Queen – Dressed To Kill (Wardour-033)


Dressed To Kill (Wardour-033)

International Hall, Kobe, Japan – April 23rd, 1975

Procession, Now I’m Here, Ogre Battle, Father To Son, White Queen, Flick Of The Wrist, Doin’ Alright, In The Lap Of The Gods, Killer Queen, The March Of The Black Queen, Bring Back That Leroy Brown, Son & Daughter, guitar solo, Keep Yourself Alive, Seven Seas Of Rhye, Stone Cold Crazy, Liar

Bonus cdr Majestic Rock, Rainbow Theater, London, UK – March 31st, 1974:  Procession, Father To Son, Ogre Battle, Son & Daughter, Keep Yourself Alive, Seven Seas Of Rhye, Modern Times Rock ‘N’ Roll, Liar

Dressed To Kill uses the common fair to good and clear audience recording that has circulated for years.  A majority of the show first surfaced on vinyl as Queen / Live In Kove (LLX 2622).  In 1998 H-Bomb released the entire tape as Killer Queen (HBM 9508). 

Wardour’s version of the tape is two minutes longer since they fixed the tape speed to be closer to the correct pitch but is still incomplete, missing “In The Lap Of The Gods…Revisited” and the rock and roll medley.  It is plagued by rhythmic clapping at certain points by people close to the taper and the bass is somewhat distorted but overall is very powerful and captures a dynamic performance. 

Queen’s show in Kobe was the third of nine on their first tour of Japan.  It’s always fascinating to hear these tape since they are on the boarder between Sheer Heart Attack and A Night At The Opera and we can hear them developing their elaborate arrangements right on stage.  “Now I’m Here” is played slower than later live arrangements and is an interesting contrast to the faster “Ogre Battle”. 

After “Doin’ Alright” Freddie announces a medley of three songs with the latest single “Killer Queen”.  “Son & Daughter” contains an expressionistic guitar solo with Brian May playing melodies and using sounds that would appear for years on stage.  Roger introduces “Seven Seas Of Rhye” and the tape sadly runs out at the very end of “Liar”.

Early copies of Dressed To Kill come with a free cdr titled Majestic Rock.  This is the complete almost forty minute tape from the Rainbow Theater in London, March 31st, 1974 and is the very best document from the obscure Queen II era.  (Their most famous appearance at the Rainbow occurred in November of that year after the release of their third LP Sheer Heart Attack and has been booted many times, but this tape really hasn’t circulated too much).  

It is advertised as a soundboard recording but some people claim it is an excellent audience tape instead.  Regardless the sound quality is an amazing stereo recording and rates a nine out of ten (point off for occasional surface noise). 

It first surfaced on vinyl (in fact all cd copies like Majestic Rock come from vinyl) and is commonly thought of as BBC sessions.  Killers on the Flashback label and Sheetkeeckers (Outside 001) both list it as such and edit in some authentic BBC material to “complete” the show.  It has also circulated as a February 8th, 1975 Cleveland tape but is clearly not. 

“Seven Seas Of Rhye” is introduced as “our current release” and there is no Sheer Heart Attack material.  It is another scorching early Queen show when they were trying to be the heaviest and most elaborate band in the world and it’s great to hear the Queen II songs live.  This could have stood on its own but as a bonus it is a nice and classy touch by Wardour.

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