The new king of Queen

Brian+May+performing+%22Love+of+My+life%22+at+the+State+Farm+Arena.+The+crowd+singing+along%2C+carrying+the+song+while+swaying+their+flashlights.
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The new king of Queen

Brian May performing

Brian May performing "Love of My life" at the State Farm Arena. The crowd singing along, carrying the song while swaying their flashlights.

Dominik Perez

Brian May performing "Love of My life" at the State Farm Arena. The crowd singing along, carrying the song while swaying their flashlights.

Dominik Perez

Dominik Perez

Brian May performing "Love of My life" at the State Farm Arena. The crowd singing along, carrying the song while swaying their flashlights.

By Dominik Perez, North Cobb High School

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Singer Adam Lambert successfully honored the position left behind by the influential lead singer of Queen, Freddie Mercury. Queen performed at the State Farm Arena in Atlanta as their second to last stop on their Rhapsody Tour, August 22.  This tour saw Adam Lambert’s seventh year touring as the frontman of the band, and alongside him played two of the older band members. Brian May and Roger Taylor took to their old instruments, the electric guitar and drum set, to back up Lambert’s stellar vocals.

The concert displayed jaw-dropping talent with the band’s mastery of musical expertise and passion. As Queen opened up with four lesser-known songs (“Now I’m Here”, “Seven Seas of Rhye”, “Keep Yourself Alive”, and “Hammer to Fall”), it served as no surprise to see that the crowd did not exert as much energy as expected. After a short monologue by Lambert, however, the band hyped up the with their beloved song “Killer Queen”, and almost instantly, joyous energy burst out amongst the crowd. Lambert, in his first outfit of the night (a gold and black kimono), serenaded concert goers while fanning himself with a paper fan. Meanwhile, May paraded around the stage, shredding away at his guitar while Taylor displayed his proficiency with the drums.

Dominik Perez
Brian May taking center stage to play the guitar solo for “Don’t Stop Me Now”. He shreds away at his guitar while the stage lights flash brilliantly in the background.

After the band played more hits (“Don’t Stop Me Now”, “Somebody to Love”, “Life Goes On”, and “I’m in Love with My Car”), Lambert ascended from underneath the stage atop a cherry red motorcycle. Seeing his second outfit of the night, a studded leather jacket with plenty of tassels along with his vibrant mount, the crowd burst out in laughter. This set the perfect theme for the band’s infamous song “Bicycle Race”. He served the song the justice it deserved by rotating on his now-iconic bike. While still flaunting the flamboyant biker jacket, Lambert went on to perform “Another One Bites the Dust” and “I Want It All”.

Dominik Perez
Adam Lambert riding his bike on stage during “Bicycle Race”. He’s wearing a studded leather jacket with black sunglasses. The blue lighting hides the other members of the band, drawing all of the attention to him.

A feeling of somberness fell over the crowd as the stage lights faded to black, and May took center stage with nothing but an acoustic guitar in his hand. He spoke directly to the crowd, thanking them for still welcoming the band after all these years, and encouraged them to sing along with him for the next song. The venue suddenly lit up with cell phone flashlights, swaying back and forth as May began to play “Love of My Life”. Midway through his performance, a stunning recording of Freddie Mercury accompanied him. After the song concluded, the other bandmates accompanied him on stage as Lambert went down the line and introduced each member individually.

With yet another outfit, a simple black vest and red jeans, Lambert took the audience through “A Crazy Little Thing Called Love”, “Under Pressure”, and “I Want To Break Free”. With the end of “I Want To Break Free”, Lambert sunk into the stage, and the other band members disappeared leaving May suspended from the top of the stage for the next part of the concert titled “Guitar Solo”.

Floating on top of a fake meteor, May opened up his 15-minute guitar solo by soaring through a space-themed backdrop. With plenty of fog and lasers to spare, the scene compared to a Laser Floyd show while still maintaining its distinct Queen sound.

The show was brought to an end with Queen’s most popular song, “Bohemian Rhapsody”. Maintaining the classic harmony of the four original band members, the song served as an ode to Freddie Mercury’s legacy.

Overall, the concert did not fail to impress the audience. With the pure talent displayed by the band and the added spectacle of an astonishing light show, the concert proved itself an extreme success. Lambert intends to keep performing with the band for future tours and events, and neither May nor Taylor expressed interest in putting the instruments down just yet. Future audiences may still possess the opportunity to see the breathtaking show live for themselves.

This story was originally published on The Chant on August 27, 2019.