Well, that’s a wrap folks! The “Iron Build” is all complete with this mornings ha;f marathon run. I still have some workouts to do next week but the real distance, time and intensity are all finished and it’s time to begin cutting back and resting up before the big Go Day on July 8th; just two short weeks away (click HERE). So until the family shows up for this evenings belated Father’s Day BBQ and I’m not venturing far from my EZ-Boy recliner, a pint of Brimstone Brewing ‘Lauder Tuns Saints’, my new book (‘The Boundless Life‘ by Simon Donato) and the turntable.
First up on the celebratory hit parade today is the ‘News of the World‘ album by Queen.
Truth be told, I’ve never been much of a Queen fan hence I have no albums of theirs in my collection. I am, however, happy to make an exception for this album because, hey, just look at that album cover!
And lets not forget the inside album cover art.
C’mon, killer giant robots terrorizing the panic-stricken masses – that shit is awesome!
The album is certainly front-loaded with two of the bands biggest anthems – the stomping, stadium-filling chant ‘We Will Rock You‘ and its triumphant companion, ‘We Are the Champions‘ – both of which are pretty apropos considering my accomplishments this week workout-wise.
There are both quickly followed by the ferocious ‘Sheer Heart Attack‘, a frenzied rocker that hits harder than anything on the album that shares its name (a remarkable achievement in itself). Three songs, three quick shifts in mood, but that’s hardly the end of it. As the ‘News…’ rolls on, you’re treated to the arch, campy crooning of ‘My Melancholy Blues‘, a shticky blues shuffle in ‘Sleeping on the Sidewalk‘, and breezy Latin rhythms on ‘Who Needs You‘. Then there’s the neo-disco of ‘Fight from the Inside‘, which is eclipsed by the mechanical funk of ‘Get Down, Make Love‘, a dirty grind that’s stripped of sensuality. In fact, that cold streak on ‘Get Down, Make Love‘ runs through the album as a whole and it’s no wonder that Trent Reznor make a point of covering it years ago with Nine Inch Nails.
Cereal – click HERE.
Not that I knew it was a Queen cover back then.
Despite the explosion of sounds and rhythms, this album doesn’t add up to party thanks to that slightly distancing chilly vibe that hangs over the album. Nevertheless, many of these songs work well on their own as entities, so there is plenty to savor here, especially from Brian May. Whether he’s doing the strangely subdued eccentric English pop ‘All Dead, All Dead‘ or especially the majestic yet nimble rocker ‘It’s Late‘, he turns in work that gives this album some lightness, which it needs. And that’s the reason ‘News…‘ of the World was a monster hit despite its coldness – when it works, it’s massive, earth-shaking rock & roll, the sound of a band beginning to revel in its superstardom.
And while I’m not about to run out and stock up on the entire Queen back catalog of albums, this was still a fun listen and a welcome addition to the collection.