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Led Zeppelin - Presence CD (album) cover


Led Zeppelin


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3.39 | 589 ratings

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3 stars A good album, and the first and only Led Zeppelin album not to have keyboards or acoustic guitars on it. The album took only 17 days to record, and was sort of an experiment to see where they stood musicaly in comparison with their early days. Probably due to their deliberate narrow approach (focussing on heavy rock and heavy blues) and the rushed recording, the album sounds a bit repetitive at times. The cover art is a little joke on Kubrick's famous 2001 - A Space Oddessey movie, with a black obelisk at the centre of a happy looking family.

The album starts brilliantly with the mythic story of Achilles, galloping bass, great drums, and fabulous multi-layered guitar arrangements and Plant in great form. written while recovering from a car crash Plant suffered in Greece, where he broke his ankle, so there is little to no coincidense in the subject and story of Achilles Last Stand. Unfortunatly the great introduction song is followed by a rather bad song, clearly drawing from their early days style, but without the energy that made those songs stand well above average, this stands slightly below.

with the funky grooves of Royal Orleans the fun returns, some reminisence to The Crunge of Houses Of The Holy, or remember Sam & Dave's Soul Man, just in the Led Zeppelin style, alledgedly about John Paul Jones taking home a drag Queen. With Nobody's fault But Mine Robert Plant get's the change again to shine with his non-lyrical soulfull screams, and a compelling guitar riff from our hero Jimmy Page. Candy store rock is an attempt at rock and roll, quite nicely done, a bit too funky to my liking, some Presley references here and there. Hots on for Nowhere is rather bland, nice vocals, but the song never really get's above average.

The album ends with the beautifull Tea For One, a blues styled rock song, somewhat similar to Since I've Been Loving You in sound and structure. well actually it's just the reprise of it, lasting a good 9 minutes.

A decent album, and by anyone's standart this can be considered good, but compared to their previous albums, it's slightly dissapointing. Still a very firm thumbs up for Achilles Last Stand, and the good Nobody's Fault and Tea For One, but the rest is not up to par, compared to their first three albums they have come a long way in songwriting skills and complexity, but some of the magic had evaporated. Still a very nice album, but not the one to start with.

tuxon | 3/5 |


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