Forums > Queen - Serious Discussion > Album: The Miracle, underrated & overlooked

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Posted: 06 Jul 09, 00:49 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

I've been reading in the curse of these years fans too critical at the album with no strong fundamented reason.
Statements like "half good", "mediocre" were the things I got to read over these years on internet. My fist reaction was to follow those fans, take that opinion andcompletely over-look this album.

Many times when the discussions were given I have defended Hot Space. Not because I consider it a great musical album but just because I find it enjoyable to listen. Although I admitd that lacks from good musical compostion and it's seems kind of obvious that Queen didn't put much effort on it, which, of course, leads to a bad album overall.

But this is not what you can nearly say about The Miracle. Of course, you can dislike it, as everyone
has an opionion...but I couldn't stand reading (as I have in recent years to justify it as a bad album) that it's a bad in terms of music and composition.
Actually to be fair, The Miracle has to be musically Queen's best Album in the 80's decade. They found the best sound and every single song has a diverse of musical ideas and variety of arrengements probably, to me, since the 70's albums.

I happyly find that Queen as a group put a great effort on this album and gave as a result a great musical album
with, in terms of music, variety of songs, composition and songwriting with the 4 of them colaborating and adding ideas in order to get a good result. Which is fantastic to listen especially after two low rated and bad musical albums like Hot Space and (a slithgtly improved) The Works in which Queen try to find the rhytm back alltogether again.  


Similarities with Queen Early Work:

· Freddie's Voice.
After singing a few months with Montserrat Caballe I think really Freddie peeled his best voice ever up to that time (because in Innuendo get's even beter). A much more smooth voice, with cleaner sound and still not losing the strenght.

· Brian's Work
Overall his job with guitars on the album I think it's just special and amazing. I find it great because he adds just the neccesary in each song of his Red Special, not too much or too less. And he got really creative in every track, doing great works even in bad songs. I'd say that to me it's probably his best in Queen.

· Continuis tracks!
When you find this, you gotta know it's going to be good. Too bad they did just once.

· Creativy is back:
Roger playing more regular drums, less drum synths. Also playing a lot of diverse percussion in Rain Must Fall.

The group trying to use less synths and more rock complex oriented songs. Multitracks, with Brian's Red special's overdubs as backing tracks, no synths as song base. Which probably means that they worked as a group together, not separated.

Complex songs again, with arrengements and 4 member group cooperation


The Cover:

We all know Qeen decided to put every song as a creation of the band, not individuals...which it makes evident since we to see the cover. There is no dominant figure in the cover as we previously saw on The Works or A kind of magic.

The four of them as a group, at the same line phisically and musically. And that I think really shows off in the album
because they came up with such a creative work that you gotta love it.




SONG BY SONG




Party

A jam session with Freddie Brian and John. A great drum rhythm thru the whole song! Great elaborated chorus and I totally love that Brian has his singing line at the begining.


Back the continous tracks, something you gotta love and an obvious prove of getting back to the good stuff.


Khosshogis Ship.

Freddie's creation, as I ve read. Good to listen, goodd lyrics overall and a strong elaborated sound. Another good work to me. Marvelous riff and adds from Brian.


The Miracle


I love it, very elaborated and complex from the lyrics to the musical arregments and Freddie nails it on the singing tones, where to sing higher and lower.
Another great Brian contribution with his Red Special.


I Want It All

Very Heavy, as heaviest as I've heard Queen in late years. Such a powerlful song. Brian's totally masterpiece with Queen and another complex song from the guitar composition. And Freddie finds exaclty where to put the strenght in his voice and where to turn it down a little. The choruses are great.
Roger used double-kick bass drum for the first time another prove of Queen's getting back to creativity and innovation.


The Invisible Man

My favourite of the album but for some reason very hated among Queen fans.
I find it very creative, from the lyrics to to the bass rhythm, which is great. It's very different from what I've heard from Queen.

· Some strange things that I strangely like about this song:

Brian singing 'Im the invisible man' line at first.

The solo just kicks ass!. It's great,  I love the idea of pan it from one side to the other of the speakers as Freddie says 'Brian May, Brian May!'. And I'd say that overall Brian's work in this song is superlative.

The "ha ha hello" part is strange but for some reason I love it, and I find it very creative, as well as Roger with
his voice contribution saying: "Look at me" or "Watch me!".

When Freddie sings: "Roger Taylor", the initial "r" is rolled by Mercury to sound like a drum roll and after the lyric "Look at me, look at me". Roger "answers" with a drum fill.



Breakthru

Another high point of the album. Has a great energy probably from the beating that sound as a trying combined with Freddie's power with vocals makes
a great song. One of my best to listen in a good day.



Rain Must Fall (One of my favs but that I don't say it outloud too much)

A bizarre sound and a rare lyric coming from Queen. But It can't be criticized for not trying.New risky sound, very different from what we've been listen in the album. Lots of percussion. A a great guitar work from Brian in backing tracks.

Brian's solo is a masterpiece, too bad it's placed in a regular song. And it gets even greater towards the end!, when he just keeps playing along. Too bad it fades out!



Scandal

A strange song for Queen, but I totally love it. This one stands out from the singing. Which kind of prooves about Freddie's voice that I wrote above.



My Baby Does Me

How can you not love this song?. It has a great beating, very smooth and a good bassline.
Brian really does it well making small adds to improve it. And I love the idea of the lyric telling everyone that his baby really does him, but not a good way (which we find at the end).



Was it All Worth It

Another Queen's masterpice to me. Creating an atmosphere again at the begining, like the old days with long and light intros and then the heavy explotion.
I love the strenght of this song and the great thing is that that heavyness goes up and down and at some parts it's an instrumental song! And I think it's great that the 4 contributed to the song and made a kind of review of their carrer and themselves.

As sad as it is...the title of the song it's a kind of good bye from Queen.



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Posted: 06 Jul 09, 02:32 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Hi!

as a matter of fact, I actually remember stealing The Miracle Cassette from my sister when I was 11 or 12, and it's the first real Queen album I've ever listenned to, apart from Greatest hits...


I've always been impressed by the cover (and had to wait quite a long time before being able to posess the Breakthru picture disc)

as you say this album closes the 8O's, on some kind of attempt to re-center the band

you can feel it in the whole album (especially in Was It All Worth It)

I sometimes regret that there's no real ballad on this album, but how could Too much Love will Kill You fit in there?


anyway your point is interesting, and your "critic" of this album worth reading...

cheers!






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"a man who learned how to teach

then forgot how to learn"

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Posted: 06 Jul 09, 09:33 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote


Party

and I totally love that Brian has his singing line at the begining.


The Invisible Man

Brian singing 'Im the invisible man' line at first.


Party: Mmmmmmm ..... where can you hear Brian singing that line ?

The Invisible Man: it is Roger who sings the "I´m the invisible man" lines ...

Anyway, a similar thread was started recently here. I love this album. It was the first I was really waiting to be released as a proper Queen fan, after falling in love with the hits from The Works and AKOM when I was a kid. The Miracle didn´t deceive me. Everytime I play it I smile and feel nostalgic :)


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Posted: 06 Jul 09, 10:57 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

My Baby Does Me is one of the most underrated Queen tracks ever. I could hardly find 3 fans who love that song. As great guy Philipp Nothaft wrote once "The song-material itself is rather b-side-style, but the incredibly large-scale Miracle production-standards made a clever piece of music out of it. It's not the melody or the lyrics which count with this track, but the arrangement and the atmosphere. Check it with  stereo-headphones and some concentration, and you won't be disappointed."

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Posted: 06 Jul 09, 11:31 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Vali: In "Party" Brian sings at 0:26:


We got love and we got style
And we got sex and I know I know
We got what it takes



And in "Invisible Man" the first lines of those "I'm the Invisible Man" it's Brian. Right after Freddie sings "When you hear me tread".  Brian sings it a couple of times and then Roger does for the rest of the song.


Serry, that's what Im taling about with this album. If you listen to it carefully you realize it's a great piece of work.



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Posted: 06 Jul 09, 12:03 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

I'm agree with you- just love The Miracle. My favorite are I Want It All, Was It All Worth It, Scandal and video of The Invisible Man. But for me it seems that a half of fans don't like all from '80. Which has no logic in it. Or maybe I'm just mistaking...

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Posted: 06 Jul 09, 13:22 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote



MmP wrote:



Vali: In "Party" Brian sings at 0:26:


We got love and we got style
And we got sex and I know I know
We got what it takes



And in "Invisible Man" the first lines of those "I'm the Invisible Man" it's Brian. Right after Freddie sings "When you hear me tread".  Brian sings it a couple of times and then Roger does for the rest of the song.




Sorry MmP; I always heard Brian´s voice more prominent at 0:26, but also thought he was joined by Freddie and Roger on the harmonies.... After listening closely again (I´m doing it right now) I´d say you´re right, and even the harmonies are driven by Brian .... experts opinion/confirmation (Sebastian?) is welcome.


re "The Invisible Man": dude, to my ears that´s still Roger







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Posted: 06 Jul 09, 13:36 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

It just wasn't that good.  Has some of their best tunes on it, but a couple of good tunes 'do not a great album make'.


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Posted: 06 Jul 09, 17:08 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

I wouldn't say it was a GREAT album but I do enjoy The Miracle album quite a fair bit

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Posted: 06 Jul 09, 18:01 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

My mind always changes as far as queens worst album, sometimes it's the miracle and other times it's magic or the works, hot space, ect.  The miracle is ok,  invisible man isn't a good song IMO. also party is queen's worst opener for  any album.   My baby does me is a grower for me, used too hate it, but now enJoy the tune, the same for rain must fall. couldn't stand that one either, but now enjoy it.  The title track is classic queen IMO.  A pretty fun album overall.


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Posted: 06 Jul 09, 23:36 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

I've always felt the album had a strong sense of optimism.  To me the album radiates happiness.  This is wonderful, but the album might have benefited from a love-sick ballad.  Other than that, I have no complaints.  It's not their greatest album, but far from their worst.  The band certainly sounds fresh and exciting.  It's radically different from both its predecessor, A Kind of Magic, and its successor, Innuendo.

Out of curiousity, has anybody ever thought Freddie's voice sounded scratchy on the album?


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Posted: 07 Jul 09, 10:30 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote



Steven wrote:

I've always felt the album had a strong sense of optimism.  To me the album radiates happiness.  This is wonderful, but the album might have benefited from a love-sick ballad.  Other than that, I have no complaints.  It's not their greatest album, but far from their worst.  The band certainly sounds fresh and exciting.  It's radically different from both its predecessor, A Kind of Magic, and its successor, Innuendo.

Out of curiousity, has anybody ever thought Freddie's voice sounded scratchy on the album?




yea, I agree. I don't think it was one of freds best albums vocally.  Scratchy is a good word to describe it.




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Posted: 07 Jul 09, 19:36 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Wow, I didn't know so many fans like that one.

I thought it was very weak. The new combined writing effort didn't work, in my opinion. The few decent songs were obviously written by one of the members (I Want it All for example) but the rest sounded like weak songs born from fooling around in the studio. Regardless of performance, if the songs aren't there, the rest doesn't matter.

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Posted: 08 Jul 09, 07:54 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

This album is really great and i dont understand it, if people told me this album isnt good, yes many told me, this isnt a real Queenalbum, but my question always is: Do you now which songs on this album?
If they say yes, i ask: Do you can sing only one of them like freddie?
All of them went away and they never tried to tell me bad things about Queen!
Equal what album: no-one could sing the songs like Freddie sang them! Yes its right: Only the good die young


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Posted: 08 Jul 09, 10:40 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote



doxonrox wrote:

Wow, I didn't know so many fans like that one.

I thought it was very weak. The new combined writing effort didn't work, in my opinion. The few decent songs were obviously written by one of the members (I Want it All for example) but the rest sounded like weak songs born from fooling around in the studio. Regardless of performance, if the songs aren't there, the rest doesn't matter.

yea, the album is weak by queen's standards, but that doesn't mean you can't enjoy the album. Hot space is another album that is weak, but I still enjoy it for what it is.  A fun album full of decent, though not great songs.







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Posted: 08 Jul 09, 19:30 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote



mike hunt wrote:



 



doxonrox wrote:



Wow, I didn't know so many fans like that one.

I thought it was very weak. The new combined writing effort didn't work, in my opinion. The few decent songs were obviously written by one of the members (I Want it All for example) but the rest sounded like weak songs born from fooling around in the studio. Regardless of performance, if the songs aren't there, the rest doesn't matter.


yea, the album is weak by queen's standards, but that doesn't mean you can't enjoy the album. Hot space is another album that is weak, but I still enjoy it for what it is.  A fun album full of decent, though not great songs.






Agreed - to an extent. I can enjoy some of the songs taken one at a time. But the album as a whole is difficult to get through.

The best thing about the Miracle for me is that it set me up for a wonderful surprise with Innuendo!





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Posted: 08 Jul 09, 23:00 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote



mike hunt wrote:



 



Steven wrote:



I've always felt the album had a strong sense of optimism.  To me the album radiates happiness.  This is wonderful, but the album might have benefited from a love-sick ballad.  Other than that, I have no complaints.  It's not their greatest album, but far from their worst.  The band certainly sounds fresh and exciting.  It's radically different from both its predecessor, A Kind of Magic, and its successor, Innuendo.

Out of curiousity, has anybody ever thought Freddie's voice sounded scratchy on the album?





yea, I agree. I don't think it was one of freds best albums vocally.  Scratchy is a good word to describe it.



Glad to know I'm not alone.








"Fuck today, it's tomorrow." - Freddie Mercury
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Posted: 09 Jul 09, 05:57 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

I agree with what Doxonrox wrote- IMHO too it's a weak album, and if the songs ain't there...

I am unashamedly a fan of the first five albums, and my litmus test is: how many of the songs on The Miracle would be worthy of a place on Sheer Hear Attack? In my view, none!

The Miracle has a couple of 'moments', the title track has a kind of inventiveness about it with it's tempo changes etc making it a little reminiscent of the band's earlier (and in my view, better) work. I Want It All is a decent enough hard-rocker and I like its fast and furious middle section. Breakthrough I think suffers a little from its 80's type production- the drums and tempo remind me of another archetypically 80's song, "Young Turks" by Rod Stewart!! A heavier treatment would have made it work better, I believe. Was It All Worth It is a reasonably good 'traditional' sounding Queen song, if a little uninspired.

Interestingly one of the tracks 'added' as a bonus when it was released on CD, Hang On In There is better than any number of tracks on the album proper.

As others have said it's a pleasant enough listen I guess... but doesn't seem to have the 'depth' that Queen's best stuff has- I guess you could call it 'Queen Lite'. Just my two cents worth...

P.s I know it's off topic, but where is the 'reply with quote' button in these forums? Cheers.

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Posted: 09 Jul 09, 10:23 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote



 



Robbieboy wrote:



I agree with what Doxonrox wrote- IMHO too it's a weak album, and if the songs ain't there...

I am unashamedly a fan of the first five albums, and my litmus test is: how many of the songs on The Miracle would be worthy of a place on Sheer Hear Attack? In my view, none!

The Miracle has a couple of 'moments', the title track has a kind of inventiveness about it with it's tempo changes etc making it a little reminiscent of the band's earlier (and in my view, better) work. I Want It All is a decent enough hard-rocker and I like its fast and furious middle section. Breakthrough I think suffers a little from its 80's type production- the drums and tempo remind me of another archetypically 80's song, "Young Turks" by Rod Stewart!! A heavier treatment would have made it work better, I believe. Was It All Worth It is a reasonably good 'traditional' sounding Queen song, if a little uninspired.

Interestingly one of the tracks 'added' as a bonus when it was released on CD, Hang On In There is better than any number of tracks on the album proper.

As others have said it's a pleasant enough listen I guess... but doesn't seem to have the 'depth' that Queen's best stuff has- I guess you could call it 'Queen Lite'. Just my two cents worth...

P.s I know it's off topic, but where is the 'reply with quote' button in these forums? Cheers.


I agree, Robbieboy.  I do want to point out that we can't really compare songs from The Miracle to Sheer Heart Attack songs.  Although it's the same band, they're still two very different albums from two very different eras of rock music. 

The 'reply quote' button is the last of the three icons (furthest to the right) just above this message box.






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Posted: 09 Jul 09, 15:20 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote



mike hunt wrote:



 



doxonrox wrote:



Wow, I didn't know so many fans like that one.

I thought it was very weak. The new combined writing effort didn't work, in my opinion. The few decent songs were obviously written by one of the members (I Want it All for example) but the rest sounded like weak songs born from fooling around in the studio. Regardless of performance, if the songs aren't there, the rest doesn't matter.


yea, the album is weak by queen's standards, but that doesn't mean you can't enjoy the album. Hot space is another album that is weak, but I still enjoy it for what it is.  A fun album full of decent, though not great songs.






It doesn't help that Queen has very high standards, since they are perfectionists.  Queen's weak albums are still strong when compared to most other artists because Queen's low points surpass most bands high points.