Path: Queen - Royal Legend - Albums: Hot Space

Albums: Hot Space

'Under Pressure' one of the biggest suprise, which came on light after collaboration with David Bowie - and it happened casually.

David Bowie: "When we found ourselves in Monteraux, I went to visit them in the studio and we started to play around there. I thought that it's nice melody and we finished it. It's sort of half-finished project, done in one day, I guess it should be better. I liked the demo more. It was done so fast, that some parts (lyrics) I really chase me, but generally I like the idea."

Brian: "I'm interested in mysterious phenomenon. I wanted to do an album about it, but the band decided that I'm over-wised fart. They were right."

David Bowie:"That was through Dave Richards, the engineer at the studio. I was in town, in Montreux, doing some other work there, and because I believe that Queen have something to do with the studio on a business level, I think it's their studio or something like that and they were recording there, and David knew that I was in town and phoned me up and asked me to come down, if I'd like to come down to see hat was happening, so I went down, and these things happen you know. Suddenly you're writing something together, and it was totally spontaneous, it certainly wasn't planned. It was, er, peculiar [laughs]"

Body Language video clip was recorded in Canada. They had few ideas, but after all the decided for naked painted and oiled bodies in various poses. The band was dressed. Picture of the single features take of woman and man with shinning bodies with mystical arrows. This cover was disabled in USA and MTV denied to broadcast the clip.

Fans were surprised by this style change, but the band stayed cool, they enjoyed discovering of the new sounds. Brian admitted himself, that he's not happy with this album, but as a defence he said that Queen had wanted to find new ways and new possibilities to not lock on groove.

The bit at the end of 'Dancer' is in German and says "Guten Morgen, sie wuenschten geweckt zu werden.". The translation is "Good morning, You wish to be woken up."

The 'Calling All Girls' video was inspired by movie 'THX 1138'.

Queen about the record:
Brian
"It is an attempt to do funk properly. It has a style of playing where you get in and get out quickly, hence the title 'Hot Space'."
"I think 'Hot Space' was a mistake, if only timing-wise. We got heavily into funk and it was quite similar to what Michael Jackson did on 'Thriller' a couple of years later and the timing was wrong. Disco was a dirty word."
"We would experiment with the rhythm and the bass and drum track and get that sounding right, and then very cautiously piece the rest around it which was an experimental way for us to do it. In one track called 'Backchat', there wasn't going to be a guitar solo, because John Deacon, who wrote the song, has gone perhaps more violently black than the rest of us. We had lots of arguments about it, and what he was heading for in his tracks was a totally non-compromise situation, doing black stuff as R&B artists would do it with no concessions to our methods at all, and I was trying to edge him back towards the central path and get a bit of heaviness into it, and a bit of the anger of rock music. So one night I said I wanted to see what I could add to it - I felt that the song as it stood wasn't aggressive enough - it's 'Backchat', and it's supposed to be about people arguing and it should have some kind of guts to it. He agreed, and I went in and tried a few things."
"Possibly Fred was then getting interested in other things, and a bit bored with being in the studio because we did studios to death with the previous two albums, when we'd be in there for months on end, just working away, although we weren't particularly inefficient, it was just that there was a lot to be done. We all felt we'd done enough of that for the time being, and wanted to get back to basics and do something simpler, but Fred got to the point where he could hardy stand being in a studio, and he'd want to do his bit and get out."

Roger (about 'Under Pressure')
"It's one of the very best things Queen have ever done, and it happened so casually, when David simply visited us at our studio in Montreux. As long as we can continue to do this, and surpass even ourselves, we'll carry on."

Brian (about Under Pressure)
"David Bowie lives near the studio we bought in a little town close to Montreux, and when we were there, he'd often come over to see us, to chat and have a drink. Someone suggested that we should all go into the studio and play around one night, to see what came out - which we did, playing each other's old songs and just fiddling around. The next night we listened to the tapes, because we'd left the tape recorder running, and picked out a couple of pieces which seemed to be promising, and then we just worked on one particular idea, which became 'Under Pressure', for a whole night an extremely long night."

Reviews:
Under Pressure / Soul Brother
Sounds : Queen group did surprisingly good work, but vocals of Bovie and Mercury and the lyrics are decays this song.
Melody Maker : Something meaningful and profound is happening. Into Bowie's performance is entering heat and pathos, even talk about mr. Mercury.

Body Language
Sounds : Good, electronically balanced record will be hit on discotheque

Hot Space
Record Mirror : New style and new sense of values. You will be liked the Hot Space album .
Sounds : Queen group never produced even fulgent albums, but You'll agree that Hot Space is fantasy opposite to the such a trash as Jazz.
NME : Whole album is really fort.

Back Chat
NME : Possibly it's parody to the disco and man hang, if Freddie Mercury though seriously.

Other versions:
Many songs from Hot Space sound much better in live versions - perhaps the synths were substituted with drums and bass.
Staying Power
Extended Version
Released only on 12" promo in US. About 6 minutes long mix with new instrumental parts and almost a capella sections.
Demo version
Has some extra vocals and instruments. And the horn solo is replaced by a guitar solo from Brian, 4:11.

Action This Day
Demo Version
Almost the same 3:39 song as the Hot Space version, but some parts are sung different.

Back Chat
Single Remix
A 4:10 long remix of the 7" by John. It sounds crisper than the 4:33 long LP version.
Extended Version
Only on UK 12" release, a 6:54 long version with some additional guitar near the end. It's again work of John.
Demo version
This 4:35 song has a different intro and very different lyrics. At 1:37 there is a silent part with drums and Freddie improvising lyrics.

Body Language
Hollywood Remix 1991
Features some extra guitar parts and more noticeable piano. It's about 10 second longer than original.

Cool Cat
Duet With David Bowie
A nearly finished version rather than a demo, planned as a B-side for 'Under Pressure'. It's saying that Bowie was not comfortable with the song.

Under Pressure
12" Version
On the French promo CD 'I Want It All'. It's just normal version, nothing more. No extended version was ever recorded.
Edited Version
It's normal version, but "This is our last dance" line is repeating till the end. Although this line is not repeating on 'Greatest Hits II', it's shorter about 5 seconds (3:39) than original.
Classic Queen Version
On CD Classic Queen appears remixed version. Whole sound is polished so the song is cleaner. Hollywood Records cutted out "That's O-kay!" line just before "It's the terror of knowing".
Demo Version
It's version recorded by Brian at KWEB radio in America.
US TV Version
From the 'Saturday Night Live' TV appearance ('Crazy Little Thing Called Love' TV version was also recorded there).
Rah! mix
On 'Greatest Hits 3', this version features some clips of UP jamming session with David Bowie. Some instruments got new dimension and the drums sound a bit in pop-style. Intro with Freddie's "You say New York, New York is dangerous..." is very interesting.

Soul Brother
Original B-side
B-side to the 'Under Pressure' single, on 7" and CD3.

You Don't Fool Me
Demo version
Roots of this song come from from this era, but the song itself was released on Made In Heaven album.

Feel Like
Early version of Under Pressure
It has completly different lyrics and features David Bowie on piano. Recorded in 1981.

Life Is Real
Demo Version
Almost the same 3:30 song as the Hot Space version. Different intro and they used effects on the lyrics:" Lennon is a genius"

Las Palabras De Amor
Demo Version
This 4:26 demo version is very different to the Hot Space version, the lyrics are very different and so is the intro.
 

My opinion:
5/10
Even I don't love this album at all, while the second part is quite good and the face is saved with 'Under Pressure'.
'Dancer', 'Put Out The Fire', Back Chat' - songs, which I could listen every day.
I think that this album is mostly work of John and he could fight for really hard R&B and Funk. Maybe it's the album, which managed them to have free '83, because recording was not so peaceful sometimes.

Thanx to Niek for some information on other versions.