Larry Lurex was the artist name used for a musical project by Trident Studios’ house engineer Robin Geoffrey Cable, in 1972. Cable was experimenting with re-creating the “Wall of Sound” style favored by Phil Spector and enlisted singer Freddie Mercury from the band Queen to perform lead vocals on these tracks. (Queen was recording their debut album in Trident Studios at the time.) Mercury in turn suggested bringing his band-mates Roger Taylor and Brian May to add percussion, guitar and backing vocals to the recordings.
They recorded cover versions of the following two songs:
“I Can Hear Music” (written by Jeff Barry, Ellie Greenwich and Phil Spector, which had been a hit for The Ronettes and The Beach Boys)
“Goin’ Back” (written by Carole King and Gerry Goffin, which had been a hit for Dusty Springfield and The Byrds)
The sound technicians were so pleased with it that it ended up as a single. It was not released until 1973, just three weeks before the first self titled Queen album was due for release. To prevent any confusion, it was decided not to use the name Queen, so the tongue-in-cheek “Larry Lurex” was adopted. The name is a pun on the stage name of glam rock star Gary Glitter and the metallic yarn Lurex. The public failed to get the joke however, and the single sank without trace.
The tracks were released as a 7″ vinyl single on EMI in 1973 (catalogue number EMI 2030), but it did not enter the charts. This pre-dated the release of the first Queen album. They have subsequently been included on the Freddie Mercury solo compilation albums The Solo Collection and Lover of Life, Singer of Songs.