News > Sheer Heart Attack: One of 100 Greatest Guitar Albums

Added on 23-Jul-2003

Mojo Magazine lists Queen’s Sheer Heart Attack in their 100 Greatest Guitar Albums Feature.The bonus booklet, which accompanies the August issue of the English rock magazine and features a foreword by Jeff Beck, features 100 albums featured chronologically – from 1929 (Charley Patton’s Screamin’ and Hollerin’ The Blues) to 2003 (The Whites Stripes’ Elephant). Sheer Heart Attack is the only entry for 1974.

Here’s the full text for the SHA mention:

1974 - Queen Sheer Heart Attack

A guitar showcase called Brighton Rock, played by a man who uses a sixpence as a plectrum; axe heroics of a quintessentially English stripe.

When work began on SHA, Queen guitarist Brian May was in hospital with hepatitis, and worried that the band would be forced to replace him. On recovering, he played with renewed appetite, his extraordinarily toothsome sound the happy result of deft vibrato, '70s amplification, that sixpence, and a unique guitar part-fashioned from an old fireplace. Now I’m Here has admirable crunch, the massed guitars on [In The] Lap of the Gods are classically rich, and Killer Queen sounds like a masterclass in guitar orchestration. A quarter century on, May would appear in the TV advert for the Best Air Guitar in The World II. He’d also influence Dave Grohl, who alongside fellow Foo Fighter Taylor Hawkins, made a speech when Queen were inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall of Fame in 2001.

Key moment: Killer Queen, 1:40-2:01, May’s playful, layered solo.

Availability: EMI CD.

Note: A scan of the cover and actual article can be found at

Submitted by: Daniel Nester

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