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The Queen Concert Was Most Excellent

Sep 28, 2016 | 11:29 Wed
Photos: ImagineChina
With the Iron Maiden concert, the WWE wrestling, and Monday night’s Queen concert, it’s become quite evident that myself from 1987 is now firmly in charge of the Mercedes Benz Arena — 1987 me is in the driver’s seat down there — and I’m just getting started, apparently. Next event’s going to be like Tony Hawk and Patrick Ewing playing Battletoads at a POG convention or something. With Michael Knight and Kit from Knight Rider facing off against the cast of Diff'rent Stokes in Family Feud, and Eddie Van Halen doing the power drill solo on his guitar for like 45 minutes straight. It’s called "1987 Fest" and Steve Guttenberg and Chuckie from Child’s Play are sharing hosting duties.

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Queen was EXCELLENT. Yes, the Queen concert was pretty damn excellent, what can you say. The band played nothing but stone-cold classics -- 22 hits; sound quality was exceptional; lights and stage show, decent (it was a big "Q"); and the crowd was lovely and game. Even the beer line didn’t feel too too bad.

Holy damn that Adam Lambert guy can sing. You’d be hard pressed to find bigger shoes to fill in the rock world — like how are you going to match Freddie Mercury, right? — but Lambert probably came as close as any other mortal probably could have. I don’t think he left anyone disappointed in Shanghai with his performance, which reached Mariah Carey levels of pyrotechnics for his renditions of "Somebody to Love" and "Who Wants to Live Forever". Nothing but love, love, love coming his way from the nearly sold out crowd. Indeed, it seemed like a good portion of them were there to see him, more familiar with the American Idol star than a band who's career was basically over when Freddie Mercury died way back in 1991.

Lambert was also pretty funny as well, lending humor and theatrically to the set in line with the material itself. He was on a throne for "Killer Queen" and for "Fat Bottomed Girls", he yelled out "where my fat bottomed bitches at!", which was met with resounding cheers from all the fat bottom bitches of Shanghai in attendance. (All of them, basically.) Lambert addressed the elephant not in the room directly, paying tribute to Mercury's influence on his own career in a bit of mid-song banter that saw the singer drop a big ole F-BOMB right in the middle of the bit. Whoops. Scandalous!

Other highlights: a "drum battle" -- yes, in 2016 -- between Roger Taylor and his son; Brian May looking like space age Dumbledore doing a guitar interlude on top of a raised platform with dry ice smoke gushing around him; and a heartfelt tribute to another deceased rock star, David Bowie, in their performance of the song "Under Pressure".

"This one's for David." Awwww.

Freddie Mercury himself joined in via video and audio samples for "Bohemian Rhapsody". Queen + Adam Lambert ended the main set with "Radio Ga Ga", and came back with "We Will Rock You" and "We Are the Champions" to finish the night. It was like the biggest budget, most absurd bachelor / bachelorette party of all time. Burnin' through the sky, yeah!

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Set List



Seven Seas of Rhye

Hammer to Fall

Stone Cold Crazy

Fat Bottomed Girls

Don't Stop Me Now

Killer Queen

Somebody to Love

Love of My Life

A Kind of Magic

***Drum Battle***

Under Pressure

Crazy Little Thing Called Love

I Want It All

Who Wants to Live Forever

The Show Must Go On

Last Horizon

Tie Your Mother Down

I Want to Break Free

Bohemian Rhapsody

Radio Ga Ga

Encore:

We Will Rock You

We Are the Champions

TELL EVERYONE

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