Queen
Jazz


4.0
excellent

Review

by Brendan Schroer USER (179 Reviews)
November 26th, 2010 | 12 replies | 8,970 views


Release Date: 1978 | Tracklist

Review Summary: A solid album with lots of fun!

3 of 3 thought this review was well written

Chapter VII: Camp at its... Well, Campiest

Well, there are certainly a lot of stories surrounding this album. Of course, it was famously considered "fascist" by Dave Marsh of Rolling Stone. It was also released to initially mixed reception for its alternating styles and, well, screwing around with much of Queen's special brand of campy humor. However, shouldn't a diverse album be good if it works in cohesion? Shouldn't there be fun in a good classic rock album?

The aforementioned diversity already comes in with the first track, "Mustapha," in which its lyrics are primarily in Arabian, with the exception of "Allah, we pray to you." It almost seems like a return to Freddie Mercury's homeland in Zanzibar, but when the pounding rhythmic foundation kicks in, it's most definitely Queen taking the stage here.

Surprisingly enough, there are many returns to Queen's prog roots in this particular album. Since their next record would be The Game, one of the poppiest in their discography, it almost seems like a baffling turn. However, some of these prog elements really pay off in terms of a diverse direction, such as with "Mustapha." Make no mistake, the classic/arena-esque elements stay, but they just take a bit of an experimental detour.

The group fly through soaring rockers as well. "Fat Bottomed Girls" will be the most familiar one to most, with nice trademark vocal harmonies and a nice melody. It also contains one of Roger Taylor's most memorable drum fills. Another rocker of note is "Dead on Time," which had oddly never been played live. Brian May has very scorching fret work and John Deacon makes various intricate basslines throughout.

Let's talk about the soft side for a moment. "Jealousy" is, bar none, one of Queen's most beautiful ballads. It starts of extremely light, also with a sort of "sitar" effect from the piano strings. Freddie's heartfelt singing comes in and immediately grabs attention about the titular subject. When the vocal harmonies start coming in at the second verse, it gets even more beautiful, and after the second/last chorus, the sitar effect comes back to close the album. "In Only Seven Days" is a short but sweet ballad, with pleasant acoustic work. "Leavin' Home Ain't Easy" is a Brian May-written tune that is a tad on the dark side lyrically, but is a joy to listen to.

Thee popular songs are quite good as well. "Fat Bottomed Girls," which was already mentioned, is an excellent rocker. "Bicycle Race" is quite a clever song about denying to do anything but riding one's two-wheeled contraption and having a good time. "Don't Stop Me Now" is an excellent party starter with fast speeds and frantically happy lyrics to match.

Overall, Jazz is a solid effort for fans of the band. Opinions may still be mixed (albeit less mixed now), but Jazz is still a great find nonetheless. So I encourage you to grab a cold beer and let the good times roll!



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3.8
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Comments:Add a Comment 
Dreamflight
November 26th 2010



1760 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Last album before queen's dark period. First half of the album is amazing.

Good review.

Dreamflight
November 26th 2010



1760 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

A Kind of Magic is the oasis on their 80's records, imo. The Game and Hot Space get the credit of exploring new ideas, even if the albums are not that great. The Works on the other hand is plain awful, just a collection of recycled material.

Dreamflight
November 26th 2010



1760 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Yeah my two favourite songs too, and some of my favs overall. Gimme the Prize and one year of love are also great.

Dreamflight
November 26th 2010



1760 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Not as cheesy as Friends will be friends :P

Nagrarok
November 26th 2010



8184 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

DON'T

STOP

ME

NOW

Jethro42
November 26th 2010



12391 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Biiiiicycle
Biiiiicycle
Biiiiicycle
I want to ride my

Realm
November 26th 2010



2074 Comments


Most enjoyable Queen album outside of Night At the Opera imo.

Rhino
November 26th 2010



71 Comments


Nice review. This makes me old, but I used to listen to Jazz on 8-track in my Buick LeSabre constantly. Great album.

Jethro42
November 26th 2010



12391 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

I have neither an 8 track nor a Buick Le Sabre, but I'm probably older than you.

aok
September 7th 2011



4410 Comments


200 degrees that's why they call me mr fahrenheit

Digging: Aphex Twin - Syro

Cipieron
November 23rd 2011



3508 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

i can only really listen to Jealousy and Don't Stop Me Now... rest is meh to bad. the beginning of the end for queen... wait, that was News of the World

InbredJed
April 22nd 2014



5790 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Yep I'm preeee sure DSMN is one in the top 20 best party songs of all time.

For ppl who know how to party that is.

Digging: Backyard Mortuary - Lure of the Occult



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