Queen without Freddie Mercury? Isn’t that like the Doors without Jim Morrison (the laughable Doors of the 21st Century notwithstanding)? Or INXS without Michael Hutchence, especially after the band anointed his would-be successor on a TV talent show? After all, when Paul McCartney recycles the Beatles catalogue in concert, he almost leaves the impression that John, George, and Ringo were only his incidental back-up band. No wonder that in this age of retro-revisionism, matching a singer without a group (Paul Rodgers, former frontman for Free and Bad Company) to a group without a singer (Queen minus Mercury) seems a shameless way to boost the profit potential for a combined comeback tour. So what does it matter if Queen is slimmed down to guitarist Brian May and drummer Roger Taylor, with Rodgers in tow helping reap the rewards? Frankly we find it a weird mix, although it does guarantee plenty of recycled hits from all the outfits involved. Are they still the champions? No matter. Some fans just can’t get enough.
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