The Miracle (1989)


 
1. Party 2. Khashoggi's Ship 3. The Miracle 4. I Want it All 5. The Invisible Man 6. Breakthru 7. Rain Must Fall 8. Scandal 9. My Baby Does Me 10.Was it All Worth it 11.Hang On in There 12.Chinese Torture

 

I don't know if it was intentional or not, but the title "The Miracle" could very well refer to the fact that this record even got made. It has now been confirmed that Freddie Mercury was diagnosed with AIDS well prior to the making of this album, but to his credit, he kept on working (they would even release two more albums, albeit one posthumously). Their days of touring were long gone, and this probably had some factor that the record didn't quite do as well as some of their other releases. To be blatantly honest, the record is good but falls far short of expectations considering what these guys normally accomplish.

They've once again fallen victim to the "dance" craze. O.K., like the early eighties, this kind of music was sort of experiencing a comeback during the late eighties, so even though you could still refer to this as "dance", similarities are somewhat minimal. What this album does have to its advantage, is that many of the songs of this vein are somewhat catchy and listenable. Songs such as Scandal and The Invisible Man are a bit difficult to digest when you first hear them, but they actually become quite agreeable after several spins.

As with most Queen albums, diversity is a goal, and they sound great when they belt out such rockers as I Want it All, Was it All Worth It and even the somewhat strange Khashoggi's Ship. Any one who wants to reminisce with "old" Queen needs to make sure they pay close attention to Breakthru. Yes, it's a bit too new-waveish, but this is one of those undervalued gems in their collection.

For some reason, though, the band almost sounds as if they're trying a bit too hard to connect the dots. Many times some of the songs sound forced, and the songs seem to feel as though they really belong on several different albums. When they go from disco-dance to in-your-face rock as quickly as they do, you almost lose your balance. The opening and closing tracks Party and Chinese Torture are downright awful and, fortunately, not very long. This is a weird way to bookend an album. Despite the unevenness, there's a nice mix of scattered pleasantries tossed in about.

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