I’ve always been sort of neutral when it comes to Queen. On one hand, I’ve always thought Freddie to be an incredibly gifted, exuberant performer (both in studio and on stage), and their songs have always served for a healthy sing-along activity, ever since I’ve been a little child. But on the other hand, their music, especially here in Romania, suffers big time from one issue: over-exposure. To put it bluntly, there was a time when I could swear I would live perfectly happy for the rest of my life without hearing ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ or ‘I Want To Break Free’ ever again. Considering the fact that it was around then that I started listening to music on my computer (rather than on TV or radio), you could say I lived a happy, Queen-free life.
Now, a couple of years later, I decided to give them another chance, this time by thoroughly listening to their albums. That’s not to say that the prejudices were all gone – I still thought of them as kind of humorless, too anthemic and bombastic, and lacking diversity (all these claims would be annihilated by simply giving an open-minded listen to A Night At The Opera). But fore and foremost, I never imagined the band would get to me so much on an emotional level, as they did with ‘You Take My Breath Away’. On paper, it’s just a love ballad, but its magic lies in how all the elements come together: the mournful piano melody, the near-worshipping lyrics and especially Freddie’s fragile, on-the-verge-of-breaking-down vocal delivery and the way he pauses before singing the song’s name as if he actually has to stop and catch his breath. The result is a slice of so heavenly beauty, that, much like The Beatles’ Something, always gives me the feeling that it’s dedicated to a God/Goddess, rather than an actual human being.
Categories: The Song In My Head Today