Controversial, deep and strange, but with an incredible ability to focus on the head. That’s what Queen songs are like. You can love them or hate them, but these twelve songs have made history and will continue as legends in the world of rock.
With an undoubted musical base, the Queen group left a legacy that few dream of surpassing. The magic that they managed to impress on their recordings, despite the lack of technology, is a sample of the quality and objectives that the band had. Perhaps that is why, almost 40 years later, Queen’s songs continue to intrigue us.
Although exhaustive analyzes of Queen, the band and their musical material have been made, the truth is that there is so much to discover that we have given ourselves the task of studying some of the most important themes. We present them to you, below, with some interesting data. We have not ordered them according to any particular quality, since by themselves, each of the songs has something that stands out.
1) Bohemian Rhapsody
Qualified as the best song in the history of the band, and surrounded by numerous enigmas, this theme was number one for 9 weeks in the United Kingdom, in the mid-sixties. It was the first time operatic touches had been combined with pop overtones in a composition and this extravagant and unusual structure was widely acclaimed.
2) Crazy Little Thing Called Love
Anyone who has never listened to Queen might well think that this song belongs to any rock band of the late 50s, but no. It was Freddie who composed it, with no more effort than what it took him to dedicate 10 minutes to it. Thus, it is possible to affirm that being in the best moment the letter flows. Without further ado, it was recorded before guitarist May added changes, as was often the case, and is considered a tribute to the great Elvis, of whom Freddie was an admirer.
3) We will rock you
For many, this is the best song in history, and it goes without saying that it has become the rallying cry of rock, but also an anthem that is sung in chorus in stadiums to ignite spirits. Interestingly, it’s not a Freddie Mercury song, but a Brian May song.
The idea was born after a great presentation, seeking to make their own anthem for fans of Queen’s music. From then on, both Freddie and May began to have some proposals. We are the Champions being Freddie’s, while May thought of something simpler and more visceral.
On the other hand, we cannot forget May’s solo, which is also one of the most studied by lovers of electric guitars, who wish to interpret it faithfully.
4) Now I’m Here
On May’s label, “Now I’m Here” is an intense song, inspired by the band’s touring experiences and hardships, especially May himself as he went through a difficult recovery in hospital.
The theme makes its rock origins very clear and it continued to be played until the last presentations.
In this song the well-known arrangements of layered voices are appreciated, but the most interesting thing is that it emerged as a quick idea, which was composed in just one night. It is considered the first of the melodies that, years later, would allow the band to cross the lines of musical genres, to mix rock with pop.
Also , in Killer Queen, Freddie Mercury shows off his voice and the wide range of sounds he could make. He uses no less than two octaves and has big jumps in certain bars.
On the other hand, the musical analysis shows the clear tendency of the author to resist the simple, therefore, we have as a result a sophisticated and complex harmony.
6) Another one bites the dust
Nobody knows for sure what John Deacon is trying to say in the lyrics of “Another one bites the dust”. But regardless of this, it’s a work with a shocking rhythm, a powerful funk bass and a chorus that you can’t get out of your head when you listen to it. It is said that Michael Jackson may have influenced the pop touch that can be subtly identified in the melody.
7) Bicycle Race
Only a band like Queen could come up with an excellent composition after seeing some Tour de France participants passing by the window. A small sample that, even during the recording breaks, they had an amazing creativity.
8) Don’t Stop Me Now
For Queen the greatest hits seem to be no big deal. With “Don’t stop me now” he makes it clear that even using piano, bass and drums as main instruments, an unforgettable rock-pop theme can be achieved. Of course, Freddie’s metaphors make it one of Queen’s most famous songs.
9) Somebody to Love
Without ceasing to be Queen, with its choirs that seem like a hundred people, the gospel genre was present in this song. If you have doubts about the importance of this composition, you might be interested to know that the song “Amar a somebody”, by the group Mocedades, is the Spanish version of “Somebody to love”. It’s probably one of those songs you’ve heard, but don’t know the name or who the original songwriter was.
10) I Want to Break Free
John Deacon reappears in our selection with this great song, which gave the band a comeback in the eighties. It may not be the best song in the world, but it did manage to lift the audience and make them applaud. It’s a must in any Queen discography.
11) Seven Seas of Rhye
For Freddie Mercury, music was a mode of expression. However, giving context to his creations is not always easy. For sample, we have this mysterious topic. The meter, rhythm and arrangements are an example that in just under 3 minutes a lot can be done in a composition.
12) Under Pressure
In the history of Queen, very interesting collaborations are mixed, like this one, in which David Bowie and Freddie Mercury participate. There was no lack of friction due to the arrangements, typical between two great composers, but the song is a success.
We hope you liked this brief review of the best Queen songs. If you didn’t know them, you probably thought they were songs for adults, but it is undeniable that, even in 2022, they are a reference to which several current artists turn to forge their success.