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Queen Rock Montreal & Live Aid(1983)
The only Queen concert ever filmed in its entirety, this 1981 Montreal Live Aid performance has been digitally restored and remixed. Featuring dynamic front man Freddie Mercury, the band puts on a high-octane show for a crowd of excited fans. Songs include "We Will Rock You," "We Are the Champions," "Somebody to Love," "Get Down Make Love," "Under Pressure," "Crazy Little Thing Called Love," "Killer Queen," "Bohemian Rhapsody" and many more.
For more about Queen Rock Montreal & Live Aid and the Queen Rock Montreal & Live Aid Blu-ray release, see the Queen Rock Montreal & Live Aid Blu-ray Review published by Sir Terrence on May 21, 2009 where this Blu-ray release scored 4.5 out of 5.
Starring: Freddie Mercury, Brian May (II), Roger Taylor, John Deacon
» See full cast & crew
Queen Rock Montreal & Live Aid Blu-ray Review
"A star that shines twice as bright burns half as long."
Reviewed by Sir Terrence, May 21, 2009
As a kid, I was a huge fan of Queen and Freddie Mercury. One of the premiere rock bands of the 70's and 80's, Queen has won more awards, filled more stadiums, and has had more albums and singles to reach number one on the UK charts than any other rock band of that time. From the period of 1971 to 1991, the group produced 14 studio albums, 7 live albums, had 18 number one albums(in the UK) and 20 number one singles(on the UK charts), and won too many awards to mention in this review. Over the lifetime of Queen with and without Freddie Mercury, the group produced 26 top ten albums and 41 singles. Their tunes have spent an amazing 1,322 weeks at the top of the UK rock charts, more than any artist to date. This is an amazing achievement for any group of any genre. None of this would be possible without the talent of Freddie Mercury, one of the best front men to ever lead a rock band. I thought Freddie was a vocal giant, as he had the vocal chops, the showmanship, the instrumental skills, and the energy to tear into any song he sung. I also enjoyed Queen's musical compositions, as they were more sophisticated musically and harmonically than any other rock band around at that time. What kept this band fresh and interesting is its continuous experimentation of different musical styles, and mixing of different genres of music over the band active life.
It is said that this Montreal concert film (yes this was filmed in 35mm) and the Live Aid concert represent Queen at the pinnacle of the quartet's career. It was voted the "greatest live gig ever" by fans and critics alike. Riding high after the release of The Game, the group experienced a surge of popularity not only in the US and Europe, but also in South America. Drawing huge crowds of more than 130,000 per concert, Queen was the first rock band to play in that part of the world. The music written during this period happens to be the most sampled music among artists today. After the death of Mercury, Queen did not split or disband as a group. Various members of the band continued to do projects under the name of Queen. However in 2004 Queen partnered with Paul Rodgers and announced they would be touring under the name Queen + Paul Rodgers. Bassist John Deacon elected not to participate and the group made great pains to state "Paul Rodgers is not replacing Freddie Mercury". It is a good thing that they stated this, because Paul Rodgers is no Freddie Mercury.
1 - Intro
2 - We Will Rock You (fast)
3 - Let Me Entertain You
4 - Play The Game
5 - Somebody To Love
6 - Killer Queen
7 - I'm In Love With My Car
8 - Get Down Make Love
9 - Save Me
10 - Now I'm Here
11 - Dragon Attack
12 - Now I'm Here (reprise)
13 - Love Of My Life
14 - Under Pressure
15 - Keep Yourself Alive
16 - Drum & Timpani Solo
17 - Guitar Solo
18 - Crazy Little Thing Called Love
19 - Jailhouse Rock
20 - Bohemian Rhapsody
21 - Tie Your Mother Down
22 - Another One Bites The Dust
23 - Sheer Heart Attack
24 - We Will Rock You
25 -We Are The Champions
26 - God Save The Queen
Freddie Mercury: Guitar, Piano and Lead Vocals
Brian May: Lead Guitar, Vocals
Roger Taylor: Drums, Vocals
John Deacon: Bass Guitar
Queen Rock Montreal & Live Aid Blu-ray, Video Quality
Queen: Rock Montreal and Live Aid rocks the Blu-ray format in a 1080p/VC-1 encode framed at a widescreen 1:78:1 aspect ratio. For a film that is twenty-six years old, it looks pretty good. Sourced from 35mm film, there are no pops, scratches or dirt to distract from the concert. Black levels are stable, sometimes crushed, and are not as deep as I have seen on other concert videos. Colors are somewhat less vibrant than usual, but the colored lights do manage to wash the stage with a blend of primary colors. Detail is well rendered from the hair and facial features, to the texture of clothing. However the detail drops in the presence of the white spotlights used with the colored stage lights. Color banding is apparent in some shots, and film grain becomes more obvious when all lighting is shining simultaneously. Some shots are also softer than others, but aside from all this it's a phenomenal presentation nevertheless.
Queen Rock Montreal & Live Aid Blu-ray, Audio Quality
This concert video features two audio tracks to choose from - DTS-HD HR 24-bit/96 kHz 5.1 (at 3Mbps), and a Stereo LPCM track at a 24-bit/48 kHz. Much to my surprise I found the stereo track much more satisfying. The vocals are very well recorded, and the balance of the vocal harmony is excellent - capturing every part equally. Although Mercury has a very dynamic voice, there is no audible clipping to be heard. Bass emanating from the LFE is strong and powerful, but always balanced with the other elements in the mix. The piano and lead guitar are perfectly balanced with the other instruments, and no element sticks out of the mix at any time. The DTS-HD track uses the surrounds for ambience and crowd noise, and it fills out the front sound stage effectively. Both audio tracks are strong presentations, and sure to please Queen fans everywhere.
Queen Rock Montreal & Live Aid Blu-ray, Special Features and Extras
The supplements on this Blu-ray disc include all the same extra content found on the DVD release. One extra bonus you get not found on other concert videos is an audio commentary track.
Audio Commentary features Brian May and Roger Taylor adding their insights to the Queen: Rock Montreal performance. I have never heard of a group being angry and agitated at being filmed during their performance. According to May and Taylor the band was in fact angry, and made it quite difficult for the crew as a result.
Live Aid Performance (SD 25 minutes) Considered one of Queens finest performances ever, it comes with the choice of 24-bit 48kHz 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio or Stereo 48kHz/24-bit LPCM., and I am glad Eagle Rock Entertainment thought to include it on this release.
Live Aid Band Rehearsals (SD 11 minutes) is a combination of backstage and on stage warm ups and interviews with the band.
TV Interview (SD 7 minutes) is an extremely funny interview taken from the television tabloid show PM magazine. This extra is definitely worth a watch - you will get a kick out of it.
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