Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin

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    Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin

    This should be an easy one, but maybe not.

    How important were Led Zeppelin? Many call them the true Godfathers of Hard Rock/Heavy Metal. Some say that they were as important to Prog Rock as any band before and after them. Some say they were the most over-hyped band in the world. And some would say that they are as important to RnR as the Beatles and the Stones. Which one is it?

    There is no doubt that songs like Communication Breakdown, Rock and Roll, Whole Lotta Love, and Dazed and Confused  were as heavy as it gets. And they could get as bluesy as anyone even when the weren't ripping off the old masters. They certainly have their share of masterpieces which will live on in Stairway to Heaven and Kashmir. These songs will forever be standards in the world of Popular Music. Their took influences from the Blues, Early British Pop, American RnR, Indian music and even J R Tolkien to give us 10 years of amazing stuff. But they also gave us a few pieces of pretentious schlock to go along with it. But what band didn't? They changed directions as fast as any band could - Zep III is still my favorite album by them even though I believe that Houses of the Holy is a perfect album. They have influenced everything since the early 70's. Billy Corgan of the Smashing Punpkins is quoted as saying Led Zeppelin was as influentional to the late 80's, early 90's alternative and Grunge scene as anyone out there. You can hear the Zep influences in music by Soundgarden and Alice in Chains. And the Hard Rock Bands of the late 90's, Creed and Nickleback basically did all they could to be just like them.

    So let's have at it.

    My own opinion says that they belong right there with the Stones, The Who, and The Kinks as the pillars or RnR. With Only Dylan, Hendrix and The Beatles being a step above them. I first saw them in 1973 and never missed a tour. And I usually would go to a couple of shows each tour. I probably saw Led Zep almost as many times as I saw Queen. Page, Plant, JPJ and Bonham could play. They all had serious chops. But they had their moments of pizzing me off as well. But what band can please their fans every second of every day.

    What say you?
     
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    Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin

    To me what ultimately separates artists is the material, the songwriting.  I think Zeppelin were vastly superior to the competition in their writing ability.  They created a musical spectrum.  The diversity of songs on the albums from III to Physical Graffiti is pretty incredible.  And of course they were great players who could rock like not many others.  I think Jimmy Page is one of the biggest talents in the history of popular music.  He is in the Pantheon.  
     
  3. You have chosen to ignore posts from cosmogirl. Show cosmogirl's posts

    Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin

    Played their first album until it wore out.  Had their new two on 8-track! 

    I'm totally over them now.  Not sure why. 

     
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    Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin

    To me they were RnR's first big Heavy Metal band. I'm no rock historian, but I would rank Zep 3rd behind the Beatles and the Stones.
     
  5. You have chosen to ignore posts from Mattyhorn. Show Mattyhorn's posts

    Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin

    As I noted in the VH thread, Led Zep has gotten a bad rap as a result of the many pale imitators who followed them.  Zep was the first band I collected (at 13) all of their proper albums; the first band I recognized as a personal favorite; the first band in which I could name any song from just a few notes.  They also were directly responsible for my exposure to the old blues titans like Muddy Waters, Willie Dixon and Leadbelly as well as the British bluesers.

    But it rarely gets any better than the first four (I would say first six) LPs by Led Zeppelin.  Their entire catalog is worthy and is chock full of great moments in hard rock, but those first four discs were brilliant and showed how expansive and talented a group they were.  They would not have been successful if they weren't such good musicians or such an accomplished live band. 

    With some bands, it's either all or nothing, i.e., they work or they don't.  Plant, Page, Jones and Bonham worked from the start, were great from the start, and when one was gone, the band was simply no more.  Think about that and how many bands have tried to be something they're not...I would suggest very few have done it successfully.

    We're all interested in lists and rankings and ostensibly categorizing music and musicians.  Every member of this band would be on a shortlist of "Best Ever" on their instruments, and a couple might be in the top five.  Very few bands have been so influential and had such universal appeal for so long, but perhaps that's because of the fickle music press as much as the dedicated fans.

    My favorite moments are mostly blues-based: Since I've Been Loving You; Babe, I'm Gonna Leave You; The Lemon Song; In My Time Of Dying; Bring It On Home; When The Levee Breaks, et al. but were just as adept at prog- (No Quarter), acoustic (Gallows Pole), rock n' roll (Custard Pie), as well as british folk (Bron-Y-Aur) and world music (Kashmir).



     
  6. You have chosen to ignore posts from jesseyeric. Show jesseyeric's posts

    Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin

    Matty - I have to tell you that I do enjoy reading your take on music. You lay it out very nicely.

    But I am interested in your opinion on Zep 1 - IV (zoso) vs Houses of the Holy and PG. Although I agree with you on their brilliance, I always thought that as a whole album, Houses of the Holy (HofH) was absolutely perfect. Now you do reach back and amend your statement to include HotH as well as Physical Graffitti. P.G. - much like the White Album, if Physical Graffitti was only one instead of a double album, I might consider it one of the greatest of all time. Do you see there being a a slight drop-off between zoso and HotH or do you think it is more of your own taste?
     
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    Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin

    In Response to Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin:
    Matty - I have to tell you that I do enjoy reading your take on music. You lay it out very nicely. But I am interested in your opinion on Zep 1 - IV (zoso) vs Houses of the Holy and PG. Although I agree with you on their brilliance, I always thought that as a whole album, Houses of the Holy (HofH) was absolutely perfect. Now you do reach back and amend your statement to include HotH as well as Physical Graffitti. P.G. - much like the White Album, if Physical Graffitti was only one instead of a double album, I might consider it one of the greatest of all time. Do you see there being a a slight drop-off between zoso and HotH or do you think it is more of your own taste?
    Posted by jesseyeric


    Thanks, jessey, I enjoy reading your opinions as well....

    Physical Graffitti is my favorite Zep album - perhaps for the opposite reasons you prefer HotH - exactly because it's a sprawling mess of an LP with lots of different textures and ideas going on.  It's one of those in which you can get lost and hear something different every time.  (e.g. this also speaks to my preference of the White Album vs. Sgt. Pepper, and Exile on Main St. vs. Sticky Fingers, etc.) 
    PG also represents, to me, their last really good album and just an unabashedly hard-rocking record.

    But if you look at Zep's output, I through IV were all released within about 3 years, while HotH had a longer gestation time.  At that point, they were still growing as a band, as songwriters, and as individual sensibilities.  It's not that there was a dropoff - far from it - they were still expanding their musical palettes.

    I know what you're saying, especially given how excessively played-out some of ZoSo is, while parts of HotH still seem fresh (when did you last hear The Crunge on the radio...?).  And personally, I agree with that notion and prefer the latter, too.  But I also lean toward their bluesier stuff - which is not quite the prevailing theme on HotH but which is splashed all over PG.  (It's like, II was a great, incredible record, but III just seems more interesting to me....)

    I hope that makes sense (in my typically verbose way)....
     
  8. You have chosen to ignore posts from jesseyeric. Show jesseyeric's posts

    Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin

    In Response to Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin:
    In Response to Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin : Thanks, jessey, I enjoy reading your opinions as well.... Physical Graffitti is my favorite Zep album - perhaps for the opposite reasons you prefer HotH - exactly because it's a sprawling mess of an LP with lots of different textures and ideas going on.  It's one of those in which you can get lost and hear something different every time.  (e.g. this also speaks to my preference of the White Album vs. Sgt. Pepper, and Exile on Main St. vs. Sticky Fingers, etc.)  PG also represents, to me, their last really good album and just an unabashedly hard-rocking record. But if you look at Zep's output, I through IV were all released within about 3 years, while HotH had a longer gestation time.  At that point, they were still growing as a band, as songwriters, and as individual sensibilities.  It's not that there was a dropoff - far from it - they were still expanding their musical palettes. I know what you're saying, especially given how excessively played-out some of ZoSo is, while parts of HotH still seem fresh (when did you last hear The Crunge on the radio...?).  And personally, I agree with that notion and prefer the latter, too.  But I also lean toward their bluesier stuff - which is not quite the prevailing theme on HotH but which is splashed all over PG.  (It's like, II was a great, incredible record, but III just seems more interesting to me....) I hope that makes sense (in my typically verbose way)....
    Posted by Mattyhorn


    Absolutely it does. P.G. is probably my favorite after III and HotH. And I do agree with you regarding the "all over the place" feel of P.G.
     
  9. You have chosen to ignore posts from ZILLAGOD. Show ZILLAGOD's posts

    Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin

    I would say that Iron Butterfly was the first band to put the "Heavy" sound that would morph into Heavy Metal on record. Either that or Cream which was not Heavy Metal but certainly a close, early relative.

    I have to classify Led Zep as Heavy Metal because it is the only sub genre they can be categorized in. But they were so much more. The acoustic songs are so magical and their hard stuff was fierce. Brilliant frontman, awesome guitarist, dynamite drummer and John Paul Jones completed the powerful lineup.

    Although not my favorite band ( strictly a matter of taste, I like Deep Purple and B.O.C. better), simply put they were the #1 band of the 70's hands down....and that was no small feat as they had more competition than the Beatles had in being #1 in the 60's.
     
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    Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin

    In Response to Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin:
    I would say that Iron Butterfly was the first band to put the "Heavy" sound that would morph into Heavy Metal on record. Either that or Cream which was not Heavy Metal but certainly a close, early relative. I have to classify Led Zep as Heavy Metal because it is the only sub genre they can be categorized in. But they were so much more. The acoustic songs are so magical and their hard stuff was fierce. Brilliant frontman, awesome guitarist, dynamite drummer and John Paul Jones completed the powerful lineup. Although not my favorite band ( strictly a matter of taste, I like Deep Purple and B.O.C. better), simply put they were the #1 band of the 70's hands down....and that was no small feat as they had more competition than the Beatles had in being #1 in the 60's.
    Posted by ZILLAGOD


    Interesting take on Iron Butterfly. And it would be very difficult to argue that point.
     
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    Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin

    I personally take the view that most hard rock derives from Led Zeppelin and most heavy metal derives from Sabbath...a minor distinction, really, but a distinction nonetheless.

    Again, just my opinion, but I give the "first heavy metal" prize sound to Blue Cheer.
     
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    Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin

    I am thorwing my hat in the ring for the Beatles.
     
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    Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin

    jessey, I find it interesting that you rate Houses over Zep IV.  I would say the consensus is that Zep IV is one of the top 5 albums in rock history, and some people put it right at the top of the pyramid.  I believe it deserves that kind of status.  I love Houses as well, and just for fun I tried stacking up the 8 songs on each album against each other.  It's a pretty good matchup of course.  It seems that Zep IV has a few more monoliths going for it with Stairway to Heaven, When the Levee Breaks, Black Dog and Rock and Roll.
     
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    Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin

    In Response to Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin:
    I personally take the view that most hard rock derives from Led Zeppelin and most heavy metal derives from Sabbath...a minor distinction, really, but a distinction nonetheless. Again, just my opinion, but I give the "first heavy metal" prize sound to Blue Cheer.
    Posted by Mattyhorn


    I kind of agree with this take.

    I think what separates Zeppelin from heavy metal bans is their versatility. They played great blues, hard rock and roll, folk/acoustic, rockabilly and some stuff I have no idea how to classify.

    I have trouble ranking their albums. I and II are just so hard-driving and come right at you with one great song after another. Then you have the change-up in III, which makes that album so great. Then how can you rank any of them above IV. It's about as classic an album as they come. Stairway alone carries that album the top but there so versatility going from hard-driving songs like Black Dog and Rock 'N' Roll. They then throw Battle of Evermore and come back with Stairway -- and that's just half the album. Two hard-driving songs Misty Mountain Hop and Four Sticks start the second side; they lighten it up with the acoustic Goin to California then ends it with When the Levee Breaks.

    Zep then follows up with Houses of the Holy, which shows  more of their versatility. After the first four albums, that they could come up with an album like HOH at that point is amazing. I find Physical Graffiti a mixed bag. Kashmir and Tramled Underfoot are so great, they overshadow the rest of the album IMO. It's still very strong. In the Light, Night Flight and Boogie With Stu drag down the album a bit, but it's still a great album.

    Push comes to shove, I'd rank the first six: IV, II, HOH, I, III, PG, but it's a paper-thin margin between IV and PG.

    Presence, IMO, is the true weak album. But what a comeback later with In Through the Outdoor where they pulled more tricks out of their sleeve.

    Zeppelin would be great enough if they stuck with the hard stuff from I and II. But few groups, if any, could match the range of sounds that they mastered.
     
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    Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin

    In Response to Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin:
    jessey, I find it interesting that you rate Houses over Zep IV.  I would say the consensus is that Zep IV is one of the top 5 albums in rock history, and some people put it right at the top of the pyramid.  I believe it deserves that kind of status.  I love Houses as well, and just for fun I tried stacking up the 8 songs on each album against each other.  It's a pretty good matchup of course.  It seems that Zep IV has a few more monoliths going for it with Stairway to Heaven, When the Levee Breaks, Black Dog and Rock and Roll.
    Posted by Hfxsoxnut


    Hard to argue the point but I will give my reason why. First, I think No Quarter, Rain Song and Over the Hills and Far Away are just amazing. And back in the day, of all the Zep songs, I sang The Ocean the best.
     
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    Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin

    So many great tracks, so little time....

    I love some of the album tracks from Zep...y'know, those ones you haven't heard in a while and then, when you do, remind you just how good they really were.

    - "Your Time Is Gonna Come" - an amazing 'kiss-off' song with an ethereal organ intro and a rock solid 4/4 and somewhat rare harmonizing vocals; this is one of those left curves that new album buyers must have drooled over.

    - "The Lemon Song" - a nominee for one of the raunchiest songs ever written; this is one to play when your grandparents come to visit; hard-rockin' blooze of a very high quality.

    - "The Rain Song" - Zep didn't pen too many love songs (though "Thank You" and "All My Love" are remarkable), but this one has a lilting sweetness and melancholy that works so well.

    - "Poor Tom" - from the Coda album (so more of an outtake), but this is folk-blues heaven, kind of a companion piece to "Gallows Pole" and even on a tight snare roll, Bonham hits harder than anyone else, ever.

    - "Down By The Seaside" - one of those the perfect unions of their acoustic and electric sides, a folky, almost country-like dirge with a haunting refrain and that funky break ("see how they run...see how they run...") that comes out of nowhere.

    I could go on and on...

    What are your favorite not-yet-played-to-death Zeppelin tracks...??
     
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    Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin

    In Response to Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin:
    So many great tracks, so little time.... I love some of the album tracks from Zep...y'know, those ones you haven't heard in a while and then, when you do, remind you just how good they really were. - "Your Time Is Gonna Come" - an amazing 'kiss-off' song with an ethereal organ intro and a rock solid 4/4 and somewhat rare harmonizing vocals; this is one of those left curves that new album buyers must have drooled over. - "The Lemon Song" - a nominee for one of the raunchiest songs ever written; this is one to play when your grandparents come to visit; hard-rockin' blooze of a very high quality. - "The Rain Song" - Zep didn't pen too many love songs (though "Thank You" and "All My Love" are remarkable), but this one has a lilting sweetness and melancholy that works so well. - "Poor Tom" - from the Coda album (so more of an outtake), but this is folk-blues heaven, kind of a companion piece to "Gallows Pole" and even on a tight snare roll, Bonham hits harder than anyone else, ever. - "Down By The Seaside" - one of those the perfect unions of their acoustic and electric sides, a folky, almost country-like dirge with a haunting refrain and that funky break ("see how they run...see how they run...") that comes out of nowhere. I could go on and on... What are your favorite not-yet-played-to-death Zeppelin tracks...??
    Posted by Mattyhorn


    Which is why I put them in the same category as The Stones, The Who and The Kinks.
     
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    Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin

    In Response to Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin:
    In Response to Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin : Which is why I put them in the same category as The Stones, The Who and The Kinks.
    Posted by jesseyeric


    I can't really comment on Zep because I have never listened to any of their albums. But I love the Stones, the Who, and the Kinks. Does this make sense?

    I have mainly heard Zep's most popular songs and I like "Rock and Roll" and especially "Black Dog." "Stairway to Heaven" is one of those epic rock songs that many other bands have that get played to death and in the process lose something. For me, I just don't like the song that much anyway. I guess there is something I can't put my finger on that prevents me from being a Led Zeppelin fan. I'm definitely in the minority here when it comes to heavy metal/hard rock. I'm just not a big fan of the genre, although I can appreciate the power of individual songs. 
     
  19. You have chosen to ignore posts from cavaliersfan. Show cavaliersfan's posts

    Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin

          Yeah!  Zeppelin, one of my favorite groups.  Back in the 70's I would play those albums a little loud.  I would go over to my dad, God rest his soul, and ask him if the music was too loud.  He was in the same room as the stereo.  He would tell me: "as long as I can sleep, its okay".  I don't know if this had anything to do with this situation, but when he was young he had a high strung disposition then later taught himself to be mellow.  Maybe this was one of his mental exercizes.  
     
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    Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin

    In Response to Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin:
          Yeah!  Zeppelin, one of my favorite groups.  Back in the 70's I would play those albums a little loud.  I would go over to my dad, God rest his soul, and ask him if the music was too loud.  He was in the same room as the stereo.  He would tell me: "as long as I can sleep, its okay".  I don't know if this had anything to do with this situation, but when he was young he had a high strung disposition then later taught himself to be mellow.  Maybe this was one of his mental exercizes.  
    Posted by cavaliersfan


    Once I had the cash for a decent stereo, my next move ( which was a good one) was to buy a real good set of headphones ( Koss , they cost about $80 and weighed a ton!).

    The rest of the family never knew or cared what I was listening to.
     
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    Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin

    This Zeppelin thread made me think of this question. Has another band had a song on one album that was the title of another album like Zeppelin did. Houses of the Holy album but Houses of the Holy song was on Physical Graffiti?
     
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    Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin

    In Response to Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin:
    This Zeppelin thread made me think of this question. Has another band had a song on one album that was the title of another album like Zeppelin did. Houses of the Holy album but Houses of the Holy song was on Physical Graffiti?
    Posted by royf19


    I am going to have to think about this one.
     
  23. You have chosen to ignore posts from Hfxsoxnut. Show Hfxsoxnut's posts

    Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin

    In Response to Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin:
    This Zeppelin thread made me think of this question. Has another band had a song on one album that was the title of another album like Zeppelin did. Houses of the Holy album but Houses of the Holy song was on Physical Graffiti?
    Posted by royf19


    Yes.  Queen's third album was Sheer Heart Attack.  The song of that name didn't appear until their sixth album, News of the World.
     
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    Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin

    In Response to Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin:
    In Response to Re: Artist of the Day - Led Zeppelin : Yes.  Queen's third album was Sheer Heart Attack.  The song of that name didn't appear until their sixth album, News of the World.
    Posted by Hfxsoxnut


    Nice.
     
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