Some of my friends and I share music with one another while we work. We’re supposed to review/rate what gets shared with us, and share those reviews with the group, but that doesn’t always happen.
Queen – News of the World (1977)
More Queen! While this album opens with some classics, I actually haven’t heard anything else off this record. So I’m kind of excited for this.
To be honest We Will Rock You is only ok until the guitar solo. We are the Champions is great, and since those two tracks are almost never played separately, We Will Rock You tends to be thought of more favorably than I think it deserves on it’s own (although it’s still a pretty good).
There are two different versions of this album on Spotify. The first only has one bonus track, a 1991 remix of We Will Rock You by Rick Rubin. And it was terrible. I can only say that it’s Rick Rubin’s fault. The other has more, including a live version of We Will Rock You which I think I would prefer, except it’s missing the sweet guitar solo – the best thing about the original. More than a year ago, they released a studio version of Queen playing it “fast” like they did live in case you want to listen to that.
There always seem to be great songs on Queen records that don’t get radio play. In this case Spread Your Wings. I’m not sure if I could point to anything specific, but the song just makes me want to go home and make music. Who Needs You was really interesting. I’d like to see someone take it further into the Latin/Caribbean genres. All Dead, All Dead is pretty good too, but I feel like there was something just a little off; like the song was a little bi-polar.
The only song I didn’t really like was Get Down, Make Love. It felt rather uncreative, which is disappointing coming from Queen.
Other notable songs include Sheer Heart Attack, which felt like Queen doing an impression of the Ramones doing a tribute to The Beatles. Meaning, the writing and song structure seemed Beatles-esque and the execution was Ramones-y. Or possibly an answer to David Bowie‘s Hang on to Yourself. Fight from the Inside and Sleeping on the Sidewalk also didn’t quite sound like Queen. Sleeping on the Sidewalk was amazingly American sounding.
I don’t think this was their best record we’ve listened to thus far, but that’s not saying much as there hasn’t been a bad one. 3.4/5
Bad Livers – Industry and Thrift (1998)
I don’t know how to introduce this trio of very talented musicians. You guys might call them bluegrass, but that’s not entirely accurate. They’re pretty unique.
I don’t even remember who gave me this CD (someone in my family) or when exactly I got it (Christmas? birthday?), but of all the random music gifts I never asked for, this is one of the better ones.
I’m not even sure it’s their best album, but I love it. I hope you enjoy it, too. Here’s what my friends had to say:
“This is a pretty good and solid album. It’s a bit chill, which I like. I will say it is very polished and crisp, but in some ways it seems to lack a certain cohesion for me. It kind of feels like a “greatest hits” album. But again, it is pretty solid and I enjoyed it.” 3/5 – Tim
“I enjoyed this, I wouldn’t call it bluegrass, though there is some of that. Its a fairly eclectic mix which I like. It sounds like they’re just some talented guys who like to make all kinds of music, and they do, rather than pigeonholing themselves into one genre. Its not the easiest way to market your band, but its fun, and I feel like that integrity (making the music they want) really shined throughout.” 4.0/5 – Spencer
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