Ogre Battle (3:57)

Cover of Queen II

From Queen II and 22 other releases

Ogre Battle is a track from Queen’s second album, Queen II and was written by Freddie Mercury. Mercury wrote “Ogre Battle” on guitar (as confirmed by Brian May in several interviews) in 1972. The band didn’t want to record it for their first album, but rather waited until they could have more studio freedom to do it properly.

The ogre-like screams in the middle are Mercury’s, and the high harmonies at the end of the chorus hook are sung by Roger Taylor. As the title suggests, it tells the story of a battle between ogres, and features a Brian May guitar solo and sound effects to simulate the sound of a battle. The beginning of the song is the end of the song played backwards including the final gong which when played backwards at the start of the song creates the building wave sound.

The song is one of Queen’s heaviest works. The guitar riff, along with Roger Taylor’s drumming, give it a very “thrash” sound. It was a longtime live favorite, although on stage Queen played it slower than in the studio. They stopped playing the song somewhere around 1977-1978, playing it on almost every concert up until then.

A different version of “Ogre Battle” exists, recorded in December 1973 for the BBC Radio 1 “Sound of the 70s” programme. This version starts right away with its riff (without any long intro), doesn’t have any effects that the version on “Queen II” has and sounds much less polished. The BBC version of “Ogre Battle” did originally have a long intro featuring a grand guitar build up; it was not used for this release, allegedly because the original tape was damaged.

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Albums featuring this track (23)

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  • Goodevil1345

    Can't believe it's been a while since I listened to this great track

    22 Jan 2:02am Reply
  • ukdarkangel

    best version is the live recording from the Golders Green Hipperdrome on 13th September 1973 (although I may be biased as I was born that evening!)

    24 Nov 2014 Reply
  • FjordSweetFjord

    brilliant song all around, LOVE LOVE LOVE Queen II

    10 Sep 2014 Reply
  • Francisco__

    metal? LOL [2]

    31 Aug 2014 Reply
  • a_jeda

    \\m/ \\m/

    9 Jul 2014 Reply
  • JeanLoco

    for me the first progressive metal song <3 love this

    24 Jun 2014 Reply
  • Gracielied

    I have to agree with damnwright, I think Queen's best albums are Queen I + II

    28 Aug 2013 Reply
  • AledMCR

    OGRE BATTLE LIVES FOREVERMOOOOOOOOOOOOOORE

    24 Jun 2013 Reply
  • bgranli

    A good song, and the source of one of the most excellent but obscure video game series ever. [3]

    16 Oct 2012 Reply
  • Metality

    "The ogre-like screams in the middle are Mercury’s" Fucking ridiculous statement. As if anyone would ever reach the conclusion they're "ogre-like" if the song wasn't called Ogre Battle. If anything, it should say "The screams in the middle, intended to sound like ogre cries, are Mercury's" or something.

    10 May 2012 Reply
  • nicolasbj

    metal? LOL

    26 Mar 2012 Reply
  • RbS

    progressive metal

    17 Jul 2011 Reply
  • reaganyouth77

    great classic queen,you never hear this on radio. only on dads old records he used to crank!!!!!

    17 Dec 2010 Reply
  • SumYungGai405

    Love the screams. AH AH AH AH AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH

    26 Oct 2010 Reply
  • ricz_dm

    A good song, and the source of one of the most excellent but obscure video game series ever. [2]

    26 Jul 2010 Reply
  • backtothelight

    This version is off "Queen at the BBC".

    20 May 2010 Reply
  • ProgShine

    It's playing a demo version right now. FIX YOUR TAGS - http://www.mp3tag.de/en/

    14 Mar 2010 Reply
  • altoid2

    i like the studio album version much better.

    8 Feb 2010 Reply
  • woobie210

    The guitar work on this song is incredible.

    11 Jan 2010 Reply
  • CyberMondoNY

    I Love this song.

    9 Jan 2010 Reply
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