City: Leeds, UK
Venue: Elland Road
Date: May 29, 1982

Setlist:
Flash (tape), The Hero, We Will Rock You (fast), Action This Day, Play The Game, Staying Power, Somebody To Love, Now I'm Here, Dragon Attack, Now I'm Here (reprise), Love Of My Life, Keep Yourself Alive (improv), Save Me, Back Chat, Get Down Make Love, guitar solo, drum solo, Under Pressure, Fat Bottomed Girls, Crazy Little Thing Called Love, Bohemian Rhapsody, Tie Your Mother Down, Another One Bites The Dust, Sheer Heart Attack, We Will Rock You, We Are The Champions, God Save The Queen



         

The original intention was to play this show at Old Trafford, the home of Manchester United Football Club. Despite it having been cleared by the council and police (and not to mention, tickets had already been printed), it was the local residents who somehow got the last vote, insisting that the volume of the sound would be disturbing. Residents of Leeds voiced similar complaints after it was announced that the show would be played at Elland Road, but it would go on regardless. There were reports that Queen had paid for residents to move out of their homes for the day, and perhaps this was part of the negotiations with the local authorities. This was unfamiliar territory for the people of Leeds - at the time this is the biggest show ever staged there.

A fan who attended the show vividly recalls the opening bands' sets, saying how The Teardrops Explodes got [lemonade] bottled by the crowd (frontman Julian Cope appeared very nervous throughout his band's set to begin with). Another fan says, "Cope picked one of the bottles up and started hitting himself with it and stretching his arms out saying he was an Argentinian bomber or something. It was during the Falklands war, remember." Some have come to interpret this reaction of Queen fans towards the post-punk opening act as a manifestation of their distaste for Queen's general departure from rock on the Hot Space album. Heart and Joan Jett And The Blackhearts, both hard rock acts, went down well.

Right from the beginning, the band could feel like it was going to be top notch show due to the audience's involvement and enthusiasm. "Too much!" Freddie says to their singing in the fast version of We Will Rock You. After the song, he greets them. "Good evening, Leeds! Hey, it's really nice to be here. You're a wonderful-looking crowd, I'll tell you. You're a fucking amazing crowd, and you don't know what that means to a performer." Action This Day gets a lukewarm response like at most shows, but both the audience and band are truly on fire for the remainder of the evening, perhaps even more so than on the officially-released show from a week later with the title "Queen On Fire: Live At The Bowl." At one point Freddie was almost pulled into the crowd.

As Roger plays the beginning Staying Power, Freddie says, "C'mon, get your funky hats on now, huh?" Tonight the first chorus is "You and me we got... fucking power." This show is a fine example of Freddie's stellar vocal control, especially in Staying Power and Somebody To Love. After the former, he said it was a "fucking motherfucker to sing, I tell you."

Brian, before Love Of My Life: "I wanna tell you, it means a lot to us to come back up here after eight years. We won't wait this long before we come back to Leeds, okay?" But they never would.

Before Save Me, Freddie does a brief improv of Keep Yourself Alive with the audience. Brian then noodles on the piano as he usually does, and you can hear the disappointment of a few audience members as it sinks in that the band aren't going to perform the debut album classic. Freddie would initiate a similar improv in Nagoya a few months later.

A superb version of Back Chat is played tonight, after being absent at the past few shows. Brian gives his absolute all towards the end, bringing it such energy almost to the point of it becoming a completely different song.

Freddie has a slight moment of honesty before Fat Bottomed Girls: "This next song reminds me of all the dirty things I've done in my life, you know. I'm not gonna explain all the things, but you know what I mean. The bigger the tit, the better it is, I kind of think."

At the end of the show, he tells the audience how they were "Absolutely fabulous. We shall not forget you!"

Queen waited until 10pm to go on, as they wanted their lighting show to be at its most effective, but this resulted in a fine from the authorities. They wouldn't be so lucky in Milton Keynes a week later, as seen on the video footage. Despite the various rumours told over the years, the Leeds show was not filmed. Years later Brian May recalled this to be one of his favourite shows, and said he wished they had recorded and filmed this show instead of Milton Keynes.

Here are two reviews of the concert (the second one is a pretty extensive article from Record Mirror, but a great read): 1 2a 2b

The first pic was submitted by Fabio Minero, and the last two are from Alessio Rizzitelli.

Here are a few pro pics from this show: 1 2 3 4 5

More pictures from this show can be found at http://www.repfoto.com. You have to register as a user.

Various bootleg 45s (such as this one) were released in the early 90s containing interviews with Brian and Roger done on the afternoon before the Leeds show.

Queen reportedly rehearsed the Hot Space ballad "Las Palabras de Amor" before this show, but it was never performed live.


Recording length: 99 minutes (2 CD, incomplete)
Quality: A-
Source: Audience
Lineage: AUD > Master > 1st Gen Cassette > WAV > CDR (x)
Track listing:
Flash (tape), The Hero, We Will Rock You (fast), Action This Day, Play The Game, Staying Power, Somebody To Love [cut], Now I'm Here, Dragon Attack, Now I'm Here (reprise), Love Of My Life, Keep Yourself Alive (improv), Save Me, Back Chat, Get Down Make Love, guitar solo, drum solo, Under Pressure, Fat Bottomed Girls, Crazy Little Thing Called Love, Bohemian Rhapsody, Tie Your Mother Down [cut], Another One Bites The Dust, Sheer Heart Attack, We Will Rock You, We Are The Champions, God Save The Queen


The audience is completely into the show, leaving the recording dripping with atmosphere. Horrible-sounding multi-gen copies circulated for ages, but this version is transferred from a first gen tape. There is no reverb at all, like most amateur outdoor recordings. It plays a half-semitone too fast, and there are a couple slight cuts.


Recording length: 2 CDR, incomplete
Quality: ?
Source: Audience
Lineage: "Live At Leeds" (Breakdown)

 
Track listing:
Flash (tape), The Hero, We Will Rock You (fast), Action This Day, Play The Game, Staying Power, Somebody To Love [cut], Now I'm Here, Dragon Attack, Now I'm Here (reprise), Love Of My Life, Keep Yourself Alive (improv), Save Me, Back Chat, Get Down Make Love, guitar solo, drum solo, Under Pressure, Fat Bottomed Girls, Crazy Little Thing Called Love, Bohemian Rhapsody, Tie Your Mother Down [cut], Another One Bites The Dust, Sheer Heart Attack, We Will Rock You, We Are The Champions, God Save The Queen


Breakdown's CDR version has been speed corrected, but as usual their hiss reduction left a slight crackling in the sound, heard especially in the drums.

Here's a link to the always-reliable GS review: http://www.collectorsmusicreviews.com


Recording length: 102 minutes (2 CDR, incomplete)
Quality: ?
Source: Audience
Lineage: "Hottest Leeds" (Uxbridge)

   
Track listing:
Flash (tape), The Hero, We Will Rock You (fast), Action This Day, Play The Game, Staying Power, Somebody To Love [cut], Now I'm Here, Dragon Attack, Now I'm Here (reprise), Love Of My Life, Keep Yourself Alive (improv), Save Me, Back Chat, Get Down Make Love, guitar solo, drum solo, Under Pressure, Fat Bottomed Girls, Crazy Little Thing Called Love, Bohemian Rhapsody, Tie Your Mother Down [cut], Another One Bites The Dust, Sheer Heart Attack, We Will Rock You, We Are The Champions, God Save The Queen


Uxbridge also corrected the speed for their September 2010 bootleg release, but left the recording otherwise untouched.




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