Queen and Paul Rodgers @ 02, London, 13 October, 2008 PDF Print E-mail
Gigs - 2008 Gigs
Written by TK   

Queen has been around longer than I have.  The band formed before my parents even met.  Yet, such is the popularity and longevity of the band that many of Queen's songs trigger life memories for me. 

Seeing the reformed band play live with Paul Rodgers at the 02 arena was literally like stepping back into the 1970s, if you disregard the technologically-advanced and corporate-logo infused 02 stadium.  And yet there is something peculiar about watching a band play without the presence of its central star, the former Freddy Mercury.  Taking Freddy Mercury out of the equation is like taking the real queen out of English society.  It goes against the tide more than a tsunami does.  Add to this the no-show of the band's original bassist John Deacon, and the band begins to take on the look of a slightly oddball tribute act.

However, I hasten to add, the appearance of Brian May and Roger Taylor added enough authenticity and talent to the occasion that the live performance was still worth its weight in gold.  Especially if you never had the fortune of watching the band play live during the Freddy Mercury era.

The set-list featured a significant amount of tunes from the band's new studio album, "The Cosmos Rocks".  However, unsurprisingly the crowd was at its most excitable during the performances of Queen's biggest and most successful hits. 

The most enthralling part of the show is when the band uses the images and voice of Freddy Mercury from a live performance of "Bohemian Rhapsody", with the band performing live in the foreground.  The weirdest and most unnecessary moments are when Brian May embarked on a ten-minute guitar solo and Roger Taylor enjoyed a ten-minute drum solo.  Pure self-indulgency.

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