Made in Heaven (1995)


 
1. It's a Beautiful Day 2. Made in Heaven 3. Let Me Live 4. Mother Love 5. My Life Has Been Saved 6. I Was Born to Love You 7. Heaven for Everyone 8. Too Much Love Will Kill you 9. You Don't Fool Me 10.A Winter's Tale 11.It's a Beautiful Day (Reprise) 12.Yeah

 

It really really is hard to honestly review an album such as this. In case you don't know the story, Freddie Mercury had died three years ago. He knew he was dying of AIDS as much as three years prior to his death, yet he kept working. He was literally on his death bed writing and recording parts to songs that he would never ever see completed, yet he kept going. Such traits are so admirable for someone who could have easily cashed in his chips near the end of his live and simply disappeared, but Mercury's heart was truly in the band, and truly in love with his calling.

The song themes here can honestly be seen as songs with someone facing the inevitable, yet doing it with peace in their hearts and not being gloomy, yet thankful and hopeful. So when you listen to these sentiments throughout the record, it almost brings a tear to your eye. This is truly a moving story. Almost so, that you not only can't review this album objectively, but you almost feel that you shouldn't. What business does anyone have being so critical of such heart felt emotion?

But review this album, we must. In summary, it's heartfelt, it's touching, yet had this record been "just another" release, it would have been looked at, I believe, as something not particularly special nor strong. The album is almost New Agey - a lot of dreamy music, electronic keyboards, heartfelt synthesizers, and, fortunately, Freddie Mercury's angelic voice. In other words, it's not very ambitious. It definitely feels like, not only is Mercury saying "goodbye" to us, but the whole band is bidding its audience farewell.

At the risk of almost sounding offensive, you almost wonder if most of this album is appropriate for a funeral. No, not a somber affair, but a joyous celebration of life. In many cases, it's obvious that Mercury didn't finish recording vocals on many of the songs, so Brian May fills in the empty spots admirably. It's all done very well - almost too well. There are some brief moments of when Queen almost sounds like the Queen of old. Songs such as I Was Born to Love You and Too Much Love Will Kill You have remnants of the old band, but most songs here, while pleasant, are definitely basically an epilogue to a beautiful story.

I'm sure Freddie was smiling from above when he saw the finished product. He should be. A good way to say goodbye.

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