Led Zeppelin: Classic Or Dud?

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Fred says Led Zeppelin rock and I'm a wimpy Brit who can't feel the noize. I say Led Zep suck and Fred's punching at straw men. Who's right? Both of us? Neither?

Tom, Wednesday, 27 September 2000 00:00 (eighteen years ago) Permalink

Fred is right here. With most of his points, anyway (Zeppelin did not make their name by playing fast.)

With Zeppelin, the sound is the thing. Tom, you should approach Zep's body of work the way you would Dr. Dre's 2001. Sure, Dre is not the greatest rapper, but he knows how to lay down rhymes that compliment his brilliant productions. I would argue that the same holds true for Page & Plant. The massive, bottom-heavy sound that Page captured with his studio work reaches perfection only with Plant's voice floating on top.

Mark Richardson, Wednesday, 27 September 2000 00:00 (eighteen years ago) Permalink

If you ask me they were the archetypal American teen boy fantasy band -- music for young lads to cruise around in battered pickup trucks smoking weed drinking beer and checking out the chicks. Or at least the soundtrack to which they *fantasize* about doing things like that...

All the while feeling vaguely smug and intellectual because of the Crowley and Tolkien references. Bleargh.

Fred's not totally wrong though -- the Zep had their occaisional moment, but they're still overrated beyond belief. Early Black Sabbath could have them for breakfast!

Nicole, Wednesday, 27 September 2000 00:00 (eighteen years ago) Permalink

Exactly. Why would I ever want to listen to Zeppelin when I could be listening to Sabbath? Or Creedence? Or Daphne & Celeste for bleatsakes? I've heard one Daphne & Celeste song once and it had more of an impact on me than all the Zeppelin I've ever heard put together. I still never recognize Stairway to Heaven until 6 minutes in. I'm all for cruising around in battered pickup trucks smoking weed drinking beer and checking out the chicks, but gimme Kid Rock over Zeppelin any day. Hell, gimme Aerosmith over Zeppelin.

But the best reason to hate Zeppelin, as Nicole pointed out, is that they were a band who sung about J.R.R. Tolkien. I fucking hate Tolkien. J.R.R. fucking Tolkien is not rock 'n roll.

Otis Wheeler, Thursday, 28 September 2000 00:00 (eighteen years ago) Permalink

Fred's probably right when he says he likes Led Zeppelin, but he's most likely wrong when he seems to say that all one has to do to 'get' them is listen to it correctly.

I loathe 'ver Zep', their sweatiness, their ponderousness (is that a word?) and their pretension. I'm very used to listening to music for the noise. Led Zeppelin make a nasty noise.

I don't think I've ever heard a band rock harder than the Roots Radics circa '81, and they sounded *beautiful*.

Tim

Tim, Thursday, 28 September 2000 00:00 (eighteen years ago) Permalink

Otis *is* right on one key point -- Tolkien was never rock and roll. God knows what he thought of all the stuff recorded in the late sixties and early seventies liberally borrowing from him, but hopefully he never had to listen to it.

With regards to the man's general worth, though, we must differ. ;-)

Ned Raggett, Thursday, 28 September 2000 00:00 (eighteen years ago) Permalink

Looks like Zep's going to lose this round, oh well. Not like they need more support anyway. A couple of things:

1) There is nothing even remotely intellectual about Zep or their fans; their music is populism at its finest.

2) Hard to imagine what could be more smug than picking on teenage kids in middle America.

3) Why listen to Zep when you can listen to Sabbath? JOHN BONHAM. Black Sabbath, while masters of the riff (and Reality), had an anemic rhythm section. How many hip-hop groups have sampled Bill Ward's drum parts?

Zep ARE pretty sweaty, though.

Mark Richardson, Thursday, 28 September 2000 00:00 (eighteen years ago) Permalink

Mark's right when he says that Zep are rhythmically superior to Sabbath; unfortunately Sabbath are superior in every other field imaginable.

Fred's right when he says Robert Plant's voice sounds like an escape (specifically, from the stuffiness and politeness of Britain when Plant was growing up) but, you know, you could say the same thing about fucking Merseybeat, for fuck's sake. While at the time they were hailed as an astonishing sonic progression from *that* lot over six years, Zep remind me of what Tom and I once said about the Beatles' hangers-on; you can't deny that they sounded like an escape and a new dawn for certain people listening to them, but that doesn't alter the fact that the music is terrible.

Yeah, Tom's nailed them good and proper.

Robin Carmody, Thursday, 28 September 2000 00:00 (eighteen years ago) Permalink

I refuse to say negative things about a band that has contributed wonderful things like "The Battle Of Evermore", "Black Dog", "Kashmir", "Good Times Bad Times", "The Lemon Song", "D'Yer Maker", and the blueprint for disco-rock "The Immigrant Song". I DEFY you to tell me you couldn't imagine people dancing their asses off to that one.

Why listen to Led Zep when you have Black Sabbath? Because only listening to one band is boring unless it's The Cure or Prince.

Dan Perry, Thursday, 28 September 2000 00:00 (eighteen years ago) Permalink

well, the voice of pitchfork has chipped in...and he has side with ME! case closed.

but seriously (ha ha ha)! tom is oblivious to many of the things that make zep great, unless he's fooled me all of this time and is really into virtuosity and locking rhythm sections. ;) mark, as you say the music isn't really made for or by intellectuals. the concept of "suspension of disbelief" comes to mind, checking your brain at the door, etc., and if you're not up for that then, let me say it again, maybe zep isn't the band for you.

and what's all this talk of sabbath? are the same people who are criticizing robert plant's voice listening to a band fronted by ozzy? certainly, sabbath has created some incredibly sludgy and heavy riffs (and are probably currently a bigger influence than zep) but, as mark says, the rhythm section is weak and, God, i just can't *stand* ozzy. more power to you if you can!

fred solinger, Thursday, 28 September 2000 00:00 (eighteen years ago) Permalink

All this obsession with 'checking your brain at the door' etc. is just silly - brains don't work like that: when you listen to Zep, Fred, your lack of analysis is an analytical choice itself. And if you *really* didn't think about them you'd not have spent so many paragraphs going on about them. I've said it before and I'll say it again: it's a cop-out.

And Pitchfork can kiss my arse ;).

Tom, Friday, 29 September 2000 00:00 (eighteen years ago) Permalink

and i'm here to say that your constant tossing about of the term, "cop-out" is in itself a cop-out, you big bitch.

i write paragraphs about them because i force myself to think about them: normally, zep isn't one of those bands one rattles on about. if i were listening to the music and *thinking* it'd be a conscious effort.

and pitchfork is *still* the internet king of music reviews, if you ask me. maybe -- and this is only a *maybe* -- you'd be in their league if you wrote a review, oh, more than once a month (or when the latest merritt album comes out).

fred solinger, Friday, 29 September 2000 00:00 (eighteen years ago) Permalink

Surely the appreciation of instrumental virtuosity requires the very distancing that Fred says is anathema to the Zep listener? You can't have it both ways, surely? Mind you, I quite like them so I should probably keep my trap shut.

David, Friday, 29 September 2000 00:00 (eighteen years ago) Permalink

One last post and then I really will shut up!

The ironic thing, I've just realised, is that my reaction to Led Zep *is* pretty much 'instinctual' - as I said to Fred in chat a few days ago, the difference is that I'm basically more of a punk than him. So I like Motorhead, he likes Zep, and both of us look around for rationalisations as to why the other one is less rockin'. Having grown up on the British music press and their horror of anything approaching prog or dinosaur rock, my gut instinct is to mistrust the virtuosity and bombast of the Zep: so my negative judgement is based on that 'unthinking' reaction.

Of course, I *could* think myself into liking some of their stuff, but as Fred says, that's hardly the point...

Tom, Friday, 29 September 2000 00:00 (eighteen years ago) Permalink

OK, off the top of my head:

Busta Rhymes - 'This Means War' samples 'Iron Man'

Cypress Hill - 'I Ain't Goin' Out Like That' samples 'The Wizard'

And I'm sure that 'Behind the Wall of Sleep' has been used on a record too, Okay it's not quite 'When the Levee Breaks' but it's still got a fucking good, if loose, groove

Chewshabadoo, Friday, 29 September 2000 00:00 (eighteen years ago) Permalink

I can never hear the lyrics very well unless it's Bob Dylan. So, thankfully, lyrics rarely interfere with my rock and roll enjoyment. For Zep it's the riffs man, it's the riffs. For Sabbeth, it's the riffs man, it's the riffs. For Rage Against the Machine, it's the riffs. For the Stones, the riffs. The riffs are probably why bombastic, butt-simple rock and roll works at all. When you put virtuosity and rock and roll together, I worry. Rock and roll is the professional wresting of music and I love it.

Who has more original, harder, stranger, colder, more bombastic riffs than Zep?

That said: Stairway to Heaven may be Zep's pop masterpiece, but pop isn't what I want out of a hard band. I've seen them twice but after the first album, they could only play arrangements of their multitracked recordings. If Zeps extraordinary arrangements bear any responsibility for the over-produced so-called power ballads that came after, I curse them. Finally, Jimmy played the coldest blues based solos ever - his solos bother me every time I hear them but, maybe that's a good thing.

TK, Friday, 29 September 2000 00:00 (eighteen years ago) Permalink

the term "virtuosity" is being tossed around a lot. is johnny marr virtuosic? kevin shields? does tom (or whoever) appreciate them for their virtuosity. i suspect the answer is yes.

as for zeppelin, to paraphrase cole gagne on branca, it does not matter what anyone thinks about them any more than it matters what anyone thinks of the sun. they were my ecstasy and education from ages 10-14 or so. i can't stand them most of the time now, after punk happened long ago for me but there are always precious moments when i can listen and get into it again. the reasons for loving them and hating them are both equally obvious and *don't matter*. zeppelin simply are.

curiously neglected so far:

i) the obvious vulnerable and androgynous qualities of robert plant's voice and persona. *this* is one item that separates them from standard macho beer-drinking rock and makes them valuable to misfit teen boys (god knows none of the *jocks* were listening to them in my gr 8 class).

ii) the tolkien's not there to make the fans feel smug and intellectual. fuck, when do most people read tolkien? gr 6? gr 7? it's there because, along with the music, zeppelin really aimed to create a fantasy-world and to achieve an otherworldly experience. item number two.

listening to just the cure all the time though. gah.

sundar subramanian, Friday, 29 September 2000 00:00 (eighteen years ago) Permalink

also interesting that zeppelin is being described as totally non-intellectual, primal, etc. such claims are never made of, say, fugazi. are they really more sophisticated?

sundar subramanian, Saturday, 30 September 2000 00:00 (eighteen years ago) Permalink

Also, no one's yet mentioned the heavy debt Zep had to the English folk tradition. Maybe that's not as obvious on their albums, but the only thing of theirs I own is Boxed Set II and they really play it up in the liner notes.

Josh, Sunday, 1 October 2000 00:00 (eighteen years ago) Permalink

or their explorations of indian classical music for that matter.

sundar subramanian, Monday, 2 October 2000 00:00 (eighteen years ago) Permalink

Zeppelin's definitely a classic. No question about it.

The best Zep, though, were "Physical Graffiti" and "Presence." The first LP of the former is the best funk record ever recorded (better even that Parliament/Funkadelic). The second is just great.

Tadeusz Suchodolski, Thursday, 5 October 2000 00:00 (eighteen years ago) Permalink

First of all, a considerable portion of Led Zeppelin is quite classic; they are one of the very few bands that could make absofuckinglutely ANYTHING rock: calypso, english pussy folk, black magic, disco, cavestomp, whatever. They were like a karaoke studio band gone bananas (Robert Plant adding a pure ridiculousness factor that puts them over the top, Stairway and all.) But I CANNOT BELIEVE the grief that the greatest rhythm section rock has ever known, the band that invented the rhythmic language of heavy metal as it were, are getting here. Bill Ward, Geezer Butler, and Tony Iommi did EVERYTHING as rhythm; just because Ward didn't mike his bass drum at the end of a canyon doesn't make their rhythms weak. Listen to the syncopated crashing on a song like Supernaught and spot the rhythmic equivalent anywhere other than maybe early seventies electric jazz or Sun Ra. No-one in rock has even come close. No, it isn't usually funky, but that's hardly the point. While Zeppelin were busy goofing around with trying to convert as many forms of music as possible into rock and roll, Sabbath invented and perfected a new form of expression.

Kris.

Kris P. Ozzfest Rainout, Thursday, 5 October 2000 00:00 (eighteen years ago) Permalink

one month passes...
Zep rules.... i didn't read everyone answer cuz im too stoned.....but zep kicks ass and everyone that said that zeppelin's music sucks, is way too stubborn to let the music take over.......by not liking zep you have just not succum to transendece or Plants voice............you think its cool not to like what everyone else thinks...(you all know who u are).....u think that by liking a less popular band it makes you more unique.....but in actuality your just a bunch suckers that think it cool to listen to a shitty band.....

f.ccccc, Wednesday, 29 November 2000 01:00 (eighteen years ago) Permalink

one month passes...
How timely, just the other day i was in the mood for some 70s style RAWK! But scanning my Led Zep box I saw too much songs that gave me the creeps. Exceptions for me still are "Kashmir", "In my time of dying" and in spite of Plant's voice, "No Quarter"...that wah-wah riff instantly turns me into a air-guitar playing dork, going "Whagawahgawha, whagawahgawah" (etc.)

Omar Munoz, Wednesday, 3 January 2001 01:00 (eighteen years ago) Permalink

three weeks pass...
Led zeppelin fucked a girl with a shark. they also made some totally huge sounding music. also, they made some pretty bad music. seeing as they fucked that girl with the shark,though, they rule.

swastikas forever, Thursday, 25 January 2001 01:00 (eighteen years ago) Permalink

three weeks pass...
Led Zeppelin is a good band, not god-like, but they had many good qualities. I only own two of their albums. I only own one of their CDs. I only own that album for one song: "When The Levee Breaks." My gosh that's a good song. Cathartic, escapist, whatever the hell you wanna call it. I do have one complaint: Why did Plant have to do his primal scream/grizzled bluesman shouting thing during the _first_ slide guitar break? That led to the second one being kind of anticlimactic. Ah well, beggars can't be choosers.

Jack Redelfs, Wednesday, 21 February 2001 01:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

one month passes...
Personally I believe that Led Zeppelin is on of the most overrated rock band of all time. Yes, they are one of the most requested rock bands in history, but that doesn't make them good. Black Sabbath was a much more influential than Zeppelin ever was. Sabbath inspired the entire Heavy Metal genre, while zeppelin can maybe be credited with 80's hair bands.

Jeff J., Monday, 26 March 2001 00:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

Led Zeppelin is the WORST band.They SUCK so bad that they make puff daddy sound good......it's true.All the dumbasses that listen to this shit should get some help.......All Led Zeppelin is,is a bunch of faggots that can't play for shit.........it's true.Thank goodness they are RETIRED.So we don't have to put up with the badness that they display......it's true.They are probabley enjoying their retirement collecting $207.42 a month for the rest of their lives.......that's not bad money for them considering their making more money now then when they played to empty night clubs.......it's true.

ray charles, Tuesday, 27 March 2001 00:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

two months pass...
Maybe you don't like LZ, but they were NOT bad musicians. Bonzo is the BEST ROCK DRUMMER, and if you don't agree, who's better? Travis Barker? And when you consider his praise from other musicians, I'd say that Jimmy Page is not a bad guitarist.

LZ, Saturday, 23 June 2001 00:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

All you people have no taste or anything musical in you if you say that Zeppelin sucks. Like they are actual artists unlike those fucking skid groups or rap fuckers these days.How can you compare zeppelin to Dr. Dre. Jimmy Pagfe is perhaps the greatest guitarist of all time and in my mind he is the king of rock n roll. Led Zeppelin is the geatest band of all time and I shit on you pricks who don't know what they are talking about.

Fuck you all

Milton Robertson, Thursday, 28 June 2001 00:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

Ray Charles fucks fred nice and Hard up the ass. ZEPPELIN RULES MAN. NOW I'M GONNA GO SMOKE A JOINT FOR ZEP THE I'M GONNA TAKE A SHIT TO REPRESENT RAY'S AND FRED'S INTELLIGENCE

Fred's gay, Thursday, 28 June 2001 00:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

Er, obviously bob cannae read. But he did make me laugh.

Nicole, Thursday, 28 June 2001 00:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

I can not believe that there is even a discussion on whether or not led zeppelin was good. Unlike other bands, they constantly progressed and changed. They started out as a blues band, with some hard rock, like dazed and confused off of their first album. As result of their progression and experimentation, they became one of the first hard rock bands of all time.

Later bands would imitate the screamin and screaching guitars; however, the rythm sectio could not be duplicated. Furthermore, the sound of led zeppelin was a result of a combination of many influencs,including indian classical and celtic. Later bands' sound was a result of musical interests within the band that were limited in genre.

All of the musicians in the band are of the highest quality. JImmy Page ranks as one of the best guitarists ever, and the rythm section of John Paul Jones an John Bonham is unrivaled. The songwritig duo of Page and Plant was also one of the best ever.

Contrary to the beliefs of some people who have posted, Led zeppelin set records for sales of tickets and albums. Their live performances shattered tickt sales records, due to elongated versions of songs such as moby dick, which is also an example of Bonham's amazing talent. They are also right behind the beatles in total record sales. HOwever, the beatles had 21 albums, where zep only had 10.

Now could somebody clarify how zeppelin isn't good, because i just don't see it.

jim, Saturday, 30 June 2001 00:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

1. Ever experimental without losing the brand value. Is that claasic? 2. Some times fake - Kashmir does not have a yellow desert. Classic? 3. Inspiration galore: Golum, the evil one. 4. Pioneering: Whole lotta love. Absolute classic. 5. Aura. natural.

Rajesh Naik, Friday, 6 July 2001 00:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

All of the musicians in the band are of the highest quality.

Guaranteed to never shrink or fade. But they might get very wrinkly and boring.

Tracer Hand, Friday, 6 July 2001 00:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

Robert Plant sounds like a cat being kicked in the balls. THAT is enough for them to be described as dud. Yeah, they may have continually progressed or whatever, but Percy himself never progressed beyound sounding like an feline in extreme pain.

Richard Tunnicliffe, Friday, 6 July 2001 00:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

two weeks pass...
The only reson ou have not to like Led Zeppelin and even Tolkien is because you're in a different state of mind. It's about escaping reality a creating one of your very own. So don't give me that crap about it being shit. This is the basis of all forms of art.

muppet monkey, Tuesday, 24 July 2001 00:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

"They are also right behind the beatles in total record sales. However, the beatles had 21 albums, where Zep only had 10": this the clicher for me. 21 = kewl number (3 x 7); 10 = evil number (2 x 5). D'you SEE?

I like Plant's voice.

mark s, Tuesday, 24 July 2001 00:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

Their most powerful moments were often the quieter ones..."That's the Way" off of III, "The Rain Song" from Houses, "Down By the Seaside" from Physical Graffiti.

But the stuff I think I most enjoy from them are when they were just plain goofy and/or eccentric. I'm thinking "Boogie with Stu", "Hats Off (to Roy Harper)", "The Crunge", "Hot Dog", etc

Can't think of too many weak moments from Zep, actually...

Joe, Wednesday, 25 July 2001 00:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

It's kind of hard to get into an argument about Led Zeppelin when the ground rules seem to be that they weren't pretty accomplished usicians who managed to extend the vocabulary of popular music in ways that few bands ever do.

I can understand those who don't like them becasue of the Prog/Dinosaur overtones, but simply noting that they were in that field would negate the accusations of them bieng anti-intellectual and lacking skill.

Sure, some of their songs are *fairly* simple, but on the whole, they almost always managed to do something unexpected or quirky within the context of Loud Blues.

They're one of the few Rawk bands I can stand, because there's always something ungraspable about how they came to what they ended up doing. To me, if you can figure out how a band got to their end product (and could replicate it yourself), why bother listening to it?

CountV/John T, Friday, 27 July 2001 00:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

one month passes...
Some of these "Black Sabbath" fans crack me up with there total lack of knowledge about rock history. Led Zeppelin did not influence that horrible hair metal of the 80's musically. All those lame bands did was try to "look" like them. There music was silly pop dreck with loud guitars.

Zeppelin's music, if you listen to it, was exstremly inventive and layered. Led Zeppelins actually musical influence can actually be felt most from everyone from Prince to REM to Jane's Addiction to Smashing Pumpkins. Not lame hair metal, lol. On the other hand all Black Sabbath ever influenced was moronic crap like death metal, or black metal and a bunch of low IQed, beer swilling "metal heads" with a mentality to "break stuff" and worship the devil. Please.

Also the comments about Led Zeppelin not being intellectual are ignorant in my opinion. Is Mozart not intellectual? He certainly did not have many lyrics about war or polotics did he? What was intellectual about Zeppelin was there musical ability. The world was filled with tons of good and lame bands that where "politcally consious", i think they where and still are a breath of fresh air. I like some Punk rock, but if you are that non-ecclectic as to be turned off to great musicans because of some silly ideal or scene (like punk) then your a idiot.

Robert, Friday, 21 September 2001 00:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

Well it's more than likely that Led Zep isn't the greatest rock band of all time. The majority of their lyrics seems to have come straight from their waists and some of their more popular riffs are remarkably simple. Plant is probably overrated and had he not died so prematurely, Bonzo might never have been as celebrated as he is now. Still, does that mean that Immigrant Song is not worth listening to, or that Over The Hills and Far Away is useless tripe from a pretentious 70s band? Maybe... but no one can argue that they were more influential than Sabbath ever could have been. Firstly, I contend that it is Led Zep and not Sab that should be pointed out as the originators of heavy metal if you had but one finger to point with. But even if you don't agree, let us remember that it was Black Sabbath's unbearbable stagnation that was in the most part responsible for the New Wave of British Heavy Metal movement in the 1980s. (The fact is that most tributes to Black Sabbath - how many are there, seven? - feature generic death metal bands with cookie monster vocalists.)

So, did Sabbath influence Iron Maiden or Judas Priest? Probably, but not in the way they might have liked. There may be a reason Maiden - a band that does few covers - did one of Whole Lotta Love, but never a single Sabbath tune.

Jack Torrance, Thursday, 4 October 2001 00:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

Well it's more than likely that Led Zep isn't the greatest rock band of all time. The majority of their lyrics seems to have come straight from their waists and some of their more popular riffs are remarkably simple. Plant is probably overrated and had he not died so prematurely, Bonzo might never have been as celebrated as he is now. Still, does that mean that Immigrant Song is not worth listening to, or that Over The Hills and Far Away is useless tripe from a pretentious 70s band? Maybe... but no one can argue that they were more influential than Sabbath ever could have been. Firstly, I contend that it is Led Zep and not Sab that should be pointed out as the originators of heavy metal if you had but one finger to point with. But even if you don't agree, let us remember that it was Black Sabbath's unbearbable stagnation that was in the most part responsible for the New Wave of British Heavy Metal movement in the 1980s. (The fact is that most tributes to Black Sabbath - how many are there, seven? - feature generic death metal bands with cookie monster vocalists.)

So, did Sabbath influence Iron Maiden or Judas Priest? Probably, but not in the way they might have liked. There may be a reason Maiden - a band that does few covers - did one of Whole Lotta Love, but never a single Sabbath tune.

J Corabi, Friday, 12 October 2001 00:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

seven months pass...
Just the fact that so many people still feel strongly about Zep, 20 years after their demise, says something. Unlike 99% of the crap that is made today and forgotten 6 mopnths later. Long live "classic" rock.

Ron

Ron Murray, Friday, 7 June 2002 00:00 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

Led zeppelin fucked a girl with a shark.

So they influenced R. Kelly, too!

Dan Perry, Friday, 7 June 2002 00:00 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

R. Kelly isn't in their league.

dleone, Friday, 7 June 2002 00:00 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

it was the vanilla fudge at the edgewater inn in washington state that fcked a girl with the shark.

chaki, Friday, 7 June 2002 00:00 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

Yes, Zep were the red snapper, not the shark

Ben Williams, Friday, 7 June 2002 00:00 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

the vanilla fudge invented everything!!

mark s, Saturday, 8 June 2002 00:00 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

one month passes...
I quite like Zep. And I don't think Sabbath come close really because they are so one-dimensional (to my fascistic ears, at least). Whereas, Zep were multi-faceted and instead of writing a few good somngs, wrote a string of shit-hot albums.

Anyband with Bonham at the back was on to a winner (unless it was Bonham's own band) and Page and Plant ain't so bad either. Actually, I recall Ian Anderson of Jethro Tull fame telling Melody Maker back in the day that with his lyrics and Zep's music they "could have made quite a good little rock and roll band." Ha ha ha ha ha.. sorry, I laugh my ass off everytime I hear that.

Gimme Physical Graffiti everytime. I think it's actually too good, if that's possible, which it isn't, but it feels like it is when I listen to that album. Does anyone else know what I (don't) mean?

Roger Fascist, Monday, 29 July 2002 00:00 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

Yes! And he's played the Best Show theme a bunch of times at baseball games.

Montgomery Burns' Jazz (Tarfumes The Escape Goat), Thursday, 12 November 2015 15:17 (three years ago) Permalink

Is that Steve Wynn out front? Must have been a Baseball Project gig.

Roaming gang of aggressive circlepits (ithappens), Thursday, 12 November 2015 15:23 (three years ago) Permalink

I also have a friend in this line-up! - Tim, second guitarist and backing vocalist.

schlep and back trio (anagram), Thursday, 12 November 2015 16:28 (three years ago) Permalink

Man, I love how Buck and Mills have pretty much worked non-stop on side-projects, super-groups and solo albums since REM broke up. They're having so much fun.

Josh in Chicago, Thursday, 12 November 2015 17:47 (three years ago) Permalink

JPJ did the string arrangements on Automatic For The People, good to see they kept in touch!

Turrican, Thursday, 12 November 2015 20:07 (three years ago) Permalink

five months pass...

Bit late now that randy c is dead tbh. What was his attitude on the issue anyway?

real orgone kid (NickB), Tuesday, 12 April 2016 06:54 (two years ago) Permalink

two years pass...

It's Zep-revisiting season. Man, this shit is so juvenile. But that rhythm section.

Fedora Dostoyevsky (man alive), Tuesday, 25 September 2018 14:09 (four months ago) Permalink

Sometimes I think it's juvenile, then other times I think, you know, Lord of the Rings was less than 20 years old, the Beatles hadn't broken up yet, it was the summer of love ... they could do worse than vikings and hobbits and blues double entendres.

Josh in Chicago, Tuesday, 25 September 2018 14:23 (four months ago) Permalink

Separately, got an advance of the Peter Grant bio so we'll see what that's like.

Ned Raggett, Tuesday, 25 September 2018 14:40 (four months ago) Permalink

Horrific no doubt re: Grant bio!

VyrnaKnowlIsAHeadbanger, Tuesday, 25 September 2018 14:44 (four months ago) Permalink

Does it go into the ‘73 theft in NYC?

calstars, Tuesday, 25 September 2018 15:55 (four months ago) Permalink

Guess I'll find out! And yeah if it's some puff piece I'll be all "Uh."

Ned Raggett, Tuesday, 25 September 2018 16:11 (four months ago) Permalink

I think I was probably the last male American rock fan, born during the era in which the band was active, to "get into" Led Zep. I got the box set as a gift in high school, when it was released, but didn't dig it too much (in retrospect, it wasn't a great introduction... a lot to wade through). Over the years, I came to dislike the band pretty actively, based on the tracks from the first two albums and IV that are played on the radio all the time.

Then, a few years ago, I picked up a used copy of Physical Graffiti (I don't even remember why); and was like, whoa... I knew the big hits, but wasn't familiar w/cuts like "In the Light" and "Ten Years Gone." This was a terrific album... and I moved forward & backward from there, getting really into the albums with titles (instead of numbers) in particular. Basically, it's the second half of their career that I had received little exposure to, and which turned out to be very much my thing (I also dig III, and side two of IV is good).

I haven't revisited them so much lately, after that heavy six or eight months... but I definitely "get it" now!

growing up in publix (morrisp), Tuesday, 25 September 2018 18:35 (four months ago) Permalink

always rep hard for III, which is one of the greatest records ever

sweetheart of the Neo Geo (Ross), Tuesday, 25 September 2018 18:49 (four months ago) Permalink

There was a recentish LZ thread where people (incl. myself?) dissected some youtube drummers' playalongs of some of Bonzo's more uh... athletic/difficult? performances... but that is currently beyond my ILX search ability.

Jersey Al (Albert R. Broccoli), Tuesday, 25 September 2018 18:55 (four months ago) Permalink

whoops wrong thread but kinda works too I guess?

Jersey Al (Albert R. Broccoli), Tuesday, 25 September 2018 18:56 (four months ago) Permalink

Even listening to an audio stream via tinny computer speakers, at mid-low volume, Bonzo's drums bust out so powerfully

growing up in publix (morrisp), Tuesday, 25 September 2018 19:16 (four months ago) Permalink

saw a youtube the other day where guy was disproving the legend that Bonham's Levee part was recorded in a stairwell w/no added artificial echo

A True White Kid that can Jump (Granny Dainger), Tuesday, 25 September 2018 19:29 (four months ago) Permalink

Hard funk is my favourite Zeppelin mode:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cqs3hw0rgpc

dinnerboat, Tuesday, 25 September 2018 19:31 (four months ago) Permalink

saw a youtube the other day where guy was disproving the legend that Bonham's Levee part was recorded in a stairwell w/no added artificial echo

― A True White Kid that can Jump (Granny Dainger), Tuesday, September 25, 2018 3:29 PM (fourteen minutes ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

I don't think the artificial echo was ever a secret. The stairwell provided most of the color, but it was supplemented with outboard gear:

https://www.musicradar.com/news/drums/andy-johns-on-the-secrets-behind-the-led-zeppelin-iv-sessions-586533

"I used two Beyerdynamic M160 microphones and I put a couple of limiters over the two mics and used a Binson Echorec echo device that Jimmy Page had bought. They were Italian-made and instead of tape they used a very thin steel drum.

"Tape would wear out and you'd have to keep replacing it. But this wafer-thin drum worked on the same principle as a wire recorder. It was magnetised and had various heads on it and there were different settings. They were very cool things!

"And so playing at that particular tempo on 'Levee the limiters had time to breathe and that's how Bonzo got that 'Ga Gack' sound because of the Binson. He wasn't playing that. It was the Binson that made him sound like that. I remember playing it back in the Stones' mobile truck and thinking, 'Bonzo's gotta f**king like this!' I had never heard anything like it and the drum sound was quite spectacular."

Montgomery Burns' Jazz (Tarfumes The Escape Goat), Tuesday, 25 September 2018 19:48 (four months ago) Permalink

Right not a secret, but to non-engineers/casual fans (hi) that part of it was left out & story was condensed to "it sounds like that cause it was recorded in a stairwell". Which it wasn't! The room was akin to a lobby of a small hotel.

A True White Kid that can Jump (Granny Dainger), Tuesday, 25 September 2018 19:59 (four months ago) Permalink

I always though the tape speed was altered too, everything except the vocals microtoned down a quarter or maybe even a half step

calstars, Tuesday, 25 September 2018 20:46 (four months ago) Permalink

A little more on the box set: I definitely gave it some listens... I remember the four CDs with their "atmospheric" cover images, and thinking the "No Quarter" riff was really cool. I must have just set it aside after freshman year, as I moved more towards other stuff. Also, the friends I fell in with shared my love of R.E.M., VU, etc. -- I didn't know anyone who listened to Led Zep (except for a cool girl in middle school who was obsessed w/classic rock, Keith Moon in particular).

growing up in publix (morrisp), Tuesday, 25 September 2018 20:51 (four months ago) Permalink

xpost There is a ton of stuff going on in "When the Levee Breaks."

Josh in Chicago, Wednesday, 26 September 2018 11:46 (four months ago) Permalink

lol, did I ever tell you guys about my seventh grade history fair project?

Fedora Dostoyevsky (man alive), Wednesday, 3 October 2018 19:12 (four months ago) Permalink

I didn't really like US history that much, and I had just gotten into Led Zeppelin, so I asked my teacher if I could do a history fair project about Led Zeppelin. She was skeptical but sort of gave me a chance: "Oh, you mean like as part of a cultural phenomenon, I guess that could work."

I enlisted my metalhead friend Nick as my partner. I had recently received some jenky quasi-picture-book biography of Led Zeppelin, like maybe the whole thing was 6000 words. I basically just started writing text for the posterboard based on stuff I read in that book. Jimmy Page invented the reverse echo! John Bonham took extended solos and even used his hands! A third of the way into the process, Nick dropped out. The ultimate work product was soundly rejected from even appearing in the history fair.

Fedora Dostoyevsky (man alive), Wednesday, 3 October 2018 19:16 (four months ago) Permalink

haha

Οὖτις, Wednesday, 3 October 2018 19:23 (four months ago) Permalink

Does anyone ever recall seeing an essay written by Michael Ian Black under the title of, something along the lines of, "My Buddy Jerry Kicks Major Ass on Drums"? It was a seriously, incredibly funny thing about this guy could really play drums and there was a short antidote included in the essay about how Jerry could play along perfectly with Led Zeppelin IV ("except for 'The Battle of Evermore' WHICH FUCKING SUCKS"). It's one of the best things I've ever read.

It was in an old issue of Filter magazine, but they don't have it available to read on their site: http://filtermagazine.com/index.php/magazine/FILTER_issue_17

Totally different head. Totally. (Austin), Wednesday, 3 October 2018 20:20 (four months ago) Permalink

three months pass...

ugh I am meaning to link the Telecaster promo fuck

Rhine Jive Click Bait (Hadrian VIII), Thursday, 24 January 2019 21:11 (three weeks ago) Permalink

That's pretty awesome. I do think some of those replicas are kind of crazy, but it really highlights how iconic the instruments are, whether Joe Strummer, Andy Summers or Page (all Teles!). Jeez, what would you do with one of those custom, hand-painted and signed $25K models? Would you play it? I guess I'd just display it, because if I could afford that I could afford one of the cheaper ones.

Video and specs stress he used it for the first album, but wasn't Zep II all Telecaster? And lots of other stuff was Tele, too, like the "Stairway" solo. Different guitars?

Josh in Chicago, Thursday, 24 January 2019 21:22 (three weeks ago) Permalink

Jeez, what would you do with one of those custom, hand-painted and signed $25K models? Would you play it?

That's the weird thing: they go to crazy lengths to replicate the playing and sonic characteristics of the original instrument, surely knowing that maybe 20% of the people who buy it will actually play it.

Montgomery Burns' Jazz (Tarfumes The Escape Goat), Thursday, 24 January 2019 21:44 (three weeks ago) Permalink

Ha that is entirely true. I do find something endearing abt Pagey's fastidiousness in old age here. He seems to have sweetened in his winter years.

Rhine Jive Click Bait (Hadrian VIII), Thursday, 24 January 2019 22:13 (three weeks ago) Permalink

xp iirc on the the second LP he mostly played the '59 Les Paul Joe Walsh gave him

Rhine Jive Click Bait (Hadrian VIII), Thursday, 24 January 2019 22:14 (three weeks ago) Permalink

two weeks pass...

Solve me this mystery: why is "Tangerine" out of tune? Not an alternate tuning, just out of tune. Like, between tunings.

Josh in Chicago, Friday, 8 February 2019 03:34 (one week ago) Permalink

You mean how it's like a 1/4 step out of tune from 330hz E?

I found a quote that he used a pedal steel on this that was out of tune so they tuned to it:

Jimmy Page played a pedal steel guitar on this track. He told Guitar Player magazine in 1977: "On the first LP there's a pedal steel. I had never played steel before, but I just picked it up. There's a lot of things I do first time around that I haven't done before. In fact, I hadn't touched a pedal steel from the first album to the third. It's a bit of a pinch really from the things that Chuck Berry did. Nevertheless, it fits. I use pedal steel in 'Your Time Is Gonna Come.' It sounds like a slide or something. It's more out of tune on the first album because I hadn't got a kit to put it together."

Jersey Al (Albert R. Broccoli), Friday, 8 February 2019 03:54 (one week ago) Permalink

I've heard one Daphne & Celeste song once and it had more of an impact on me than all the Zeppelin I've ever heard put together.

from what i can tell this came within a week of being the ilx first mention of #28 on the album poll for 2018 !

budo jeru, Friday, 8 February 2019 04:04 (one week ago) Permalink

So rather than just tune the pedal steel they tune the acoustic and acoustic 12-string to the out of tune pedal steel?

Josh in Chicago, Friday, 8 February 2019 04:15 (one week ago) Permalink

(All I know is that if you play along in standard it's totally off.)

Josh in Chicago, Friday, 8 February 2019 04:19 (one week ago) Permalink

Isn’t a pedal steel kind of hard to tune?

Only a Factory URL (James Redd and the Blecchs), Friday, 8 February 2019 04:52 (one week ago) Permalink

very

budo jeru, Friday, 8 February 2019 04:58 (one week ago) Permalink

The pedal steel on "Your Time..." sounds like it's actually out of tune. "Tangerine" generally sounds in tune to me, just about a quarter-tone down from A=440 Hz concert pitch, as Al says. I feel like I recall Beatles tunes that are also a bit like this. I don't recall a definitive reason given for it on "Tangerine" but on this Reddit thread, people suggest the possibilities of tape speed alteration or the fussiness of 12-strings of the time, both of which might be credible (esp the first). This 1975 live version seems a lot closer to A440.

Ha 3xp!

silent as a seashell Julia (Sund4r), Friday, 8 February 2019 05:00 (one week ago) Permalink

I feel like there could be something a little unnatural about the timbre of the voice on the recording; it seems noticeable when comparing to the live video. Tape speed alteration sounds believable to me.

silent as a seashell Julia (Sund4r), Friday, 8 February 2019 05:11 (one week ago) Permalink

I'm sure there's literally thousands of examples of tape speed manipulation knocking the overall pitch of tracks just slightly out of standard pitch. There's an entire Stranglers album (La Folie) that's like this because of the way Tony Visconti mixed it.

Then again, in the days of vinyl I'm sure different turntables all had their own inherent quirks which could potentially lead to further subtle pitch differences.

Le Baton Rose (Turrican), Friday, 8 February 2019 07:17 (one week ago) Permalink


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