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Led Zeppelin - Led Zeppelin II CD (album) cover


Led Zeppelin


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3.97 | 861 ratings

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2 stars Fuzz-heavy blues standards that ultimately leave me as the listener unsatisfied.

This album has little of the raw spontenaity of their first. Moreover, it perpetuates the musical theft of the first: the band had to settle with Wille Dixon and Howlin' Wolf after acknowledging they had 'lifted' significant intellectual property from these blues pioneers. Sorry, but this sticks in my craw. I've watched bands like DREAM THEATER being accused of plagiarism when they do no more than 'sound like' other bands. LED ZEPPELIN'S crime was the greater - they stole from others and claimed the resultant original sound as their own.

That said, this album does contain some brilliant moments. 'Heartbreaker's guitar solo is a classic, and 'Ramble On' is a blueprint for the folk-fantasy territory LED ZEPPELIN was about to explore. 'The Lemon Song' is a nice package of saucy blues. However, I've always been unimpressed by 'Whole Lotta Love', from the smutty lyrics to the brazen licks and the curious 'freak-out' mid section. The single best thing about this album is the first sign that the rest of the band are about to flex their muscles: PLANT, BONHAM and JONES are coming out from PAGE'S thin shadow.

As for progressive conent, there is little of the progressive sensibility here that would infuse and eventually overwhelm the band. Those steeped in progressive rock will be underwhelmed by what's happeing on this album. LED ZEPPELIN II and it's older brother are antecedents for hard rock, not progressive rock. In my view, this is an album that should be listened to by afficianados of modern music, but need not be approached by a progressive rock fan.

russellk | 2/5 |


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