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Led Zeppelin - Led Zeppelin IV CD (album) cover

LED ZEPPELIN IV

Led Zeppelin

 

Prog Related

4.37 | 764 ratings

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Nightfly
Special Collaborator
Rock Progressivo Italiano Team
5 stars Led Zeppelin's fourth album I imagine needs little introduction to any fan of Rock Music over the age of 40 and has an almost mythical status. Although I slightly prefer Physical Graffiti over IV this the album I would recommend to anyone wanting to start their Zeppelin collection. Most bases of their sound are covered, from the Heavy Rock, the folk and acoustic elements and the Blues. Every track on this album is worthy of inclusion and not a single filler is present.

Any fan who had been thinking that the band were going in a more lightweight direction with the more acoustic Led Zeppelin III immediately had that thought dispelled with opener Black Dog, one of the bands most powerful Rockers with a fantastic riff from Page and closing the song with one of his best solo's ever, proving that a well considered melodic solo is far more listenable than the blur of notes employed by many modern Metal guitarists. Bonhams Drumming is pure genius on this track, choosing to play it straight when many players would have gone for a more complex approach.

Rock and Roll sounds like the title suggests, an up tempo rocker which fell together very quickly from a Jam in the studio when Bonham started playing the drum intro to a Little Richard song and the rest of the band fell in.

The Battle of Evermore is the first of two acoustic songs and is perhaps the better with some great vocal interplay between Plant and Sandy Denny of Fairport Convention guesting.

Can there be anyone who hasn't heard A Stairway to Heaven? One of the most played songs on American Radio at least. A perfect composition, starting with the beautiful acoustic introduction and building to a climax with another fantastic solo from Page in the mid section before moving into the heavy coda.

Side 2 of the original vinyl version opens with Misty Mountain Hop and Four Sticks. The former, a bouncy, upbeat number and a great favourite of Robert Plant apparently. Four Sticks, so called because Bonham plays his drums with four sticks is another slice of Heavy Rock and another great riff from Page.

Going to California is the second totally acoustic song and again Plant really shines. But Zeppelin save the best until last with When the Levee Breaks, a Blues number originally recorded by Memphis Minnie and Kansas Joe Mccoy. Naturally it's given the Led Zep treatment and sufficiently changed for the band to take partial writing credits. It's now legendary for Bonhams drum groove which became the most sampled drum part of all time and it's easy to see why as it's so powerful. All the more amazing as it was recorded with only one Microphone strung up in the hall of Headley Grange. Plant also plays some great Mouth Harp here too.

And there you have it, one of the greatest Rock albums ever and easily worthy of a 5 star rating.

Nightfly | 5/5 |

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