Review of Gary Mullen and The Works Performing One Night of Queen
We arrived at Bristol’s O2 Academy in time to catch support band ‘Doing Time’ and we noticed that the set times for the evening consisted of a hour long support slot. This seemed like a very long time for the support to be playing but as soon as the band came on to the stage and started performing a number of covers from the Foo Fighters to Oasis, the time just seemed to disappear. ‘Doing Time’ did an amazing job of warming up for the main act and everyone was on their feet dancing and singing along.
It was then time for the stars of the show in the form of ‘Gary Mullen and The Works‘. Gary, a lifelong Queen fan rose to fame back in 2000 when he won Stars in Their Eyes, setting a new record for voting figures.
Gary and his band opened with a personal favourite of mine, ‘Tie Your Mother Down‘ and immediately showed off not only his own talent but that of his band. It is clear that Gary has studied Freddie Mercury with acute detail, from his stage presence and iconic wardrobe to his unique voice. Right from the start Gary became Freddie Mercury. This level of detail is why he has had such roaring success and is why he has a long career ahead of him.
Surprisingly the venue was only at half capacity but what was lacking in numbers was more than made up for in energy and atmosphere. Everybody was here for the same reason, to celebrate their love of Queen and to have a bloody good time. Gary encouraged the audience to interact throughout the entire performance and he had us all in the palm of his hand. There wasn’t a single audience member not clapping or singing along.
The band worked their way through all of Queen’s greatest hits, including a cover version of Jailhouse Rock which Queen had performed on their 1980 North American tour. Gary’s energy didn’t wane for the whole evening and every song was met with the same exuberance. During ‘Bohemian Rhapsody‘ the venue had the atmosphere of a stadium concert.
‘We are the Champions’ was chosen as the closing song and Gary came back onto the stage wrapped in a giant Union Jack. This was the perfect end to a perfect evening and the most fun I have had the O2 Academy since Skunk Anansie’s performance last year. Let’s hope that they come back soon or I’ll have to give up my day job to join them on the road!