RELEASED ON SEPTEMBER 5TH 2011
September 5th 2011 sees the DVD release of Queen Live at Wembley Stadium. A special 25th Anniversary edition DVD of Queens legendary 1986 concerts, the 2 disc set comes with previously unreleased footage and brand new bonus features.
Over one remarkable summer weekend, on Friday 11th and Saturday 12th July 1986, Queen performed two sell out shows at Wembley, concerts which have been widely acknowledged as two of the most incredible rock events ever staged.
Now, for the first time, both the Friday and Saturday night concerts can be seen in their entirety on the Anniversary edition DVD, highlighting that no two Queen shows were ever the same. The driving rain of the Friday night show presented its own challenges but failed to dampen the mood or the music, presenting Freddie Mercury with some perfect opportunities to amuse the crowd. The sun shone on Saturday, making it a magical summers evening, as the band showcased everything that made Queen brilliant live.
The DVD footage has been restored for the Anniversary edition and the sound has also been remastered with a brand new stereo mix and 5.1 sound.
Extras on the DVD include ‘The Magic Tour’, a short feature containing brand new interviews with Brian May and Roger Taylor filmed this year. They reflect back on what was to be their final tour with their familiar intelligence, honesty and brilliant wit and humour. They explain in depth how they would approach planning their concerts and they also reflect on the poignancy of the shows which were to become among the last few performances with Freddie.
Queen Live at Wembley Stadium is released on September 5th coinciding with what would have been Freddie Mercury’s 65th birthday. The final five studio albums that Queen released are also re-issued on the same day.
“The Wembley concerts in 1986 were the pinnacle for us” says Brian May. “We were at our height band-wise, and Freddie had developed this phenomenal way of dealing with stadium audiences. Being back home in London playing two sell-out nights was such a big, big occasion for us. None of us realised that this would be almost the last time we played together…”
Queen’s 1986 Magic Tour had been their most successful to date. Regenerated and reinvigorated by their triumph at Live Aid almost exactly a year earlier, the band were on a 26-date tour of the UK and Europe and after a month out of the country returned home to London to play two defining concerts at the ‘place of champions’, Wembley Stadium.
These were to be Queen’s biggest stage, their biggest lighting rig, the biggest screen that not only Queen had performed with, but also that Wembley Stadium had ever seen. For director Gavin Taylor, filming it involved the unprecedented use of no less than 15 cameras and a helicopter to capture the aerial shots.
For Freddie it was the start of one very long party. Friends were flown in from New York and ferried from his London home to Wembley in special coaches. It was one of the proudest days of his life.
The Saturday show saw a previous wet day turn into one of the sunniest of the year. “It was a perfect day,” says director Taylor. And the Wembley roar went up as Brian, Roger, John and Freddie arrived on stage to the synthesised opening chords on One Vision.
For the next 110 minutes Queen played what was undoubtedly one of their most potent concert performances. The two Wembley concerts, along with a hastily added final date at Stevenage’s Knebworth Park a month later, were among Queen’s finest moments.
“Wembley Stadium was such a special place,” says Roger. “Having played it as part of Live Aid and to come back and play it again was such a blast.”
It’s perhaps no surprise that Queen’s hit musical, We Will Rock You, sees the show’s heroes end up at Wembley Stadium, ‘the place of living rock’ for the storming finale where the roots of rock are rediscovered and the rebellious bohemians find their way to recreating the music of the Mighty Queen.
Towards the end of Queen’s performance on the DVD Freddie Mercury addresses the audience: “There’ve been some rumours we’re splitting. They’re talking through their *****,” Freddie says. “We’ll be together forever.”
“And in a way,” says Brian, “I guess we were. We might not have been a touring band much longer, but we were together as a band right until the end.”
“I don’t think anyone expected the Magic tour to be the band’s last dates; things had gone so well and we were already planning the next one,” says Gerry Stickells, Queen’s tour manager. “There was no sense of anything coming to an end”.
But as things turned out, Queen only ever played 2 further UK concerts, in Manchester on July 16 and that final concert at Knebworth on August 9.
But if ever a reminder was needed of why Queen earned themselves the mantle of best stadium rock group in history, then you only have to turn to this DVD to see Queen live, uncut, and at their ferocious, majestic, best.
QUEEN LIVE AT WEMBLEY 25TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION CONTENT
Live At Wembley Stadium Saturday 12-07-1986
1. One Vision
2. Tie Your Mother Down
3. In The Lap Of The Gods … Revisited
4. Seven Seas Of Rhye
5. Tear It Up
6. A Kind Of Magic
7. Under Pressure
8. Another One Bites The Dust
9. Who Wants To Live Forever
10. I Want To Break Free
12. Brighton Rock Solo
13. Now I’m Here
14. Love Of My Life
15. Is This The World We Created
16. (You’re So Square) Baby I Don’t Care
17. Hello Mary Lou (Goodbye Heart)
18. Tutti Frutti
19. Gimme Some Lovin’ *
20. Bohemian Rhapsody
21. Hammer To Fall
22. Crazy Little Thing Called Love
23. Big Spender *
24. Radio Ga Ga
25. We Will Rock You
26. Friends Will Be Friends
27. We Are The Champions
28. God Save The Queen
* Saturday 12 July 1986 concert only
Live At Wembley Stadium Friday 11-07-1986
• The Magic Tour – approx 12min feature containing new interview filmed with Brian and Roger in 2011.
• The Wembley Weekend – approx 25min feature where Brian and Roger describe what went into these legendary concerts filmed in 2003
• Rehearsal – Secretly filmed footage from the bands rehearsal for the Magic Tour.
Queen Live At Wembley available on Limited Deluxe 2DVD + 2CD (Digipak) / Standard 2DVD