A Night at the Odeon – Hammersmith 1975

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A Night at the Odeon – Hammersmith 1975
A Night at the Odeon - Hammersmith 1975.jpg
Live album by Queen
Released 20 November 2015 (2015-11-20)
Recorded 24 December 1975 in London
Genre Rock
Length 73:21 (CD Edition)
Label Virgin EMI, Hollywood
Producer Justin Shirley-Smith
Josh Macrae
Kris Fredriksson
Queen chronology
Live at the Rainbow '74
(2014)
A Night at the Odeon – Hammersmith 1975
(2015)
On Air
(2016)

A Night at the Odeon – Hammersmith 1975 is a live album by the British rock band Queen. The album is the first official release of the band's Christmas Eve performance at the Hammersmith Odeon in 1975, taped by the BBC. The show was broadcast on BBC2 and BBC Radio 1, and included one of the first live performances of "Bohemian Rhapsody". It had been one of the band's most popular bootlegs.

Background[edit]

The 24 December 1975 gig at the Hammersmith Odeon was the final date of Queen's UK tour in support of the album A Night At The Opera, which had been released a few weeks previously, and had already gone platinum.[1] The single "Bohemian Rhapsody" was in the middle of its 9-week run at number one in the UK charts at the time of the gig, which was one of the first times the song was played live.[2] Queen had already played four shows at the Odeon earlier during the tour and received positive reviews in the press, with Sounds saying "everything about them says that they are more important than any other band you've heard".[3]

The gig was advertised in Melody Maker as "Britain's most regal band awaits your presence ..." and all 5,000 tickets sold out.[3][4] Guitarist Brian May later recalled: "This concert was very special because it was the first time we ever played a whole show completely live on TV".[2] Lead singer Freddie Mercury played a white Bechstein grand piano imported especially for the gig, and wore white and black catsuits, changing costume halfway through the show.[3]

Though A Night at the Opera was in the charts at the time of show, the band's setlist mainly drew from earlier songs that worked well on stage, including May's solo guitar spot in the middle of the show, and a medley of old rock'n'roll songs towards the end. The band only played the ballad section of "Bohemian Rhapsody" as part of a medley with older material, and the only other Opera track was "God Save The Queen" played on tape at the very end of the show.[4]

The show was broadcast on BBC2 as part of the music programme The Old Grey Whistle Test with the audio later broadcast on BBC Radio 1. Queen had appeared on the show several times previously when studio tracks were played alongside custom music videos.[5] Whistle Test presenter Bob Harris introduced the band onstage and later recalled that Queen "were in party mood at the Hammersmith Odeon that night".[6] Unfortunately, the video cameras were packed away before the group's second encore, so only the audio of "Seven Seas of Rhye" and "See What A Fool I've Been" were recorded.[7]

Because of the high-quality recording and filming, and nationwide television and radio broadcast, the gig had become the most popular bootleg recording of Queen.[7] Many of the songs in the band's Hammersmith set were dropped on later tours, and did not appear on official live albums such as Live Killers and Live At Wembley '86.[4]

The original multi-track tapes of the show were believed to be lost, before being recovered in 2009 and restored by Queen sound engineers Justin Shirley-Smith, Kris Fredriksson, and Josh Macrae. A 50-minute performance of the show was broadcast that year, again on BBC2.[8] In 2011, a few of the tracks from this gig were officially released elsewhere as bonus tracks on reissues of Queen's studio albums, such as "White Queen" on Universal Records' reissue of Queen II, and "Ogre Battle" on the iTunes version.[9]

Release[edit]

The remastered and restored show was shown at a special screening on 8 October 2015 at Olympic Studios Cinema, Barnes, where some of A Night at the Opera had been recorded.[10]

The album was released on 20 November in CD, DVD, SD Blu-ray and double vinyl formats, as well as a deluxe box set including a hardback book, reproductions of period-specific tour memorabilia, and an audio recording of the band's soundcheck for the show. The DVD/Blu-ray release also features bonus material from Queen's first tour of Japan in 1975 at the Nippon Budokan, and a 22-minute documentary featuring interviews from May, Roger Taylor and Harris entitled Looking Back at the Odeon.[3]

Track listing[edit]

CD[edit]

No.TitleWriter(s)Length
1."Now I'm Here"Brian May4:43
2."Ogre Battle"Freddie Mercury5:19
3."White Queen (As It Began)"May5:31
4."Bohemian Rhapsody"Mercury2:28
5."Killer Queen"Mercury2:08
6."The March of the Black Queen"Mercury1:30
7."Bohemian Rhapsody (Reprise)"Mercury1:02
8."Bring Back That Leroy Brown"Mercury1:32
9."Brighton Rock"May2:24
10."Guitar solo"May6:37
11."Son and Daughter"May1:44
12."Keep Yourself Alive"May4:33
13."Liar"Mercury8:45
14."In the Lap of the Gods... Revisited"Mercury5:24
15."Big Spender"Cy Coleman, Dorothy Fields1:24
16."Jailhouse Rock (Medley)"Jerry Leiber, Mike Stoller9:21
17."Seven Seas of Rhye"Mercury3:11
18."See What a Fool I've Been"May4:22
19."God Save the Queen"Traditional, arr. by May1:23

DVD/Blu-ray[edit]

No.TitleWriter(s)Length
1."Now I'm Here"May 
2."Ogre Battle"Mercury 
3."White Queen (As It Began)"May 
4."Bohemian Rhapsody"Mercury 
5."Killer Queen"Mercury 
6."The March of the Black Queen"Mercury 
7."Bohemian Rhapsody (Reprise)"Mercury 
8."Bring Back That Leroy Brown"Mercury 
9."Brighton Rock"May 
10."Guitar Solo"May 
11."Son and Daughter"May 
12."Keep Yourself Alive"May 
13."Liar"Mercury 
14."In the Lap of the Gods... Revisited"Mercury 
15."Big Spender"Coleman, Fields 
16."Jailhouse Rock (Medley)"Leiber, Stoller 
17."God Save the Queen"Traditional, Arrangement by May 

DVD/SD Blu-ray extras[edit]

Live in Japan '75

  1. "Now I'm Here" (Live at the Budokan, Tokyo, Japan, 1 May 1975)
  2. "Killer Queen" (Live at the Budokan, Tokyo, Japan, 1 May 1975)
  3. "In the Lap of the Gods... Revisited" (Live at the Budokan, Tokyo, Japan, 1 May 1975)

Looking Back at the Odeon
A previously unreleased 22 minute documentary featuring interviews from Brian May, Roger Taylor and Bob Harris.

Vinyl[edit]

Side one
No.TitleWriter(s)Length
1."Now I'm Here"May 
2."Ogre Battle"Mercury 
3."White Queen (As It Began)"May 
Side two
No.TitleWriter(s)Length
1."Bohemian Rhapsody"Mercury 
2."Killer Queen"Mercury 
3."The March of the Black Queen"Mercury 
4."Bohemian Rhapsody (Reprise)"Mercury 
5."Bring Back That Leroy Brown"Mercury 
6."Brighton Rock"May 
7."Guitar Solo"May 
8."Son and Daughter (Reprise)"May 
Side three
No.TitleWriter(s)Length
1."Keep Yourself Alive"May 
2."Liar"Mercury 
3."In the Lap of the Gods... Revisited"Mercury 
Side four
No.TitleWriter(s)Length
1."Big Spender"Coleman, Fields 
2."Jailhouse Rock (Medley)"Leiber, Stoller 
3."Seven Seas of Rhye"Mercury 
4."See What a Fool I've Been"May 
5."God Save the Queen"Trad., arr. by May 

Personnel[edit]

  • Freddie Mercury – lead vocals, piano
  • Brian May – guitar, backing vocals, ukulele on "Bring Back That Leroy Brown"
  • Roger Taylor – drums, percussion, backing vocals
  • John Deacon – bass guitar, backing vocals, triangle on "Killer Queen"

Charts[edit]

Chart (2015) Peak
position
Austrian Albums (Ö3 Austria)[11] 57
Belgian Albums (Ultratop Flanders)[12] 60
Belgian Albums (Ultratop Wallonia)[13] 42
Dutch Albums (MegaCharts)[14] 28
French Albums (SNEP)[15] 118
German Albums (Offizielle Top 100)[16] 34
Spanish Albums (PROMUSICAE)[17] 41
Swiss Albums (Schweizer Hitparade)[18] 31
UK Albums (OCC)[19] 40

References[edit]

  1. ^ Jackson, Laura. Brian May: The definitive biography. Hachette. p. 39. ISBN 978-1-405-51372-2. 
  2. ^ a b Giles, Jeff (12 October 2015). "Queen Schedule Release Date for 'A Night at the Odeon: Hammersmith 1975′". Classic Rock. Retrieved 29 November 2015. 
  3. ^ a b c d "'A Night At The Odeon' Released TODAY!". Queen (official website). 20 November 2015. Retrieved 2 December 2015. 
  4. ^ a b c Garratt, John (16 November 2015). "Queen: A Night at the Odeon". PopMatters. Retrieved 2 December 2015. 
  5. ^ "Old Grey Whistle Test 40". BBC Radio 6 Music. Retrieved 2 December 2015. 
  6. ^ "Queen to release 'A Night At The Odeon – Hammersmith 1975' concert film". NME. Retrieved 1 December 2015. 
  7. ^ a b "The most bootlegged gig of Queen's career is being released as a film". GigWise. 12 October 2015. Retrieved 1 December 2015. 
  8. ^ "Hammersmith 75 on BBC". Queen (official website). Retrieved 2 December 2015. 
  9. ^ Purvis, Georg (2012). Queen: Complete Works. Titan Books. p. 73. ISBN 978-1-781-16287-3. 
  10. ^ Sutherland, Mark (12 October 2015). "Brian May Talks Queen's 1975 Concert Film, Performing 'Bohemian Rhapsody' Live". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 2 December 2015. 
  11. ^ "Austriancharts.at – Queen – A Night at the Odeon" (in German). Hung Medien. Retrieved 3 December 2015.
  12. ^ "Ultratop.be – Queen – A Night at the Odeon" (in Dutch). Hung Medien. Retrieved 7 December 2015.
  13. ^ "Ultratop.be – Queen – A Night at the Odeon" (in French). Hung Medien. Retrieved 7 December 2015.
  14. ^ "Dutchcharts.nl – Queen – A Night at the Odeon" (in Dutch). Hung Medien. Retrieved 28 November 2015.
  15. ^ "Lescharts.com – Queen – A Night at the Odeon". Hung Medien. Retrieved 29 November 2015.
  16. ^ "Longplay-Chartverfolgung at Musicline" (in German). Musicline.de. Phononet GmbH. Retrieved 28 November 2015.
  17. ^ "Spanishcharts.com – Queen – A Night at the Odeon". Hung Medien. Retrieved 6 December 2015.
  18. ^ "Swisscharts.com – Queen – A Night at the Odeon". Hung Medien. Retrieved 2 December 2015.
  19. ^ "Official Albums Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 28 November 2015.