Led Zeppelin-DVD (Yes, thatís the actual title
I donít think the band needs much of an introduction, so Iíll just give an introduction to the DVD. This is one of quite a few (authorized and unauthorized) Led Zep DVDs. I highly recommend that this is the one that you buy. Trust me when I say, this DVD is much better than ďThe Song Remains the Same" and Iím sure this would have to be better than any unauthorized DVD. This DVD contains performances throughout Led Zeppelinís career. The dates range from 1970-1979, so it has a good variety of songs from each album. Anyway, since this band is considered by many ďepic," Iím going to try to make this review as ďepic" as possible.
Live at the Royal Albert Hall- 1970
This concert covers material from the albums Led Zeppelin I and II. For a concert shot in 1970, the camera work, sound quality, and video quality is excellent and this is needed to capture the excitement and energy of any Led Zeppelin performance. Led Zep kicks things off on a high note with Weíre Gonna Groove. This song features great work from Jimmyís guitar solo and Bonham pounding drum fills and keeping a fast paced beat. The band then rolls right into I Canít Quit You Baby, in which Plant delivers an emotional singing performance. However, the slow tempo and kind of dragging on in this song might cause you to lose interest (I know I did). Next is Dazed and Confused. Its classic Led Zep and its even more classic to see live. And for me the climax of this song is when, thatís right, Jimmy pulls out the bow. Overall, it does run on for quite some time, and while it is interesting for quite a long time, it may once again cause a loss of interest. Next is White Summer, Jimmyís guitar solo (as in nobody else plays for quite a while). Once again it is a lengthy performance and challenges my short attention span but its Jimmy Pageís guitar solo, so itís got to be somewhat interesting. I have to point out that Jimmyís guitar really interests me in this one. Itís a Dan Electro with lipstick pickups. My dad says itís not an expensive guitar at all (he would know cause heís somewhere around Jimmyís age) and he too was interested in why THE Jimmy Page would use a guitar like this one. Itís got a nice tone and everything though. What is and What Should Never Be is a great song to hear live. Itís got those jazzy verses and rocking choruses which the band does a great job of making transitions through. How Many More Times is a great performance. Its not one that I lose interest in easily. Its got a catchy guitar riff, which is what is the trademark in many classic Led Zep songs is. You get a good chance to get to know John Bonham in Moby Dick. Begins with another trademark LZ guitar riff and leads into a DRUM SOLO (again, as in nobody else plays). Iím not much of a drummer myself so I lose interest in the solo immediately. However, Iím sure it would interest some drummers on this site. Whole Lotta Love, once again, features a trademark guitar riff, and then a long jam session in the middle. So you can decide for yourself if youíll like it or not. Communication Breakdown, another fast paced rocker with the guitar riff going on again, is an essential to include on this DVD and LZ does a good job performing it. CíMon Everybody is another fast rocking crowd pleaser and doesnít require a good attention span. Something Else, much like the last 2 songs, is a fast-paced rocking track with a rather short length. Bring it on Home, a blues rocker features Robert Plant playing some nice harmonica licks, leads into another memorable guitar riff and ends the show with a bang.
I think the extras for this are pretty funny although I know they werenít intended to be. The Communication Breakdown Promo is just a music video for the song. Itís pretty funny seeing Robert just shake his hair all over, while the other band members donít look interested (especially Jimmy). The Danmarks Radio ďmini show" features Babe, Iím Gonna Leave You, one of my fave Led Zep songs and no let down live. But whatís with the crowd just sitting clustered around Led Zep? It seems like theyíre ready for LZ to sit down and tell storytime. Get up and dance (or headbang or something) people, itís Led Zeppelin! The Supershow is just Dazed and Confused which has enough versions that have been seen on this DVD already. Tous En Scene is a performance of Communication Breakdown and Dazed and Confused (both for the 4th time).
Immigrant Song (1972) is a good performance but Iím not sure the picture even shows the band playing this song, or if its just a collage of performance shots. Whatever it is, the camera work should be better.
Madison Square Garden-1973
This is the same show that is shown on the DVD, ďThe Song Remains the Same". It features (how many times have I said that word) 4 classic Led Zep songs. The camera work, video and sound quality is excellent. Black Dog is a great performance and great start to the show. Another great guitar (and bass lick). The crowd has got some skill when they sing along with the ďAh-ahís". Misty Mountain Hop has some nice work from John Paul Jones on keyboards and another catchy guitar riff. This song was meant to be played live. Since Iíve Been Loving You features, wait let me count, 3 Jimmy Pages! Cool camera effects triple Jimmyís image in the beginning. Anyway, this song slows things nicely from the first 2 songs. Classic guitar work from Jimmy throughout the song, but especially on the soulful solo. This show finishes with The Ocean, one of my personal faves. Jimmy looks loke heís having a lot of fun on this one, especially when it jumps into that bouncy bridge part at the end.
Earls Court- 1975
This concert starts with three acoustic songs, leaving John Bonham with a rather boring job. Going to California starts off with a nice guitar/mandolin duet (JPJ playing mandolin). Some odd camera shots are the only minor flaw I can think of. This is probably my fave out of the 3 acoustic songs. Thatís the Way fits along the same lines as the previous song. Some more nice mandolin work from JPJ and more weird camera angles. I really donít like Bron Yr Aur Stomp at all. It reminds of like a hoedown song. However, the crowd seems pretty interested and claps along. Awesome slide guitar intro from Jimmy on that Dan Electro I was talking about before on In My Time of Dying. Picks things up (I mean things like tempo and energy) nicely from the acoustic songs. Plant sounds really into this song. Trampled Underfoot has another catchy guitar riff from Jimmy and itís a high energy performance all-around by the band. Once again, its running time is rather long. Finally, the moment weíve all been waiting for, Stairway to Heaven. This performance canít be described well enough with words, but Iíll try. Jimmy does some great work on his Gibson SG Double neck and sounds great on his classic solo. Is it possible for LZ to perform a classic like this one bad? Of course not!
In their later days, Led Zep still doesnít lose their performance energy. This becomes apparent immediately when Bonham kicks into Rock and Roll. Plant doesnít hit the same high notes he does in the studio version, but that doesnít take away from the performance. Nobodyís Fault but Mine starts with a flange guitar intro and Plant singing along with the notes. It then kicks into a hard rocking performance with Plant back on harmonica. Overall, another great high energy performance. Sick Again is a song I donít really care for but the band sounds sharp. Plant shows heís still got his singing talent. Achilles Last Stand is another song I donít really care for, although Iíve heard some say its one of their favorites. These people will be happy to know that the bandís performance sounds great overall. In the Evening begins with a crazy noise intro into another memorable guitar riff and great singing. Kashmir is one of my favorites to listen to on this DVD. More guitar riffs and great keyboard playing by JPJ. The live performance of Kashmir really brings the song to life. The band closes with the classic from their early days, Whole Lotta Love. Sounds a bit different than the version played at Royal Albert Hall, but in means is that a bad thing.
The extras on this DVD are pretty boring. It has 2 interviews, NYC Press Conference and The Old Grey Whistle Test. Theyíre like any other interview, nothing too exciting. Down Under shows a black and white performance of Rock and Roll so you might find that interesting. After that it just show the band just does some talking to some fans. The Promos arenít any interesting either. Iím a big fan of Over the Hills and Far Away but the video for it is just some wavy images of band members and instruments and the video quality is static often and the images are shown distorted. The video for Traveling Riverside Blues is a bit more interesting. It shows the band and a lot of random images like work on a farm and a ferry boat.
Most camera work is done well.
Sound and video quality is good.
Great Guitar, Bass, Mandolin, Drums, Keyboards, Vocals, Harmonica
Running Time: 5 Hours and 20 minutes!
Extras are pretty boring
Many great songs left out (Over the Hills, 10 Years Gone, Heartbreaker)
Some performances can get dragged out and cause you to lose interest.
Please people, post, post, and post! I didnít write such a long review just to get 4 replies!