In January of 1985, Queen performed at the Rock in Rio festival, held at the massive Barra de Tijuca in Rio de Janeiro in front of a record-breaking 250,000 people. Other superstar rock acts who were part of the eight-day festival included AC/DC, Ozzy Osbourne, Yes, and Iron Maiden, but Queen had already built a solid South American fan base due to the group's highly successful prior tours of the continent, and were named the festival's headlining act. Although the band didn't appear until very late in the evening (2 a.m. on opening night, January 12), Freddie Mercury and co. gave one of their most inspired and memorable performances of their career. The album Queen was touring behind at the time, The Works, was a return to rock, and the video's track listing is comprised mostly of rockers -- "Tie Your Mother Down," "Liar," "Hammer to Fall," "Bohemian Rhapsody," etc. You' ll also find a rare performance of the forgotten U.K. pop hit "It's a Hard Life," as well as other melodically based tracks like "I Want to Break Free" and "Radio Ga Ga." With the band's massive stage displayed in all i's exorbitant glory (featuring huge pumping pistons and multi-levels) and a set list comprised of most of their best-known material, Live in Rio will be thoroughly entertaining for just about any Queen fan.
AllMusic Review by Greg Prato