Forums > Queen - General Discussion > A Kind Of Magic (Original Version)

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Posted: 23 Aug 08, 18:36 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Who know why original version not release on album

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Posted: 23 Aug 08, 18:52 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Because it sucked. Most of the tracks from Highlander were re-recorded for a richer sound for album release, although I've always liked the movie version of WWTLF.


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Posted: 24 Aug 08, 11:06 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Actually, I like the original better. But I think, Freddie's version was considered better (=commercially more appealing), and that's why they put it on the album.

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Posted: 24 Aug 08, 11:13 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote


I prefer the original version. It´s a thousand times better than the AKOM version, wich was totally rebuilt by Freddie from Roger´s original concept.


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Posted: 24 Aug 08, 11:18 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

kagezan1313 wrote:

Because it sucked. Most of the tracks from Highlander were re-recorded for a richer sound for album release, although I've always liked the movie version of WWTLF.


Dude...don't answer if you don't know. Just because the sound quality of the video reels for Highlander wasn't great, it doesn't mean that the audio masters weren't; they were.

Anyways, Freddie decided to fuck around with it a bit, make it more poppy, because they wanted an album full of hit-singles (yes, they were very commercial at the time, too).


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Posted: 24 Aug 08, 15:07 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

ThomasQuinn wrote:


Dude...don't answer if you don't know. Just because the sound quality of the video reels for Highlander wasn't great, it doesn't mean that the audio masters weren't; they were.


I never really cared for A Kind of Magic - both versions. But I have to say that the original Highlander version has 'something' about it that the 'Freddie-mix' didn't. Great to see it finally released in full glory on the Wembley DVD a couple of years back.

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Posted: 24 Aug 08, 15:19 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

ThomasQuinn wrote:

kagezan1313 wrote:

Because it sucked. Most of the tracks from Highlander were re-recorded for a richer sound for album release, although I've always liked the movie version of WWTLF.


Dude...don't answer if you don't know. Just because the sound quality of the video reels for Highlander wasn't great, it doesn't mean that the audio masters weren't; they were.

Anyways, Freddie decided to fuck around with it a bit, make it more poppy, because they wanted an album full of hit-singles (yes, they were very commercial at the time, too).


You just said exactly what I said, so why are you telling me I don't know what I'm talking about? I never made reference to sound quality - I said "a richer sound", meaning more content.


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Posted: 24 Aug 08, 16:11 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

The original version should of been on the album, and the Freddie remix should of been the single (as it was). That way, for commercial efforts, they'd have it on the single. But for anyone who'd want to hear another mix, they'd hear it on the album..


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Posted: 24 Aug 08, 18:50 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

kagezan1313 wrote:

ThomasQuinn wrote:

kagezan1313 wrote:

Because it sucked. Most of the tracks from Highlander were re-recorded for a richer sound for album release, although I've always liked the movie version of WWTLF.


Dude...don't answer if you don't know. Just because the sound quality of the video reels for Highlander wasn't great, it doesn't mean that the audio masters weren't; they were.

Anyways, Freddie decided to fuck around with it a bit, make it more poppy, because they wanted an album full of hit-singles (yes, they were very commercial at the time, too).


You just said exactly what I said, so why are you telling me I don't know what I'm talking about? I never made reference to sound quality - I said "a richer sound", meaning more content.


No you didn't say the same as Thomas. You said it sucked, which isn't true, although it might in your ears (I don't know) but definately not in their ears. It just wasn't as commercially interesting as Freddie thought it could have been, which is why Freddie rebuilt the song into a commercially interesting and more radio-friendly song. To me personally a little too radio-friendly, but that's just my personal taste.

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Posted: 25 Aug 08, 18:39 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Ok, but could someone define Commercial in this sense?

Don't just say "so it would sell more" or "so it was more Radio Friendly".

If you're gonna throw out the term "Commercial" then expand on that. What did Freddie do that was "commercial"?

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Posted: 25 Aug 08, 18:49 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Isnt that a bit like saying "what is popular?".
Cos thats complicated.....

I dunno - I think the best you can do is say he gave it a poppier, dancier vibe with the prominence of the base line and different tempo. Many people like music they can dance/tap feet/nod head to.

In a sense, by making it more appealing to a wider audience he made it more commercial as it was likely to sell more copies.

Best I can do, hehe.


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Posted: 26 Aug 08, 16:00 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Micrówave wrote:

Ok, but could someone define Commercial in this sense?

Don't just say "so it would sell more" or "so it was more Radio Friendly".

If you're gonna throw out the term "Commercial" then expand on that. What did Freddie do that was "commercial"?


Novelty sounds popular in the mid '80s (the intro synths in the Freddie version vs. Roger version), disco beat, slick sound.


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Posted: 26 Aug 08, 16:02 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

kagezan1313 wrote:

ThomasQuinn wrote:

kagezan1313 wrote:

Because it sucked. Most of the tracks from Highlander were re-recorded for a richer sound for album release, although I've always liked the movie version of WWTLF.


Dude...don't answer if you don't know. Just because the sound quality of the video reels for Highlander wasn't great, it doesn't mean that the audio masters weren't; they were.

Anyways, Freddie decided to fuck around with it a bit, make it more poppy, because they wanted an album full of hit-singles (yes, they were very commercial at the time, too).


You just said exactly what I said, so why are you telling me I don't know what I'm talking about? I never made reference to sound quality - I said "a richer sound", meaning more content.


"A richer sound" usually refers to the way audio is spaced across the spectrum: if the range of frequencies is large, they are balanced and have a solid midrange, it is called 'rich' (where the width of the spectrum makes it somewhat crisp, where the midrange gives it warmth).


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Posted: 26 Aug 08, 16:30 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Thanks, CLT and TQ, for answering. But I debate:

Cwazy little thing wrote:

I think the best you can do is say he gave it a poppier, dancier vibe with the prominence of the base line and different tempo.


Speeding up the tempo and adjusting the EQ? The tempo thing, ok maybe. But speeding up something Roger played would be really stepping on Roger's toes, don't you think? And with respect to shelving, I think the producer of the record would be more in control of that than the actual band member. Was Freddie that educated/gifted for that? I'm not so sure.

ThomasQuinn wrote:

Novelty sounds popular in the mid '80s (the intro synths in the Freddie version vs. Roger version), disco beat, slick sound.


Again, addressing the "slick sound": Then that version should be credited as Engineered by Freddie Mercury.

The synth work, assumably by Fred, is nothing more than a little doodling. It doesn't conjure up visions of A-ha or Tears For Fears at all. 80s were big for synths, but not for doodling on an Oberheim.

And back to that stepping on Roger's toes. I would think that Roger would demand, not ask, to cut that beat live, not allow it to be sped up.

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Posted: 27 Aug 08, 10:07 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

For some reason I get an error message when I try to quote at the moment, which is frustrating!

Alright, perhaps its less a case of what Freddie actually did, and more of what Freddie suggested which the band then worked on.
Youre right, I dont think Freddie literally played with the levels and sped things up.

What I was getting at was that comparing the two versions there are certain elements in the one that got released which are more "commercial", mostly in the sense there are more hooks, and a beat more suitable for dancing - such tracks tend to dominate the singles charts, now and then. I think what is being got at is that Freddie suggested these changes.

I think, and no I cant back this up, that I recall someone saying Freddie wrote the bassline - its completely different to the Highlander version, and certainly more prominent, giving a groovier, dancier sort of vibe.
Roger has clearly been asked to play a more uptempo rhythm, apart from the final section of the track, which is similar on both versions.

Brian has contributed a nice guitar lick - "THE magic lick" if you will, which is repeated at various points in the song. This, along with the bassline are the really memorable things about the track for me; I was delighted the day I realised this was similar to the outro riff on WWRY, because having learnt one on the guitar, I could play both, sort of, hehe.

I think a combination of those elements, a slightly different structure/extra bits of the verse, and those repetitive "Its a kind of Magic" backing vocals from Freddie make it a catchier, poppier "more commercial" prospect.

So having said last time that was the best I can do I retract that statement - this is in fact the best I can do, hehe.

(I really like the alternate version though, and hope it finds a place on a future CD release. Or I could just try and rip it from the Wembley DVD...)


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