on 26 January 2007
Innuendo is a strong album and is worthy of the special spot it occupies as the last Queen album completed during Freddie Mercury's life.
It isn't a truly great album, but it is better overall -- with a more complete identity-- than quite a few of its predecessors.
It also has an adventurous, almost questing, quality that is all the more remarkable when put in the context of Freddie's grave illness and the near-sure knowledge that this would be the band's last effort. The band try out much that is new and diverse idioms are introduced, such as the flamenco influences in Innuendo or the Noel Coward-frippery of I'm Going Slightly Mad.
The lyrics are also startlingly focussed. It is almost impossible now to disassociate the album from the unusual circumstances in which it was created, but there is an incredible poignance and steadfastness to the sentiments conveyed in The Show Must Go On and These Are The Days Of Our Lives. At times -- with the benefit of hindsight -- it is almost heart-breaking to listen to some of these songs.
Finally, this an outstanding testament to the vocal prowess of --for this reviewer anyway -- the single greatest rock singer we have ever seen. Brian May has spoken in the past about how at this stage Freddie was so ill that he barely had the strength to stand. And somehow, from that quagmire of terminal illness and despair, he was able to sing with such power, with such admirable optimism and courage that it is, frankly, unbelievable. There is something deeply riveting and moving about great strength being greatly tested, and there is no finer example than Freddie's superhuman effort here. In doing so, in railing against an inevitable destiny, in refusing to give in to self-pity or pain or negativity, Fred showed himself to be more than simply a great showman. To be blunt, he was nothing short of heroic.
The finest song on the record is The Show Must Go On, which succeeds on every level. It has a wonderful, memorable melody and stirring and exquisitely-crafted lyrics. As Fred's passionate vocal soars to stunning heights, it is impossible to resist your spirits being elevated also. As such it is a fitting memorial to a remarkable life and a remarkable man.
on 21 April 2002
There is no word in the English dictionary that accurately describes this work of genius. It is absolutely amazing, unbelieveable, incredible. I have almost every Queen album, this was the first one I purchased aside from the greatest hits, and it still reigns supreme over all the other Queen albums.
"Innuendo" (the song) is my favorite Queen song, it is amazing. It opens with a drum roll which makes you jump upon first listen. Freddie Mercury sounds better than ever before. The highlight of the track is the "wandering minstrel" guitar interlude beginning at 3:16, it starts out in 5/4 time, then goes into 6/4 after a couple of choruses. Absolutely amazing. "I'm Going Slightly Mad" is a humorous track, which is somewhat Noel Coward-ish. "Headlong" is an excellent rocker, will please metalheads everywhere with its heavily distorted guitar riffs and excellent solos. "I Can't Live With You" is a fantastic song, with great lyrics and instrumentation. "Don't Try So Hard" features one of Freddie Mercury's ultimate vocal performances, absolutely beautiful, will bring tears to some eyes, no joke. Roger Taylor must have been the primary force behind "Ride The Wild Wind," as his drums really stand out on this fast, heart-pumping track. "All God's People" is classic Freddie Mercury, with its complex, multilayered vocals ala "Somebody To Love" or "Bohemian Rhapsody." Next is the haunting track "These Are The Days Of Our Lives," a song about looking back on childhood and enjoying life as an adult. This song was also the last music video filmed by Queen as a foursome with Freddie. "Delilah" is a cute, little ditty about Freddie's favorite cat of the same name. Then in charges "The Hitman," which rocks and reels us all like just like the album's earlier track "Headlong." Next is "Bijou," an instrumental with a brief lyric from Freddie. This track features incredible guitar work by virtuoso Brian May himself, beautiful.
Finally, the all-out finale "The Show Must Go On" closes the album. This song is most likely the track that defines the Innuendo album. As most of you know, this was the last album Queen released before Freddie Mercury died. He said to his bandmates that he wanted to keep on making records until he was no longer alive to record more music. This song speaks of his attitude toward his state. Freddie was extremely ill at the time of recording this album, and was determined to give it his all. "Inside my heart is breaking, my makeup may be flaking but my smile still stays on." This lyric speaks of his exact feeling,
Innuendo was released on February 5, 1991. On November 24th of that same year, Freddie Mercury was dead. He left this world after he and his bandmates released an album of the most incredible music they could ever do. They knew they were on borrowed time, so they pushed themselves to the limits, and by doing so, they did it better than they ever could have done, with one simple thought of determination, "the show must go on." They continued right up until Freddie was to ill to work. Now and forever, the show will go on, go on, go on, go on, go on, go on...........
on 9 September 2005
Well this album was Queen's last. And i found the album heart warming and quite sad. My favorite track on the album is 'i'm going slighty mad' i felt like this was the closet thing to what Freddie Mercury was going through. Such a shame, he was a great vocalist, but as i review this i am not going on sympathy but by mere perfection. The album has it all. With great instrument playing and slighty different tunes which make this a winner. The title track would be my favorite record for Brian May's solo guitar play. Overall this album is class, Shame it was there last but it has to be checked out.
on 8 June 2002
Anyone out there who is ill, feeling under the weather, or just passing the time away in a fairly non-descript manner should take this album onboard and digest. It's a testiment to Mercury's remarkable zest & work-ethic that he (together with the other three band members) was able to deliver such a stunning performance despite reportedly being so ill he could barely stand.
The range and power in 'The Show Must Go On' just knocks you sideways. Being Queen, there are silly songs, like 'Delilah' and 'Slightly Mad'. But there are also out and out rockers like 'Headlong' and 'The Hitman'. Then there are the ballads; the sublime 'Don't Try So Hard', the warm and sweet 'Bijou', and of course the hauntingly beautiful 'Days of our Lives'.
Despite it being Queen's 17th album, they still experiment with 'All Gods People' and 'Innuendo' The former being slightly reminiscent in style to 'Millionnaire Waltz' whereas the latter is another six and a half minute opus of a hodgepodge of styles. Performed by anyone else it would be ridiculous. But Queen, well, it's just 'magic' isn't it.
Eleven years on, and this is still the Queen album that gets loaded most often into my CD player. It's tragic, yet hugely uplifting & inspiring.
Even though all of this album is special, there is one particular vocal line in 'The Show Must Go On' which makes me well up with the sheer magnificence of it every time I hear it. You'll know it when you hear it.
On with the show...
on 9 September 2005
After a sucession of lacklustre albums during the eighties. Not to suggest that The Works/Magic/Miracle didn't have their fair share of gems, this album is consistent throughout, with only the occasional lapse. Back are the lengthy rock symphonies (Innuendo - Bohemian Rhapsody 2 in my opinion), along with the hard rock driven Headlong, I Can't Live With You, and The Hitman, accompanied by tender classics such as These are the days. Brilliant varied and very melancholy, but easily Queen's best effort since A Night At The Opera.
on 23 October 2002
In 1991, no one exactly knew what was going on with the state of Freddie Mercury or Queen, daily tabloid reports would state that Freddie was dying/Freddie was blind/Freddie was deaf - all these things were probably quite true. All the more suprising that Queen managed to release this album in February 1991.
It had been two years since there last album "The Miracle", which had received mixed reviews, and this time Queen wanted to produce something very special, knowing full well this would be the last album they would release in Freddie's lifetime.
"Innuendo" was released to nothing but complete praise!, the album was pulling out all the stops and was regarded as a hark back to there earlier material. The album starts with a bang with the title track (there first uk number 1 in years), followed by the bittersweet "I'm going slightly mad"- a track which bears closer inspection and revealing that Freddie really had given in to the fact that his days were numbered, a general theme throughout the album. But the pain and despair is also tempered with such blistering tracks as "Headlong" & "The Hitman", the latter could have come straight off one of their earlier albums. Then there's more of the reflective material such as "Don't try so Hard" ( geninuely moving), Days of our lives ( a track that has caused a tear to be shed on many a moment of listening to), and the final cresendo of "THe Show Must Go On"- a truly awesome track with Freddie saying it like it is.
To Conclude, this album was genius, most likely because it was made with a rollercoaster of emotions, and this can still be heard when listening to after all this time.
This was never going to be there best album, but it was there most powerful and thought-provoking, and it was a fitting epilogue to one man's life - Freddie Mercury.
If you don't have this album, you should do.....
And if you have it, go listen to it again.....a masterpiece!
on 10 June 2002
Reading the other reviews written so far of this album, I've got to say they are all on the whole pretty accurate, although they might leave the reader with the slight impression that people are being unnecessarily kind towards this album simply because it was made with Freddie Mercury at death's door and has some great sentimental lyrics.
Don't be fooled, this album really IS as good as everyone says. From the first track Innuendo which in my opinion is one of the most underrated queen songs to the average person who isnt into queen, right up to the last song on the album (in my opinion also queen's best) this album is on par with the best of them.
Don't listen to the 'expert' magazine critics who criticised pretty much every queen album that ever came out - this is a great album and I would advise it strongly to any queen fan, along with A Night at the Opera.
on 4 March 2004
I am a massive Queen fan and i feel that this is possibly one of their top three albums. 'Innuendo' is a monster of a track with the band exploring their heavier side. 'I cant live with you' contains some great vocals and finishes with some great guitar riffs by Brian. The best song on the album is 'These are the days of our lives'. Whilst being a very emotional song (it contains a sort-of goodbye message from Freddie to his fans) it is also musically very impressive. The album finishes with 'The show must go on' and although some Queen fans at the time worried that the lyrics sounded like an obituary it is still a great and very powerful song. Fans should also note that people who describe songs like 'Headlong' and 'Hitman' as rubbish are just talking nonsense because these are fantastic, lively tracks while also showcase Brians guitar playing abilities.
on 18 June 2012
This series from Japan of the Queen catalogue in SACD are fantastic. All songs are heard in 96/24, and blow away any format that has come before,they make CD's sound like a gramaphone. This is the best version anybody will hear,next to having the original master tapes in the studio. Although it does sound like your in the studio listening to the master tapes on a decent set up, bass is much more defined and the brilliance of John Deacon now shines thru on each song. Roger Taylors drums also come through alot better than before and can be appreciated. Freddie Mercurys vocals no longer sound like they are dying on certain songs, they are strong and powerful. Plus Brian Mays guitar work really shines here. Its almost like your hearing the album for the first time. There are things that now can finally be heard clearly. This album was compiled unique to others as well. Five songs (Innuendo,Im Going Slightly Mad,Dont try So Hard,These are the Days Of Our Lives and Bijou) all were recorded on half inch master tapes, and like the rest of the album straight to Digital PCM. It is the tape version used for this disc that the five songs have sourced from, and they stand out more in depth and power than the others. Im guessing these versions have never been used for other releases of the album in the past and that the whole album has always come from the Digital Source. The sad thing is that the tape masters sound a little better than the Digitally Sourced songs, so on a whole the album is hit and miss, I wish Queen hadnt recorded Digitally because the quality has suffered, analogue is much better than digital, the proof is here.
on 13 February 2000
Innuendo is arguably one of Queen's most powerful albums, the last full studio album before Freddie Mercury's death, and suprisingly their most underrated album, being described by some critics as "a mixture of Led Zepelin and Kenneth Williams". I personally find it one of Queen's best recordings and an album which definately deserves 5 star recognition. The album contains some of their best work including These Are The Days Of Our Lives and the title track Innuendo, both number one hits in their own right, this platinum selling album is a must in all good collections.