With the Queen mania going on at the moment after the release of the Bohemian Rhapsody movie, I couldn’t not tell you about this time when a fantastic tribute band gave an amazing concert in Nykøbing. It was in the summer 2014, during the yearly town festival (festuge), by the band Queen Machine, one of the best Queen tribute bands in Europe.
Being a huge Queen fan, I couldn’t just stay at home, I had to see for myself. Like a lot of people, I thought « OK, here is one of this cover bands that just imitate famous people… ». For once, my small size was an advantage on the Viking lands, because somebody pushed me to the very front of the stage to allow me to see better. So, here I was, glued to the stage, with my camera, and no expectations at all. But what I saw simply blew me away.
Right from the first minute, I found myself thrown into Queen’s universe and their mythical songs… but not only. What I saw was a smashing and phenomenal performance, by some stunning artists. I honestly think the audience clearly felt the alchemy between the musicians – Peter Møller Jeppesen, Paolo Romano Torquati, Jens Lunde and Henrik Østergaard – and the frontman Bjarke Baisner Laursen. They offered us a breathtaking showmanship, respecting all what made Queen’s legendary touch. Not to mention the amazing light show which really brought a spectacular dimension to the concert.
Bjarke Baisner Laursen also blew me away by his outstanding act. It’s not only the fact that he’s a true artist with a fantastic voice, presence and charisma, but also that he could take Freddy’s place, yet remaining himself. The emotions he just threw right in your face were really his, not just some attitudes borrowed from a famous singer who died some years ago. Under an iconic moustache, and despite his perfect Mercurian poses, it is Bjarke Baisner Laursen you saw, and not only Freddy. Having been an artist myself (guitarist and dancer), I know how it is to interpret a piece that is not your own, but without losing your true self in the process. Here, the frontman showed who he was as an artist, while honouring Mercury’s memory with a great sense of detail and a lot of respect.
I’m very happy I got to see our Danish Freddy and his Queen Machinists playing memorable hits just right at my door ! I have to confess that few days later after the concert, I still feel a kind of emptiness, having trouble to « un-queen » myself and to not think about this great moment anymore. I never thought I would be a « groupie », but here I am, checking Queen Machine’s tour dates expecting them to come again any soon !
You can see the full album of this concert here.