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Queen + Adam Lambert Announce Live Virtual Reality Experience

Queen and Adam Lambert have joined the VR craze.

The group has announced that they have teamed up with Universal Music Group to release a live concert virtual reality experience.

The band and Lambert announced the news via a 30-second trailer. The reveal was set to coincide with their upcoming shows at the Hollywood Bowl.

The VR experience is titled VR The Champions, and puts you right into the concert experience, through a performance filmed in Barcelona last May. It is presented in full 360° through VRTGO – Universal Music Group’s virtual reality platform.

A statement reads: “The immersive video offers front row access to the ultimate on-stage experience with the band. With ‘flying’ 3D and 360° video, the viewer virtually hovers above the audience and even flies among the band members themselves, as they perform on the grand stage of Barcelona’s Palau Sant Jordi.”

The VR project is the brainchild of Queen guitarist Brian May. “This is the fulfillment of a dream. Through this unique virtual reality creation, fans around the world will for the first time be able to experience the excitement and energy of a Queen show in their own homes.”

May added, “Many of you have seen VR – but not VR like this!”

 

VR The Champions will be available for $9.99/€10.99/£9.99 on VRTGO – a VR platform available for iPhone, Android and all major VR platforms and accessible through most web browsers.

It can also be watched through May’s very own OWL VR kit which is available to purchase through The London Stereoscopic Company.

Brian May Teases Previously Unreleased Queen and David Bowie Collaborations

While making the rounds to promote the new Queen in 3-D book, Brian May made some interesting comments about the collaboration between the band and David Bowie for “Under Pressure”.

May told  Mojo (via Radio X) that the studio sessions in 1981 produced more material than just “Under Pressure”.

“It wasn’t easy …,” he said. “(We were) all precocious boys.”. He also called Bowie as particularly “forceful,” saying Bowie and Queen singer Freddie Mercury “locked horns, without a doubt.” Regardless of the butting of heads, May recalls the sessions as wonderful.

“Those are the things that happen in a studio,” said May. That’s when the sparks fly and that’s why it turned out so great. “[They locked horns] in subtle ways, like who would arrive last at the studio. So it was sort of wonderful and terrible. But in my mind, I remember the wonderful now, more than the terrible.”

Near the end of the discussion on Bowie and Queen, May teased the idea of putting out more from their collaboration. “Not all of what we did in those sessions has ever come to light,” he added. “So there’s a thought … ”

Brian May Reveals New Details of the Final Days of Freddie Mercury

In a recent interview with the Sunday Times (via the Daily Telegraph) Queen guitarist Brian May revealed new details on the legendary Freddie Mercury’s final days. Mercury was a very quiet when it came to his personal life, protecting his privacy, even as he battled with AIDS.

One of the most shocking things to come out of the interview was May claiming the disease was taking Mercury down piece by piece, including his foot, which had to be amputated.

“The problem was actually his foot,” May told the Times. “Tragically there was very little left of it. Once, he showed it to us at dinner. And he said, ‘Oh Brian, I’m sorry I’ve upset you by showing you that.’ And I said, ‘I’m not upset, Freddie, except to realize you have to put up with all this terrible pain.’”

Mercury would shortly before the major advancements in AID research. May believes if it would have happened later, that he’d still be alive.

“He missed by just a few months. If it had been a bit later he would still have been with us, I’m sure,” said May. “You can’t do ‘what if,’ can you? You can’t go there because therein lies madness.”

Since this interview has come out, May has expressed his unhappiness with the interview, which was to originally focus on the Queen in 3-D retrospective book.

“This woman came into my house, pretended she was a fan and was going to write a nice piece about the book, as agreed; then went away and wrote this pathetic sensationalistic drivel. I’m angry and disgusted,” wrote May, pointing out that he’d agreed to give the Times the exclusive on the book, including any photos they wanted to run — and they “used just two of them, one of them reproduced not much bigger than a postage stamp; the rest of the piece illustrated with recycled ordinary snaps from God knows where.”

May didn’t single out any specific quotes that left him unsatisfied, but he did admit his anger towards what the headline described as “the debauchery of the Freddie Mercury years.” He also revealed that he will never give the Times “the time of day” from here on out, he assured fans that the book has nothing to do with the story presented by the article.

“I spent over two years fashioning this into the first book of its kind — EVER — a biography of a band from the inside illustrated with my own photographs — and in 3-D, with a fabulous viewer to bring them to life in three dimensions,” May insisted. “It’s honest, goes deep and is tasteful and dignified (I have been told!) but nobody reading this awful amateurish piece of journalistic opportunism would know it.”

‘Queen in 3-D’ Retrospective Book Hitting Stores This Spring

Fans of Queen can now get a personal look at the history of the band with the release of the book, Queen in 3-D.

The book is scheduled to arrive in store on May 25th and is full of archival stereoscopic photos. It also includes guitarist Brian May’s patented OWL photo viewer, adding another personal touch to the 256-page collection of more than 300 previously unpublished photos.

Promising “a series of glimpses of life with the rock band Queen, seen from the inside for the first time,” the Queen in 3-D press release says the book is a one-of-a-kind opportunity for fans to gain a new perspective on the group’s distinguished history.

“The pictures and self-penned text tell the story of Brian’s discovery of the world of stereoscopy as a boy, and chronicle Queen from the early 1970s all the way to the present day,” it reads. “The images, from Brian’s personal archives, were taken using the various stereo cameras which Brian carried throughout his life. … they leap into stunning three-dimensional realism, giving a uniquely vivid impression of life with Freddie Mercury, Roger Taylor, John Deacon and Brian himself, alongside the people who helped to shape Queen’s amazing global adventure.”
For May, the book is a fulfillment of a personal quest to help revive stereoscopic photos with the help of the London Stereoscopic Company, whose online store will be taking orders closer to Queen in 3-D‘s publication.
“A whole new audience can enjoy the magic of immersive 3-D in their own homes, just as our ancestors did in Victorian times,” said May, who’s reportedly working with the company on more books. “We’re restoring and reissuing stereoscopic masterpieces from the 1850s, along with new 3-D wonders of the modern world.”

Hasbro Announces Queen Special Edition Monopoly

Queen has been honored in many ways over the years. The band will now be immortalized in board game form, in a Special Edition copy of Monopoly.

Queen guitarist Brian May announced the news, saying the game should be released in May. May says the band has been “very secretly developing Queen Monopoly for over a year.” Writing that he’d had “a blast” helping put the game together, May went on to compare the process to making an album and concluded, “We hope you love it! Choose your weapons!”

According to Entertainment Weekly, the game board  has been altered to reflect the band’s legacy; instead of buying up real estate and utilities players will instead attempt to achieve Queen-style greatness by following “the amazing gig history of Queen, from their very first at Imperial College in 1970 to their last with Freddie Mercury at Knebworth Park in 1986” and buying “gig locations and hit singles” as they go.

Of course, the altered board isn’t the only that has changed. As with most Special Edition Monopoly games, Queen Monopoly has an assortment of new playing pieces designed after key moments in the band’s history. In addition to May’s guitar, players can choose from a robot (inspired by the News of the World album artwork), a bicycle (a nod to the bands’ “Bicycle Race”), a vacuum cleaner (as seen in the video for “I Want to Break Free”) and a hammer (an allusion to “Hammer to Fall”).

 

Brian May Teaming With Kerry Ellis for New ‘Golden Days’ LP

Queen guitarist Brian May has announced that he and singer Kerry Ellis are working on a new project.

The album is titled Golden Days and set for an April 7th arrival. The LP is the second collaboration between Ellis and May, their first being the 2010 release Anthems. The two went on tour to support Anthems and will do the same for Golden Days.

“This album is a true collaboration between Kerry and myself,” said May in the press release announcing Golden Days. “Five years ago, Anthems was the result of me producing an exciting new artist — Kerry Ellis. This new record has both our names on it, and breaks new ground. We produced ourselves together as a team. I feel confident it’s the best thing we’ve ever done and a worthy testament to 13 years of belief. It also happens to feature Britain’s most beautiful voice!”

“This new album has been a real journey of discovery and I feel so proud of how Brian and I have developed over the years; we have learnt how to work together and inspire each other to create special performances and music,” added Ellis. “The album is really a mixture of our experiences and has a story behind each song. Brian and I have had such fun developing it and can’t wait for people to hear it.”

Take a look at the complete Golden Days track listing below.

Brian May and Kerry Ellis, ‘Golden Days’ Track Listing
“Love in a Rainbow”
“Roll With You”
“Golden Days”
“It’s Gonna Be All Right (The Panic Attack Song)”
“Amazing Grace”
“One Voice”
“If I Loved You”
“Born Free”
“Parisienne Walkways”
“I Who Have Nothing”
“The Kissing Me Song”
“Story of a Heart”
“Can’t Help Falling In Love”

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