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Led Zeppelin - In Through the Out Door CD (album) cover


Led Zeppelin


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2.93 | 596 ratings

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3 stars This was the album that finally gave the punk-obsessed music press the chance to write Led Zeppelin off as "rock dinosaurs". It was a departure for them, as John Paul Jones' keyboards came more to the fore, and was not that well received at the time.

"In The Evening" kicks things off and could have been a real Led Zep classic if it wasn't for the poor production. The keyboards are too loud in the mix and the vocals are too low. It should have been a crunching guitar riff after the eerie opening sounds, but doesn't really come off. "Southbound Suarez" is a bouncy, if inconsequential number based on staccato piano from Jones. "Fool in the Rain" is the best track on the album, a story about a fool waiting for his girl "on the wrong block". Bonham is on good form here, whereas his flabby snare sound lets him down on some of the other tracks. There is a rousing samba section in the middle which leads into an excellent Page solo using an octave divider. "Hot Dog" can only be a pastiche of country ("she took my heart, she took my keys from in my old blue dungarees and I'll never go to Texas anymore") and as such is quite amusing. Page seems to struggle with the guitar picking on the riff. "Carouselambra" is the epic of the album and is dominated by keyboards. The keyboard sound itself is a bit dated now but this is a good song overall.

The last two tracks are excellent - "All My Love" has been spoiled slightly for me by a friend who played it constantly on a drive down to the south of France one year but "I'm Gonna Crawl" is an excellent Led Zep slow blues number in a similar vein to "Tea For One". Plant plays a blinder here with an excellent emotional vocal.

In summary, what could have been an excellent album is spoiled by the production (at ABBA's studios). There are some other tracks from these sessions on "Coda" which are also good, although again the production lets them down (particularly on "Wearing and Tearing").

chopper | 3/5 |


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