Sound — 8
The recording quality, especially on the remastered version is very good. Though Queen's sound wasn't fully developed, it actually helps the album in that Queen's music sounds distinctly different. Brian May didn't have 50 million delays going on, Roger Taylor's drumming is pretty out there compared to their later days, and John Deacon has a bass solo? Yeah, this is a very unique Queen album. Actually, about him, they put his name as Deacon John on the album. Obviously, he had it changed. This album covers many genres, like the typical Queen album, but I sense that it is a lot more gritty and heavy as apposed to other albums. They do standard classic rock, prog rock, southern rock, sabbath-esque rock, and hell even a bit of christian rock in "Jesus" and "Mad the Swine".
Lyrics — 8
Queen isn't known so much for their lyrics as they are known for their bombastic live shows, but the lyrics here are quirky, in a good way. They cover some odd subjects in this album. For example, the most known song from the album, "Keep Yourself Alive" is about how one should not aspire to anything great, which is somewhat funny, because all of these gentlemen were in college at the time. The music in all the songs compliments the lyrics well. If the lyrics are very powerful, other instruments cut out to bring the words to the forefront. If the lyrics are just about the rock n' roll life, then you have some blazing guitar work going on. And Freddie Mercury is his amazing self. Best singer ever. Fact.
Overall Impression — 8
Most people probably will not like this album as much as their hits like "A Night at the Opera" and "The Game," but this shows how Queen started out, and how they originally sounded like. Granted, Queen II is a better example of this in my opinion, but that doesn't mean you should pass over this album. I think "Liar", "Great King Rat (one of Queen's heaviest songs", and "Keep Yourself Alive" are the strongest tracks on the album. The only song that I think is a somewhat weak link is the Seven Seas of Rhye. It isn't nearly as catchy as the version on Queen II. If this was stolen, I would be torn between this and Queen II. But still, get this album.