Top Ten Songs by Queen

Beginning a top ten Queen songs list is as easy as bobbing your head to “Another One Bites the Dust”âÂ?¦ it just sort of automatically happens without you noticing it. There are no surprises to be had at first, not with the group who made rock history with some of the most famous tunes of all time.

But eventually you dig down deeply enough in the catalog to find something that not everyone’s had the chance to love as deeply. And then the decisions get harder. A lot harder.

Nonetheless, from arena-glam rock to smooth, sad looks into the human heart, here’s one fan’s look at a band called Queen that truly reigns as king.

(1) Bohemian Rhapsody

Because decades later, whenever someone says the word ‘Queen’ you think not of thrones and crowns but four men shrouded in black shadow chanting “He’s just a poor boy from a poor family!” Because an epic six-minute track going from rock to opera and back again survived unedited on mainstream radio and became the first song ever to hit number 1 on two completely separate occasions. Because they just don’t make songs like this any more. Now and forever, “Bohemian Rhapsody”.

(2) We are the Champions

Quickly finding its place as the climactic moment of the Queen concerts, “We are the Champions” remains a staple for victorious in sports, politics and everything else competitive, to the point of becoming a clichÃ?©-a glorious, happy clichÃ?©. “I can’t believe that somebody hasn’t written a new song to overtake it,” said an astounded Freddie Mercury in 1985. No one ever will.

(3) We Will Rock You

One of the occupational hazards of writing a top Queen songs list is that it starts out by writing itself. One of the few songs in the rock canon that gets most of its live play from jovial sports fans slamming the benches with their fists, “We Will Rock You” has lost none of its swaggering charm to the years, coming off like a haka for heavy metal fans.

(4) Another One Bites the Dust

With an instantly recognizable bass line and a chorus that isn’t too taxing on the memory, “Another One Bites the Dust” is another timeless Queen classic that never seems to go out of style.

(5) Flash

The group’s first excursion into film scoring with the 1980 cult classic “Flash Gordon” was no disappointment; indeed, even today fans of the film celebrate the over-the-top score as the perfect marriage of material to music, giving the campy sci-fi silliness a sweep of giddy gravitas. It’s hard not to cheer for a hero with this tune on the soundtrack, and even harder not to become curious about the film, whose intriguing snippets of pulp dialogue enticingly litter the song’s soundscape.

(6) Bicycle Race

A blissful back-and-forth between a graceful light rock track and more traditional Queen faux-opera, the only disappointment in listening to this song is not getting to see the infamous topless bicycle girls hired for the single’s promotional events.

(7) Don’t Stop Me Now

Pure joy in musical form. With a relatively uncomplicated production when compared with some of the band’s more lavish efforts, this piece is a tour de force for Mercury’s voice, making the vocals the focus rather than the sum of all things. A rollicking piano, not one of the first things one thinks of when Queen springs to mind, takes us in and out with soul and drives the relentless, frenetic body of the song with true verve.

(8) One Vision

Even if this euphoric song had nothing else to offer, no Queen article would be complete without mention of its final two words: yes, they really do sing “fried chicken!” at the end. What other group would so cheerfully and courageously sum up a song of high energy and higher production values with a note of absurd humor?

(9) Under Pressure

This collaboration with David Bowie, later sampled by Vanilla Ice, isn’t just a reminder of how Queen synthesized influences of its time and handed them down to the next generation; it’s fun to dance to, too. A group noted for arena anthems and big ballads had a career on the dance floor-how soon we forget.

(10) Who Wants to Live Forever

Combining equal helpings of raw emotion with an epic, even mythic feel, this piece for “Highlander” effectively sums up what we best remember about the Queen sound. Like the heroes described in the poignant lyrics, Queen reaches across the ages, and will live on forever.

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