Despite being an almost universally loved group, there aren't a ton of Queen cover songs out there. That could be because not many artists are willing to try and put their voices up against Freddie Mercury, who is widely considered the greatest rock vocalist of all time. But if you dig enough, a few brave souls have given it a try. Here are seven of the best.
7. Bohemian Rhapsody- The Muppets
If Queen is considered uncoverable by most artists, “Bohemian Rhapsody” is even more so. Even Queen themselves typically only played the song as part of a medley, finding Mercury's layered vocals too hard to pull off live. But if you're going to make the attempt at covering “Bohemian Rhapsody,” it helps if you're made of felt. Sure enough, The Muppets' take on the song ramps up the song's inherent silliness to the point of absurdity, and in the process created a really catchy rendition.
6. Under Pressure- Foo Fighters
The Foo Fighters have never been a band afraid of taking on a challenging cover song in concert. But to take on not only the vocals of Freddie Mercury but also another of the all-time greats, David Bowie, is a massive undertaking for even them. But that's what they did at Voodoo Festival in 2017, with regular drummer Taylor Hawkins taking on co-lead vocals with Dave Grohl and inviting The Darkness drummer Rufus Taylor, son of founding Queen drummer Roger Taylor, to fill in on the sticks.
5. The Prophet's Song- Cellar Darling
Both the newest band and the newest cover on this list comes courtesy of Swedish metal act Cellar Darling. Made up of three former members of folk metal act Eluveitie, Cellar Darling decided for their rendition of a Queen song to steer clear of the big hits and instead take on an album cut from 1975's A Night at the Opera. Even without the familiarity working against them, Cellar Darling didn't make things easy on themselves, with “The Prophet's Song” considered one of Queen's most progressive and vocally challenging songs ever. Singer Anna Murphy does some Freddie Mercury-style vocal layering herself to pull off the chorus.
4. Stone Cold Crazy- Metallica
If “The Prophet's Song” is one of Queen's hardest songs to cover, “Stone Cold Crazy” may be one of the easiest. It's as close to a straight ahead hard charging rocker as Queen ever got and also one of their heaviest. That made it a perfect cover for heavy metal titans Metallica, who did their own thrashed up version as a b-side to “Enter Sandman.”
3. Get Down, Make Love- Nine Inch Nails
One way to get around the Freddie Mercury vocal comparison is to do such a radically different version that comparisons don't apply. That was the choice Trent Reznor made for Nine Inch Nails' version of “Get Down, Make Love,” released initially as a b-side for “Sin” and later included as a bonus track on the remaster of Pretty Hate Machine.
2. We Are the Champions- Adam Lambert and Kris Allen
It can be argued that Adam Lambert and Kris Allen's version of “We Are the Champions” from the finale of American Idol, backed by Queen themselves, isn't one of the greatest Queen covers, but there's no argument about it being the most impactful. Obviously Lambert and the band felt some chemistry on stage that night because Lambert was named lead vocalist for the newly monikered Queen + Adam Lambert in 2011, a position he has retained since. Allen may have won that season of American Idol, but Adam Lambert got one doozy of a consolation prize.
1. Under Pressure- Annie Lennox and David Bowie
A lot of people came out to pay respects to Freddie Mercury at the 1992 Tribute Concert at Wembley Stadium. But of all the legends who performed, the day belonged to David Bowie and Eurythmics' Annie Lennox, who delivered a cover of Queen and Bowie's hit “Under Pressure” for the ages. The pair both brought their finest form to honor their friend and left the Wembley audience wanting more.