Dreamer’s Ball (Wardour-006)
Budokan, Tokyo, Japan – April 25th, 1979
Disc 1: We Will Rock You (slow-taped intro), We Will Rock You (fast), Let Me Entertain You, Somebody To Love, Death On Two Legs/Killer Queen/Bicycle Race/I’m In Love With My Car/Get Down Make Love/You’re My Best Friend, Now I’m Here, Teo Torriatte, Don’t Stop Me Now, Dreamer’s Ball, ’39
Disc 2: It’s Late, Brighton Rock (incl. guitar solo), Keep Yourself Alive, Bohemian Rhapsody, Tie Your Mother Down, Sheer Heart Attack, We Will Rock You, We Are The Champions
Dreamer’s Ball and At Last Budokan are the final two Queen releases on Wardour for 2004. The label has released one concert from each of Queen’s tours of Japan (except from the Hot Space tour in 1982). Dreamer’s Ball documents the band’s final concert in Tokyo on the Jazz tour on April 25th, 1979.
Despite being released on the fan-produced The Invincible Killers, this tape is still quite rare and not easy to find. It is a clear mono audience recording taped some distance from the stage. It does contain the entire concert with some tiny, insignificant cuts (like between “Get Down Make Love” and “You’re My Best Friend”).
I thought at first that “Love Of My Life” was omitted from the artwork, but it was inexplicably dropped from the set list on this evening. There are no cuts in the tape between “Dreamer’s Ball” and “’39”. My guess is the piece would have been too much for Freddie’s voice. His vocals really show the strain of the consistent touring.
Throughout the show he either fudges the high notes or avoids them altogether. Consequently songs like “Somebody To Love”, “Killer Queen”, and “Don’t Stop Me Now” are rendered flat and uninspired. The rest of the band is in great spirits, however, and Brian May shines in his “It’s Late” and “Brighton Rock” segment. Dreamer’s Ball ends on a high note with the News Of The World numbers “Sheer Heart Attack”, “We Will Rock You”, and of course “We Are The Champions”.
Overall another nice production from Wardour and definitely recommended for Queen collectors. It’s great they include Queen in their catalogue and I hope they continue the fine work in making these scarce shows available in nicely produced silver editions.