Queen Live November 26, 1975, The band performed at Free Trade Hall in Manchester, England. “A Night At The Opera” Tour

Queen play two sold-out shows today (at 6pm and 9pm), and this listing highlights the earlier show.

After Sweet Lady, Freddie says, “By the way, I forgot to say how nice it is to be here in Manchester. And it’s really nice to do two shows, so see you in the second half.”

This show is the first known instance of Brighton Rock being played live, and it contains a superb Brian May guitar solo. Son And Daughter is now reduced to a single verse after the solo. People attending their shows during this period who knew the albums well would be wondering how the band would end the song, taking note of how they already had ended Flick Of The Wrist with the Brighton Rock coda (it had been performed this way since November ’74, and would remain as such through 1976).

In a 1976 radio interview, Roger reveals that Brighton Rock was actually a leftover from the Queen II sessions, as they thought they’d had enough material. About its life on stage, Brian added: “We didn’t think we could do the main part of the song on stage, because it’s got quite a lot on it on the album, a lot of overdubs and stuff. But strangely enough, it’s just one of those things, if you try hard enough it comes, and the excitement makes up for the things which aren’t there.”

“It’s now time to do another number from this little album here.” He’s holding a copy of the newly released A Night At The Opera in his hand. “Let me see, let me see. I think we’ll do a number called The Prophet’s Song.”

They decide to skip out on Big Spender, and instead launch directly into Jailhouse Rock after Now I’m Here.

There are some great moments in this show, like John’s great bass work in White Queen, and the guitar-drum interplay during the Liar solo. Overall, the band’s ultimate tightness (and often daring nature) in the early days shines through. This facet of Queen is one of many that would define them as a live band in the 70s.

Journalist David Wigg shared this story about one of the two Manchester shows today video podcast in 2020: “I went to the concert and I went backstage and Mary [Austin] was there. And they were roaring, calling him back for more, and he came out of the side platform of the stage into the dressing room, picked up an iron and threw it through a full length mirror that he dressed in front of earlier. And I said, ‘Freddie, Gosh! You’re obviously not superstitious. That’s seven years bad luck in my family.’ And he said, ‘Well that means I’ve got another seven years to live, haven’t I, David?'”

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