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Led Zeppelin - Led Zeppelin II CD (album) cover


Led Zeppelin


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3.96 | 823 ratings

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5 stars Written in pieces while on the road and recorded here and there between gigs, Led Zeppelin's second studio LP arrived innocently in 1969 on the heels of their smashing debut. It was a surprise follow-up punch and ended up raising the bar considerably, forever changing the expectations of a modern rock band. Nicknamed the 'Brown Bomber', Led Zeppelin ll showed a new mastery of studio sound and impact, a coming together of the bold spirit of the 60s with the discipline of working musicians led by a seasoned veteran who knew exactly what he wanted and how to achieve it. It also may be the single most influential album in rock history.

A nervous cough from Robert Plant and a riff that would forevermore provide the blueprint for guitar rock starts 'Whole Lotta Love' with its nimble staccato, spectacular nu-psych jam, great band dynamics and a thrilling lead break from Mr. Page. Warm in tone but meticulous in production, this was a music not heard before, finished with sonic depth and texture others only dreamed of. A hard cut to follow but 'What is and What Should Never Be' delivers and shows the light-to-heavy contrasts this act was capable of. 'The Lemon Song' is a tongue-in-cheek homage to American bluesmen with plenty of crude innuendo, some crispy guitar work and tons of feeling, and 'Thank You' finishes the legendary first half of the album as a touching love song. The mercury is maintained on the the second half for 'Heatbreaker'/ 'Living Loving Maid', and 'Ramble On' remains one of the most perfect mixes of heavy rock with an acoustic backbone, and shows Plant's astounding vocal elasticity. John Bonham's talents are platformed on 'Moby Dick', a drum solo that, on certain nights, was expanded to nearly a half hour, and 'Bring It On Home' is railroad blues raised to glory.

Seminal, explosive, no wasted time or energy, this masterwork remains a rock 'n roll cornerstone... a perfect statement unimprovable by God or man.

Atavachron | 5/5 |


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