway. Don't Try Suicide has a good message, but I doubt anyone ever heard it because this song sucks badly. Ugh. Sail Away Sweet Sister is a pretty good song, its very melodic and is more like their old poppy stuff. Its not terrific though. Coming soon=pop junk. Save me i alright as well, however its hard to even put this in to have to skip all the crap songs.

I hate to give Queen such a low score (I love other Queen albums), but this steaming pile of crap deserves it. If your a fan, you may enjoy a few of the pop songs, but its just a terrible album I think. Highlights are: Play the Game, Sail Away Sweet Sister and Save Me, then everything else sucks fairly bad.

Report this review (#41056)
Posted Sunday, July 31, 2005 | Review Permalink
4 stars OK NOT all Queen records can be called "progressive". I don't mind about categories, Queen never cared about it too. They changed their sound, the 70's were over and if they still would have sounded like on "A day at the races" no-one would care about Queen anymore.

So "The Game" is just another Queen classic. I love to listen to this record, the funk songs are great and NONE of this tracks can be called a pop song.

Play the game is a typical Queen song, nice opener but not my favorite track on this record.

Dragon attack is a great funk/rock song with a brilliant bass-line, it has a nice screaming guitar solo in the middle.

Another one bites the dust...same style, so both songs fit together brilliant. A classic, i like it but i prefer Dragon Attack.

Need your loving tonight is a typical Deacon song, he always had these happy-melodies and nice harmonies. Nice song, if you like "Who needs you" or "You and I" you will also like that one.

Crazy little thing called love ... As said before a song in the early 50's style, its something different, they've done it later again with "man on the prowl". I think the song is ok but I don't love it that much.

Rock it is a great Roger song, intro sung by Freddie. I like the effect on Roger's voice. Nice rocker with a great guitar solo.

Don't try suicide is somehow strange, its a mix between Rock & Rock n Roll á la "Crazy little thing", wheather you love this one or you hate it. I like it quite much I have to say.

Sail away sweet sister ... is one of Brian's best compositions, its a shame they never played it live. If you like Queen's ballads like "Teo Torriatte" this one is for you.

Coming soon .. another catchy pop/rock tune, very groove like most of Queen's material during this period. I like it.

Save me is one of the greatest songs I know, very touching lyrics, nice harmonies, great guitar solo. One of Queen's great ballads....and they have lots of nice ones :)

So if you're openminded and like ROCK MUSIC and not just PROG this record is for you. In my opinion Queen never released a "bad" record, they just did some expreriments. And I consider this to be PROGRESSIVE too.

Report this review (#41090)
Posted Sunday, July 31, 2005 | Review Permalink
Sean Trane
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Prog Folk
1 stars I will not spend time reviewing all preceeding albums to this one (up to Jazz and the Live Killers) , because they are all good and would rather avoid the prog or not debate) but the good Queen era stopped at the above-stated albums. From this one comes the "certainly not prog" era, whether this is to be linked with Freddy Mercury's coming out is open to debate but also due to the MTV phenomena (Body Language videos etc...)...... Whatever..... But Queen did alienate most of their older fans around this album and Hot works. And I was one of them.And i am still. And hearing tunes like Bite The Dust Crazy Little Thing and Radio Gaga, will probably never reconcile me totally with Queen.

Outside of the odd tune on here that will remind you of previous albums , Queen entered the 80's with the typical sickly drumming (and it is a shame because Taylor is a good drummer) of that decade. This alone is 2* stars taken away. For the rest , one cannot say that Queen was headed for the commercialism since they were always commercial, but at least before they were challenging: now from this album on , they will be controversial.

I may be tough on this album , since they will do much worse with the next three (Space , Gordon and Works) , only really bettering at the end of the decade with Innuendo, but I want to make a statement here, that this is the Cornerstone album (that Styx did also but called it as such) and it clearly sets the mark between the good (before) , the bad (after) and the Ugly - Montserrat Caballe ;-)

Report this review (#41394)
Posted Wednesday, August 3, 2005 | Review Permalink
3 stars You know what I like of the reviews...Everybody can express their feelings on a records (good or bad) always supporting your point of view...Funny that I gave this 3 stars while others gave it 2 or 1 (someone could give 5 stars)...I would not say that is unfair, wrong, good or excellent, but its great that we discuss every record in these few lines (Without being offensive). Matter of tastes as I always say... For me The Game is Jazz with synthesisers...Jazz closed an era an the reason I gave it 3 stars (the same as this) is becuase they lose in some ways that EPIC mood of their previous records...Jazz is a joyful album as this one, the elements are the same, but the brand that made Queen great was somewhat lost in Jazz.

THE GAME is the first record with synthesisers...All the songs are pure pop...For some that hate pop I would assure that is BEARABLE pop...Play The Game is an outstanding ballad (the whole beginning is with synths making clear that nothing would be the same), Dragon Attack, Another one Bites the Dust, Crazy Little Thing Called Love, Don't Try Suicide are the catchy tracks and assure you to have a good time when hearing them...Deacon's Bass is one of the principal ingriedients of these songs...Maybe the lowest point of the record is Coming Soon...May's ballad Sail Away is good but not his best ever...And Prime Jive is pure Rock and Roll...sung by Taylor.

I guess is the first album produced by Mack and the sound is pretty nice...Progressive?...Definitely not...But I guarantee you that you will have a fantastic time spinning this one...A Queen's essential, but in the progressive field not essential.

Remember You have the last word...Respects CS...

Report this review (#41847)
Posted Saturday, August 6, 2005 | Review Permalink
3 stars Is this a great album?? Yes it is. If you are expecting something like another "Opera" or "Races" you will NOT find it here. Nor does it sound like "News Of The World" or "Jazz" for that matter. Any die-hard Queen fan will tell you that the beauty behind what Queen does is the fact that they never do it twice!!! While there are still AC/DC fans out there, which I can't understand, that listen to 30 years of albums that sound exactly alike, there are even more people who like diversity!!!

There is nothing wrong with those people who enjoy familiarity and decide to stick with a band because of their fear to change. Then there are Queen fans who love them because Queen refused to walk the same course and refused to record the same album twice...how else can you explain their progress from hard rock to pomp / pop rock to heavy metal to epic to vaudeville...you get the point!!

The early 80's were a hell of time for music!!! By this time the classic prog bands were dying off quickly!! Yes released the Anderson-less "Drama" album, Genesis released their modern pop with "Duke", Kind Crimson made a complete mistake after a 7-year hiatus with the dreadful "Discipline" and it didn't get any better for many other bands of the time. Queen decided to record an album that couldn't be classified and the result was "The Game."

All of Queen's trademarks are here, whether you choose to hear them or not is your problem. Sure, instead of heavy rock you instead get a strange mix of rockabilly, funk, pop, and even R&B. Songs like "Crazy Little Thing...", "...Bites The Dust", "Don't Try Suicide" and others could NEVER have been recorded by another band and been successful. Queen was quirky to say the least and this album proved that. Still containing several great rock tracks including "Play The Game", "Dragon Attack", and "Rock It", you have several other lighter tunes in the form of the beautiful "Sail Away Sweet Sister" and the COMPLETELY Queen song "Save Me."

Sure this is different than their 1970's output. I can't name any band that continued to record 1970's music in the 1980's. It is a way to survive for any band...to change with the times!!!!! If not for "Duke" and "Abacab" Genesis would have split up a decade before they did. If not for "90125" Yes probably never would have re-grouped after the "Tormato / Drama" debacle. Yet, these prog bands that moved into pop territory are still around today because they changed with the times.

Certain bands like "Camel" and "King Crimson" tried as well but never seemed to capture the chemistry...although both bands have come full circle and are better now than they have been in 20 years!!!! I've rambled enough, but realize that Queen did this to be different and the MILLIONS who purchased this album and gave them several #1 singles from it understood the point!!!!!!!!

Report this review (#70542)
Posted Sunday, February 26, 2006 | Review Permalink
Guillermo
PROG REVIEWER
2 stars This album marked the change to Pop Rock music for Queen. Gone are the very good arrangements of previous albums. It seems to me that their "Live Killers" album marked the end of an era for Queen.

As previous reviewers wrote, and as I wrote in other reviews for albums by bands like YES, Genesis, King Crimson, and others for the albums they released in the late 70s-early 80s, Queen was another of those good quality bands which changed their previously more elaborated musical style to compose songs more destined for radio playing. Maybe it was a "change or disappear" requirement done by their record companies, or maybe it also was a need for a change, but with Queen in particular, the disappointment was even greater, in my opinion.

The biggest hit from this album, I think, was the song "Crazy Little Thing Called Love", a 50s Rock and Roll style song sung a la Elvis by Freddie Mercury. I also consider it as the best song in this album. Another hit song, played many times in the radio was "Another One Bites the Dust" with a bass guitar line similar to the song "Rapper`s Delight" by a band whose name I don`t remember now (maybe it was "Rapper`s Convention" or something like that), a song which was a hit in 1979. John Deacon, the writer of "Another One..", wrote better songs for Queen years before, but I don`t like "Another One..." very much. "Save Me" was another song played in the radio, and at least it has good vocals arrangements. "Play the Game", again played in the radio, is not one of my favourites.The rest of the songs are not very interesting, apart from very good guitars played by Brian May.

When I started playing drums in one amateur band in 1981, I had to play with them "Crazy Little Thing Called Love" in wedding parties. This song is still played in oldies FM radio stations in my city.

Report this review (#79916)
Posted Wednesday, May 31, 2006 | Review Permalink
3 stars Well I can be short about this album. It's a reasonable good album with some very good songs on it, all in the rock and Roll style, but on the whole I can't get really excited about it.

the album produced some great hits for Queen. I remember hearing a longer version of Another One Bites The Dust, which was great, with freddie in great form, you can hear he was enjoying it, but the album version isn't very good.

No bad songs on the album, but as a whole the album fails for me. Still 3 stars as it is an enjoyable listening for the fans of R&R and Queen, which I'm both.

Report this review (#92139)
Posted Tuesday, September 26, 2006 | Review Permalink
clarke2001
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Honorary Collaborator
2 stars The QUEEN album from the transition period. This one will be remembered because of first use of a synthesizer (Oberheim OBX) on a QUEEN record. Prog-related QUEEN period is gone for good. This record is much closer to the trendy punk and new Wave than it's predecessors "News Of The World" and "Jazz".

"Another One Bites The Dust" was a huge hit. Only interesting thing about this one is the fact that actually all the special effects and strange sounds are made with Brian's guitar. There is no single not played on a synth. "Play The Game" is lovely ballad in QUEEN style, but note very challenging. The same goes for "Save Me" (very pleasant ballad though). "Crazy Little Thing Called Love" is rockabilly (retro-rockabilly was trend in the early 80s) somewhat reminding of THE STRAY CATS. "Don't Try Suicide", "Need Your Loving Tonight" and "Coming Soon" are just fillers, very weak fillers. "Don't Try Suicide" have some good lyrics, but that's not enough to save the song.

"Rock It" is very good punk/new-wave with Roger on vocals. I like it a lot; it's not just a weak attempt of 70's rock dinosaurs to play new, trendy music (like mentioned "Coming Soon"), it works really well, actually. My favourite track from the album.

"Sail Away Sweet Sister" is lovely Brian's acoustic ballad, and only thing that is somewhat proggy, but don't expect too much. It's just a lovely song with Brian on vocals, and one chorus in good old-fashioned QUEEN style.

The last song worth mentioning is bass-driven "Dragon Attack". Despite the cheesy lyrics and predictability, it's quite a good groove...

What can I say? Eighties are here. If you are not a QUEEN fan, skip this one.

Report this review (#101809)
Posted Wednesday, December 6, 2006 | Review Permalink
4 stars Most people here seem to disregard this album, because it started the new era of Queen, with more pop-oriented and radio friendly music, but I really don't mind as long as music they create is really good. Most prog bands went into pop in the eightes but probably non one of them did it so succesfully as Queen. They were probably the only rock band, that was able to keep pop music as powerful and interesting as their prog masterpieces from the mid-seventies.

The album has many highlights and one of the best Queen songs ever such as the beatiful ballad "Save Me", funk/disco/rock crossover hit "Another One Bites The Dust" or Presley like rockabilly "Crazy Little Thing Called Love". Those were the biggest hits, but there is still many great songs on the album. "Dragon Attack" is a powerful rocker with a pounding beat, great bass playing by John Deacon and Brian May doing very interesting stuff with his guitar. "Need Your Loving Tonight" is a power pop song that is a mixture of ELO, The Beatles and The Knack. "Sail Away Sweet Sister" is one of the most beautiful May ballads you ever hear. "Play The Game" and "Don't Try Suicide" are both nice, not exceptional, but not stinkers by any means. "Rock It" and "Coming Soon" are two new-wavish songs from Roger Taylor and those are probably the weakest tracks on the record.

To sum up, if you're not a proghead that dismiss everything that isn't prog just because it isn't prog, and you can appreciate the quality of the music itself, no matter what genre it represents, then go and buy this album now! On any other site I would give it five stars without any hesitation as it is a truly essential masterpiece, but not of prog music of course, so I lower the note to four. It's a pity to see all those great Queen records so lowly rated, on the first glance I could think that there are many stinkers, which is obviously not true. They were just not prog enough to suite the tastes of most of the reviewers here, but they're still one of the best and most influential rock bands ever!

Report this review (#102760)
Posted Tuesday, December 12, 2006 | Review Permalink
Chris S
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Honorary Collaborator
2 stars In 1980 Queen delivered a killer blow to their sound. They really did move into the more pop market orientated field. For those fans who enjoyed Queen's evolution going in this direction will no doubt continue to enjoy the 80's works but for me the compositions took a downward spiral. ' Another One Bites The Dust' written by John Deacon is still for me one of the best songs ever written by Queen so this song redeems the album somewhat. What Queen continued to do through the 80's was deliver great live performances but their studio work took a bit of a dive.
Report this review (#103406)
Posted Sunday, December 17, 2006 | Review Permalink
Seyo
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Honorary Collaborator
2 stars Three huge hits, "Another One Bites the Dust", "Save Me" and "Crazy Little Thing Called Love", are pretty much everything on "The Game" that deserves to be heard. And of course, none of these is anywear near the prog rock. This is arena, bubble gum disco-rock music that had a purpose to entertain teenage kids in early 1980s, but nowadays it is so dated and negligable.
Report this review (#118804)
Posted Wednesday, April 18, 2007 | Review Permalink
Gatot
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Honorary Collaborator
2 stars As far as my taste, there is nothing special about this album. Oh yes, this album features a very popular hit by the time it was released and it was aired on every radio in my country: "Another One Bites The Dust". This song created confusion to Queen fans as to which direction Queen would take their music to. Looking at this Another One Bites The Dust there is very obvious on upbeat disco style of this song. Other hits that were also popular: "Crazy Little Thing Called Love" and "Play The Game". As matter of taste, I like "Play The Game" as it still has the components of early Queen music. "Crazy Little Thing Called Love" was for me something like a rock'n'roll tune. This song was rearranged for marching band when I also get involved to play at Waditra Ganesha ITB Marching Band, altogether with ELP's "Pictures at an Exhibition" and The Police "Every Little Thing She Does is Magic".

Report this review (#121009)
Posted Monday, May 7, 2007 | Review Permalink
Easy Livin
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
3 stars "I gotta be cool, relax, get hip, get on my tracks"

Queen entered the 1980's with something of a resurgence after a couple of sub-par releases in 1977 ("News of the world") and 1978 ("Jazz"). "The Game" is notable simply for the fact that the band used a synthesiser for the first time, thus ending the proud "no synthesiser" boasts which appeared on previous album sleeves. It is fair to say though that the synthesiser usage is kept well in check, even if it is immediately noticeable as the first solo instrument on the opening (title) track.

During this period Queen's focus moved perceptibly towards world domination through multi-million selling singles and albums. "The game" therefore has ten single length tracks, any of which could have been a hit. In the event, four massive hit singles were selected, "Play the game", "Another one bites the dust", "Crazy little thing called love" and "Save me". Two of these, "Another one.." and "Crazy little thing.." signal a significant move for the band into a much funkier, pop orientated domain. "Another one bites the dust" is notable for John Deacon's much sampled bass line, the song's signature.

While they retained much of their unique character, the originality which differentiated the band in their early years was largely suppressed in the quest to be the best pop band. The track "Need your loving tonight" for example could be by any retro influenced chart group, were it not for the undeniable quality of the performance. The irresistible "Crazy little thing called love" comes straight from the rockabilly world of "Blue suede shoes" Elvis, Freddie even doing his best to sound like The King.

The other two singles mentioned ("Play the game", "Save me") are more orthodox Queen power ballads, which sit somewhat apart from the rest of the album. The most bizarre track is "Don't try suicide", which puts an upbeat jaunty melody to a troubling, not to say weak lyric: "Think you're gonna slash your wrists this time, baby when you do it, all you do is get on my tits."

The bottom line on the album as a whole is, take away the wonderful pop of the hit singles, and you are left with a bunch of pretty average album tracks, only partially saved by some fine performances. This is probably one case where the "Greatest hits" packages are the better bet.

The sleeve photograph of the band is now somewhat amusing, portraying them as young rockers complete with short hair and black leather jackets. They look like extras from "Grease"!

Report this review (#128402)
Posted Saturday, July 14, 2007 | Review Permalink
ZowieZiggy
PROG REVIEWER
1 stars OUCH !!! ALL DEAD! ALL DEAD!

Attention ! This album seriously hurts. Believe me!

One of their worse effort. But be prepared for several albums of this calibre, unfortunately. Disco beat "Coming Soon ", poor music "Don't Try Suicide"

But the two hits from this album are just the corresponding answer to "Fat Bottomed Girls" from "Jazz". I can't stand these, but apparently lots of people love them. So.

The most difficult task is to define the poorest one of all. Is it "Dragon Attack" (very difficult to describe), the childish "Need Your Loving Tonight" or the insipid "Sail Away Sweet Sister" ?

One good news about the original album : it was very short (less than thirty-five minutes). The second one is that there will even be a good tracks in here. A typical "Queen" number Play The Game. One good song only, this is below average for a Queen album.

Avoid it by all means if you want to keep yourself alive and be able to rock at Brighton. This album has not won the ogre battle. The one who tells you so is just a liar. I understand that these days weren' t the modern times of rock 'n' roll and that the band weren' in the lap of the gods while writing this album.

I guess the band should have better been inspired if they would have been lazing on a Sunday afternoon. They could have remained one of my best friends. But these were probably some prophets songs. Not at all the love of my life. After listening to such an album, I'm just dead on my two legs and my breath has been taken away.

I can't spread my wings because we are not the champions anymore. And from father to son I say : All dead! All dead!

Don't expect any prog in here. Maybe for their next album? This one stinks.

Report this review (#159691)
Posted Thursday, January 24, 2008 | Review Permalink
4 stars The year is 1980. Queen's music was becoming more commercial. They were starting to make the transition to pop music. Many people think that pop music=bad but that is not the case. This album is surely not as bad as everybody says. It is actually quite good. This album is not prog in any way and should not be viewed as it. If you forget about prog and just listen to this album as a pop album it will be an enjoyable experience. Songs like Another One Bites the Dust and Play The Game were hits at the time and are quite good. Some other good tracks are Crazy Little Thing Called Love and Save Me. This album does contain some filler, but all in all it is a very enjoyable album. Queen would not become terrible until the release of Flash Gordon, and then the very Terrible Hot Space.
Report this review (#162765)
Posted Tuesday, February 26, 2008 | Review Permalink
Queen By-Tor
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Honorary Collaborator
2 stars Just playing that game.

Following their 1978 change in pace, Jazz, Queen starts to move down the disco road with this effort. Not there quite yet, but the sound is starting to run in that direction. The Game is a blend of old school (pseudo-1950s) Rock 'n Roll, some almost disco moments and a bit of old Queen. Really, this is where Queen started to adapt to the 80s and really started to aim at the hits. While Queen had always been a trendy band who managed to find commercial success in everything they did, this is where they really started to lose the progressive and hard rock audience. Some may argue that this started back with News Of The World (and others say Night At The Opera), but at least that album had some very bright rock moments with a couple of truly brilliant anthems. This one plays it safe, and while it does have its moments, this one is mostly the stuff of progressive nightmares.

Starting with the promising Play The Game we're treated to some of the Queen that we know so well. A slow, yet effective song that shows the emotion that Queen has usually portrayed so well with Mercury's excellent vocal talents and the compositions of the rest of the band. But that's when it all starts to go downhill. Dragon Attack has an interesting bass riff that starts off the track promisingly, and a great Taylor drum solo near the middle... but the track never really goes anywhere. It sticks to the strait and narrow so much that it simply becomes that one bass riff over and over until the song ends. Following that is the song that many people know so well, Another One Bites The Dust. A good pop-rock track, yes. but is it very good in the progressive scope? No, not really. Another good bass riff is what saves this one from becoming just another track.

Now for some good ol' rock and roll. A bundle of enjoyable, if somewhat predictable song are up next. Proving that they're still an excellent force to be reckoned with in the rock world, Queen puts out a couple of numbers here that should appeal to the classic rocker, if not so much the prog-head. Need Your Loving Tonight and Rock It (Prime Jive) are a couple of upbeat tracks with a fast pace that are enjoyable, while Crazy Little Thing Called Love brings back memories of 50s rock and roll music. Sail Away Sweet Sister coupled with Coming Soon make up for the very redeeming saving grace of this album along with the crowd favorite, Save Me, all of which are good rock tunes but lack the complexities that Queen usually are so good at playing around with.

However, one track has been skipped here. The album's nadir, Don't Try Suicide is an annoying track that's amusing at best and terribly irritating at the worst. Though a short track, this is one of those, ''What were they thinking!?'' tracks whose comparison could fall close to Genesis's ''Who Dunnit?''.

Not Queen's best effort, this is one best skipped by those who don't consider themselves fans of the band. Still a couple highlights, this one is a full head and shoulders above its successor, Hot Space, which would be a couple years later. Though that's really not saying much based on the caliber of that album. This one is for people who enjoy dancable classic rock and who really like Queen's 80s outputs. Everyone else should just retreat back into 80s Queen if they're looking for something to get into. I'd be hard-pressed to give this album anything higher than a 2.

Report this review (#165989)
Posted Monday, April 7, 2008 | Review Permalink
SouthSideoftheSky
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Symphonic Team
3 stars Is Queen back in the game? Well, almost... The two songs that book end the album are the best ones; Play The Game and Save Me are both great songs with a very typical Queen sound.

Dragon Attack is great funky, bass driven rocker. I love the drum break at 1:30 into the song and the bass guitar solo that follows. Indeed, this is very much John Deacon's album, his bass guitar is very present on this album. And he wrote even more funky and bass driven Another One Bites The Dust. This song is not a favourite of mine though, I usually skip it.

Need Your Loving Tonight is a rather straightforward rocker that does not impress me much. And then there is the 50's style rock 'n' roll of Crazy Little Thing Called Love which is fun, but not much more than fun (but the guitar solo is great!).

Roger Taylor's Rock It (Prime Jive) (which I think should have been titled Rock In Space instead) is decent and very typically Roger Taylor. The Game was the first Queen album to include synthesisers which can be heard on this song and some others.

Don't Try Suicide is yet another bass driven song with a great lyric don't try suicide, you just gonna hate it.

Sail Away Sweet Sister is a song that makes me cry. Brian May sings this one, and his voice is so fragile and emotional. Great acoustic guitar break as well. A very typical Brian May song.

Coming Soon is another rocker; good but hardly amazing.

Save Me is without any doubt the album's best moment. I love this song! The lyrics, the vocals, the acoustic/electric guitar solos, the piano; its beautiful!

So, how to rate this album? Well, judging each track alone does not make this look too impressive, but the album taken as a whole cannot result in anything less than three stars. I readily admit that The Game offers very little in terms of prog. But I like it.

Report this review (#190045)
Posted Friday, November 21, 2008 | Review Permalink
b_olariu
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars Queen always remaining one of the most well known and respected bands ever in music. From this album on they dropped the prog influences from previouses album and become more and more accesible and comercial, but never the less some of their albums worth some spins from time to time, even if the prog elements are no more. On this album named The game from 1980, Queen manage to creat something between hard rock in places and mainstream rock , just for everybody. To me this is not a bad album, kinda mediocre , but 2 or 3 pieces are great like:Rock It (Prime Jive) and Coming Soon, the best from here, the rest are ok, easy to listen but not bad. In the '80's Queen was a hit factory, almost from every album, were 2-3 or even more pieces as hits in charts, beating almost everyband in this category. Not much to add, if you know Queen, and I think everybody listened at least once their albums, this one is not recommended, but is enjoyble. 2.5 rounded up to 3.
Report this review (#207824)
Posted Friday, March 20, 2009 | Review Permalink
snobb
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Myriad of critical reviews! I was a big fan of Queen for years, and I perfectly remember, how interesting this album was at the time of it's release!

First wide using of synthesizers in Queen albums ( if you remember, they we proud to write on their early albums "No synthesizers used!") Yes, this album is a turn to more pop-synth- oriented music, but it was a victim of time. ( And you perfectly know, that many artists made the same turn at that time: David Bowie, RPI groups,etc). So - some things are result of their time.

But the album by itself isn't as bad, as many think. At least, it rock, not sweet-soap of many competitors of it's time. Yes, it gave some mega-hits, so everyone know this music more or less. But just to try listen it as album, once again. I think you will see, that there are some interesting music on it.

Report this review (#239896)
Posted Friday, September 18, 2009 | Review Permalink
Evolver
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Crossover & JR/F/Canterbury Teams
2 stars Here is where Queen went completely into the realm of bubblegum pop music. The best thing I can say about the album is that it compares to the last few 10CC albums, where that band was completely irrelevant.

While the production managed to get this album some airplay, mostly with Anotherone Bites The Dust, a fairly empty, boring, bass drive tune (I'm sure you've heard it) and Crazy Little Thing Called Love an Elvis imitation (how original), the album is pretty much forgettable.

There is a moment for about ten seconds in the middle of the opening track, Play The Game, where it sounds as if the band is going to break into something interesting. But alas, it doesn't last. And they do try some hard rock in Dragon Attack, but it's a pale song in comparison with their earlier hard rock works.

This Game? Tilt! Game over.

Report this review (#349322)
Posted Friday, December 10, 2010 | Review Permalink
zravkapt
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Post/Math Rock Team
2 stars My parents played the 8-track cartridge of this album in the car all the time when I was just a small child. I can still remember hearing: "don't try suicide, you're just going to hate it..." (music fades out) CLICK! CLICK! (music fades back in) "...don't try suicide, nobody gives a damn." My parents were those mainstream types who never really bothered with Queen until The Game came out. This is their best selling album in North America, most likely due to the strong 1950s rock'n'roll and funk/disco influences. Even a song like "Bohemian Rhapsody" never caught on in the US until it was featured in a 1990s movie.

A lot of older fans didn't like the direction the group went in with this album. Unitl now, all their albums included the statement: "no synthesizers were used in this recording." Well, now they were used. Since this is literally my first exposure to Queen, I enjoy it more than most die-hard Queen fans do. This album was so ingrained into my psyche when I was young I literally love every song. Even 'filler' songs like "Need Your Loving Tonight" and "Coming Soon." This album has what I believe to be three of the bands best ballads ("Sail Away Sweet Sister", "Save Me" and the title track). "Sail Away" features some of Brain May's best singing on a Queen song, while "Rock It (Prime Jive)" is one of the better songs Roger Taylor has written for the band.

"Another One Bites The Dust" is famous for ripping off the bassline from Chic's "Good Times." "Dragon Attack" is the only other funk/disco influenced song. "Crazy Little Thing Called Love" of course sounds like Elvis Presley. For nostalgic reasons I love this album, but for this site it only gets 2 stars from me.

Report this review (#434287)
Posted Saturday, April 16, 2011 | Review Permalink
3 stars The Game ? 1980 (2.8/5) 10 ? Best Song: Dragon Attack

How many solid artists (and I can't deny, through all their faults, that Queen are a solid band) totally gaffed, crashed and burned miserably in the 1980s? Why? Well the traits of cheesy arena rock and new wave and synth pop came in. It was a decade of decadence and trying to move as far away from introspection as possible. Most solid artists tried their hardest to make music that meant something in the beginning, and when the 1980's rolled it, taking away their base of reference, forcing them into a completely foreign realm, they crashed and fell through, respectfully, but for a band like Queen, who never said anything meaningful in the first place, and had already pioneered the lackluster arena rock with much of News of the World, well we can see how they survived with most of their sound intact. They just moved on and focused on more particular facet to their sound than anything else. 'When your resistance is low, light another cigarette and let yourself go', he sings on the opening eclectic anthem rocker 'Play the Game', which epitomizes the kind of lifestyle and musical ideology they were shooting for with their first release in the 1980's. I can respect them, they were finally being honest for a change. They don't wholeheartedly eschew 1970s values, either. How could they, when in 'Dragon Rock', they celebrate their potheaded hard rock roots? But it's certainly more 'progressively minded', in the sense that 'Another one Bites the Dust' is a continuation of the arena soaring. I can't handle that song for long, but anyway it blows We are the Champions out of the water. The hard rocking is there, the soaring, shallow crooning is there, the bass guitars are taken up seven or eight notches on the loudness and grooving scale. What has changed that wasn't going to change anyway? Nothing, and that's why the Game is a pretty good album. They even have time for 'Crazy Little Thing Called Love', which is fun and all, but nothing to write home about. It's an Elvis tribute, if anything.

Report this review (#445879)
Posted Wednesday, May 11, 2011 | Review Permalink
Warthur
PROG REVIEWER
2 stars Queen had by this point become a rather soulless pop hit machine, cranking out catchy but disposable singles one after the other. This time around Another One Bites the Dust is the obligatory "anthem", Play the Game and Crazy Little Thing Called Love are the love songs, and the rest is rather forgettable. The band make a token effort to strike up some hard rock fury with Need Your Loving Tonight but fail to convince. The Game here is clearly "the music industry", and by this point Queen had become very adept at playing it indeed, because it sold like crazy - but do you know anyone who sincerely claims their favourite Queen song is Another One Bites the Dust? I don't.
Report this review (#564407)
Posted Tuesday, November 8, 2011 | Review Permalink
4 stars 8/10

The game in question here is to adapt your style.

But how they do it so brilliantly. Queen broad policy of non-synthesizers and makes other minor changes in an attempt to be further embraced by critics and audiences. And they succeeded! The 80s was a terror to proggers, and those who were also fans of this band (who admit they were not progressive as a whole) could not forgive them for such a change of direction, but hey - there's still a bit of good songs here!

The album begins in a little orthodox by the standards of the opening of Queen - because I think Play the Game is a ballad. But wow! We also have here the first use of the synthesizer, which is played very strongly just to be present (ok, ok, I admit - I love those cheesy '80s synths). Attack of the Dragon surprised me because it is not as heavy as I thought - I guess I thought that because of the title - as she mixes hard rock with influences from funk or something, I do not know. Now is certainly say that Another One Bites the Dust is a funk, and that's cool! Much better than the horrendous Fun It form Jazz and pair Fight from the Inside the News of the World. Need Your Loving Tonight is a median strip and below the level of the others here, but the excellent Crazy Little Thing Called Love is a priority to listen to - Freddie copying the figure of the King Elvis Presley make this is a incredible rockabilly !

Rock It (Prime Jive) marks the return of synthesizers, but only when there's vocals Taylor - Freddie sings his introduction. Dont Try Suicide is a bizarre combination of dark lyrics with a nice melody. Sail Away Sweet Sister is a beautiful ballad sung by May and Save Me is classic outor - to listen to it recently I remembered that I already knew this song! Excellent way to end the album.

As seen, the game marks a turning point in the style of the band, something that would mark the decade and 80 of them. Sure, it was risky - the band was just enjoying the moment as well as many others, and this can be seen as something unforgivable to many (especially here on the site), but I still like what they have to offer me. But I am also aware that this is not progressive, so I give 4 stars.

Report this review (#707394)
Posted Tuesday, April 3, 2012 | Review Permalink
UMUR
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars "The Game" is the 8th full-length studio album by UK rock act Queen. The album was released through EMI/Parlophone in Europe and Elektra/Hollywood in the USA in June 1980. "The Game" was a great commercial success upon release and generally received favorable reviews too.

Compared to "Jazz (1978)", "The Game" is quite different sounding. While the former featured quite a few hard rock tracks with edgy riffing, the latter is more of a sophisticated pop/rock album. Of course such a simple description of Queen´s music is somewhat ridiculous, as they are eclectic beyond eclectic and their music features so many different elements, moods and atmospheres. That´s also the case with "The Game", but it´s like they´ve toned down their most wild theatrical/progressive ideas and gone with a more commercial mainstream sound on this one. It´s starts out pretty interesting with "Play the Game" and "Another One Bites the Dust" is of course also a "classic", but there are not many highlights on the album. In fact I´d say that even though the musiciaship as usual are on a high level and the sound production and songwriting professional, most of the tracks on the album come off unremarkable to my ears. Sure "The Game" is a decent listen and there´s nothing offensively bad on the album, but I´m not feeling Queen´s usual burning passion on this one.

"The Game" is a step down from anything Queen released in the seventies. The few glimpses of excellence on the album are not enough to for me to rate "The Game" higher than 3 star (60%) rating.

Report this review (#890787)
Posted Thursday, January 10, 2013 | Review Permalink
3 stars The beginning of the end. The release of 'The Game' signalled a marked departure in style from the preceeding albums that had established Queen as recording artists. Only the two tracks that bookend the album ('The Game' and 'Save Me') retain Queen's vintage trademark sound, the remainder being composed of a mixture of styles shoe-horned into a pop format and sprinkled with synth faerie-dust or click-track disco handclaps. What raises 'The Game' above Queen's subsequent releases is the overall quality of the sound and songwriting. 'Crazy Little Thing Called Love' and 'Another One Bites The Dust', whilst being a world away from Queen's vintage sound of yore, are nevertheless well- crafted musical vignettes that have become classic songs in their own right.

So what of the rest of the album?

'Rock It', 'Sail Away Sweet Sister' and 'Coming Soon' retain just enough of the vintage Queen structures to elevate them above the status of filler. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said of the remaining two tracks. 'Dragon Attack' is a flimsy funk riff used as a playground for Queen's new synth- toy, but even this sounds like a classic when compared to 'Don't Try Suicide'. This wretched piece of music plumbs not only the song-writing nadir of the album, but possibly Queen's entire career.

The verdict? This album marks the end of an era, but retains enough of Queen's vintage quality to hoist it above the shoulders of the subsequent Queen pop albums it set the blueprint for. Just.

Report this review (#904640)
Posted Saturday, February 2, 2013 | Review Permalink
TCat
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars Queen is one of the bands that became a slave to the corporate machine as they approach commercialism. The interesting thing is how they lost their loyal fan base more and more as got closer to the pop sound. It's also interesting how the most memorable music came from the band when they were at their most inventive and their most dynamic. This album still has some greatness to it, but it would be the last one that would hang on to a part of that. This album is also missing a lot of the variety, experimentation and progressiveness that made the band great. I still enjoy this one, although less than the previous albums. Everything before this had amazing amounts of quality music with a lot of variety, talent, dynamics, inventiveness and so on. This album retains some high points, but it is very close to the fine line of pop and cookie cutter music that it just isn't as highly regarded by me as their previous albums. For example, "News of the World" was amazing for it's variety and the way each song was of the highest quality even in it's variety. "Jazz" was inventive and risky and showed the band taking on new frontiers for music along with retaining that great variety. "Sheer Heart Attack" was rough on the edges but still a masterpiece that I consider as great as "Night at the Opera". "The Game" however, is the end of the greatness that came before. Variety and experimentation starts to give way to commercialism and sameness.

Of course there are the great tracks "Dragon Attack", "Another One Bites the Dust", "Crazy Little Thing" (yes I'm a rockabilly fan and these guys do it right), and "Sail Away Sweet Sister". But there are also many that are annoying and too pop centered like the awful "Rock it" and "Don't Try Suicide" which attempt to achieve the status of rock/pop anthems, but fall flat on their faces. Then there is the pure pop drivel of "Play the Game", "Need Your Loving Tonight" and "Save Me" which utilize Freddy's amazing voice but suffer in the originality department.

This album was not their worst or representative of the band at it's rock bottom, that was coming soon though, and it would be impossible for Queen to bounce back on future albums. But at least they were great enough to be remembered for their best albums. This should be a lesson to the corporate engine to keep it's cogs out of artistry, but some people never learn. Anyway, this album gets 3 stars and after this, everything falls apart.

Report this review (#1390665)
Posted Monday, March 30, 2015 | Review Permalink
Necrotica
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars Jazz was easily one of Queen's most controversial records, many publications believing that the band were getting too over-the-top for their own good. Indeed, the album was very free-spirited and energetic even for Queen; Rolling Stone even went on to say that the band "may be the first truly fascist rock band." As if the band didn't already get a bunch of attention for their eclecticism and bombast, this just added more fuel to the proverbial fire. So with the band's first 80s effort The Game, the band decided to switch things up a bit. Instead of their traditional campy rock and layered production sound, Queen chose to create a more focused hard rock record and mix in a few sounds previously uncharacteristic of their style.

The biggest shift in the band's sound for this album is that they finally embrace synthesizers. After years of following a "no-synthesizer" policy, the opening track "Play the Game" immediately throws the rule out the window with the frantic keyboard intro that kicks it off. That's not to say that the band had forgotten their roots with this record; they were simply expanding their horizons, as well as experimenting with sounds that were popular at the time. There's also a noticeable emphasis on dance music this time around, something that would continue with their 1982 effort Hot Space. "Another One Bites the Dust" was the biggie when it came to the band's success with this genre, with a funky bass line that beginning bassists emulate to this day. That very song represents the other big change in the group's sound: it sounds a hell of a lot more restrained than their previous efforts. There's a distinct lack of bombast and stadium-filling choruses on this record, the band instead opting for a sound that's more reminiscent of Journey or another pop/rock band of their nature at the time. The difference is that Queen add their trademark sound to this style, giving it some extra personality.

Indeed, there are still elements of the band's old style present. "Crazy Little Thing Called Love" is an amazing rockabilly song filled with Freddie Mercury's typical sense of pastiche and fun, while the explosive chorus of the closing piano ballad "Save Me" is absolutely heartwarming despite the sense of desperation the song's lyrics suggest. Songs like "Another One Bites the Dust" and "Dragon Attack" are really where the change in sound is most apparent. Unfortunately, you'll have to get the hate mail ready... I don't like "Dragon Attack." It sounds like a boring mid-tempo rehash of what "Another One Bites the Dust" already accomplished before, and it's not all that exciting. The bass line, while sort of fun, wears out its welcome pretty quickly; a later highlight "Don't Try Suicide" makes much better use of John Deacon's bass work, especially when combined with the finger snaps and Brian May's Police-like guitar chords. The ballads, on the other hand, are generally fantastic; there's not a weak one here. "Play the Game" and "Save Me" are solid piano-driven numbers that benefit from infectious vocal harmonies and heavy emotional weight, while "Sail Away Sweet Sister" stands out as one of Brian May's best tunes. His somber vocals and John Deacon's melodic bass lines during the verses work together perfectly, while the chorus is extremely climactic and definitely worth waiting through the song's slow tempo to get to it.

The reason this is only a 4/5 and not higher is because some of the restrained songs really come back and bite the band in the ass. As I said, "Dragon Attack" is pretty damn bland; so are "Rock It" and "Coming Soon," both being extremely average rockers that feel like obvious filler. However, as with many of Queen's records, the songs that are good are extremely good. In fact, the goodies here can be absolutely amazing at times. So while there are some flaws and bland songs, The Game is definitely worth your time. It's more restrained, sure, but there are so many songs to root for that it doesn't really matter in the end. Their next few records, however, are quite a different story.

Report this review (#1445858)
Posted Tuesday, July 28, 2015 | Review Permalink

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