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Led Zeppelin - Presence CD (album) cover


Led Zeppelin


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3.39 | 590 ratings

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Gustavo Froes
3 stars Absence.

Led Zeppelin had been showing signs of wearyness lately(even so on the excellent Physical Graffiti),but this 1976' studio album is where it all becomes clear to our ears.Recorded at a very tormented time for the band,the fact that Presence is drastically inferior to anything Led Zep had presented to us up to that point is understandable.Even so,it remains a much inferior offering,showcasing the problems that would haunt the group up to it's rupture some years later.Nevertheless, taking in consideration it's rather dissapoiting follow up,this is still a solid and reasonably good rock album(more tha ever,giving hints of an eventual heavy metal approach).

It's worth poitning out that Presence opens with one of the wildest,and ultimately best,pieces of music the band ever wrote:the extremly heavy Achilles Last Stand.This song's imperfections are insignificant under the overshadowing mighty of Plant and Page's melodies,and the thundering drums of John Bonham.The pace is lead by a steady bass line,and the final result is a furious10-minute roaring that reflects what Led Zeppelin had turned into by the mid-70's.There isn't much out there to be found that matches the epic spirit of this masterpiece.A shot of life,really.

Much unfortunately,there's nothing else in the album with even the slightest chance to cause the same impression as the opening track.To be perfectly fair,there isn't much complain about the level of songwriting(being Zeppelin it is unlikely to expect otherwise),but it simply fails to captivate in the way all their previous albums had managed to do so far.For Your Life sound's as a poorman's Custard Pie,and Tea For One does no more than to bring me in mind of past glories,the freshness of their earliest blues set(I Can't Quit You Baby,You Shook Me or Since I've Been Loving You for instance).The second best thing on the album would be Nobody's Fault But Mine,a captivating,over-developed blues number with a stunning guitar riff.Even though the group missed the timing here,as the song eventually becomes rather repetitive,the final result is worthy of attention and suits as a relief.

Some may strangely claim this as the best album the band ever put out(including Jimmy Page himself) :although the final result never did much for me personally,the level of songrwiting was kept,leaving that to a simple matter of taste I guess.To my ears,the magic of Led Zeppelin is already missed in Presence,and unfortunately that unique,powerfull and majestic band's original sounding was gone forever .

Gustavo Froes | 3/5 |


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