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Led Zeppelin - Led Zeppelin CD (album) cover


Led Zeppelin


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4.03 | 872 ratings

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4 stars Led Zeppelin 3/5

The Sound. Merge driving blues licks, pounding drums, gutwrenching basslines and howling lyrics delivered by a flaxen hair lad and you have it. Often imitated, barely ever matched. With this 1969 release, Led Zeppelin literally changed the landscape of modern music, leaving a lasting blueprint for every hard rock band of the 1970's and beyond.

Contrary to popular belief, there really was nothing novel about Led Zeppelin, with the expection that they played LOUDER. They were essentially the most commercially sucessful of the Cream influenced blues groups- in the same vein as Mountain, Cactus, Grand Funk Railroad, Free, Foghat and early Fleetwood Mac (among others). Their influences are obvious: take the decibel registry of acts like Blue Cheer, Jimi Hendrix, Jeff Beck and Cream, mix it with the classic blues riffs of Howling Wolf, Muddy Waters and Willie Dixon, and stir it with vocals of biblical proportion.

And that is not to say that this album is bad. Personally I prefer their later works from III to House of the Holy. They are certainly more progressive than this album which is essentially a good album, nothing more and nothing less. There are some extremely good songs: 'Dazed and Confused', 'Babe I'm Gonna Leave You' and 'How Many More Times' among the best.

Now the history behind how this album came into being. After all members except bassist Chris Dreja left The Yardbirds, Mr. Page (Neighborhood occultist, babysitter and session musician) was left in need of some replacements. Given the nature of the music scene in 1968, Mr. Page knew exactly what kind of band he wanted to create. He first expressed interest in Terry Reid as a vocalist, who declined the position due to his opening for the Rolling Stones on their 1969 American Tour (Ironically Reid would also turn down an offer from Deep Purple before Gillan joined). Reid recommended one Robert Plant, who jumped on board and likewise recommended thronemaster extraordinaire John Henry Bonham. Dreja soon dropped out to pursue photography and in came Jimmy's old session partner John Paul Jones.

The lineup set: gathering in a record store basement, the four future gods of rock and roll decided to jam out to Train Kept A Rolling. Deriving the name Lead Zeppelin from off hand comments by John Entwhistle and Keith Moon (the latter saying a potential supergroup of he, Entwhistle, Page and Beck would go down like a 'lead zeppelin'), Led Zeppelin's destiny was sealed. Peter Grant then cut the 'a' out of their name and secured a $200,000 record deal with Atlantic Records and thus began the invasion of America...

For a debut record that was reportedly recorded in only 36 hours once in the studio, this incredibly energetic, youthful and spirited. It features some great acoustic and quieter moments and then epic highs which shake the rafters.

mr.cub | 4/5 |


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