Queen Adam Lambert at the Impact Arena, Bangkok – 30th September 2016

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Posted 21st March 2017 by

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Queen Adam Lambert. How was this going to turn out? This is Queen’s third tour with Adam Lambert (lets be honest, after the tours with Paul Rodgers anything had to be an improvement, all fine players but if ever there was a mismatch  – who can Remember the album they made together….The Cosmos Rocks 2008).

Queen Adam LambertWhile they obviously have the songs to cover all bases ,could they still cut it? Lets face it from one point of view there is a lot stacked against them. The Two remaining original members of Queen are now closing in on 70. The selected lead vocalist, although half the age of the other two name grabbers in the line up, had after all only come Second in the 2009 American Idol show and backing them up were two fine, but Journey Men Musicians plus the Drummers son on Percussion.

The weather and traffic did not exactly help either with a tropical storm blowing over the Arena two hours before the show. That slowed all traffic to a virtual stand still causing the concert to be delayed by nearly an hour, but also allowing many late comers to buy last minute seats and eventually sell out the Impact Arena to its full 11,000 tickets.

Queen and Adam Lambert

Any lingering doubts were dispelled when the curtain dropped and Queen in all their glory rampaged onto the stage with twice the energy of many younger bands. They belted out Queen’s first hit from 1973, Seven Seas of Rye at twice the speed that it was originally recorded at, and from that point on it was one hit after another for two and a quarter hours. There were three giant screens surrounding the band so wherever you were sitting you could catch the action or watch the videos accompanying the songs.

The giant round screen behind the Band was the most effective with clips of Freddie Mercury woven into the show sharing verses with Adam Lambert or Brian May to tumultuous applause. Mention must also be made of the dexterous work of Bass Player Neil Fairclough (replacing reclusive original Bass Player John Deacon) and Keyboard Player Spikey Edney,  who has been associated with Queen since 1984.

Queen and Adam Lambert

When Brian May took over the to sing Love of My Life, a song from the album A Night at the Opera from 1975, on acoustic guitar the audience sang along with every word (according to our source at Metal Works and Record Collector Magazine Mark Taylor, the Thai audience knew the words better and sang louder than the London audience). Not a bad feat considering English is not Thailand’s first Language, and shows what a knowledgeable Rock’n’Roll audience we have here in Thailand. This was followed by the Taylors taking center stage for first, the Roger Taylor penned a Kind of Magic, sung from his Drum kit set up at the end of the walk way usually reserved for Lambert and May, and then we had the family Drum Battle with son Rufus on the big kit on the stage with Dad out front on the little one. I don’t, as a rule, like Drum battles, but this one certainly kept your attention.

Queen and Adam Lambert

Under Pressure had the audience singing and swaying again with an appearance by David Bowie on the big Screen along with Freddie. More hits followed until it was time for Brian May’s Guitar Extravaganza. Hoisted up on a platform, twenty feet above the stage and transformed onto another Galaxy, Brian May showed he has lost nothing in his Guitar Armory. In fact, adding to it including a large section of Starmus Sonic Universe from the album he recorded with Tangerine Dream in 2011 (the only non-Queen music to be played all night). But once Brian May’s Guitar had taken us around the Universe, he was gently brought back to earth and not so gently ripped into Queen’s salute to Punk Rock Tie Your Mother Down, with Rufus Tiger Taylor being allowed one thrash along on the main drum stool (no wonder the boys from the Darkness have snapped him up as their full time Drummer when he is not out on tour with Dad). From this point the band had won all the battles. Bohemian Rhapsody was sensational with full use of all the Screens, Lasers, Mirrors and Lights.

Queen and Adam Lambert

Radio Gag Ga finished off the show proper. But more was to come.  Encores of  a heavy hard rockin’ version of We Will Rock You, followed by band and audience singing us into the night with We Are the Champions. During this the Audience were showered in gold confetti giving the whole of the Impact Arena a very surreal affect.

After the crowd filtered out into the maze of food kiosks outside the arena, there were still groups of fans singing Queen anthems well into the night.

Queen and Adam Lambert were a sensation. Without doubt the best show by a Foreign band in the last thirty years.

This was Queen’s last gig of a very lengthy World Tour. There are no future tours booked. Let’s hope it’s not their last.

Set List:
Seven Seas of Rye
Hammer to Fall
Stone Cold Crazy
Fat Bottomed Girls
Don’t Stop Me Now
Killer Queen
Somebody to Love
A Kind of Magic
Drum Battle
Under Pressure
Crazy Little Thing Called Love
Another One Bites the Dust
I want It All
Who Wants to Live Forever
The Show Must Go On
Brian May’s Guitar Extravaganza
Tie Your Mother Down
I Want to Beak free
Bohemian Rhapsody
Radio Gag Ga

We Will Rock You
We Are the Champions

Written by Hells Bells and Mott the Dog.

Photos by Joe Kicherer, Lars Faeste and Tony Phadang.

Mott the Dog



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