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Led Zeppelin - Presence CD (album) cover


Led Zeppelin


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3.39 | 590 ratings

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2 stars Not the underrated classic/lost gem many make PRESENCE out to be. PRESENCE is never mentioned in the pantheon of the well-received Led Zeppelin albums, so I gave it a fair shot in hopes I would find a hidden gem. Instead, I only get one great track, a decent rocker and nothing else.

It's with complete predictability that ''Achilles Last Stand'' is the highlight track. Ten epic minutes, galloping rhythm, superb guitar solos, you get the idea. Why I am fond of it is this; the track isn't as over-hyped and over-played as ''Stairway'' or ''Kashmir''. Also, the track allows Page, Jones and Bonham to just cut loose on their instruments and really make the track develop. ''Nobody's Fault But Mine'' is a late-era sort-of-classic hard rock track that's worth its share of spin mostly due to the drumming, but Plant's vocals are phoned in at best and nauseating at worst.

There's nothing else left. The rest of the album is so mediocre that it pulls PRESENCE down to two stars. Had there been another decent or good track I'd fell guiltier about my rating, but with the endless plodding of both ''Tea for One'' and ''For Your Life'', the ridiculosity of ''Candy Store Rock'' and ''Royal Orleans'' and the forgetful ''Hots On For Nowhere'', it's hard to change my mind. Some of the tracks might sound better had Alice Cooper or Blue Oyster Cult penned them because those guys could make them sound so goofy that it would work. Humour doesn't translate well into a Led Zeppelin track.

In short, other than the two good tracks, PRESENCE is an example of a hard rock band that was once making classics (in the critical sense) that is at this stage fried mentally. ''Achilles'' is a monster and the closest Zep ever got to prog rock, but it's not worth seeking PRESENCE over.

Sinusoid | 2/5 |


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