It’s funny how even though I was born in the early 90’s, I still grew up on classic rock music from the 70’s and 80’s. There are plenty of artists I love, and one of my personal favorites that I still go crazy about it to this day is Queen. I don’t even know where to start with these guys, I feel like this is the classic 70’s rock band that’s lasted throughout the ages, and will continue to do so. So, for today’s post I decided to take a break from my more traditional movie and TV related reviews in do something entirely aimed at music. Even if you’ve never heard of Queen, you’ve probably heard some of their classics songs in some form or another, and didn’t even realize it was from Queen. Weather you’re someone crazy about a little thing called love, or under some serious pressure, these are the tunes that continue to rock me. Get on your bikes and ride with my own personal top 10 favorite songs from Queen.
#10 “Another One Bites the Dust” (The Game - 1980)
When it comes to “toe tapping jams”, this is the song that gets things started on all the right notes. It’s one of those addictive beats that I can’t help bob my head and clap my hands to while listening. In my opinion, “Another One Bites the Dust” is John Deacons stand out solo song for Queen, and one of the bands all around best, but we’re just getting started.
#9 "I Want it All" (The Miracle - 1989)
Despite being a song from one of their latter albums, “I Want it All” still stands as a classic from the bands roaster. It’s catchy and energizing as hell right from the opening before a single musical note even starts. Freddie Mercury’s vocals combined with Brian May’s rocking Guitar are the key ingredients that make this one of their many unforgettable tunes.
#8 "Princes of the Universe" (A Kind of Magic - 1986)
While I had been exposed to Queens music many times before, it was their soundtrack for the 1989 movie “Highlander” that got the band’s name on my radar. “Princes of the Universe” is a high energy rock fest with some of Freddie Mercury’s best writing credits. Needless to say, the song is every bit a cult classic as the mid-80’s action movie it came from, but this is only the first of two songs from their “Highlander” soundtrack.
#7 "Bohemian Rhapsody" (A Night at the Opera - 1975)
Oh boy, I only have “Bohemian Rhapsody” listed at number seven and not any higher ... what kind of Queen fan am I? Well, I have to be honest with my opinion, and their just happen to be six other songs I like a little more. With that said, “Bohemian Rhapsody” will always be recognized as one of the bands most iconic works. Featuring elements of hard rock, balladry and opera, this six minuet song covers quiet the large range and style. The music video is like classic 70’s in a bundle. More than anything, I’ll always remember this as the song from “Wayne's World”, as that movie helped cement “Bohemian Rhapsody” as a pop-culture icon.
#6 We Will Rock You (News of the World -1977)
The simple yet powerful rhythm, tempo and clapping of “We Will Rock You” are about as catchy and iconic as 70’s rock tunes get. Even if you’re not familiar with Queen as a band, you have to be familiar with this song on some level. It’s so well known and beloved that I don’t even think it needs much of a comment. It’s simply one of Queens classic hit songs, and it’s a tune that helped define a generation.
#5 "Who Wants to Live Forever" (A Kind of Magic - 1986)
Here’s my second song from Queens “Highlander” soundtrack, and on something of a personal note, it’s the song that first got me into the band’s music. There’s something about the melody, and tone of the song that just gets to me every time. On a side note, the movie “Highlander” has always been a nostalgic gem of mine, and it’s this particular song that always takes me back to my initial discovery of the film at a young age. While “Who Wants to Live Forever” has never been labeled as one of their great classics, it will always be a special for me.
#4 "We are the Champions" (News of the World - 1977)
With a hard rock power ballet, there’s no better song to celebrate a triumph or victory like “We are the Champions”. Whenever my friends and I got together to play sports or any kind of gaming activity, this would always be the tune playing in my head when things went our way. Just like the previously mentioned “We Will Rock You”, this song is so iconic and recognizable I feel like I don’t even need to give it much of a comment.
#3 "Innuendo" (Innuendo - 1991)
To be honest, this song makes it among my top 3 favorites just for those amazing opening musical notes alone. Seriously, the opening is like an epic military drum beat, but that’s just the beginning. As the tune marches along we’re treated to what I personally consider Brain May’s most sensational Guitar solo. The song also covers a unique range of styles, including something of a Spanish flair thrown in for good measure. Freddie Mercury’s lyrics infuse the song with substance, and the music video is a stylish work of art. In short, “Innuendo” incorporates both hard rock and pop rock with Queens trade mark touch of opera and became a UK chart topper in the process.
#2 "The Show Must Go On" (Innuendo -1991)
Somewhat audio biographical of Freddie Mercury’s growing illness, the talented artist proved that there’s no backing down, and that the show must go on. With his killer vocals leading the charge for this killer Queen song, “The Show Must Go On” has honestly become something of an inspirational piece for me. It’s all about finding the will to keep with what you love, and in the case of the band it’s music. Personally, I feel that the songs sentiment and theme can apply to anyone who’s struggling to hold onto a dream, and that’s where this masterpiece really gets to me. It’s undeniably Freddie Mercury’s swan song that highlighted the artist at his absolute best before his passing, and that alone makes this an immortal piece to Queens legacy. Aside from all that, this is just a plain awesome song, with a great beat, high energy, and could have been my number one favorite had it not been for one other ...
It wasn’t easy putting together a list of Queens 10 best songs, as they obviously have far more great ones then just 10 alone, so here are some quick Honorable Mentions ... “Somebody to love”, “The March of the Black Queen”, “I Want to Break Free”, “These are the Days of Our Lives”, “The Flash Gordon Theme” & “Keep Yourself Alive”
#1 "Under Pressure" (Hot Space - 1982)
When organizing a countdown of a bands best music I should probably highlight a solo song of theirs at #1, but in this case I just couldn’t help myself. No other song from Queen’s roaster gets to me more than their collaboration with the late great David Bowie. With its unforgettable bass line, “Under Pressure” has a steady place in popular music history, and is often regarded as Queens “opus”. It’s like a nostalgic celebration song reflecting on all the events leading to a pivotal moment in one’s life ... at least, that’s what I always took away from it. More specifically, this song is about a love that’s gone through many up’s and downs, and now it’s time for someone to give it another chance. It’s just an all around high spirited and deeply nostalgic song that for me personally seems to highlight Queen at their best.