Currently touring their seventh album, Sleep Well Beast, The National brought a four-night residency at London’s Eventim Apollo to a close on Thursday, 28 September, and included a surprise cover of Queen’s 1984 single ‘I Want To Break Free’ as part of their encore.
Watch a fan recording of The National’s cover, above.
‘I Want To Break Free’ was penned by bassist John Deacon. It was the second single to come from that same year’s album, The Works, and reached No.3 when it was released in the UK, on 2 April 1984. Its parent album, The Works, had been released two months earlier and took Queen to No.2 in the UK album charts.
The song is one of three covers The National played during their London residency, including Cat Power’s ‘Maybe Not’ (from her 2003 album You Are Free) and Talking Heads’ ‘Heaven’ (from their seminal 1979 album, Fear Of Music, produced by Brian Eno).
The London residency brought The National’s UK tour to a close. It will resume in October, with dates across America, Europe, Mexico, New Zealand, Austria and Latin America leading into March 2018.
In November, Queen + Adam Lambert will kick off their own tour, with shows running into February 2018, taking in Europe, the UK, New Zealand and Australia, in support of a 40th-anniversary box set release of their 1977 album, News Of The World. (The box set can be bought here.)
The National’s setlist at London’s Eventim Apollo on 29 September was:
‘Nobody Else Will Be There’
‘The System Only Dreams in Total Darkness’
‘Walk It Back’
‘Don’t Swallow the Cap’
‘Dark Side of the Gym’
‘I’ll Still Destroy You’
‘I Need My Girl’
‘Carin at the Liquor Store’
‘Day I Die’
‘Sleep Well Beast’
‘I Want to Break Free’ (Queen cover)
‘Vanderlyle Crybaby Geeks’