September 21, 2021

Brian May re-releases solo cut Too Much Love Will Kill You

Brian May has re-released his haunting solo cut ‘Too Much Love Will Kill You’ with a remastered music video.

Taken from the Queen guitarist’s 1992 solo album, ‘Back to the Light’, the song was penned during a dark period for the music legend when he felt “trapped”, and he explained how it was like therapy for him writing the track with his songwriting pals Elizabeth Lamers and Frank Musker.

Brian said: “‘Too Much Love Will Kill’ You is a big, long story and the version that you hear on ‘Back to the Light’ is the original. It has the original keyboard that I played when we were writing the song. Me and Frank Musker, and his lady friend at the time, were in a room and it was like a therapy session for me. I was just pouring out all these words because I felt like I was trapped. I was in a place that I could never, ever get out of. All I could do is write about it. This is the only song I wrote in that probably nine months or a year period.”

Upon its release on August 24, 1992, the ballad became a Top 5 single in the UK.

The song received its live debut in front of 72,000 fans at the Freddie Mercury Tribute Concert at Wembley Stadium in April 1992, and many fans had believed it was penned about the loss of the late frontman – who died of bronchial pneumonia resulting from Aids in 1991 – which is not the case as it dates back to 1986/1987.

The 74-year-old guitar hero has hailed the deeply personal track his “most important song” he’s ever written.

He continued: “The pain will make you crazy.

“The things that I struggle with are still there. ‘Too Much Love Will Kill You’ is a chronicle of what’s actually buried deepest inside me. Every word on it, as I listen to it now, every word counts for me. Every word I would still stand by. It’s exactly how I am inside. I say ‘am’ in the present tense because I’ve come to the realisation that I haven’t changed that much. It’s the one opportunity I had in my life to tell it as I saw it. In a way, it’s the most important song I ever wrote because it does sum up life’s journey for me.”

Brian explained how the song emulates the “raw emotion” he was feeling.

He said: “The version I did is anchored to the source. There’s nothing in there which doesn’t just speak about the emotion of the original writing. There’s no point in the original where the drums kick in and it becomes big. It never gets there. It’s all tentative and all quite delicate. And the raw emotion of the way I sing it is the way I feel. I wrote it, I feel it.”

A new version of the track was recorded in 1989 with Freddie’s vocal, which featured on Queen’s 1995 ‘Made In Heaven’ LP, and would earn Brian an Ivor Novello Award for Best Song Musically and Lyrically.

Brian said: “I loved working with Freddie to do that vocal. We were aware that the song was becoming something different, and it meant something different. We were all aware of it. We obviously knew Freddie’s days were probably limited barring a miracle. So the song started to feel like something different. And we didn’t shy away from making it very big, very Queen-like. And I like it.

“But if you want to hear what the song originally had poured into it, with the blood, sweat and tears of my life, then that’s this version.”

Fans can purchase ‘Out of the Light’, the companion release available in the ‘Back to the Light’ box set and on the 2CD and digital formats, featuring two alternative readings, a guitar version and a live version recorded at The Palace Theatre, Los Angeles, April 6, 1993.

‘Too Much Love Will Kill You’ is available to download and stream now.

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