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CONCERT REVIEWS: Queen + Adam Lambert, Pittsburgh, July 31, 2019 (UPDATED)

Filed Under () by broddybounce on Thursday, August 1, 2019

Posted at : Thursday, August 01, 2019

A duo of "killer" reviews for the Queen + Adam Lambert concert at the PPG Paints Arena in Pittsburgh (7/31/19) from the city's main newspaper, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, and a smaller area paper, The Beaver County Times.  Third piece below from the Pittsburgh City Paper is less of a review and more a photo spread, but very nice shots!

UPDATE (8/1/19): Additional review from Pittsburgh Music Magazine added at bottom of post.


Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: 
"Queen + Adam Lambert at PPG Paints Arena is pretty killer"

credit: Haldan Kirsch/Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
"Rami Malek...grabbed the Oscar for portraying Freddie Mercury in 'Bohemian Rhapsody,' and while they don’t hand out awards for concert performances, by the end of the night...Adam Lambert clearly earned the velvet cloak and crown he donned for 'We Are The Champions.'"
"Playing stand-in for Freddie Mercury requires an impossible balance of humility and flamboyance that Lambert, with glitter on his eyelids, somehow managed to strike by just being himself."
"...the important thing is that he has rare pipes to soar like Mercury without ever falling into imitation or parody."
"For the set-closing 'Bohemian Rhapsody'...May and Lambert crushed the song’s hyperdrive climax in the most thrilling musical moment of the night."


Beaver City Times: 
"Queen was a killer at Pittsburgh Show"

credit: Sarah Wilson / for the Times
"Big, bold and bodacious — it was everything you’d hope for from a Queen concert.  With Adam Lambert firmly handling lead vocals, the classic rock band lived up to its lofty legacy..."
"Prestigious and precise, Lambert was a charmer, with a clear and charismatic voice and ample stage panache."
"You had to be feeling goosebumps as Lambert took a big breath than nailed the final verse of 'Under Pressure'..."


Pittsburgh City Paper:
"Concert photos: Queen + Adam Lambert at PPG Paints Arena"

credit: Mike Papariella
"Queen brought The Rhapsody Tour to PPG Paints Arena last night as part of a 23-date arena and stadium tour celebrating the song first made famous by original singer Freddie Mercury in 1975."


Pittsburgh Music Magazine:
Concert Review and Pictorial: Queen + Adam Lambert = Rhapsody

With appreciation to our regular reader Patria for a wonderful find, this piece in Pittsburgh Music Magazine is epic for what music critic Alan D. Welding wrote about Adam, as well as one of the best photo layouts we've ever seen in a review.  Well done!

"Unforgettable. That about sums it up. For anyone who had doubts about Adam Lambert’s abilities and attended the show, they had those doubts quashed thoroughly. The key is that Lambert does not attempt to be Freddie Mercury but to honor his legacy. He puts just the right about of theatricality and small amounts of mimicry combined with an unbelievable voice that American Idol viewers only saw scratch the surface."
 "There were so many highlights it’s hard to pinpoint all of them, but certainly, Adam Lambert’s multiple outfits were noteworthy, enough to make my wife insanely jealous. When Adam appeared up from the depths of the stage on a Harley for “Bicycle Race” and camped it up as he sprawled across the body of the bike and belted out the lyrics, the crowd went nuts."


broddybounce said...

Folks, FYI -- yes, great Pittsburgh stuff here but, in case you're wondering, "hey, wait, where are the Wash DC reviews?" Wellll... unless something happens to come out later, unfortunately there were none! :(

And, Nanbert ... we are waiting with bated breath to hear your thoughts on the show!

Patria said...

Last nights show sounds like it was Excellent with some original highlights to call their own. Love all the great things they are saying about Adam, that's why want to read them.

Traveling thru twitter I found 2 tweets I'd like to share. First one is from on of these reviews.

And the description of Brian May as an 'afffable beast on guitar' is brilliant I think 😆

during we are the champions the entire crowd was singing and it was beautiful and this little old man who came to the concert all by himself says just loud enough for me to hear “freddie i hope you’re seeing this buddy” and put his hand on his heart AND I STARTED BAWLING OMFG

Dee R Gee said...

Two wonderful reviews! And I love reading tweets from QAL first-timers (and skeptics) who are surprised but THRILLED that Adam is so absolutely astounding.

And Nanbert, we're waiting to hear!

Sue Smith said...

So wonderful. Nanbert just may be tuckered out. Those concerts have been packed and tons of energy. Give her some time to recover. I'm sure she will be back.
So great that Adam's getting the praise he deserves. Patricia that is so heart warming about that little man. Bless him.

Sunflower said...

I am so loving these good reviews from all the concerts!

Patria said...

Another excellent review from Pittsburg.

broddybounce said...

Terrific, Patria! Thanks...will add shortly.

Sunflower said...

Thanks Patria, just read the review! Indeed another excellent one.

Sue Smith said...

Thanks Patricia. What a wonderful review. Adam so richly deserves these reviews. He deserves every bit of this praise. The review was much appreiated.

Nanbert said...

Hi everyone. Believe me, I've been trying to write about the concert, and have been getting SO frustrated with technology!...or something!

First, yesterday, the day after the concert, I spent a long time...with occasional breaks, pouring my heart out about the concert.

Then, today, I find that my loving "opus" is not here. Don't know what happened. Did I forget to click on "publish"? Bummer!

So, today, I started all over. I spent a long time rewriting my impressions. When I was finished, I tried to "publish" and nothing happened....but a sentence popped up saying ..."Your HTML cannot be accepted. Must be at most 4,096 characters"...written in Red Letters! I haven't a clue what an HTML is, but I interpreted that to mean my comment was too long.

So, I set about drastically cutting and editing what I had written, but nothin I did would remove that red printed sentence! All in all I spent writing, and then reducing... at least two hours!...and the red sentence wouldn't go away nor would it publish my comments! And by that time, I was certain I had certainly reduced what I said to well below that 4,096 words. Whatever!...don't even know if this will print, but felt I had to explain why I didn't tell about the concert as promised.

Tomorrow, if this can publish, I will give it another try, even though we have passed by that timing for that concert. I try not to be too long-winded!haha

Patria said...

But Nanbert, did you have a great time?

Nanbert said...

Ratria...hahahaha, OF COURSE I DID....that's why I got in trouble I guess....evidently I said too much. Not unusual for long-winded me...but I'm certain I've written longer-winded stuff here than that here. Maybe that's a new rule?

I'll get back to you ...I'm just tired of review writing for the moment! Sorry!

Nanbert said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
broddybounce said...

Nanbert: we were wondering what happened to you! Glad you had a great time at the concert -- but tragic about your writing disappearing into cyberspace, that is so frustrating! I would definitely type it out on a separate document and save it, so you don't have to worry about writing it over yet again, and then, once we figure out what's wrong, you can then just copy & paste. I'm just so sad what you originally wrote is gone. :( I do not understand why that happened though. No, to my knowledge there is no limitation in how much you can write on a comment. Although, to be safe, you could split it up into two comments.

Are you using a desktop/laptop computer or smartphone? Doing long comments on smartphone can be dangerous because I have found there is more possibility for a problem -- and then losing what you wrote! This has happened to me countless times. On the desktop or laptop you have a bit more flexibility. Please let me know if I can help -- we want to read your review! :)

Sue Smith said...

It's certainly happened to me a couple times. They do limit it to certain amount. I do comment on a cell phone.yea I think splitting it up in 2 or 3 comments is safer. Glad you had a good time. We want to hear all about it. But no need to stress out. There is nothing like antisapation.
That was to put it in 2 or 3 posts.

Nanbert said...

Okay, I'm back....overflowing with praise for the Pittsburgh concert, and anxiously hoping to trim my remarks down so I won't get into trouble. It's SO hard! Finger crossed!

First, I am always struck by Queen's sense of drama on "opening" (they NEVER rush)...the long electronic humming and brightening lights whipping the audience into paroxysms of hope and cheering.

Finally, Innuendo is playing, slipping into "I Am Here"...curtains open on Brian.. then Adam flashes on each side...and suddenly...explosively...Dah Dah!... THEY ARE ALL THERE!! And at that moment, this silly old lady was surprised to feel tears flowing down my cheeks!

I would only tell THAT to other Glamberts...I even kept it from my accompanying grandson in the darkened venue as I quickly dabbed my cheeks. So unexpected!

And, YES, everything was PERFECT!!!!...the Music, of course...Queen, of course...ADAM, OF COURSE,...the other band members, staging, lighting, etc., of course! I am often struck at how much the lighting, especially the spotlighting, adds to the drama of the show. Everyone, everything is so professional, perfectly rehearsed and precisely timed as to appear seamless.

Adam and Brian move so inconspicuously from "mark"to "mark"...and they always arrive at the place where the spotlight finds them at the precise moment that they start their "solo". What's so special about that to me is that it's NOT's seamless...but appears quite natural and unrehearsed. And, of course, Adam and Brian seem to have a symbiotic "sense" of each other while performing.

Adam's voice was superb, as usual. Hearing him live is awesome! Although he had a concert the night before in Washington, his voice was just as brilliant as ever as he rattled the rafters in that huge venue...and elicited gasps from the audience with his vocal acrobatics and inhumanly sustained notes that we all know so well.
(continued below)

Nanbert said...

(continued from above)
QAL slips so easily from one song into another...leaving no one time to breathe or clap. THAT is wondrous, too...because considering the number of times they have performed these songs, and how often they have changed the sequence, they are all ALWAYS precisely at the same place in the music together! Such seamless! How do they do it!

Adam's costumes, of course, elicited ooohs and aaahs from the audience with each change, and he looked magnificent! Too bad that most of the photos from the concerts only show his first splendid costume!

From the first videos of this tour, I have been struck by Adam's presence on the stage...more than ever before it seems to me. He moves with such authority and electric grace...very ALPHA...that even is apparent in their still photos, IMO. Although his voice entwines flawlessly with Brian's guitar, his body seems to respond more to Roger's drums. Sometimes I like to think of the three...Adam, Brian and a BRAID...each strand embracing and supporting the other to make a thing of beauty. And I especially love it when the three perform together at the end of the catwalk... such amazing talents!...such warm friends! I always have to smile....watching them perform together.

I have been delighted to see, during this tour, the rest of the band introduced and applauded.... at Adam's instigation, I'll bet, since he has always done that with his own bands. They are all superb!

I am also pleased to see the excellent reviews from the Pittsburgh spite of a slight suggestion of "imitation"(!) of Freddie by Adam, and a slight mention of a "tribute" band elsewhere by another. Frankly, I think that many reviewers (and audiences) do not quite understand what Queen and Adam Lambert IS...and which, as I've already stated ad nauseum, I feel is partly due to Adam's "pink elephant speech".

Anyway, all good things come to an end...sigh! And while leaving the venue....that huge crowd shuffling shoulder to shoulder, I could not help but notice how different it was than the crowd we'd shuffled and shouldered with coming longer quite strangers, since we'd all just shared something very special and precious together...and spirits were brightened and there was a sense of camaraderie among those thousands of fans. NICE!

And last, but not least, just as that massive crowd exited from the venue and milled around...we were all suddenly startled by a great caravan of motorcycles flanking big black dark-windowed vans...all with sirens blaring and lights flashing...inching itself around the corner through the red light, and eventually speeding off down the street.

It wasn't until the following morning, checking for reviews online, when I discovered a video from Brian May showing and thanking the Pittsburgh Police for their royal escort to the airport! NICE!

Nanbert said...

There's so much I left out, because I loved, loved, loved every second of that concert, and was so proud to share it with my grandson. But I've looked forward to it for so long that now there's a bit of a let-down.

But, fortunately, my new grandaughter has been born, and I am flying down to Tampa to meet her in a couple of weeks! Whee...something else to look forward to!

Sue Smith said...

Congratulations on the new arrival of
Your granddaughter Nambert. Really glad
you had a great time at the concert.
I remember the one in 2014 at the arena in Houston. There were Limos all down the block from the entrance door. I also remember from two concerts I went to, his voice it just absolutely huge.
The concerts are bigger and better everytime his outfits amaizing.

broddybounce said...

Nanbert, thank you for your wonderful and very detailed review!! I knew exactly what you were feeling! The moment Adam first comes onstage is always amazing, isn't it? Reminds of when I first saw him in SF on the Glamnation Tour and how electric and glorious and exciting his entrance was.

Also, when he comes out to sing "Doing All Right" with Roger & Brian, that was another great moment, and the audience really cheered.

But, wait a minute -- I see from your show on YouTube that Adam has dropped the expression "pink elephant" and makes it less "forgive me" and more "I am HERE and glad to be!" if you know what I mean.

Great you go to share this with your grandson! May I ask, how old is he? And did he enjoy it? How does he feel about Adam?

Also: congrats on your new grandchild! Mazel tov!

Sunflower said...

Nanbert! Happy for you on your new grandchild CONGRATS!!! I have family in Tampa too! Also thank you for sharing your QAL experience with us, I hear you girl about tears streaming down your face! This journey with Adam and with Queen has been very emotional on all levels! We ALL love Adam with every fiber of our being! My turn is coming up this Friday the 9th in Chicago! I believe Dee R Gee is going to the same show, we don't know each other but at least I'll know one Glambert by name. Hahahaha

Nanbert said...'re right about the "pink elephant" part...I should have just said Adam's "speech"... I just had become so used to the PE label. Actually, it was a bit softened, and as usual, Adam handled it very graciously.

I hope the speech continues to evolve, because it's nice that he points out Brian and Roger as "rock icons", encourages applause for them and says what a privilege it is to perform with them. And, it IS appropriate at that point to add Freddy in too...and also say he's been a Queen fan most of his life. However, he should avoid saying the more humbling things that invite comparison with Freddie and make him almost sound as though he considers himself inferior or second-best...such as "one and only Rock God", or "I'm not Freddie.. I know, it sucks". Well, you know all the humbling and apologetic remarks that makes us cringe.

Your remark about the thrill of seeing Adam strolling, singing, into the spotlight from the dark during "Doing Alright" was right-on, and reminds me of a similar appearance he used to do in "Under Pressure". And it makes me think again of all the clever (and inconspicouous) lighting tricks Queen has that enhance the drama of their program.

BTW, my grandson is 21. He already liked Adam...and Queen...but was not an AVID fan like He sang and whooped and hurrayed along with me, and after the concert he marveled that Adam "really has a fantastic voice...I understand why you're such a fan". We had a great time together...with dinner before. In spite of our obvious age difference, we are truly BEST friends, and often get together for weekend brunch and long hilarious conversations. He's just such fun to be with! He is my EFF (Exceptionally Fine Fellow) and am his EFG (Exceptionally Fine Grandmother)!

I envy all the Glamberts who still have their concerts to attend, and await their reviews, too....Sunflower and Dee R Gee. Enjoy!