Listen to alternative takes on two Queen classics

Queen (Image credit: Chris Hopper)

Queen have released alternative versions of two of their most iconic songs.

We Will Rock You and We Are The Champions will both feature on the upcoming 40th anniversary box set of News Of The World, which will arrive on November 17.

The tracks are included on a CD titled Raw Sessions which features never-before-heard versions of each of the 1977 album’s 11 songs.

A statement reads: “All the lead vocals on the Raw Sessions are from a different take to that used on the original album.

“This includes We Will Rock You, which also features a radically different approach to the guitar solo, reminiscent of Jimi Hendrix, plus the band’s original studio banter recorded immediately prior to the master take. This reveals that the much-speculated noise at the beginning of the 1977 record is actually an echo of Brian’s count-in.

On We Are The Champions, there are also many unfamiliar instrumental elements, most notably from the guitar department. This track was edited on the 1977 album but is presented here for the first time in its originally recorded length with two more choruses.

“Also included is a charming false-start to one of the earliest takes of the song. The recordings also reveal that We Are The Champions, known for its unresolved cliff-hanger ending, was originally intended to fade-out. Freddie ends the take saying: “That was a lovely feel…that’s exactly how it should be.”

A limited edition picture disc will be available through Queen’s online store, while the box set is now available for pre-order.

Find full details on the 40th anniversary edition of News Of The World below, along with both tracks.

Queen News Of The World 40th Anniversary Edition

Original album – new pure analogue cut vinyl

Side One

  1. We Will Rock You
  2. We Are The Champions
  3. Sheer Heart Attack
  4. All Dead, All Dead
  5. Spread Your Wings
  6. Fight From The Inside

Side Two

  1. Get Down, Make Love
  2. Sleeping On The Sidewalk
  3. Who Needs You
  4. It’s Late
  5. My Melancholy Blues

CD 1: The Original Album – Bob Ludwig 2011 master

  1. We Will Rock You
  2. We Are The Champions
  3. Sheer Heart Attack
  4. All Dead, All Dead
  5. Spread Your Wings
  6. Fight From The Inside
  7. Get Down, Make Love
  8. Sleeping On The Sidewalk
  9. Who Needs You
  10. It’s Late
  11. My Melancholy Blues

CD 2: Raw Sessions

  1. We Will Rock You (Alternative Version)
  2. We Are The Champions (Alternative Version)
  3. Sheer Heart Attack (Original Rough Mix)
  4. All Dead, All Dead (Original Rough Mix)
  5. Spread Your Wings (Alternative Take)
  6. Fight From The Inside (Demo Vocal Version)
  7. Get Down, Make Love (Early Take)
  8. Sleeping On The Sidewalk (Live in the USA, 1977)
  9. Who Needs You (Acoustic Take)
  10. It’s Late (Alternative Version)
  11. My Melancholy Blues (Original Rough Mix)

CD3: Bonus tracks

  1. Feelings Feelings (Take 10, July 1977)
  2. We Will Rock You (BBC Session)
  3. We Will Rock You (Fast) (BBC Session)
  4. Spread Your Wings (BBC Session)
  5. It’s Late (BBC Session)
  6. My Melancholy Blues (BBC Session)
  7. We Will Rock You (Backing Track)
  8. We Are The Champions (Backing Track)
  9. Spread Your Wings (Instrumental)
  10. Fight From The Inside (Instrumental)
  11. Get Down, Make Love (Instrumental)
  12. It’s Late (USA Radio Edit 1978)
  13. Sheer Heart Attack (Live in Paris 1979)
  14. We Will Rock You (Live in Tokyo 1982)
  15. My Melancholy Blues (Live in Houston 1977)
  16. Get Down, Make Love (Live in Montreal 1981)
  17. Spread Your Wings (Live in Europe 1979)
  18. We Will Rock You (Live at the MK Bowl 1982)
  19. We Are The Champions (Live at the MK Bowl 1982)

DVD: Queen: The American Dream

News Of The World: How Queen rose from the ashes

Scott Munro
Louder e-commerce editor

Scott has spent 35 years in newspapers, magazines and online as an editor, production editor, sub-editor, designer, writer and reviewer. Scott joined our news desk in the summer of 2014 before moving to the e-commerce team in 2020. Scott keeps Louder’s buyer’s guides up to date, writes about the best deals for music fans, keeps on top of the latest tech releases and reviews headphones, speakers, earplugs and more. Over the last 10 years, Scott has written more than 11,000 articles across Louder, Classic Rock, Metal Hammer and Prog. He's previously written for publications including IGN, the Sunday Mirror, Daily Record and The Herald newspapers, covering everything from daily news and weekly features, to tech reviews, video games, travel and whisky. Scott's favourite bands are Fields Of The Nephilim, The Cure, New Model Army, All About Eve, The Mission, Cocteau Twins, Drab Majesty, Marillion and Rush.