News > Cologne Open Air Reviews

Added on 09-Jul-2005

Here are two reviews from the German Press which I translated about the concert on 6 July .1. From the Rheinische Presse:

7 July 05

Queen are an inspiration in the pouring rain

Pictures: At the additional concert in the RheinEnergie stadium Queen really

let it rock in spite of the pouring rain. Photo: ddp

Paul Rodgers acted as singer in the place of the late Freddie Mercury. Photo:


Queen fans had to put up with wet and cold on Wednesday evening at the

additional concert in the Cologne RheinEngergie stadium. But the band didn’t

leave their fans out there in the cold and rain. The successor to Freddie

Mercury, Paul Rodgers, came out of the warm and dry time and again to rock in

the pouring rain.

Guitarist Brian May and drummer Roger Taylor, who also turned his hand to

singing now and again, proved, by stepping out repeatedly, that they were not

hydrophobic either. An audience of more than 26,700 revelled in this

dedication and in the enduring music of Queen.

Well, perhaps it wasn’t all perfect at this penultimate concert of the

European leg of ‘Queen and Paul Rodgers’, under which name go the trio of rock

Flintstones backed by a bass player, a second guitarist and a keyboard player. A

26,700-strong audience is a lot, but they looked a bit lost in the spruce

stadium where the gaps in the upper tiers were too large. Perhaps this was an

indication of weakening appeal after a sold-out concert hall tour earlier this


But nowhere does the glamorous pomp of Queen function better than in a

stadium. Especially an open-air one, where May’s long guitar solo can distend

without hindrance into the zero gravity of outer space, where, during ‘We Will

Rock You’, a sea of outstretched arms becomes one of clapping hands, and ‘We Are

the Champions’ is in its natural environment. Even with only two founding

members left, Queen remain a rock institution.

An element of that is a particular attitude to the music. Not only a

professional one, but also one which May, Taylor and Rodgers celebrated this

Wednesday – they shared their music with the fans mainly in the stadium

interior which was overwhelmed by an awful lot of rain. Nevertheless there

were hardly any umbrellas; there was singing, acclaim and applause. It was

just ‘A Kind of Magic’.

The first tour without Mercury (and the first)* for 19 years has shown that the

charismatic frontman who died in 1991 could not, in fact, be replaced. The

playing of the video of ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ allows for no other notion. On the

other hand, Rodgers was, wisely, never advertised or ‘sold’ as the ‘new’

Mercury. Rodgers brought in his own band history and harmonised magnificently

with May and Taylor. His Free and Bad Company songs ‘Wishing Well’, ‘Can’t Get

Enough’ and ‘All Right Now’ enriched the programme.

The powerhouses in their mid fifties put on a wonderful rock show and above

all there was the recognition that Queen’s music lives on; not only as a

recording for the winning of the area championship in football, handball or

mini golf, not only as the soundtrack for a whacky musical, but also as a live

event for fans from 15 to 65.

*Words in brackets added for clarity

2. From the Koelnische Rundschau:

6 July 05

Never completely gone from us: Freddie sang too

By Jan Wördenweber, Kölnische Rundschau

Picture: Queen with (from left) Paul Rodgers, Roger Taylor and Brian May at

the beginning of the tour in the Olympiahalle in Munich.

One bleak cloud after another gathered in the evening over the RheinEnergie

Stadium. Not the best weather for the only open-air Queen concert in Germany.

Freddie Mercury would certainly have wished for better conditions for his

fellow band members Brian May and Roger Taylor and last but not least for the

loyal fans.

Shortly after 20.

Submitted by: somedayoneday

What do you think?

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