Monthly Archives: November 2014

Cover Craft

Hi there and welcome to another Simpsons Sunday blog entry. This week I’m going to talk about the latest episode of The Simpsons, originally named Band Of Dad’s, now called Cover Craft. Actually, I think that both names are pretty cool and would have worked either way.

This episode sees Homer taking up playing bass and this touches a nerve for me because I can also play bass too, even though I am actually a guitar player and singer. I believe that if you can play guitar you can also play bass reasonably well and vice versa. I agree that they are 2 different instruments in that the strings are tuned the same but the bass is one octive lower than a guitar and you are dealing with 1 or 2 less strings. As for the tuning, I will get to that later. To me, they are essentially the same in that they are the same shape and feel, unless you are playing a fretless upright bass. If you are playing a bass with a strap over the back of your neck you are playing a guitar with 4 or 5 strings.

I will grant that playing the bass is different from playing guitar because you are dealing with thicker strings and you aren’t playing chords as much. All though, some basest’s sometimes play chords on occasion such as: Steve Harris from Iron Maiden or Geddy Lee from Rush or even Les Claypool from Primus. Some bass players also use all the strings and play a slap style such as: Flee from Red Hot Chili Peppers as probably the most well known example from today. I’m sure you can name a few of your own examples.

As for the tuning of the strings, the first 4 strings on a guitar from the top down are the same notes on a bass. However, the bass is an octive lower and the notes are: e, a, d and g. My guitar teacher had a way of memorizing all tthe notes from the bottom high e string to the top low e string: every, boy, goes, down, and, eats. With the seven stringed guitar with a b natural note you can add bred, beans, beats or what ever food to the phonetic notation. With the bass just “goes down and eats” are the open notes as they are tuned. Once again, if you have a five stringed bass the lowest note is also a b natural. That is the basics of it but there are more tunings with both guitar and bass which are mainly used in hard rock and heavy metal in the last 22 years or so.

As for the episode, Homer forms a cover band with him playing bass, Julius Hibbert on drums, Timothy Lovejoy on guitar , Kirk Van Houten on keyboards and Apu Nahasapeemapetilon as the frontman. They call themselves Cover Craft because covering other people’s songs is their craft. In this case, we see and hear one song by Apu’s favourite 1980s band Son Gazer called Hoping For A Dream. I don’t know who sings it but I believe that he does sound like Apu would if he was a singer in real life.

Unfortunately things fall apart for the band when Son Gazer poaches Apu from the band to go on tour with them. Homer soon gets jealous, or rather envious of Apu’s new gig and accuses the other members of being a bunch of Yoko’s and kicks everyone out of the band. Then he plans to ruin Apu’s show in Springfield but Apu finds Homer in the backstage area and after a conversation between the two, Son Gazer comes down with hotdog poisoning and Cover Craft reunites to play the show instead.

As a musician I like this episode a lot and it reminds me of how I am now. I wanted to be a rock star when I was younger but things conspired to kill my dream. Both Homer and myself are in our 40’s but he has the good fortune to be around people who can help him with getting in a band. I don’t know anyone around me who is close enough to get something started and a jam band wasn’t what I wanted to do back then anyway. I wanted to write songs and make records, regardless if they sold or not. I just wanted a chance to be a star, damn it.

Sorry folks….I just had to get some stuff off my chest. Anyway, this episode reminds me of an earlier episode where Homer forms a barbershop quartet with: Apu,Cheif Wiggum, Principal Skinner and later on, Barney Gumble replacing Cheif Wiggum. The difference here is that they are playing musical instruments and not using their voices as instruments.

I’m curious as to who played bass? As you may or may not know, Harry Shearer is also a bass player as well as the voice for many characters on The Simpsons. He has show’n off this talent in Spinal Tap and I’m guessing on his wife’s albums as well. I’m not sure but it wouldn’t surprise me if he plays a few bass licks on them.

Another thing that is cool is that Sammy Hagar guest starred on this episode as himself and well, he hasn’t changed a bit, from the last time I have heard him being interviewed. I’ve heard that he really is a nice guy and I felt bad when he was kicked out of Van Halen the first time in 1996. There’s nothing wrong with the David Lee Roth era of Van Halen but Sammy Hagar propelled the band to the top of the charts. I think the change in singers was a great move at the time, even though it wasn’t like early Van Halen. Sammy brought the band a wider audience and gave them a shot in the arm they needed after Dave left.

As for his solo stuff, I have no problem with what I have heard from that part of his discography but I love what I have heard from the debut album from Montrose back in 1973. Check out the songs: Rock Candy, Bad Moter Scooter and Space Station No. 5. All those songs are great and there are more I haven’t mentioned here too. I don’t have the album but I have heard most of it on the radio on shows that specialize in hard rock and heavy metal back in the 80s.

As for the next guest rock star on The Simpsons, I wonder who it will be? Maybe Corey Taylor could guest star as a musician or as some villainous character or something. I’ll leave it in the good hands of the writers and Al Jean to figure out who could be the next guest star on the show.

On the birthday front, happy birthday to Pamela Hayden on November 28th who voices: Milhouse, Jimbo, and many others. She has even used her own speaking voice in an unnamed character on the episode How I Wet Your Mother. She says “this is the best I’m sorry party Homer’s ever throw’n.” This is of course, when Homer wets the bed the night before and he feels he needs to apologize for getting his friends in trouble the day before at work.

As for the next 3 weeks I will be taking a look at my favourite Christmas episodes of The Simpsons until after Christmas day. I will also be preparing an entry I had promised back in the late summer, about turning points in the series. I am looking forward to this entry because it will be a real Tour de force but at the same time, it will be a lot of fun too. You’ll see what I mean when I release this particular entry on December 28.

As usual to end each Simpsons Sunday post, I recommend checking out Chris Ladesma’s blog. He is the Music Editor for The Simpsons and has been since day 1.
http://simpsonsmusic500.wordpress.com/author/simpsonsmusic500/
I also recommend checking out Yeardley Smith’s blog at http://gobbingoff.tumblr.com
I should also mention Marchez Vous, which is her women’s shoe designer company, which she started earlier in the decade. You can check out their website at
http://www.marchesvous.com
For some strange reason everyone I know hasn’t heard of them yet. Hopefully I can change that.
You can also comment here or you can email me at blindgordie@gmail.com and I will reply as soon as I can to all messages I receive. I would much prefer getting an email so I can reply directly to you, but that’s just me.
One final thing to mention is that you can follow Simpsons Executive Producer Al Jean on Twitter and his Twitter handle is @AlJean.
He has ran the show since Season 13 and has ran it during Seasons 3 and 4.
Anyway, that is it for this weeks post. Talk to you again on Weather Wednesday.

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Riding The Weather Roller Coaster

Hi and welcome to another Weather Wednesday. I hope you survived the temperature swings in the past couple of days, especially in Central Canada and the Northern and Northeastern US. We had some pretty crazy winds blowing and it also rained a bit too, melting the snow. This was obviously a problem for our friends in Buffalo, who have had to deal with a record snow fall for this time of year.

Actually, I wasn’t really surprised at the snow that came down in that part of North America because it happens every year the winter is predicted to be colder than normal and it has always happened on those years. Sometimes a little thundersnow has occurred and well, I’m surprised that it didn’t happen this time. Maybe it did but I hadn’t heard about it.

In the past couple of days Southern Ontario and Western New York has had to deal with a welcomed mild spell for a couple of days on Sunday and Monday, that actually started on Saturday. The weather started to change from the colder than normal pattern we have been in to a milder pattern on Saturday morning, with some freezing rain in some places and plain rain in others. As I write this, we have just endured a day or so of mild temps with both rain and wind. The wind has been rather gusty and it even rattled my windows. I actually live in a bit of a wind tunnel so walking in this wind should be a piece of cake but it isn’t. When the winds get this strong to warning criteria I get a bit nervous that they will blow down a pole, such as a bus stop or a telephone pole.

Thankfully, the winds have died down but we are back into the cold temperatures again, after basking in wet but warm weather, with temperatures going as high as about 18 or 64. Now we are back below seasonal again and well, I don’t like it. But hay, Christmas is coming.

On a totally unrelated and sad note, I wish to give my condolences to the friends and family of former hockey: player, coach and general manager Pat Quinn who passed away on Sunday at the age of 71. He coached my favorite hockey team The Toronto Maple Leafs from 1998 to 2006, where he guided them to to Eastern conference finals and beat the Ottawa Senators 4 times in: 2000, 2001 2002 and 2004. I think his greatest accomplishment in hockey was guiding the men’s Canadian Olympic team to a gold medal in the 2oo2 Salt Lake City Winter Olympics. Anyway, he is and will be missed by all who knew him and knew of him. He was apparently larger than life but a real cuddly bear on the inside.

This will be the last Weather Wednesday post for 2014 and it will return on January 7th and well, I’m sure there will be some stuff to recap from the holidays. I have no doubt that there are some winter storms coming up that are worth discussing.

If you have any comments you can reply here or email me at blindgordie@gmail.com and I will get back to you.
Also, for more weather stuff you can subscribe to my Weather Radio Listeners Newsletter mailing list by emailing me at wxrnewsletter@gmail.com and I will send you all the issues so far. You will also receive the next issue when it comes out.
Another blog you may want to follow alongside this one is from Phil Chadwick. He is a retired meteorologist from Environment Canada and his specialty was severe weather. Here is the url.
philtheforecaster.blogspot.com
Check it out if you are a weather nut. He has stuff in there that I didn’t even know. Well, after all, he did work for Environment Canada for many years and he retired in 2011.
Well, that’s it for today’s blog post. Talk to you on Sunday.

Weather Radio Listeners Newsletter Issue 13 Pt. 2

Hi and welcome to another Simpsons Sunday post. No, this isn’t a Weather Wednesday entry but it looks like it could be one, eh?

In the last 3 issues of my Weather Radio Listeners Newsletter I have included material about episodes of The Simpsons, which have weather as a plot device and I will lay them out here and what issue they appeared in and it will be in episode airing order.

Mr. Plow (Issue 13), Hurricane Nedy (Issue 12) Skinners Sense Of Snow (Issue 13) and The Changing Of The Guardian (Issue 11). All of these episodes represent weather events sparking either a life change or rather odd actions. An example of the latter is when the demonic blizzard hits Springfield in Skinners Sense Of Snow, Homer’s repeated gunning of the Engine of the car that him and Ned Flanders are in, causes them to hallucinate. Also, it makes the kids at Springfield elementary school become rowdy and Principal Skinner becomes much like an army commander, ruling them with an iron fist, among other things that all 4 episodes have included that the weather in Springfield has made the characters do.

I first discussed The Simpsons in the 9th issue, just after Marcia Wallace died. I had been thinking about how to insert it into the newsletter, ever since I had become a Simpsons nut in June 2013, just before completing Iuue 8. It would be cool if someone who is a part of the current cast or crew of The Simpsons decides to join the mailing list. I am always holding out hope for a miracle!

Anyway, I just wanted to put The Simpsons in the newsletter to try and attract people who may not be into Weather Radio but are Simpsons fans. The show hasn’t mentioned NOAA Weather Radio directly, but weather has been a plot device that has been used well by the writers. If anyone from The Simpsons cast and crew are reading this and would like to join the mailing list for my newsletter, they can email me at wxrnewsletter@gmail.com and I will send out all 13 issues to them and anyone, who would like to be put on the mailing list. I am always looking for new people to join and I’ll except anyone, as long as they have any interest in Weather Radio at all. Maybe one day we may hear something that sounds like NOAA Weather Radio on The Simpsons. I’m sure that any of the voice actors are quite capable of doing a voice similar to the current NOAA Weather Radio voices. The question is, would they ever mention it directly or in a parity, like they did with ham radio, Apple or Siri? My answer is it is hard to say. I guess time will tell

Oh, here is a link to my website, which also has some of the issues of the newsletter. It was put together by a friend of mine, who can do more than I can do. He is also the Co-Editor of the newsletter and has been from day 1. http://www.qrz.com/db/va3wxa

On a sad note, I wish to give my own condolences to the family of actor/ director/ standup comedian Mike Nichols, who passed away on Wednesday evening at the age of 83. He has given us many movies such as: The Graduate and The Birdcage. Both of which has a Simpsons tie in.

In the case of The Graduate, a suduction seen was parity on the episode Lisa’s Substitute, when Mrs. Krabappel was trying to seduce the substitute teacher Mr. Berkstrom. Both the seen in the movie and the episode starred or guest starred Dustin Hoffman, as the voice of Mr. Bergstrom in the episode and as one of the characters in the movie. The Birdcage had Hank Azaria as one of the actors in it, playing the feminine male character Spartacus. Thank you Mike for all your movie work and your work with Elaine May in the comedy duo Nichols and May. Without whom, we may not have had Second City TV or maybe even Monty Python.

Tonight is the musical episode Cover Craft, which will feature Sammy Hagar and Will Forte as guest stars. It should be interesting to also meet Sideshow Mel’s family too. I am looking forward to downloading it for myself tomorrow.

As usual to end each Simpsons Sunday post, I recommend checking out Chris Ladesma’s blog. He is the Music Editor for The Simpsons and has been since day 1.
http://simpsonsmusic500.wordpress.com/author/simpsonsmusic500/
I also recommend checking out Yeardley Smith’s blog at http://gobbingoff.tumblr.com
I should also mention Marchez Vous, which is her women’s shoe designer company, which she started earlier in the decade. You can check out their website at
http://www.marchesvous.com
For some strange reason everyone I know hasn’t heard of them yet. Hopefully I can change that.
You can also comment here or you can email me at blindgordie@gmail.com and I will reply as soon as I can to all messages I receive. I would much prefer getting an email so I can reply directly to you, but that’s just me.
One final thing to mention is that you can follow Simpsons Executive Producer Al Jean on Twitter and his Twitter handle is @AlJean.
He has ran the show since Season 13 and has ran it during Seasons 3 and 4.
Anyway, that is it for this weeks post. Talk to you again on Weather Wednesday.

Weather Radio Listeners Newsletter Issue 13

Hi there and welcome to another Weather Wednesday. Today is all about Weather Radio Listeners Newsletter Issue 13. It will be in 2 parts: 1 is the weather post and the other will come on Sunday. You will know why when I release it.

This issue is actually more of the same, when it comes to the newsletter over the past 3 years. I have made a point of including a portion on manufacturers of Weather Radios and on both CANWARN and SKYWARN. Unfortunately, not a lot of new information has come my way, when it comes to SKYWARN but I get regular emails from Warning Preparedness Meteorologist Geoff Coulson from Environment Canada in Toronto, about CANWARN in Ontario.

I have also continued filing reports to Weatheradio Canada on the weekly and monthly alert tests and for some reason, I seem to be the only one doing it on a consistant basis.

Finally, for the weather portion, I have also inserted reports of when Weatheradio Canada has had its problems and there are no shortage of them. In fact for the next issue I will be discussing a watchdog event which happened this past weekend.

In case you are wondering what it sounds like when Weatheradio Canada goes into watchdog mode, here is a video from Youtube I found. The sound is distorted somewhat but you can understand what the voice is saying in both english and french.
http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=bFy_vK_e95Q

If you have any comments you can reply here or email me at blindgordie@gmail.com and I will get back to you.
Also, for more weather stuff you can subscribe to my Weather Radio Listeners Newsletter mailing list by emailing me at wxrnewsletter@gmail.com and I will send you all the issues so far. You will also receive the next issue when it comes out.
Another blog you may want to follow alongside this one is from Phil Chadwick. He is a retired meteorologist from Environment Canada and his specialty was severe weather. Here is the url.
philtheforecaster.blogspot.com
Check it out if you are a weather nut. He has stuff in there that I didn’t even know. Well, after all, he did work for Environment Canada for many years and he retired in 2011.
Well, that’s it for today’s blog post. Talk to you on Sunday.

Patty And Selma

Hi there and welcome to another Simpsons Sunday. This week I’m going to talk about Patty and Selma, as best I can. They are the twin sisters of Marge, who have a strong dislike of Homer. Actually, I can’t tell which one is which because to me, they sound the same, despite that some internet sourses say that Patty sounds different from Selma. Of course, they and Marge are voiced by Julie Kavner, who also voices Gloria in the Season 2 episode The War Of The Simpsons, where she does not have a gravelly voice.

The one thing that has puzzled myself and other fans is who will eventually hook up and tie the knot with either of them, on a permanent basis. Sideshow Bob was briefly married to Selma, despite Bart’s mistrust of him, which was correct. Patty almost got married to Principal Skinner before she broke it off and they never saw each other again. Then she came out of the closet during the Season 16 episode There’s Something About Marrying.

They both love to smoke, which would be a problem for them in real life because most governments are banning smoking in many places such as outside work places and the list is getting longer every so often. If they were real people they would probably be either dead from lung cancer or in Selma’s case, if she had accidentally left a cigarette somewhere and would cause a fire. In her case, she has no sense of taste or smell.

Another thing about Selma that I can relate to is that she is a licensed Ham Radio operator. I have been for 5 years now and Selma was said to be a ham in Season 4’s Selma’s Choice. It’s funny that she hasn’t revealed her call sign, all though Principal Skinner has.

If they were real people would they be likeable? If you don’t mind rubbing their feat or are willing to put up with their smoking, then the answer is yes. I have always said that if people are nice to me then I am nice to them too.

Last week was the Simpsons Futurama cross over episode Simpsorama or however it is spelled. This week we will get to meet Bart’s new 5th grade teacher, who is also a bully, voiced by guest star Willem Dafoe. Who knows if this new teacher will be permanent or not.

On the birthday front, another guest star of the show turns 70 years old tomorrow. Veteran actor and director producer Danny DeVito celebrates his 70th birthday tomorrow and of course, guested as Homer’s half brother Herb Powell on Season 2’s Oh Brother, Where Are Thow? and Season 3’s Brother, Can You Spare Two Dimes?

When I looked him up on Wikipedia I learned how old he is and I’m shocked. He sounds about 10 or 20 years younger than his age to me. Actually, he reminds me of a weather guy on The Weather Channel in the US. I don’t know why but he does.

Also, guitarist Kirk Hammett of metallica celebrates a birthday on Tuesday. I’ve mentioned Metallica before and well, just look at past entries for more on them. On a personal note, I am building my Digital collection of their music and I’ve been meaning to do that for a while because they are one of my favourite bands, before they appeared on The Simpsons. I don’t like to do this too often but here is the link to my Metallica post back in May. https://blindgordieblog.wordpress.com/2014/05/04/simpsons-sunday-metallica/

As usual to end each Simpsons Sunday post, I recommend checking out Chris Ladesma’s blog. He is the Music Editor for The Simpsons and has been since day 1.
http://simpsonsmusic500.wordpress.com/author/simpsonsmusic500/
I also recommend checking out Yeardley Smith’s blog at http://gobbingoff.tumblr.com
I should also mention Marchez Vous, which is her women’s shoe designer company, which she started earlier in the decade. You can check out their website at
http://www.marchesvous.com
For some strange reason everyone I know hasn’t heard of them yet. Hopefully I can change that.
You can also comment here or you can email me at blindgordie@gmail.com and I will reply as soon as I can to all messages I receive. I would much prefer getting an email so I can reply directly to you, but that’s just me.
One final thing to mention is that you can follow Simpsons Executive Producer Al Jean on Twitter and his Twitter handle is @AlJean.
He has ran the show since Season 13 and has ran it during Seasons 3 and 4.
Anyway, that is it for this weeks post. Talk to you again on Weather Wednesday.

Turning The Corner

Hi all and welcome to another Weather Wednesday. This week we are turning the corner, from fall to winter in a good-sized chunk of North America, possibly the whole continent. It usually happens from about now to December 21st at the latest and it of course, depends on when the ultra strong cold front will bring in the arctic air and freeze us all. I have some examples of how varied the corner has been turned, as the mercury takes a dive from above freezing to sub-freezing temperatures.

In 1989 just after November 11th it began to warm up from just above the freezing mark to about 18 degrees c or 64 f, with showers. In fact it happened on the 13th, when it was sunny and it was supposed to go up to 9 or 48. That’s when it heated up and set the stage for a sharp cold fron to move in on Wednesday November 15th and bring cold temperatures and snow. This of course, caused a lot of accidents and that was the start of a winter with 2 parts; one part was cold throughout almost all of December and the rest was mild with cold weekends and an early spring warm up.

This event came at the end of a warm fall, with the mercury staying around 20 degrees c for almost a couple of weeks, off and on throughout the season, untill that sharp cold front ended the party with heavy rain, wind and eventually snow.

Another example also came in a warmer than normal fall and it was in 2001, of course just after September 11th. The temperatures would be cooling off for a day then warm back up to around the same as 1989 but it took much longer for the weather to turn cold enough for an accumulation of snow on the ground. In fact it didn’t stay below freezing untill December 21st and it was also a mild winter with a cool wet spring in 2002.

As for this year, the weather is turning cooler today in Southern Ontario and we may just turn that corner but I’m not sure that will happen yet. We may be in for one more warm up before we go from waring no mits to bundling up. That has been the patern this fall, with a cool off but a prolonged warm spell for a few days before the cool off continues. Then again, we may just be turning the corner after all because this is a front which has swept through the American midwest and pushed temperatures below freezing south of the Canadian border. It may be a prolonged period of cold weather which will probably result in Southern Ontario going below freezing during the day for the first time this season. Actually, both examples I have sighted here happened in Southern Ontario.

If you have any comments you can reply here or email me at blindgordie@gmail.com and I will get back to you.
Also, for more weather stuff you can subscribe to my Weather Radio Listeners Newsletter mailing list by emailing me at wxrnewsletter@gmail.com and I will send you all the issues so far. You will also receive the next issue when it comes out.
Another blog you may want to follow alongside this one is from Phil Chadwick. He is a retired meteorologist from Environment Canada and his specialty was severe weather. Here is the url.
philtheforecaster.blogspot.com
Check it out if you are a weather nut. He has stuff in there that I didn’t even know. Well, after all, he did work for Environment Canada for many years and he retired in 2011.
Well, that’s it for today’s blog post. Talk to you on Sunday.

Review Of Queen Forever

Hi all and here is another album review from me. Before we get to the review itself, I should preface this by saying that I’m not a professional music geek or even a music writer. I’m just a fan of music who happens to have a passion for it which goes beyond listening to it, not unlike those who actually right about albums in magazines for a living.

Today, the long anticipated new album by Queen is out called Forever. I will start it off by saying, if Queen Rocks showcases the bands harder rocking material, then Forever is meant to highlight the ballads and softer songs. The exception to this (sort of) is I Was Born To Love You, which rocks as a Queen song but is more dance Flavored as a Freddie Mercury solo single.

The album starts off with Let Me In Your Heart Again, which was written by guitarist Brian May, who has written the majority of the bands heavier songs and sings the ones which are of more of a personal nature to him. There are a few of those songs on this album with his voice as lead and we will get into them as we go along.

This track was originally recorded for The Works in 1983 and you can tell because there is Brian’s guitar sound from a regular Vox amplifier and a Rock Man, which was used on The Works and A Kind Of Magic as the main amp on most songs. Just listen to the last 3 albums from Boston and some Deff Leppard songs from the 80s and you will hear what I mean.

The track features not just the original band and vocal track from Freddie but some new backing vocals from Brian as well. This was the first track I heard but not the first single or song available on iTunes for purchase. It is actually not a bad song for what the band were doing back in 1983. I don’t know how it would have fit on The Works with the rest of the songs which eventually appeared on it in 1984. This song should have been released years earlier, to hopefully revive the bands popularity in the US, whiched had wained from 1982 until 10 years later. However, it starts this compilation off nicely here. There is also a remix by William Orbit available on iTunes and I like that it brings out Freddie’s vocals more. All though the keyboard bass sometimes overpowers the other instruments. However, it is only a remix and I won’t complain about it.

Love Kills is the next track and this time it is a stripped down acoustic ballad as apposed to the original dance track it became in 1984 or the funky rocker in 1992. This is one of the few songs in the history of rock, which works well as both a funk rock track and a ballad. The playing by Brian and Roger is as good as it has ever been and really, what else can you say about the song?

There Must Be More To Life Than This comes next and is mixed by William Orbit. This track also features Michael Jackson and the original band track and Freddie’s vocals was taken from the Hot Space sessions. However, if you listen you can hear some new guitar parts from Brian near the end of the song. I actually like this version better than the original Freddie version on Mr. Bad Guy in 1985.

Now, as for the rest of the tracks on the album, it is not a compilation of the bands hits, not unlike Queen Rocks and there are some interesting trimmings that were done to some songs too.

Play The Game and You Take My Breath Away had the wash of synthesizer and vocals eliminated from the beginning and the end of each respective track. Play The Game normally starts with the wash of synth and then Freddie sings “Open up your mind and let me step inside.” The rest of the song is as it has always been and maybe this could be done for radio but I’m not sure.

You Take My Breath Away is intact except for the wash of vocals which are “take my breath away” that comes in at the end, after the piano rings out the last few notes. Again, I’m not sure why this was done. Maybe it was because of CD length but I’m not sure.

The tracks: Long Away, ’39 and Sail Away Sweet Sister are all sung by Brian May on the original and here as well. I’m glad that some songs that Brian has sung are getting further recognition on a compilation such as this. You can also say the same for Roger’s song Drowse from A Day At The Races, which also appears here too.

The track I Was Born To Love you fits because it is a love song in my opinion and thus, is the heaviest song on the album. However, I am glad it is here because it is a nice chnage of pace from the rest of it, which focuses more on the ballads and songs which are not necessarily hard rock.

The Miracle, Friends Will Be Friends and Who Wants To Live Forever were all big hits in the UK when they were released but not so much in North America. Thankfully they are also here as testaments to their greatness as Queen songs and as fan favourites. I am also glad that all 3 have been put here untouched except for the quicker faid of The Miracle. But despite this, it doesn’t edit out any important part of the song.

Lilly Of The Valley and Nevermore are interesting because on their respective albums they are linked with the previous track. On Queen ii Never More is linked with The Fairy Feller’s Master-stroke and on Sheer Heart Attack, Lilly Of The Baley is linked with Flick Of The Wrist. When I first read that both tracks were to be included I was rather unsure about how because of the links above. However, it was done and they bot now sound like separate songs, as they are.

Everything else on the album has appeared on other compilations except for the final track Forever, which is simply an instrumental piano version of Who Wants To Live Forever? which appears as a bonus track or on the 2011 Deluxe version of A Kind Of Magic. It serves as an appropriate ending to the album and thus, the title.

Over all, it is a very good compilation in its own right and as I said earlier, it can be said to be a companion piece to the Queen Rocks compilation released 17 years ago.

Another thing about this and the previous compilation is that both serve as a framework for the three volume compilation Deep Cuts, which came out in 2011, as all the Queen albums were rereleased on Universal Music everywhere but North America. All you need to do is go on Wikipedia and compare the track listings with all 5 albums and you will see there is a reason why those lesser known tracks appeared.

The other thing about both Queen Rocks and Forever is that they also included some hit singles which also were left off Deep Cuts. The two albums together plus the Greatest Hits compilations make up a large part of the Queen catalog. Although, there is no deluxe version of Queen Rocks and there is one for Forever. This makes me wonder if Queen will ever consider rereleasing Queen Rocks in 2017 as a standard and Deluxe version. I think there is enough material in the heavier side of Queen for a 2 or 3 CD set. Forever has a 20 track version and a 36 track deluxe version! Why not rerelease Queen Rocks with both?

Anyway, I hope you get a chance to either purchase it from iTunes or physically. This compilation is indeed worth it.