Rock's Backpages Library Rock's Backpages
Rock's Backpages

Queen: Sheer Heart Attack

Bud Scoppa, Rolling Stone, 8 May 1975

TWO OF THe MOST liberated and ambitious of the "fun" oriented British bands beginning to make their mark in the States are the updated war-horses Pretty Things and the nouveau-heavies Queen. Both of these groups, which could easily – if not accurately – be termed "psychedelic," seem to be signaling the advent of what may well be a renaissance of affective rock & roll. If the renaissance occurs, it will be as a result of autonomous imaginations like these; imaginations free enough to permit the introduction of such seemingly outlandish and inept devices as marching bands and carnival noises (can you imagine the Allman Brothers even considering this?) and somehow to put them to good use. Of course, no device would work if these two bands weren't firmly grounded in the fundamentals of rock & roll – and the Pretty Things and Queen have certain manifestations of these in common: Each band likes to lay high, firm three- or four-part harmonies and an anything-goes range of effects over a hard, visceral base of guitar, bass and drums.

Total word count of piece: 509