As Brian May’s propulsive chug of Now I’m Here ramps up the anticipation, it’s clear that Queen have arrived at the top of their game and the funicular of fame. This landmark show runs on confidence and swagger – Freddie, in satin catsuits, wasn’t short on either – and draws on their exhilarating first four albums.
Arguably the pomp crushed the romp thereon, but with Bohemian Rhapsody midway through its initial record-breaking run at No.1 they were revelling in acclaim and dripping adrenalin. The climax of their tour, broadcast on the Beeb, this celebration was their Hammersmith of the gods.
Forty years on, it’s released on every format imaginable, with new audio mixes and restored footage. There’s a new bonus documentary, with interviews, and film of the band live at The Budokan the same year.
A version of Big Spender notwithstanding, this was Queen as a savagely good rock band, before cabaret controlled.