Sweet Rhapsody is an early Gypsy Eye release documenting Queen at
a very important turning point in their career. A month after the
release of ”Bohemian Rhapsody” and five days after the
release of A Night At The Opera, the single just hit number
one on the charts forever changing the fortunes of our heroes. The
tape Gypsy Eye use for this release is a good but distant sounding
audience recording. It is distant but clear with the emphasis upon
the treble. Since its release a lower generation, better sounding
tape has surfaced and would make a great silver upgrade. There
are several little cuts between songs including after ”Liar” with
the usual final song “In The Lap Of The Gods…Revisited”
missing. Although it is possible the taper didn’t record the song,
it would be strange if he did that while recording the encores. Most
likely Queen dropped the song from the set for time constraints since
they were scheduled for a second show shortly after this one.
The tape picks up with the Kenny Everett introduction. He is the DJ
who played “Bohemian Rhapsody” constantly on the radio insuring it
would be a hit. The operatic middle of the song is played on tape as
an introduction (replacing “Procession” from earlier tours) before the
band come on stage and play the hard rock section, seguing into
“Ogre Battle.” Freddie says, “Are you feeling fine?
We’re feeling great! We’ll do a new number for you, it’s
called ‘Sweet Lady’” continuing the hard, heavy vibe.
“Flick Of The Wrist,” which is segued with “Lily Of The
Valley” on Sheer Heart Attack ends with the “Brighton
Rock” ending, an arrangement they introduced the previous year.
“Bohemian Rhapsody” bookends a medley which includes “Killer
Queen” and part of “March Of The Black Queen.” “Brighton
Rock” was introduced into the set for the first time on this tour and
this recording is the earliest live version available (two tapes from
earlier in the tour, from Liverpool and Coventry, have the long
version of “Son And Daughter” instead). The track lasts for
eleven minutes and contains the Brian May solo with hints of nursery
rhymes thrown in (”This Old Man” is clearly audible). A
long version of “Liar” with extended solos in the middle closes
out the performance with a quick encore section with “Now I’m Here”
and a short running through of “Jailhouse Rock.” Normally this
would have been expanded to include “Stupid Cupid” and “Be Bop A
Lulu” but again they sound pressed for time and cut it short.
Gypsy Eye use a double slimline package with relevant photos of the era
for the front and back. This is a great show to have and since a
better sounding generation has since been released another version of this
important show would be welcomed.