Thursday, April 24, 2014

"Under Pressure" by Queen & David Bowie

Song#:  0812
Date:  11/07/1981
Debut:  80
Peak:  29
Weeks:  15
Genre:  Rock

Pop Bits:  After great success with their #1 1980 album "The Game," and contributions to the "Flash Gordon" soundtrack, Queen issued their first "Greatest Hits" album. This particular single found its way onto the compilation in a few countries (including the US), but really it was meant to server as the lead-off single to their next studio album "Hot Space." The song was an immediate hit in the UK soaring to #1 and it was a Top 10 success in many other countries. However, the US didn't follow suit and the single barely cracked the Top 30. At the time it was a big disappointment, but over time the song had grown into one of their most popular and recognizable tracks.

ReduxReview:  I have to admit that back in the day, I didn't latch onto this song. It's mini-epic format kind of confused me and I wasn't connecting with the tune. It wasn't until later when I was getting into Bowie that I finally latched onto it. Now, it comes close to being my favorite Queen song. Based on its peak, US audiences seemed perplexed as well, but many would later jump on board as I did.

ReduxRating:  9/10

Trivia:  Double Shot!  1) This song came about when Bowie was at the studio with Queen to work on another song. A jam session began that was based off another song Queen had been working on called "Feel Like." Soon, the song took shape and the jam session resulted in this song.  2) One reason contributing to the song's longevity comes from its prominent use in the #1 1990 hit "Ice Ice Baby" by Vanilla Ice. A sample of the song's opening provided the backdrop to "Ice Ice Baby," but neither Queen nor David Bowie received credit for the use. This started a controversy where Ice denied he used a sample (even though the opening of both songs are identical) and claimed he changed it a little. Lawsuits ensued and eventually it was settled with Queen and Bowie getting credit. Later, Ice did set the record straight and admit he used a direct sample from "Under Pressure."


No comments:

Post a Comment