Teo Torriatte(Tarantura TCDQ-6-1, 2)
Budokan Hall, Tokyo, Japan- February 17th, 1981
Disc 1 (57:20): SE, We Will Rock You, Let Me Entertain You, Play The Game, Mustapha, Death On Two Legs, Killer Queen, I’m In Love With My Car, Get Down, Make Love, Rock It (Prime Jive), Save Me, Now I’m Here, Dragon Attack/Now I’m Here (reprise), Love Of My Life
Disc 2 (54:58): Keep Yourself Alive, drum solo, In The Death Cell, Execution Of Flash, guitar solo, Sakura Sakura, guitar solo, Vultan’s Theme, Battle Theme, Flash’s Theme, The Hero, Crazy Little Thing Called Love, Bohemian Rhapsody, Tie Your Mother Down, Another One Bites The Dust, Sheer Heart Attack, Teo Torriatte, We Will Rock You, We Are The Champions, God Save The Queen, announcement
Queen’s short tour of Japan in 1981 consisted of five shows, all played at the Budokan on February 12, 13, 16, 17, and 18. Teo Torriatte from Tarantura documents a previously unreleased third tape source from the forth night that comes from the Mr. Peach archives. The incomplete first source tape was released in 1995 on Zoom Up on Rag Doll (RDM 942019). A complete version coming from the second source can be found on the CDR Freddie Was Here on Masterport (MP-013), released in 2003.
In December 2005, Wardour released the silver pressed version as Prime Jive (Wardour-030) paired with the previous night. The recording sounds a bit more compressed than previous releases of Mr. Peach tapes and suffers especially when the band is pushing really hard. Other than that minor complaint, the recording is still very enjoyable. When compared with Prime Jiveon Wardour, Teo Torriatte sounds a good deal closer to the stage and has a much bigger range of frequencies making this a definite upgrade to what’s been available before.
The band sounds very tight and Freddie’s vocals start off very strong. He really pushes for some of the high notes in the early part of the set with great results. The band drop “Jailhouse Rock” that served as the opener since the US tour the previous year and begin straight away with “We Will Rock You (fast)”. The medley on this tour consists of five songs starting with “Mustafa” and continues through “Get Down, Make Love”.
A double shot from the The Game LP continues with a performance of “Rock It (Prime Jive)” followed by “Save Me” featuring Brian May on piano for the first half of the tune. “Now I’m Here” is broken up with “Dragon Attack” played in the middle. Freddie also encourages some crowd participation before finishing the track.
Brian May says a few things in Japanese before “Love Of My Life”. This is the only surviving number from the acoustic set from previous tours and Freddie lets the audience sing a good portion of the song by themselves. “Keep Yourself Alive” is played up until the drum break where Queen gets into a mini-set from the recent LP, Flash Gordon.
The Flash material is one of the biggest curiosities from this tour for collectors and also seems to be enjoyed by the Japanese audience. Aside from what is listed on the cover, “In The Death Cell” and “Execution Of Flash” were not performed. May does include a bit of the Japanese “Sakura, Sakura” during his guitar segment.
The remainder of the show is obviously reserved for the “home runs”, building the show up to its highest point with their biggest hits. By “Bohemian Rhapsody”, Mercury’s vocals start to show signs of strain and he abandons some of the higher parts from here on out. “Teo Torriatte” is included in the set tonight for the first time inside this tour and is a great version of one of Queen’s more obscure numbers.
Tarantura released this in their usual gate-fold paper sleeve with really nice picture discs and includes pictures of the master tapes on the inside. In my opinion, this is a much better alternative to the Wardour source and regardless of the compression on the tape is another great sounding Mr. Peach recording definitely worth getting.