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Articles Home » 1977 Articles » Queen - 1977 News Of The World
Queen - 1977 News Of The World

ALBUM: News Of The World
LABEL: EMI (UK), Elektra (USA)
SERIAL: 6E-112 (USA), EMA 784 (UK)
YEAR: 1977
CD REISSUE: 1986, EMI (UK), CDP 7 46209 2, many other reissues..


LINEUP: Freddie Mercury - lead vocals, piano * Brian May - guitars, vocals * John Deacon - bass * Roger Taylor - drums, vocals

TRACK LISTING: 01 We Will Rock You * 02 We Are The Champions * 03 Sheer Heart Attack * 04 All Dead, All Dead * 05 Spread Your Wings * 06 Fight From The Inside * 07 Get Down, Make Love * 08 Sleeping On The Sidewalk * 09 Who Needs You * 10 It's Late * 11 My Melancholy Blues


Think what the sports world would be without the boom- boom- boom of 'We Will Rock You'. Yes, it's something of a clich‚ now, predictable at most events where tens of thousands inebriated fans cheer on their favourite team but when I first heard the song on the radio back in 1977 - I literally had to sit down and take it all in. There was nothing like it then and nothing quite like it now and for this young listener it was another example of Queen's genius. 1977 was a pivotal year for the music industry, especially in the U.K where punk rock had turned music upside down. This hadn't gone unnoticed by Queen a band whose career up to this point was built on over the top extravaganzas both on record and with live performance. Now considered 'old' the world was changing and Queen had to change with it. 'News Of The World' was their answer.

The Songs
The first noticeable change was the cover art. Gone was the Queen crest in favor of famed Sci-Fi painter Frank Kelly Freas work based on a cover he did in the 1950's. The second change of course is the music itself. There are no operatic pieces found on 'News Of The World', just a lot of straight forward rock with the usual Queen touches. Following the rock narcissism of 'We Will Rock You' and 'We Are The Champions', Queen take a shot a punk with 'Sheer Heart Attack' and indeed it's one of the roughest tracks the group put on record, but it's Brian May's 'All Dead, All Dead' where the band finally return to form. Very English and very Queen, although May's other contribution the bluesy 'Sleeping On The Sidewalk' doesn't fare as well. Roger Taylor's 'Fight From The Inside' is passable and John Deacon's 'Who Needs You' is a charmer, but I have to say I've never been thrilled with 'Get Down, Make Love'. I winced when I first heard it with pseudo sexual lyrics like 'I Suck Your Mind, You Blow My Head' and a pointless overly long exercise in spacey sound effects - a precursor to 'Hot Space' listening to it now but that's for another review. The albums two other singles 'Spread Your Wings' and 'It's Late' really didn't do that well on the charts although they are worthy contenders as some of Queen's best work, while the album closes on a high note with Mercury as a southern dandy on 'My Melancholy Blues'.

In Summary
'News Of The World' is not one of Queen's strongest albums, but it's not their worst either. Another gargantuan tour would follow to sold out audiences proving that despite changes in musical tastes and styles Queen were here to stay.

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#1 | jeffduran on June 30 2008 05:41:41
Great review and spot on Eric! This is one of those releases I have always reverted back to. Your right it's not they're best, but how it used to be done. Great stuff!
#2 | jeffduran on June 30 2008 05:42:41
'Spread Your Wings' deserves a nod as one of the best ballads of all time. C'mon!
#3 | trillion1999 on October 08 2011 22:38:38
I love all the ballads on this one.Great cover to boot as love
#4 | englandashes on January 03 2018 21:51:20
Just watched the documentary on BBC, Rock The World, which covered the News Of The world album and subsequent tour of USA, very good but the best bit is Freddie using the actual album insert, to remember the lyrics in rehearsal.
#5 | Explorer on February 06 2018 19:57:26
The 40th Anniversary box set for NOTW is excellent if a little pricey.
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