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A Night At The Opera

Queen

1975

Buy At Rough Trade
A Night At The Opera
Album Summary

A Night at the Opera is the fourth studio album by the British rock band Queen, released on 21 November 1975 by EMI Records in the United Kingdom and by Elektra Records in the United States. Produced by Roy Thomas Baker and Queen, it was reportedly the most expensive album ever recorded at the time of its release.Named after the Marx Brothers' film of the same name, A Night at the Opera was recorded at various studios across a four-month period in 1975. Due to management issues, Queen had received almost none of the money they earned for their previous albums. Subsequently, they ended their contract with Trident Studios and did not use their studios for the album (the sole exception being "God Save the Queen", which had been recorded the previous year). They employed a complex production that extensively used multitrack recording, and the songs incorporated a wide range of styles, such as ballads, music hall, dixieland, hard rock and progressive rock influences. Aside from their usual equipment, Queen also utilised a diverse range of instruments such as a double bass, harp, ukulele and more. Upon release, A Night at the Opera topped the UK Albums Chart for four non-consecutive weeks. It peaked at number four on the US Billboard Top LPs & Tape chart and became the band's first platinum-certified album in the US. It also produced the band's most successful single in the UK, "Bohemian Rhapsody", which became their first UK number one. Despite being twice as long as the average length of singles during the 1970s, the song became immensely popular worldwide. Contemporary reviews for A Night at the Opera were mixed, with praise for its production and the diverse musical themes, and recognition as the album that established Queen as worldwide superstars. At the 19th Grammy Awards, it received Grammy Award nominations for Best Pop Vocal Performance by a Duo, Group or Chorus and Best Arrangement for Voices. It has been hailed as Queen's best album, and one of the greatest albums in music history. In 2020, Rolling Stone ranked it at number 128 on its list of the 500 Greatest Albums of All Time. In 2018, it was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame.

Wikipedia

Rating

3.99

Votes

13369
Genres
Rock

Reviews

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Tue Oct 12 2021
4

There's a quote from fabled film director Howard Hawks about what makes a great movie: "Three great scenes, no bad scenes." That same rule applies to one's definition of a great album. But it has to check both boxes. Queen surely meets the "3 great songs" criteria here (You're My Best Friend, Bohemian Rhapsody and Death On Two Legs qualify, as does 39 on a good day). But imagine you're the drummer for Queen, and your band's frontman is Freddie Freaking Mercury. You decide to bring in a song you wrote for your band's make or break album, and it's titled "I'm In Love With My Car". You're so fond of this song that you insist it can only be sung by you. The drummer. Who can sell the song in a way the iconic Freddie Mercury just wouldn't understand. Your belief in this song is such that you go so far as to lock yourself inside a cabinet unless it not only makes the album, but it also has to be the B Side of the Bohemian Rhapsody single. As one does. There are 3 songs of which Mercury takes a back seat (although in the interest of full disclosure, I don't mind guitarist Brian May's vocals on the aforementioned "39"). But it's the bad songs that keep this album from the fabled 5 rating. Listen to this with a great set of headphones to really appreciate the finer moments. Even the auto enthusiasts can feel free to skip Roger Taylor's car song.

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Tue Feb 16 2021
5

Amazing. A work of art. But not the car song

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Fri Jun 23 2023
3

A surprising amount of fluff surrounding the eternal hits makes for a night at the opera that’s less memorable than you might hope.

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Wed Jan 13 2021
5

To have you’re my best friend, love of my life, and Bohemian Rhapsody on the same album, is one of the greatest accomplishments in modern-day history. I know this is only the first album that we are listening to, but it’s going to be hard to beat this collection of songs.

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Thu Jun 17 2021
5

Absolutely a fantastic album. I’d never listened to all of this and it was such a delight to listen to some Queen deep cuts. There’s a reason why they’re held in such regard. This album blows me away.

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Sat Nov 27 2021
3

I really wanna like the album more than I can honestly admit. I think it’s a 5 in terms of cultural impact but for my listening pleasure a lot of the songs are just on. Bohemian Rhapsody is a 5/5 and the production is very good but, I wish the rest of the album was as catchy and bombastic as that.

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Thu Jan 21 2021
5

Fantastic album, a beautiful voice with a beautiful band. I particularly liked The Prophet's Song

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Sat Jan 23 2021
5

Another one I don’t even have to try on.

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Wed Apr 21 2021
5

Just fantastic, varied and fun, front to back awesome

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Tue Aug 24 2021
5

Yeah, I mean, this hits all my sweet spots. It rocks. It's huge. It's dumb. It's weird. I love it. If you also love this and you've never heard The Kleptones A Night at the Hip-Hopera, I suggest you do so. This is all good.

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Sat Dec 30 2023
5

I lost my virginity to my best friend Puma while listening to this album. Sex was one star. Album is a 5.

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Sun Jan 17 2021
5

An album I should have listened to a long time ago. I picked it up on vinyl years ago. An incredible listening experience, as per usual with Queen.

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Tue Sep 28 2021
5

I never owned this one but this was one of those albums you didn't have to buy since it was played so much at all the parties. Side 1 doesn't have THE song, but it is still a strong side. The Side 1 songs I remember most from the parties where this LP was spun are "You're my best Friend" and "I'm in Love with my Car". You're My Best Friend still sounds great. Death on Two Legs is also musically good and lyrically full of piss and vinegar to say the least. Wiki just taught me that this song was with respect to their management that they fired at the time over financial and contractual issues. I recall the Bohemian Rhapsody movie made it seem like the old label was fired because they wouldn't agree to make THE Song a single because it was too long for radio. I guess this was a better storyline for the movie than the legal one. It also allowed the brilliantly casted scene where Dana Carvey plays the record company exec who gives a diatribe about how bad Bohemian Rhapsody was. I can't watch that scene without thinking of Dana and Mike Myers bobbing their heads in the car while they lip sync THE Song. There is a lot of genre hopping in this LP: On Seaside Rendezvous I keep waiting for the tap dancing solo, lol, 39 is a cool folk song, Good Company is a funky Ragtime song, The Prophet's Song has a 2 1/2 minute capella segment, and THE Song brings us opera. One could argue whether or not the music itself brings this to a 5 but, imo, Queen's ability to record good songs in so many off the beaten path genres gets it there.

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Wed Oct 11 2023
5

Now that's a fine album, REAL fine album, you can get a first class listening experience there

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Tue Jan 05 2021
5

YAS QUEEN! i've been expecting this here

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Sat Jan 16 2021
5

This album is brilliant, silly, fun. My ex girlfriend used to love it and it reminded me of the good times with her. So much fun

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Thu Feb 18 2021
5

Okay, so this is great. I don’t really know why I haven’t been more into Queen before. This album has a sort of cinematic sound. I loved the quirkiness of the second song. They are so varied! Like, they have so much versatility in their style, and I think it’s fantastic.

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Wed Feb 10 2021
5

Classic. Random weirdness and gold standard all-time greats.

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Tue Feb 23 2021
5

Queen were straining at the boundaries of hard rock and heavy metal on Sheer Heart Attack, but they broke down all the barricades on A Night at the Opera, a self-consciously ridiculous and overblown hard rock masterpiece. Using the multi-layered guitars of its predecessor as a foundation, A Night at the Opera encompasses metal, pop, campy British music hall, and mystical prog rock, eventually bringing it all together on the pseudo-operatic "Bohemian Rhapsody." In short, it's a lot like Queen's own version of Led Zeppelin IV, but where Zep find dark menace in bombast, Queen celebrate their own pomposity. No one in the band takes anything too seriously, otherwise the arrangements wouldn't be as ludicrously exaggerated as they are. But the appeal -- and the influence -- of A Night at the Opera is in its detailed, meticulous productions. It's prog rock with a sense of humor as well as dynamics, and Queen never bettered their approach anywhere else. [Source: https://www.allmusic.com/album/a-night-at-the-opera-mw0000391519]

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Mon Jul 26 2021
5

No other band can jump from heavy metal to cabaret to prog rock with the effortless grace of Queen, and this album displays that with a beautiful smattering of song variety.

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Tue Aug 24 2021
5

I could go the rest of my life without hearing Bo Rhap again and die a happy man. Yet, in terms of being the cherry on top of this overblown, bombastic confection, it's hard to argue with its aptness. Anyway, this also has 'Death on Two Legs', 'Love of My Life' and an eccentric love letter from Roger Taylor to his favourite motor. Oh, plus 'You're My Best Friend', the best thing Queen ever did. Eclectic, stuffed to the gills and, ultimately, glorious. Where's this ambition these days?

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Tue Oct 12 2021
5

Adrenaline rush from start to finish. Tracks keep jumping without a moment's breath. Really puts the prog in prog rock by taking inspiration from all sorts of classical genres, from the namesake opera ("Bohemian Rhapsody") to ragtime ("Good Company"). There are the really poppy songs. The true-to-form hard rock songs ("I'm in Love with my car"), which gets even heavier, metal-like with "Sweet Lady." The beginning of the folk '39 sounds like it could have come out today, especially with that beat. The songs are catchy and fun to sing to. Production sounds amazing. Weaknesses? I'm not sure this is a weakness, but I felt the diversity in genres could be a double-edged sword. On one hand, it grabs your attention the entire album, interested to discover not just what the next song will be, but what the very song you're listening to will sound like in a minute. On the other hand, they don't share much in common beyond the high energy, and it can be kinda exhausting with the sound constantly changing with each passing second. I think a better example of genre-blending is LDIV, but I don't think this deters from a perfect score. The songs can stand on their own. Each song is interesting to listen to from start to finish. There's really not much to dislike about anything about this album.

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Tue Feb 22 2022
5

You suck my blood like a leech You break the law and you breach Screw my brain ‘til it hurts You’ve taken all my money and you want more - death on two legs (dedicated to … )

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Wed Jun 09 2021
4

Lazing on a Sunday Afternoon into I'm In Love With my Car is the rock n roll one-two punch you never knew you needed.

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Fri May 28 2021
4

Amazing range and variety. Not all songs stick in the mind though.

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Thu Mar 25 2021
4

Gives a whole other level of appreciation for Bohemian Rhapsody

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Mon Jan 25 2021
5

I was blown away by the scope of this album. It's probably best known for its two epics, but that summary ignores the depth and breadth of the rest of its offerings. What other rock project contains a hate song for a former manager, a Bowie-esque space folk song, and a combination Dixieland/ukulele number? All of the experiments work. I have a tendency to reduce Bohemian Rhapsody to a product of Wayne's World fame, and I'm definitely guilty of taking it for granted due to its overexposure. A fresh listen reaffirms its status as a masterpiece, and the thing of it is, it's not out of place on the album. The whole thing is a work of art. Best track: Bohemian Rhapsody

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Fri Jan 15 2021
5

A great album with a contender for best song ever almost at the end.

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Sat Feb 06 2021
5

Echt een aantal pareltjes op dit album.

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Mon May 10 2021
5

Heh, you'll have a hard time finding a Queen album for which I will *not* give 5 stars. This is NOT that album. 5 stars.

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Wed Jan 13 2021
5

Good album. I know so many of the queen songs on it but have never listened to the full album.

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Wed Jan 20 2021
5

Love this album, this is exactly what I was hoping for in this project— I really only knew the hits. I know this is one my dad probably wore the vinyl out of when he was in high school

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Tue Feb 16 2021
5

Not much that can be said. Brilliant.

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Tue Jan 19 2021
5

One of Queen's best. Not much else to say

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Fri Apr 08 2022
5

4/7/22 The easiest 5 I’ve given yet! Such a fun album with the perfect blend of theatrics and talent. Excellent guitar as well! Really enjoyed every song in the album and the ending was amazing! Favorite song: Bohemian Rhapsody Favorite new song: ‘39

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Mon Feb 26 2024
4

Queen albums are always entertaining. This is the big one - featuring everyone's favorite song, at least for one moment in their life. Varies a bit in quality throughout, but you gotta give respect to Freddie and the gang's most accomplished effort to bring ballet to the masses.

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Wed Oct 11 2023
3

“Mamaaaaa, uwu” - Freddie Mercury

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Sun Nov 12 2023
3

There are very few things I dislike more than the marriage of rock music and cabaret/music hall. …and I say that as a Kinks fan. This record is excellently produced, which distracts from A Night at the Opera’s haughty cabaret-rock. Musically, however, Queen has never really been for me.

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Mon Feb 26 2024
3

This is a top-tier 3/5 album, always fun, the preponderance of oddball song-shapes almost incidental to the record’s pleasures, the vocal and guitar fireworking, the pointed daftness, and the hugeness of the production. This contains maybe two and a half very good songs (and one and a half are BR), but I’m not sure that matters.

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Tue Feb 06 2024
2

As much as I like some of their songs individually, I’ve never been that much of a Queen guy, and I tend to find their albums pretty grating. This is no exception.

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Fri Feb 23 2024
2

I’ve always been a tounge in cheek Aueen hater, but this album didn’t do much to change that. The 2 famous songs are great, BH might be one of the best songs ever, but I don’t really love the rest of it, which is a common theme for a lot of Queen I’ve found. Controversial 2

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Fri Jun 23 2023
1

I tried but had to bail before the end. Overblown and frankly a mess - 39 doesn't sound like it should be on any album, never mind this one. Too much guitar, too little melody.

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Wed Jan 13 2021
5

Gostei muito, fazia um tempão que não escutava.

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Thu May 06 2021
5

How can the album that bore Bohemian and Rhapsody not to be a five. Love the 70s shredding.

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Sat May 29 2021
5

Hard not to rate this well. Not every song is a gem but those that are make up for it. I’m thankful that Wayne’s World revived the interest in Queen.

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Tue May 11 2021
5

Great album from start to finish

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Fri Jan 15 2021
5

Revisitar esta obra que ya conocia es siempre chulo. Más rock del que recordaba.

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Wed Jan 27 2021
5

Bardzo pomieszane gatunki, ale są dobrzy we wszystkim. No i Bohemian Rhapsody <3

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Wed Feb 03 2021
5

Just love this album with all of its eccentricity.

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Thu Feb 25 2021
5

Incredible album - Queen always puts me in a good mood. You're my best friend and Bohemian Rhapsody are both iconic. I also feel like I know a lot about this album because it was featured in the movie.

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Mon Apr 05 2021
5

Just great and suuuper original!

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Sun Jul 04 2021
5

No me ha encantado, pero ...

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Fri Jun 25 2021
5

It fucking kills it. Thats it

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Mon Jan 25 2021
5

Amazing classic. Discovered '39, probably a 10 ten queen song for me now. Prophet song great stereo experience. Album excellence

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Tue Jun 29 2021
5

Lives up to its name, Bohemian Rhapsody is worth the price of admission alone

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Thu Feb 25 2021
5

Obviously some absolute jams here, but I really liked ‘39, which I’d never heard before, and The Prophet’s Song” was like a Bohemian Rhapsody 2.0 that I didn’t know existed.

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Wed May 05 2021
5

Bohemian Rhapsody tem 1,5 bilhoes de listens

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Thu Feb 11 2021
5

Faves: Love of my life, Bohemian Rhapsody, seaside revenue

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Mon May 17 2021
5

Eclecticismo puro, bordea el heavy, pasa por el pop, se asoma brevemente al folk y es puro rock. Mercury desatado. Cambios de ritmo contínuos. Temazo mítico incluído. Sobresaliente

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Tue Mar 09 2021
5

This is a 5 star album from start to finish. Queen at their finest.

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Thu May 27 2021
5

Рубрика "Не даром жирными жопами топ заняли". Тупа мастхиар-альбом. Пусть и не каждым треком по отдельности, но альбомом единым. Прям вообще проходняка не завезли, все треки плюс-минус интересные, от середняка до "боже мой, 10/10". Рапсодия, мб, лучший трек всех времён и народов. Туды и музла, и композиционных решений, и смыслу, и работы с языком, и элементов разных жанров завезли, и всё работает, как положено. К ней единственная претензия условная разве в том, что митольный фрагмент "So you think you can stone me..." слишком короток, имхо охуенен, мб больше, чем четверостишие на него выделить. Ну вот полвека прошло, до сих пор вполне актуально звучит. В смысле не по трендам, канеш, но по качеству, по доступности, так скать. Слушать не затем, чтоб знать, откуда есть пошло, а ради того... чем всё закончилось, грубо говоря. То есть решения, что Queen в золотое время напридумывали, опосля в мейнстриме особо развития особо нигде не получили, так и оставшись в своих альбомах. Мб, канеш, цэ тупа продукт своегоо времени, и опосля было как-то нерентабельно особо заморачиваться, дабы повторить. Но мб всё же Queen были ярким неповторимым явлением эпохи, к которому так просто и не подсосёшься. Так что всё же мастхиар из 10.

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Sat May 08 2021
5

Great album, Queen was at the top of their game and produced a brilliant album out of it. It’s a little mix of everything and it’s all brilliant

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Sun May 02 2021
5

Canciones que no conocía tanto, canciones rápidas casi todo el álbum para un gran crescendo. Lo mejor para el final.

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Mon Apr 26 2021
5

Bohemian rhapsody bleibt einer der besten Songs aller Zeiten, aber auch sonst enthält das Album ein paar gute tracks

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Fri Apr 16 2021
5

Another Queen album already? Let's GO. This album has some great songs. Of course Bohemian Rhapsody is the most well known, but they're all great.

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Tue May 11 2021
5

Quite an iconic album. Nice to hear some of the other songs on the album instead of just the hits.

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Mon Jun 14 2021
5

Finally! An album that I agree should be on this list!

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Wed Jun 23 2021
5

Absolutely brilliant in every sense.

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Sat Jun 12 2021
5

Yaaasssss Queen!!!! I loved this album. I don’t think I’ve ever listened to a full on queen album and I’m glad this one was my first. Vocals and instruments are fire and Freddie Mercury is just incredible in everything Top tracks: you’re my best friend, Love of my life, bohemian rhapsody, sweet lady

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Fri May 07 2021
5

first track- killer guitar parts, menacing gritty vocal performance, experimental structure second track- a psychadellic take on a classic British style, quite funny and tongue and cheek third track- hard/ blues rock style reintroduced, much more traditional rock structure, comedic lyrics fourth track- classic queen song, poppy and fun, lighthearted. fantastic songwriting on all tracks so far fith track- folky style with breaks into wierd choral vocals, quite nice but overall most bland track so far sixth track- comes in sounding like led zeppelin, punchy, dirty and aggresive lyrics and vocal performance seventh track- a British summertime inspired piano/vocal ditty, fun and funny eighth track- prog intro using acoustic guitar, whole track builds throughout its runtime, strange acapella vocal lines, very prog inspired ninth track- quite beautiful denounment with just Freddie and his piano, leads on beautifully from the eighth track, almost tear inducing tenth track- airy guitar lines, plodding ukelele, almost like something off of Abbey Road eleventh track- in the running for greatest song of all time, so operatic, amazingly structured with huge tonal shifts that come naturally, iconic moments and performance, a huge number that will be remembered in legend for all time closer- an instrumental of god save the queen, not as dramatic as the former track but still quite a tongue and cheek summary of the albums themes with the consistency in sound

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Fri May 28 2021
5

An excellent album. I listened to this one a lot when I was little, and most are songs I still listen to regularly. Really formative for my music taste today. A respectful 5 stars

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Mon May 24 2021
5

Queen rules, such a fun listen.

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Mon Jul 26 2021
5

Queen, you've done it again. Consistently good with a good scope of sound.

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Mon Aug 23 2021
5

There will never be a better singer.

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Sun Sep 05 2021
5

Iconic. Some filler in the middle but enough classics to keep it going

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Sun Sep 05 2021
5

Easiest 5 star album of my life. I'd never heard many of the songs on this album, so it was an awesome listen. The Prophet's Song is really impressive and creative!

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Tue Sep 07 2021
5

A masterpiece of songwriting, arranging harmonising and playing.

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