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Seattle Post-Intelligencer

ROCK GROUP QUEEN FINDS ITS SUCCESS IN ANTHEMS

Queen drummer Roger Taylor makes no pretense as to what his band is
all about.

While describing Queen's new Capitol Records album, ''The Miracle,'' the willowy percussionist offhandedly remarked, ''Anthems are our business.''

Some time ago, Taylor and his bandmates - guitarist Brian May, vocalist Freddie Mercury and bassist John Deacon - saw the anthemic future of rock 'n' roll.

The band surfaced out of England in the early 1970s with a spate of overwrought, though undeniably compelling, hard-rock albums.

It was during the mid-1970s that Queen plunged into grander, more-concise song forms.

''Bohemian Rhapsody'' was the first such experiment, a sprawling rock opera packed into a four-minute single.

But it was not until 1977 Queen perfected its composing craft.

That is when the band released ''We Will Rock You'' and ''We Are the Champions,'' songs that have since emerged as the unofficial themes of numerous sporting events.

With ''The Miracle'' rocketing up the album charts, Queen seems on its way to being a champion again.

''The idea was to record with less computers and drum machines, and get back to some real rock 'n' roll again,'' said Taylor.

The public's renewed interest in Queen caught Taylor off guard.

The drummer and guitarist May were surprised by the response they received during a recent Hollywood visit.

''It's been a great little trip,'' Taylor said. ''I can't believe the buzz here about Queen. The record has gone from No. 83 to No. 31 in a week. I was talking to a guy at Billboard (magazine), and he seemed pretty stunned by the record's progress.''

''There have been a lot of other things I did not count on. I see a lot of new bands out there playing Queen-style stuff. Every time I go to restaurants, I hear from some fan who likes the first album ('Queen') or 'Day at the Races.' It's remarkable.''

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