Various Artists The Freddie Mercury Tribute Concert (Blu-Ray)
Released: 2013, Eagle Rock Ent.
Reviewer: Celtic Bob
I remember the day this took place, sitting in front of the TV watching it happen live. I had a few blank VHS tapes handy to capture some of my favorite artists performing plus the finale. Far cry from today’s world of High Definition and PVR’s. Eagle Rock Entertainment help relive some of those memories from that day some 20+ years ago.
This Blu-Ray is NOT a HD Release, rather standard definition on a Blu-Ray. For me it is a far cry from the VHS copy I had. Unfortunately the entire show has not been released. Most notable are part of Def Leppards and Extreme’s segments. If memory serves correct, Extreme did “Love Of My Life” plus their own “More Than Words” which was omitted from this release as was Def Leppard’s performances of “Animal” and “Lets’ Get Rocked”. Another glaring omission was the Spinal Tap performance plus Robert Plant’s “Innuendo” with the remaining members of Queen.
Apart from the missing performances mentioned above this release is an upgrade over the old VHS copy. I never had the DVD version so a side by side comparison is not possible. After watching this release it would have been nice if it was cleaned up slightly to make it more crisp and closer to HD but it may not have been possible. The performances we do get are a fantastic highlight of that day in 1992. While watching it memories came flooding back seeing the performances again. The “Medley” by Extreme was easily the greatest tribute to Freddie that any artist did. Gary nailed the vocals and his performance was over the top. As Brian said during their introduction they understood what Freddie was about and what Queen were about. They easily stole the show interlacing different Queen songs into one medley. Another stand out was Def Leppard with Brian May doing “Now I’m Here”.
The segment with different artists fronting Queen holds some fantastic performances such as Joe Elliott & Slash doing “Tie Your Mother Down”, Robert Plant with “Crazy Little Thing Called Love”, plus Ian Hunter and David Bowie with Mick Ronson doing “All The Young Dudes”, Amazing! It is a performance like this that you realize how timeless good music really is.
The Tribute ends off with 3 of the biggest Queen songs plus 1 that just fits; “Bohemian Rhapsody by Elton John and Axl Rose, “The Show Must Go On” by Elton John and Tony Iommi, “We Will Rock You” sung by Axl Rose before Liza Minnelli leads off “We Are The Champions” backed by Everyone.
The bonus documentary done 10 years after the concert is a very nice addition as is the rehearsals. It would have been nice to see all acts rehearse especially Robert Plant who was there. Maybe for a future version?
A wonderful release despite it’s faults. Something every fan should own, and not just Queen fans. The performances by Def Leppard, Extreme, Metallica...etc give it some Metal cred even though Queen was and still is a huge influence on many Metal musicians. Their first few albums really rocked and were heavy, especially May’s guitar playing. Just listen to “Stone Cold Crazy” to confirm. I thought Metallica just amped it up but I was wrong, the original IS that heavy.
2) Brian May / Roger Taylor / John Deacon Introduction
3) Metallica – Enter Sandman
4) Metallica – Sad But True
5) Metallica – Nothing Else Matters
6) Freddie Montage (Insert)
7) Extreme – Queen Medley including: Mustapha / Bohemian Rhapsody / Keep Yourself Alive / I Want To Break Free / Fat Bottomed Girls / Bicycle Race / Another One Bites The Dust / Stone Cold Crazy / Radio Ga Ga
8) Freddie Montage (Insert)
9) Def Leppard & Brian May – Now I’m Here
10) Queen – I’m Going Slightly Mad video (Insert)
11) Bob Geldof – Too Late God
12) Guns ‘n’ Roses – Paradise City
13) Guns ‘n’ Roses – Knocking On Heavens Door
14) Elizabeth Taylor Speech
MAIN QUEEN + SET
1) Joe Elliott, Slash & Queen – Tie Your Mother Down
2) Roger Daltrey, Tony Iommi & Queen – I Want It All
3) Zucchero & Queen – Las Palabras De Amor
4) Gary Cherone, Tony Iommi & Queen – Hammer To Fall
5) James Hetfield, Tony Iommi & Queen – Stone Cold Crazy
6) Robert Plant & Queen – Crazy Little Thing Called Love
7) Brian May – Too Much Love Will Kill You
8) Paul Young & Queen – Radio Ga Ga
9) Seal & Queen – Who Wants To Live Forever
10) Lisa Stansfield & Queen – I Want To Break Free
11) David Bowie, Annie Lennox & Queen – Under Pressure
12) Ian Hunter, David Bowie, Mick Ronson & Queen – All The Young Dudes
13) David Bowie, Mick Ronson & Queen – Heroes
14) George Michael & Queen –’39
15) George Michael, Lisa Stansfield & Queen – These Are The Days Of Our Lives
16) George Michael, London Gospel Choir & Queen – Somebody To Love
17) Elton John, Axl Rose & Queen – Bohemian Rhapsody
18) Elton John, Tony Iommi & Queen – The Show Must Go On 19) Axl Rose & Queen – We Will Rock You
20) Liza Minnelli & Ensemble – We Are The Champions