The band’s acclaimed performance at Live Aid had given them a new lease on life. The next album, 1986’s A Kind of Magic shot to the top of the charts in their native England, and produced the hit singles “Friends Will Be Friends,” “Who Wants to Live Forever,” and the title track (“One Vision,” included on the album was released a full eight months before A Kind of Magic). Though the band’s popularity in the US had sagged (A Kind of Magic languished at #46 in the charts), the band’s summer 1986 tour felt like a victory lap.

Previous editions of this release only had the July 12, 1986 show (and sometimes not even the entire show). This set features the July 11 performance as well. That evening was marred by rain (which affects the film quality as well), but the band never lets their spirits flag. Still, they’re noticeably more relaxed on the next night, when the weather is perfect. It’s largely the same set as on the recently released Live In Budapest DVD, though this show has a warmer feel to it due to the home court advantage. It’s hard to tell who’s having more fun; the audience or the band.

The set list is a pretty good reflection of Queen’s catalogue, leaning towards the ‘80s hits: “Under Pressure,” “Radio Ga Ga,” “I Want to Break Free,” “One Vision.” There’s an absolutely storming rendition of “Tie Your Mother Down,” but who made the odd decision to stick “Friends Will Be Friends” between “We Will Rock You” and “We Are the Champions” during the encore? Queen also gives a nod to their rock ‘n’ roll roots with a short acoustic set that features “(You’re So Square) Baby I Don’t Care,” “Hello Mary Lou,” and “Tutti Frutti,” which is fun, and Freddie Mercury picks up the guitar himself for a bash through “Crazy Little Thing Called Love.”

Queen set up the biggest stage Wembley Stadium had ever had before, and they make full use of it. There are no elaborate sets or special effects; it’s just Queen doing what they do best, playing up the pomp and majesty of the occasion — as when Mercury strides on stage at the show’s end wear a crown and wrapped in a full length ermine robe. Another plus: there are no cutaways to off stage footage, with both concerts presented complete, as they happened. Bonus features include interview featurettes and short rehearsal clip. But it’s the two concerts that make this set essential.

Label: Eagle Rock