Forums > Queen - Serious Discussion > The horn section in Staying Power

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Over the Field user not visiting Queenzone.com
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Posted: 07 Feb 11, 09:44 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Hi!

The horn section in Staying Power has always been referred only to (hot and spacey) horns.

Could somebody analyze the horn instruments of the section, please.

(This one goes out of topic but is the sax solo in Action This Day synthesizer?)

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Posted: 08 Feb 11, 09:02 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

As far as I remember, the section's very simple, driven by parallel motions. Arif was a wonderful arranger, but this is something he probably did in fifteen minutes. It's like Usain Bolt running the 100 metres in half a minute: better than what the vast majority could achieve, but way below his own limits.

Yes, Action This Day is a synth.


John hated HS. Fred's fave singer was not PR. Roger didn't compose 'Innuendo.' Witness testimonies are often inaccurate. Scotland's not in England. 'Bo Rhap' hasn't got 180 voices.
mooghead user not visiting Queenzone.com
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Posted: 08 Feb 11, 15:36 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Queen + horn section = wrong    :-(

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Posted: 08 Feb 11, 18:45 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

What's song with a cleverly arranged horn section? Does no one here like to dance and have fun? I've performed this live with the said horn section a few times and when it all works the opposition between the horns, vocals and syth works a real treat! I think people need to accept Hot Space for what it was and either enjoy it or not play it all all, it's a free world after all.

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Posted: 09 Feb 11, 08:05 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Never thought of this before, but now the existence of "Body Language" makes sense to me. Freddie was probably originally thinking of a full-blown musical jazz version, something in the vein of Big Spender et al. Damn, that would've been great to hear. Queen with a proper horn section wouldn't have been such a bad idea after all...

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Posted: 12 Feb 11, 18:27 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Weren't they 'hot and spacey' and by Arif Mardin?

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Posted: 13 Feb 11, 00:10 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

"What's song with a cleverly arranged horn section?"

Nothing.  It's just that there isn't one in Staying Power.


"Your not funny, your not a good musician, theres a difference between being funny and being an idiot, you obviously being the latter" - Dave R Fuller
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Posted: 14 Feb 11, 02:46 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Zebonka12 wrote: "What's song with a cleverly arranged horn section?"

Nothing.  It's just that there isn't one in Staying Power.

or maybe you're just an old boring rocker who only likes one type of music.  You know, the 'I only like loud guitars and drums' type of person.   Boring.........I like artists who try different things.  Go and listen to kiss or ACDC.

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Posted: 14 Feb 11, 05:41 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

"or maybe you're just an old boring rocker"

A).  I'm not old

B).  I like an awful lot of music that contains horn or brass arrangements.


"Your not funny, your not a good musician, theres a difference between being funny and being an idiot, you obviously being the latter" - Dave R Fuller
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Posted: 14 Feb 11, 06:09 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

C).  If the horns are so great, then why the hell is the live version so much better?? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XrGhMeqR1lI


"Your not funny, your not a good musician, theres a difference between being funny and being an idiot, you obviously being the latter" - Dave R Fuller
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Posted: 14 Feb 11, 07:05 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

CruellaDeVille wrote: What's song with a cleverly arranged horn section? Does no one here like to dance and have fun? I've performed this live with the said horn section a few times and when it all works the opposition between the horns, vocals and syth works a real treat! I think people need to accept Hot Space for what it was and either enjoy it or not play it all all, it's a free world after all.
====

Disliking something is also part of said freedom. I have every right to criticize the album, as I feel it represents a lack of inspiration and quite certainly a lack of effort - as Sebastian implied, the whole product would've been a decent effort if they were mediocre and under-talented, but it's frankly insulting coming from a band like Queen which not only could do better, but regularly did.

All this is apart from considerations of taste - I am simply speaking of rushed, ill-considered arrangements and cutting corners, like the synth-bass.


Not Plutus but Apollo rules Parnassus

Sebastian user not visiting Queenzone.com
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Posted: 14 Feb 11, 07:31 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Standing ovation!!!


John hated HS. Fred's fave singer was not PR. Roger didn't compose 'Innuendo.' Witness testimonies are often inaccurate. Scotland's not in England. 'Bo Rhap' hasn't got 180 voices.
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Posted: 14 Feb 11, 10:46 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

I agree Hot space isn't On par with Queen's best, (not even close)  but sometimes people think anything that isn't heavy rock or has a great guitar solo means it sucks.   Staying power is one of the better tunes on HS,  but i agree.  How much better could this album have been with better production.  I love the live version of these songs, staying power is only a little better live IMO.  I  also like the studio version, but 'action this day' is light years better live,  so is Back Chat.

Sebastian user not visiting Queenzone.com
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Posted: 14 Feb 11, 11:02 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

>>> I agree Hot space isn't On par with Queen's best, (not even close)  but sometimes people think anything that isn't heavy rock or has a great guitar solo means it sucks.

And sometimes people think anyone who doesn't get an orgasm listening to Hot Space or My Baby Does Me is a person who thinks that anything that isn't heavy rock or has a great guitar solo sucks.

Some people (narrow-mindedly, IMO) reject Hot Space because it's not heavy. But other people are unbiased enough to entertain the idea that it's NOT a matter of style, but a matter of sub-par performing quality.

Sometimes political correctness goes mad even for these cases.


John hated HS. Fred's fave singer was not PR. Roger didn't compose 'Innuendo.' Witness testimonies are often inaccurate. Scotland's not in England. 'Bo Rhap' hasn't got 180 voices.
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Posted: 14 Feb 11, 11:48 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

"but sometimes people think anything that isn't heavy rock or has a great guitar solo means it sucks"

But that's just an assumption on your part.  There are a myriad of other reasons that I don't think Hot Space was an entirely successful experiment.  It doesn't invalidate it as an album - experiments either work or they don't, that's the very idea of them.  I for one love a whole lot of music that isn't heavy rock.  You might want to come up with a more inclusive knee-jerk response to people who don't share your musical taste than "go listen to kiss".  It's very inaccurate.


"Your not funny, your not a good musician, theres a difference between being funny and being an idiot, you obviously being the latter" - Dave R Fuller
Sebastian user not visiting Queenzone.com
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Posted: 14 Feb 11, 15:02 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Come to think about it, I take back what I wrote earlier: it DOES have a lot to do with the style. But not in a metal > disco way - it's a matter of specialities, IMO.

A lot of people didn't enjoy Michael Jordan's baseball career. Does it mean they hated baseball? For the most part, I don't think so. Does it mean they were rabid anti-White-Socks? For the most part, I don't think so. It simply means they knew he belonged elsewhere. As a baseball player, he was average, as a basketball player, he was arguably the best ever. Soon enough, he also realised that and went back to the NBA.

Same if, say, David Gilmour started a career as a professional drummer: he certainly plays well (and has done so in the studio occasionally), but:

A) He's not as good as those who've devoted their life to that instrument (too many examples to put here).
B) He's already LARGELY proficient at another instrument.

And it doesn't mean guitar > drums. It does mean, though, that David's a way way way better guitarist than drummer.

IMO, it's the same case here: Queen were not at all experts on funk or Motown. They were rock artists. They were not experienced professionals on drum programming and synth-bass; they were a four-piece band with a very professional drummer and an equally skilful bassist who were at their best when playing actual instruments rather than programming cheap samples. Brian was not a proficient funky guitarist (in fact, for that department, even he admitted John Deacon was better), but he is an extraordinary rock performer. They get an 'A for effort' as they dared to try something else, but it's clear (first of all to Queen themselves) that it was not their department. No wonder why they returned to what they knew they did best.

Michael Jackson, marvellous singer that he was, would've faced an epic fail if he tried recording Stone Cold Crazy or Du Hast. He was incomparable, though, on things like Beat It or Man in the Mirror. Likewise, Queen were outstanding for something like Show Must Go On or Killer Queen (two very different pieces, but still part of their 'native tongue', so to speak), but they didn't quite cut the mustard for something like Staying Power (in the studio, that is) or Pain Is So Close to Pleasure.


John hated HS. Fred's fave singer was not PR. Roger didn't compose 'Innuendo.' Witness testimonies are often inaccurate. Scotland's not in England. 'Bo Rhap' hasn't got 180 voices.
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Posted: 14 Feb 11, 17:36 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

I think I may be the only one who likes Staying Power's studio version (a bit) more than the live version.
Live is a different beast and it ROCKS big time but it's not "hot and spacey" like the studio version, hehe :).
Also, Freddie's studio vocals are unsurpassable, I think. and he shines on this record.

By the way, I don't care that much for the horns. They are adecquate for that song. It's a great idea but the execution is lacking a bit.

Like Seb said, it was not Queen's specialty... what they did best.
Maybe if they had incorporated a few guest musicians, producers or arrangers who were experts in that genre then it could have been better.

PS: Hopefully, Hot Space's Deluxe Edition will include the 12" remix for Staying Power. It's awesome.

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Posted: 14 Feb 11, 18:28 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Yea but Radio Ga Ga was in that hot space style and is considered a classic, as is AOBTD.......They did have their moments in that style.  If michael jackson tried hard rock he would make a fool of himself.

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Posted: 14 Feb 11, 18:41 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Zebonka12 wrote: "but sometimes people think anything that isn't heavy rock or has a great guitar solo means it sucks"

But that's just an assumption on your part.  There are a myriad of other reasons that I don't think Hot Space was an entirely successful experiment.  It doesn't invalidate it as an album - experiments either work or they don't, that's the very idea of them.  I for one love a whole lot of music that isn't heavy rock.  You might want to come up with a more inclusive knee-jerk response to people who don't share your musical taste than "go listen to kiss".  It's very inaccurate.

Oh please,  if it wasn't for arguments this site would be boring as hell.   I seen enough of you're posts to  know you have a wide taste in music.  Usually I pick fights with guys who know more than me, you, "sir"  Sebastian  ECT......I agree as a whole,  hot space was a failed experiment, but did have some good moments.  Much better than Judas priests Turbo Album, and other bands Experiments.

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Posted: 14 Feb 11, 18:49 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

"Oh please,  if it wasn't for arguments this site would be boring as hell."

I don't believe so!  I know for a fact that in my non-internet life, I've had quite a few interesting and rewarding discussions that weren't 'arguments' ... hahaha.


"Your not funny, your not a good musician, theres a difference between being funny and being an idiot, you obviously being the latter" - Dave R Fuller