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Led Zeppelin - The Song Remains the Same [Blu-ray]

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  • I cannot for the life of me figure out why so many Zep-heads (and Page and Plant too) dismiss this 1973 concert album as sub-standard. Granted, it is heavily edited, with the best moments of three consecutive nights spliced together for the final mix. But then, in reality aren’t all official live recordings put together this way? And there is no doubt that what we are left with is definitive concert versions of these nine songs. Page delivers two of his finest ever solos in ‘No Quarter’ and ‘Stairway to Heaven,’ while his chord/lead work on the title track is simply astounding. Similarly, the violin bow solo in ‘Dazed and Confused’ and the rockabilly solos in ‘Whole Lotta Love’ are masterful. Also, Plant is in fine voice throughout, and the rhythm section of Jones and Bonham is frighteningly intense. In my view, 1973 was Zep’s greatest year as a live band – it marked the peak of their early instrumental development (check out bootlegs of the Mobile and Seattle shows from this same US tour for comparable performances). And this album captures that peak-1973 period for official posterity. So forget what the ‘politically correct’ Zep critics say – this is one of rock’s great live albums!

    Posted on December 30, 2009