Killing Me Softly (Wardour-004)
Budokan, Tokyo, Japan – May 1, 1975
Disc 1: Procession, Now I’m Here, Ogre Battle, Great King Rat, White Queen, Flick Of The Wrist, Hangman, Doing Alright, In The Lap Of The Gods/Killer Queen/March Of The Black Queen/Bring Back That Leroy Brown
Disc 2: Son & Daughter, Keep Yourself Alive, Seven Seas Of Rhye, Stone Cold Crazy, Liar, In The Lap Of The Gods…Revisited, Hey Big Spender, Modern Times Rock N’ Roll, Jailhouse Rock/Shake Rattle & Roll, Be Bop A Lula, See What A Fool I’ve Been, God Save The Queen
Another release of Queen’s legendary final night in Japan on the Sheer Heart Attack tour. The old tape source was previously released as First Live Attack on Prime Masters (PM-007/008). Although generously called good to very good on various Queen collector sites, it is in reality merely fair. Killing Me Softly uses the old tape for “Procession” and “Now I’m Here”, picking up the new tape source thirty seconds into “Ogre Battle”. The older source is also used to patch a hole in the “Son & Daughter” guitar solo. This new tape source is very good mono being a definite upgrade to the previous first tape source. All of the instruments are distinct and clear and enjoyable. What makes this show so special? It was the final on the tour right before Queen went into the studio to produce A Night At The Opera.
The band were relaxed and loose and played a very long concert which included many rarities like “Hangman” (a song never officially released by the band and only found on very early concert recordings), “Doing Alright”, and the B-side “See What A Fool I’ve Been”. Before “Seven Seas Of Rhye” Roger Taylor introduces Freddie as “Fredrick Mercury”, the only time I can recall him ever being addressed as such. “Liar” is extended to almost ten minutes with a very long guitar solo and Freddie playing call and response games with the audience before the “Mama I’m gonna be your slave” part of the song. Queen didn’t want to leave the stage with another long series of encores, including a heavy version of Taylor’s “Modern Times Rock N’ Roll” and every oldie they can think of in the “Jailhouse Rock” medley. This is one of their legendary shows and the new tape source makes the legend shine like never before. Another great Queen release on the Wardour label and definitely a title worth having! (GS)