on 25 July 2000
Jazz came out during the peak of punk, and showed that Queen had lost none of the pomp and bombast of their early days. This album saw them once again ploughing their uniqie furrow across a broad range of styles from hard rock through jazz and rock'n'roll to acoustic ballads. Opening with the ludicrous but oddly wonderful Mustapha, it is Freddie who dominates, his vocals soaring over all the album's best moments such as the stunning single Don't Stop Me Now and the cheeky (no pun intended) Fat Bottomed Girls. Throughout he is ably assisted by guitarist Brian May, whose liquid playing on the heavier Dead on Time and Let Me Entertain You are also high points. This album has often been overlooked by the public, perhaps overshadowed by the punk phenomenon - but also maybe because the production sounds slightly tinny compared with other, fuller Queen releases. That doesn't, however, disguise the quality of songs such as In Only Seven days and Leaving Home Ain't Easy - the latter being one of May's best, more poignant Queen moments. It's fair to say that drummer Roger Taylor's contributions towards the end of the album are not his best, and thus a star deducted. But this is still a record to come back to time and time again for sheer variety, slick musicianship - and breathtaking confidence! Great fun, and for all budding musos out there - the best inner sleeve ever!
on 27 June 2011
Queen teetering on rock mountain at the end of the 70's before their leap towards the pop drenched 80s. Its got some fantastic moments; Dead On Time is one of May's greatest riffs and Jealousy is a bona fide Mercury classic. Mustapha is quite literally mad..... the song that has benefited most from this overhaul and infinitely better than the 1994 cd release. Of course it has the singles Don't Stop Me Now, Bicycle race and Fat Bottomed Girls... all three showing Queen at their most playful.The extras are OK but as with the other releases it suggests that there isn't that much left in the old Queen volts......
on 18 December 2012
As good as expected, quiet different from usual Queen albums hence the title,however the digital remastering technician must have been having a tea break or something here,as the first few tracks are so quiet ,volume has to be turned right up,later the album suddenly finds its feet with the volume and has to be turned back downbecause its suddenly practically piercing the ol eardrums,this is really the main let down with this album.
on 17 June 2016
'Jazz', Queen's 7th studio album, delivers plenty of high octane rock with some pleasant soothing ballads to keep fans of the band, both old and new, suitably happy. The UK singles releases are all inspired with the splendid double 'A' side of May's 'Fat Bottomed Girls' and Mercury's lyrically stunning and musically complex 'Bicycle Race' being joined by another pacey Mercury composition 'Don't Stop Me Now'. Mercury's 'Let Me Entertain You', May's brilliant riff-laden 'Dead On Time', John Deacon's rocky 'If You Can't Beat Them' and Roger Taylor's funky 'Fun It' are all worthy of inclusion; of the ballads here 'In Only Seven Days (Deacon) is quite lovely as is 'Jealousy' (Mercury). Overall this is a very decent Queen album despite what some of the music critics felt at the time.
on 18 August 2011
I recall buying this on vinyl when i was 11 and opening up the poster than came with it...ahhh happy days indeed.
But im not rating the poster, im rating the album!
So, firstly, Mustapha....what a great opening track, totally bonkers, but i love it. Dont Stop Me Now is the best Queen track ever written (IMO) and any alnum with it on must be half decent.
Like most Queen albums (like most albums by anyone) there is some filler. Im not that keen on More of that Jazz or Fun It...but the harder tracks (If You Cant Beat Em and Dead On Time) are good, if not classics. Again i think Brians Leaving Home is a weak track and you could take a lot of his songs from the late 70s and stick them on a Brian solo album rather than on a Queen album and it wouldnt have impacted the Queen album
Seven Days and Jealousy are both good, simple tracks from Freddie.
So probably not as strong as NOTW and Queen needed to change something as the 80s approached, which they managed with ease with The Game. Id give this 3.5 stars, but as i cant, benefit of the doubt gives it a 4 rather than a 3.
on 19 November 2001
I love this album! Has to be THE most overlooked Queen album! Remember when Queen albums sounded like they'd spent ages writing 'em and the songs weren't just bashed out on a synth? This is the last one! The ensuing 'Game' with its hollow sounding production (even 'Save Me' sounded washed-out compared to the single mix!)was for me, a massive let-down after Jazz and its predecessor, the titanic News of the World...
Anyway! What has Jazz got?-the lot! Great songs, great production (Roy Thomas Baker!) and the classic Queen quirkiness. 'Mustapha' starts off sounding like a 'Game' song, then Brian's gorgeous guitar comes crashing in and all fears are banished! Fat Bottomed Girls has extended May riffery transforming the track from its single incarnation to a self-respecting rocker. 'Jealousy' is a bit of vintage Mercury (RIP)swoonery..what a gorgeous song! At this point I must mention Deacon's 'In Only Seven Days'...surely the best and most poignant holiday romance song ever penned! Absolute perfection; rather than using synths, May orchestrates away in the background, Fred laments for all he is worth, and the final, 'Oh so sad, alone' lyric leaves you imagining the bereft vacationer's plight!A classic!
May is on form...'Dead on Time' Rocks! And this is the album with the seminal and wonderful 'Don't Stop Me Now'. Another classic.
'If You Can't Beat Them' is a melodic multi-layered Deacon-penned rocker with a brilliant phase-shifted outro section. 'Let Me Entertain You' is here too! Not to mention others such as the wistful 'Leaving Home Ain't Easy', a May corker with vintage lush-sounding Queen vocal harmonies. Wow. If you like Queen get this classic! I never could understand why this album has been so overlooked!
on 4 December 2004
This album is rather splendid. I can't work out whether or not it is one of my favourites, but it really is great.
It opens bizzarly with Mr Mercury wailing 'Abrahim', leading into a fantastic musical fusion of rock and middle-easty stuff. The close harmony vocal chord at the end rounds it all up very nicely.
The next song, Fat Bottomed Girls was one of the singles from this album, and everybody knows it (I assume). It isn't one of the best form this album in my opinion.
Jealousy has to be one of the best. In the typical Mr Mercury style of a little sad, very soothing but optimistic all the same, it makes a good contrast to the heavier songs which surround it.
Bicyle race is another well known song, and is a lot more complicated than a lot of people think. I have the music written out for piano, and the number of ridiculous modulations and bizzarre key changes which occur were enough to put me off playing it straight away (I'm not a particularly proficient pianist).
I have to confess that 'If You Can't Beat 'em'doesn't please me too much. Though I am the first person to accept wierd chord progressions (which queen are so good at stringing together), it seems to me that this is a little messed up for the sake of it. I don't think it deserves its 4:15 slot at all. Not to worry, because there is some good guitar in the middle ad it is surrounded by a lot of good songs anyway.
Let me Entertain You is marvellous. This is definitly a song which pulls off being a bit strange. Its subtle complexity is something that I can't help but appreciate.
Dead on Time isn't quite as good as the song above, but I still find it a great song with a good rock feel.
Mr Deacon's second song of the album, In Only Seven Days, was a bit annoying for me at first. It just sounded a bit boring. After listening through it a few times I concluded that it was fine song, though the story still gets on my nerves a bit.
Dreamer's Ball- this is one of my favourtie May songs ever. Another reviewer said that this track was so wierd that it made him want to throw up. Personally I think he must be mad. Does this light, ballroom dance song not just reflect on the talent of the band. I think it does to an extremity.
Fun It was a song that I though was really rubish at first. It seems almost minimalist with it's thin guitar line and repetative drums. However I soon realised that if Mr Taylor had wanted to he could have filled the song with bass and guitar extraviganzas. He was obviously after something else, and he achived it in my view. The contrast between Taylor's almost hoarse voice and Mercury's much cleaner vocalisation is what I find really great.
Leaving home ain't easy ain't one of my favourites. It's fine, but it's a litte too repetative to me. May's voice is as nice as ever though.
Another popular song, don't stop me now is one I really love. It's intrduction is like a coiled spring, and it certainly does explode by the twentieth bar. The lyrical content I shall steer clear of.
I don't think that More Of That jazz is a good ending to the album. Firstly, it's too similar to Fun It only without Mr Murcury's voice to save the day. Secondly, it seems to be slagging of the whole album which, though I'm sure is very clever and subtle, I find irritating. Finaly, when a little clip of most of the other songs is played at the end, it seems to be telling you that this is a song not worthy of being putting in Jazz at all. Not to worry- you can always just skip the track.
Over all I have given this CD five stars, as no Queen CD to me deserves less.
on 6 April 2013
The last album before the boys cut their hair and bought a synthesizer.
As you would expect from Queen, memorable tunes with strong choruses- stand out tracks are "Bicycle Race, "Fat-Bottomed Girls and "Don't Stop Me Now". Roger's songs sound a bit dated now but he has a great rock voice.
My 2nd favourite Queen album after "Sheer Heart Attack".
on 9 October 2013
For some reason, this is the Queen album that seems to divide opinion the most; I don't know why as it is certainly no worse than any of the other albums released during the band's golden era. But then, its not completely brilliant either. As ever Queen stretch themselves over a variety of styles, which, as usual, makes for an ambitious if inconsistent record.
So what has Mr Fusspot deemed good? Well, for a kick off we have Queen's best ever song, and i do mean best: 'Dead on Time'. Never heard of it? No, it wasn't a hit, and as far as i know, never (or only rarely) played live. Shame, as it rocks like a swear word. Never has Brian May's guitar sounded quite this angry, and even his words are fairly aggressive. Topped off with a thunderclap at the end (courtesy of God, apparently) this really is an undiscovered classic. I know the heavier stuff isn't for everyone, but hey, Queen are usually referred to as a rock band so I am assuming that a potential buyer has some interest in the genre. Anyway, 'Fat Bottomed Girls' is a goodun, a more laid back slab of rock; 'Bicycle Race' is a clever pop type song that gives Freddie Mercury a chance to list all the things he doesn't like; 'Leaving Home aint Easy' is a ballad style song full of May's typically earnest musings. The album closer, 'More of that Jazz' is a reasonable Roger Taylor sung rocker with a catchy stuttering drum motif. The last in the good batch, 'Let Me Entertain You', is a rare Freddie up tempo guitar led song, but it highlights my main gripe with this album; its too quiet. This song in particular has always sounded muffled and the remastering has done little to alter that, but maybe its just my ears that are faulty.
As for the bad...'Jealousy' and 'In only Seven Days' are a couple of sappy ballads; 'If You can't Beat Them' and (dare i say it) 'Don't Stop me Now' are dull/camp pop fare. 'Mustapha' is just plain weird, an eastern flavoured ditty with Freddie chirping away in arabic or something. In 'Dreamers Ball' the group broadcasts blues, but unfortunately it is a little dreary.
Which leaves the funky. Which is only one song actually, 'Fun it'. This is certainly the first song to suggest that certain members of the band had begun to discover the emerging disco scene of the time, a sound that would start to feature more prominently in subsequent albums. Its not for me.
So do you deluxe or do you not deluxe? Even for the committed Queen fan, the bonus disc doesn't offer much. There's the edited single version of 'Fat Bottomed Girls'. Why you would want this when you already have the full version on the album proper is beyond me (plus this version is already available on the Greatest Hits) and if that wasn't pointless enough, you get an instrumental version of 'Bicycle Race'. Again, why? Theres also a version of 'Don't stop me Now' with long lost guitars. It might be my ears playing up again, but I couldn't tell the difference. 'Let Me Entertain You' gets a live run out, and while this actual version may be previously unreleased, I doubt the version on Live Killers is much different. The only song that gets close to being interesting is the accoustic demo version of 'Dreamers Ball', but once you've heard it, you probably won't be rushing back for repeated listens. Had I known this before I bought it, I would have got the single disc version, and would recommend you do the same, just in case Queen really do get around to 'clearing the vaults' any time soon.
on 17 June 2009
First of all this not a 2008 digital remaster.Secondly it is a Japanese issue.Inside the ,admittedly, very good re-packaging is a leaflet on which you can find in very small letters that this is a 2001 digital remaster made by Raincloud Productions under exlusive licence to EMI.Now what counts is the sound in comparison to the 1994 digital remasters.The sound is audibly more clear and they have boosted the treble and bass which to some may seem a bit tiring as the cymbals ring around too prominently.So if you're not a very hot Queen fan skip this as it offers little more than the cheaper earlier remaster.