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PD: Mustapha22 Oct 2002 17:47
This is a song analysis that I think have to be corrected soon or later. I admit I have had major difficoulties interpreting the modality of the song. Can anyone help on this?
Does anyone know the origin/name of that arabic-sounding ascending scale that Brian May plays in the middle of the song? It goes along these notes: E, F, G, Ab, B, C, D, Eb, F.

1.BrianMay 16 Jun 2003 05:52
Phryrigan scale maybe?

I'm too lazy to check
2.PD 16 Jun 2003 10:56
Good idea, I've also though at that one being used. I'm going to revise old analyses soon (or later), including this one.
3.BrianMay 17 Jun 2003 02:01
I think it's Phryrigan. Cause it has that middle east kind of sound
4.PD 17 Jun 2003 18:11
I suspect the Phrygian mode is used where I wrote that the minor scale is accompanied only by the iv or v chords in the absence of i. The quoted/spelled scale is not phrygian. I tried to look it up in a database of exotic scales, but I cloud not find it.
5.BrianMay 18 Jun 2003 21:08
"I tried to look it up in a database of exotic scales"

So, what exactly are you looking for?
6.PD 18 Jun 2003 22:41
E, F, G, Ab, B, C, D, Eb, F.

(I've corrected the spelling of "Phrygian")
7.Sebastian 25 Jul 2005 15:48
Actually it's a mixture of two scales:

F Double Harmonic Minor: F G Ab B C D E
F Dorian #4: F G Ab B C D Eb

About modes and keys the way I interpret them are:

Verse: instead of shifting I think the key is an overall F Dorian #4 (F G Ab B C D Eb) or perhaps F Locrian #2 (F G Ab Bb Cb Db Eb). The B chord at the end works as pivot for the modulation to...

Pre-Chorus: I interpret it as F# Dorian #4, the enharmonic equivalent to C# Harmonic Minor. Dorian #4 is indeed a minor mode.

Pre-Chorus ("Mustapha Ibrahim"): D Hijaz Major, a middle Eastern mode equivalent to G Harmonic Minor.

Chorus: I interpret is as being an overall Ab Major (Bbm and Cm being ii and iii functions respectively).

I've got similar insights in 'Innuendo': instead of shifting the key from E Phrygian to G# Phrygian, I think the key is maintained, and it's E Double Harmonic Major (E F G# A B C D#)
8.PD 26 Jul 2005 12:43
Thanks. Gonna check it out. The song analysis should be revised soon or later.
9.Sebastian 08 Aug 2005 16:29
Actually now I agree with your Innuendo interpretation. One slight difference though: instead of Phrygian, I think the mode is Phrygian Dominant (aka Spanish mode or Hijaz mode, the same as Mustapha's pre-chorus), because the third degree is major both in chords and melody.
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