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Queen A Day At The Races'
A Day At The RacesIn every sense, A Day at the Races is an unapologetic sequel to A Night at the Opera, the 1975 breakthrough that established Queen as rock & roll royalty. The band never attempts to hide that the record is a sequel -- the two albums boast the same variation on the same cover art, the titles are both taken from old Marx Brothers films and serve as counterpoints to each other. But even though the two albums look the same, they don't quite sound the same, A Day at the Races is a bit tighter than its predecessor, yet tighter doesn't necessarily mean better for a band as extravagant as Queen. One of the great things about A Night at the Opera is that the lingering elements of early Queen -- the pastoral folk of 39, the metallic menace of Death on Two Legs -- dovetailed with an indulgence of camp and a truly, well, operatic scale. Here, the eccentricities are trimmed back somewhat -- they still bubble up on The Millionaire Waltz, an example of the music hall pop that dominated Night, the pro-Native American saga White Man is undercut somewhat by the cowboys 'n' indians rhythms -- in favor of a driving, purposeful hard rock that still could have some slyly hidden perversities (or in the case of the opening Tie Your Mother Down, some not-so-hidden perversity) but this is exquisitely detailed hard rock, dense with minutiae but never lush or fussy. In a sense, it could even function as the bridge between Sheer Heart Attack and Night at the Opera -- it's every bit as hard as the former and nearly as florid as the latter -- but its sleek, streamlined finish is the biggest indication that Queen has entered a new phase, where they're globe-conquering titans instead of underdogs on the make.
- Stephen Thomas Erlewine (All Music)1. Tie Your Mother Down
2. You Take My Breath Away
3. Long Away
4. The Millionaire Waltz
5. You And I
6. Somebody To Love
7. White Man
8. Good Old-Fashioned Lover Boy
10. Teo Torriatte (Let Us Cling Together)$29.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
A Day At The RacesQueens classic 1976 follow-up to A Night At The Opera, takes no prisoners and features the two monster hits Tie Your Mother Down and the transcendent Somebody To Love which would set the blueprint for the band's future ballads.
This fall marks Queens return to studio recording for the first time in 13 years, to commemorate that occasion, Universal has created the Queen on Vinyl Collectors Edition re-issue program in which every Queen studio album is to be released on vinyl LPs over the next two years. The original albums are being re-issued correct in every detail to the original releases, including inner sleeves, packaging and bonuses.1. Tie Your Mother Down
2. You Take My Breath Away
3. Long Away
4. The Millionaire Waltz
5. You and I
6. Somebody To Love
7. White Man
8. Good Old Fashioned Lover Boy
10. Teo Torriatte (Let Us Cling Together)$19.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
News of the WorldIf Day at the Races was a sleek, streamlined album, its 1977 successor, News of the World, was its polar opposite, an explosion of styles that didn't seem to hold to any particular center. It's front-loaded with two of Queen's biggest anthems -- the stomping, stadium-filling chant We Will Rock You and its triumphant companion, We Are the Champions -- which are 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. That cold streak on Get Down, Make Love runs through the album as a whole. 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.
- All Music1. We Will Rock You
2. We Are The Champions
3. Sheer Heart Attack
4. All Dead, All Dead
5. Spread Your Wings
6. Fight From The Inside
7. Get Down, Make Love
8. Sleeping On The Sidewalk
9. Who Needs You
10. It's Late
11. My Melancholy Blues$29.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
The MiracleFollowing their massive 1986 European stadium tour for the A Kind of Magic album, Queen took an extended break. Rumors swirled about an impending breakup, but it turned out the break was brought on by a painful marital divorce for guitarist Brian May (who subsequently battled depression and contemplated suicide), and Freddie Mercury being diagnosed with AIDS. Instead of sinking further into misery, the band regrouped, worked on each other's mental state, and recorded one of their most inspired albums, 1989's The Miracle. Lyrically, the songs tend to reflect on the band's past accomplishments (Khashoggi's Ship, Was It All Worth It) as well as the state of the world in the late '80s (the title track, I Want It All). Produced by the band and David Richards, The Miracle packs quite a sonic punch, recalling the rich sounds of their past classics (1976's A Day at the Races, etc.). Split 50/50 between pop (Breakthru, The Invisible Man, Rain Must Fall) and heavy rock (the aforementioned I Want It All, Khashoggi's Ship, Was It All Worth It), the album was another global smash, even re-establishing the band stateside (going Top 30 and attaining gold status). Along with The Game, The Miracle is Queen's strongest album of the '80s.
- Greg Prato (All Music)1. Party
2. Khashoggi's Ship
3. The Miracle
4. I Want It All
5. The Invisible Man
7. Rain Must Fall
9. My Baby Does Me
10. Was It All Worth It$29.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
Frozen: The SongsSongs from the 2013 Disney animated film, Frozen.
Featuring the voices of Kristen Bell and Idina Menzel, Frozen is the coolest comedy-adventure ever to hit the big screen. When a prophecy traps a kingdom in eternal winter, Anna, a fearless optimist, teams up with extreme mountain man Kristoff and his sidekick reindeer Sven on an epic journey to find Anna's sister Elsa, the Snow Queen, and put an end to her icy spell. Encountering mystical trolls, a funny snowman named Olaf, Everest-like extremes and magic at every turn, Anna and Kristoff battle the elements in a race to save the kingdom from destruction. (c) Disney1. Frozen Heart (Cast)
2. Do You want To Build A Snowman (Kristen Bell, Agatha LeeMonn and Katie Lopez)
3. For the First Time In Forever (Kristen Bell, Idina Menzel)
4. Love Is An Open Door (Kristen Bell, Santino Fontana)
5. Let It Go (Idina Menzel)
6. Reindeer Are Better Than People (Jonathan Groff)
7. In Summer (Josh Gad)
8. For the First Time In Forever (reprise) (Kristen Bell, Idina Menzel)
9. Fixer Upper (Maia Wilson & Cast)
10. Let It Go (Demi Lovato Version)$19.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
Up In ArmsWe work hard, and we have a lot to say. Look around the planet - people are fed up with the corrupt ruling class. They destroy the planet and kill millions for profit, and the formula for our response is simple: Anger + applied knowledge = results. Don't just bitch. Change it.
- JOHN JOSEPH
At its purest, there is little that can match the visceral thrill and empowering spirit of hardcore. As frontman of New York City hardcore kings Cro-Mags, this is something John Joseph knows very well, and with Up In Arms, he and his Bloodclot compatriots deliver a furious collection that hits hard on every level. "In this band we're doing what each of us have always done: give it our all," he states plainly.
The results reflect the roots and passions of the individual members. Danzig/Murphy's Law guitarist Todd Youth was the first piece of the puzzle. "We've always talked about doing this record together, Todd had songs written and I had notebooks full of lyrics. In late September 2015, I went out to LA to do a triathlon and injured my calf muscle, so I couldn't race, and Todd said he could get some studio time. So, we went in and cut the demo. While there are things we may perceive as a negative in our lives, in fact the universe has a bigger plan, and that experience ultimately resulted in the record." Having been friends with Queens Of The Stone Age and Danzig powerhouse drummer Joey Castillo for three decades, the two musicians had long admired each other's work, and their collaboration has been a long time coming. Following Castillo's suggestion of bringing in Nick Oliveri (Queens Of The Stone Age/The Dwarves) to handle bass duties, the lineup was complete. The songs that comprise Up In Arms manifested after the quartet plugged in and let the music speak for them. "We didn't decide to try to play anything, these are the songs that happened when we started jamming, and I love this band because there are no egos involved. Our goal is to make the best music possible, period. I love it when those guys contribute with melodies, etc., and I've even helped with some of the arrangements. Because we all think alike, our lyrics deal with the issues of the day, and that makes for better songs."
Every track on Up In Arms lives up to the rallying cry of the album's title - the bursts of high energy hardcore act as the perfect accompaniment to Joseph setting his sights on injustice and the seemingly endless flaws of the contemporary world. The breakneck thrashing of "Slow Kill Genocide" is an anthem for everyone sickened by those responsible for "killing the planet and all its inhabitants through industry and war. They're fucking maniacs and must be stopped." The suitably titled "Manic" attacks with bared fangs, Joseph making it clear that you can only push someone so far before they will react with violence - a call to arms for the disenfranchised who want tomorrow's world to be better than today's. Tracked at NRG in Los Angeles, the raw, old-school production that leaps out from the speaker comes courtesy of producer Zeuss (Hatebreed, Revocation), and the record was mixed by Kyle McAulay at NRG. From the moment the opening title track explodes to life, it's clear that everyone involved is having a blast and playing from the heart, and that this is no frills / no bullshit music at its most passionate - every song evoking mental images of utter chaos in a heaving mosh pit.
For anyone approaching the album for the first time, Joseph has only this to say: "Turn the volume way the fuck up!" And with plans to tour everywhere, Bloodclot will be getting in a lot of faces in 2017 and beyond. "We are already writing material and the next album is in the works. But, for now, all we want is to hit the stage to support 'Up in Arms', and every single night leave every ounce of ourselves up there."
John Joseph (Cro-Mags) - Vocals
Todd Youth (ex-Murphy's Law, ex-Danzig) - Guitars
Nick Oliveri (ex-Queens of the Stone Age) - Bass
Joey Castillo (ex-Queens of the Stone Age, ex-Danzig) - Drums1. Father Of Lies
2. This Is Exile
4. To All That Are Dead
6. Somatically Incorrect
7. Death Becomes Him
9. Eternal Refuge
10. Of Legions
11. Messiahbolical$19.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now