Queen: “Seven Seas of Rhye”

ALBUM: Queen Two

YEAR: 1974

WRITER: Freddie Mercury

Didn’t chart in the U.S., but became the band’s first British hit, peaking at number-10 there.

“Seven Seas of Rhye” was written toward the end of the recording of Queen’s debut album. A minute of instrumental music from the track was included at the end of that album. It reappeared in its entirety on Queen Two and became the only single drawn from that album. As guitarist Brian May tells it, they were told that “Keep Yourself Alive” failed as a single because it took so long to get to Freddie Mercury’s vocal. “Seven Seas of Rhye” was a reaction to that. “We said, ‘Right, you buggers, the next one you get everything in the first 15 seconds,’ – which is exactly what happens in ‘Seven Seas of Rhye.’ You know, the whole kitchen sink is in there and before you know where you are Freddie’s in there singing the verse.”

Queen Two came out in the U.S. forty-three years ago today (April 4th, 1974).


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