|Star Fleet Project|
Brian May + Friends
October 31, 1983
Star Fleet Project is an EP by Queen guitarist Brian May. The project was released as the work of "Brian May + Friends", consisting of May, guitarist Eddie Van Halen, drummer Alan Gratzer (of REO Speedwagon), Phil Chen, and Fred Mandel. Roger Taylor, Queen's drummer, provided backing vocals for the title song. It was originally not meant for the tapes to be released and they had minimal mixing before release.
STOP! What you have picked up is not your normal kind of album. Not an album which has been "thoughtfully pieced together by a coordinated band as a balanced and polished listening experience." Not a Queen album. Not a solo Brian May album. It is a record of a unique event.
On the 21st and 22nd of April 1983, five musicians from different backgrounds, who had previously known each other only as friends, played together for the first time. Purely for fun. In listening to this record, I hope you will share in the excitement we felt.
STAR FLEET is theme tune for a superb t.v. sci-fi series broadcast in England for kids of all ages; Japanese visuals and British soundtrack including music by Paul Bliss. The heroes pilot space vehicles which can assemble into a giant robot for land battles. The aliens fly fantastic insect-like craft which spawn smaller fighting machines; all intent on possession of the secret of F Zero One... Having been introduced to all this by my small boy, I became equally obsessed by it, and formed the idea of making a hard rock version of the title theme.
A few months later I found myself in Los Angeles doing very little. I suddenly realized that four musicians, with whom I'd long wanted to play, were at the end of a local telephone call. To my great surprise, they all liked the ideas I had, so I took my courage in both hands, booked a studio, and in we went. None of us had done this kind of thing before - no record company, no plans for release, no back-up organizations-just us. Just for fun.
In STAR FLEET, recorded on the first day, you can hear a kind of nervous exhilaration. The new situation produced a strange and different kind of energy.
In LET ME OUT - an old song of mine which found new life - and in BLUES BREAKER, which of course is purely spontaneous, you can hear a much more relaxed set of people, just laying back and enjoying the fresh inspiration of each other's playing…
I could have put away these tapes in a bottom drawer and kept them as a private record of one of the best experiences of my life. But the few people I've played them for have urged me to "publish;" and it will make me very happy if others can enjoy this stuff the way I have.
I've attempted to hone STAR FLEET into something like a "proper record" - my thanks to ROGER for helping me with chorus vocals. But I haven't messed one scrap with the tracking done on the day. The rest is simply mixed 'naked'.
In BLUES BREAKER you can hear us smiling as we search for answering phrases. In the last solo of LET ME OUT, Edward tortures his top string to its audible death and winds up quite naturally on the remaining five. The rest I'll leave to imagination. It's not too hard to figure out who did what!
Thank You!! Enjoy!!!
- Star Fleet
- Let Me Out
- Blues Breaker
The vinyl LP was released on October 31, 1983 by EMI. An Audio cassette was also released by Capitol Records in 1983 in Canada and the US.
In 1993 it was re-issued as part of the Japanese mini-album "Resurrection", featuring the three Star Fleet Project songs as tracks 6-8, albeit in a different order from the original vinyl release.
The LP has never been officially released on CD, however, "Star Fleet" is available on CD in two forms. It was first re-issued on CD as part of Brian May's "Back to the Light" single. There were two CD singles – the first (which came in a special pack with space for the second CD) featured "Star Fleet" and "Let Me Out". The second had "Blues Breaker" on it.
Unofficial CD releases of the album are available in bootleg form, and is quite a convincing pirate release, using the original LP cover adapted for CD.
- The cover Image of Dai-X is a painting of a mirrored shot from Board the Imperial Alliance Mothership.
- Upon release, Paul Bliss was given a personal copy with a letter by Brian May, which Bliss cherishes.
- Blues Breaker was dedicated to Eric Clapton, who allegedly hated the album.