A Kind of Magic!

The studio albums, live releases, compilations and box sets
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action
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Re: A Kind of Magic!

Post by action »

Sir Didymus wrote:
Mon May 04, 2020 3:47 pm
I've long since held the belief that A Kind of Magic suffers from being an album made by accident, rather than design.

What should have been was a bonafide Highlander soundtrack album. Instead we got the highlights from that plus some half-baked extra songs that weren't really fit to be more than B-sides, and a bolted on pre-existing single for good measure because even Queen realised 8 songs wasn't enough for the record.

Don't Lose Your Head is ok, but Friends Will be Friends has to be the worst song in their catalogue for me. A warning sign of some of the more pedestrian, soft-rock smudge that would permeate The Miracle, too.

Time for a revisit... and on that note... I was planning on posting the next Restructuring thread in a few weeks, but maybe I should just share my revised tracklisting here instead? ;)
FWBF is an absolute classic song. It's easy on the listen and attracts a wide range of listeners. It was part of the perfect closing songs for the magic concerts. I love this song.

Also, by this point only a music historian knows about the highlander stuff on AKOM. As known as that movie is to Queen fans, for most other people it's a forgotten 80s oddity. For the casual listener, nothing gives away it's half-highlander DNA (apart from some movie quotes here and there. But bands like guns n roses are known for that too, for example "civil war" To me, these quotes just sound cool).

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Sir Didymus
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Re: A Kind of Magic!

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action wrote:
Tue May 05, 2020 8:10 am
FWBF is an absolute classic song. It's easy on the listen and attracts a wide range of listeners. It was part of the perfect closing songs for the magic concerts. I love this song.

Also, by this point only a music historian knows about the highlander stuff on AKOM. As known as that movie is to Queen fans, for most other people it's a forgotten 80s oddity. For the casual listener, nothing gives away it's half-highlander DNA (apart from some movie quotes here and there. But bands like guns n roses are known for that too, for example "civil war" To me, these quotes just sound cool).
I think Highlander has a higher cult following outside of Queen fans, than A Kind of Magic does. The difference is Joe Public has probably long since forgotten that the title track and Who Wants to Be Forever were written for it, especially because they've become ubiquitous.

Gonna have to agree to disagree on FWBF. I genuinely believe it's their absolute nadir.

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Leigh Burne
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Re: A Kind of Magic!

Post by Leigh Burne »

I'm pretty much with the original poster - the singles are good ("Who Wants to Live Forever" is one of the best songs they ever did if you ask me) but some of the other stuff on it is really naff. "One Year of Love" might be the most saccharine bit of 80s tripe they ever did.

For me, the album as a whole is sort of summed up by "Don't Lose Your Head" - they took a bit of music they wrote for the film and tried to flesh it out into a full song, but it didn't really work and what you end up with is an unsatisfying hybrid halfway between the two.

They probably would've been better off making it a proper soundtrack, ditching the throwaway filler tracks and putting some of Kamen's score on there in their stead.

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Young Music Fan
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Re: A Kind of Magic!

Post by Young Music Fan »

A Kind Of Magic is a mixed album for me. It has some of my all time favourite Queen songs and some of my least favourite ones too.

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Sir Didymus
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Re: A Kind of Magic!

Post by Sir Didymus »

Leigh Burne wrote:
Wed May 06, 2020 10:56 am
I'm pretty much with the original poster - the singles are good ("Who Wants to Live Forever" is one of the best songs they ever did if you ask me) but some of the other stuff on it is really naff. "One Year of Love" might be the most saccharine bit of 80s tripe they ever did.

For me, the album as a whole is sort of summed up by "Don't Lose Your Head" - they took a bit of music they wrote for the film and tried to flesh it out into a full song, but it didn't really work and what you end up with is an unsatisfying hybrid halfway between the two.

They probably would've been better off making it a proper soundtrack, ditching the throwaway filler tracks and putting some of Kamen's score on there in their stead.
That's pretty much how I've re-imagined it, using tracks from the partial score release from the mid-90s.

HIGHLANDER
Music from the original motion picture soundtrack

01. Princes of the Universe - Queen
02. The Highlander Theme - Michael Kamen
03. One Year of Love - Queen
04. Rachel's Surprise / Who Wants to Live Forever - Micahel Kamen
05. Who Wants to Live Forever - Queen
06. Gimme the Prize - Queen
07. The Quickening - Michael Kamen
09. Hammer to Fall [Headbanger's Mix] - Queen
08. Swordfight at 34th Street - Michael Kamen
09. Don't Lose Your Head - Queen
10. Under the Garden / The Prize - Michael Kamen
11. A Kind of Magic [Highlander Version] - Queen
12. Forever - Queen

Until the band bother to arrange a proper soundtrack as hinted at back on GVH1 many years ago, this'll have to do... 2026 anyone?

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fairydandy
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Re: A Kind of Magic!

Post by fairydandy »

Leigh Burne wrote:
Wed May 06, 2020 10:56 am
I'm pretty much with the original poster - the singles are good ("Who Wants to Live Forever" is one of the best songs they ever did if you ask me)
I so agree. WWTLF at Wembley on the Friday night was the most astonishingly powerful vocal from Freddie. The sheer emotion, the effort and the power as he stands on tip-toes to hit the notes is simply breath-taking. Right there in that moment was Freddie's best ever live vocal performance (for me).

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WeeMann
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Re: A Kind of Magic!

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fairydandy wrote:
Fri May 08, 2020 7:49 am
Leigh Burne wrote:
Wed May 06, 2020 10:56 am
I'm pretty much with the original poster - the singles are good ("Who Wants to Live Forever" is one of the best songs they ever did if you ask me)
I so agree. WWTLF at Wembley on the Friday night was the most astonishingly powerful vocal from Freddie. The sheer emotion, the effort and the power as he stands on tip-toes to hit the notes is simply breath-taking. Right there in that moment was Freddie's best ever live vocal performance (for me).
Alongside Somebody To Love from Milton Keynes, possibly one of the best (recorded) live songs in their history, in my opinion.

I love this album - it was what got me into Queen. One Vision and WWTLF are a couple of their best songs for me.

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Leigh Burne
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Re: A Kind of Magic!

Post by Leigh Burne »

fairydandy wrote:
Fri May 08, 2020 7:49 am
I so agree. WWTLF at Wembley on the Friday night was the most astonishingly powerful vocal from Freddie. The sheer emotion, the effort and the power as he stands on tip-toes to hit the notes is simply breath-taking. Right there in that moment was Freddie's best ever live vocal performance (for me).
I've not watched the Friday set for years. I'll have to dig that out in the near future!

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Frank
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Re: A Kind of Magic!

Post by Frank »

Leigh Burne wrote:
Fri May 08, 2020 1:38 pm
fairydandy wrote:
Fri May 08, 2020 7:49 am
I so agree. WWTLF at Wembley on the Friday night was the most astonishingly powerful vocal from Freddie. The sheer emotion, the effort and the power as he stands on tip-toes to hit the notes is simply breath-taking. Right there in that moment was Freddie's best ever live vocal performance (for me).
I've not watched the Friday set for years. I'll have to dig that out in the near future!
Me too. Not a bad way to spend Friday night!

Jake
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Re: A Kind of Magic!

Post by Jake »

I like the album a lot. Highlander fans praise it as their best work. The Game always feels too short for me, but I don’t experience that feeling with this album. I very much wish for a true Highlander soundtrack... someone remind Brian May... it’s a great time to work on it.

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