Led Zeppelin
Physical Graffiti


4.5
superb

Review

by Zeppelin14 USER (10 Reviews)
January 17th, 2013 | 20 replies


Release Date: 1975 | Tracklist

Review Summary: "So the world is spinning faster, are you dizzy when you're stoned?"

Many bands have attempted to produce a double album in their career. Pink Floyd and The Beatles pulled it off, and George Harrison even got a triple album to work. While Physical Graffiti isn't the best double album around, it certainly is very entertaining and worth a listen. Keep in mind that this is considered to be Zeppelin's masterpiece (with the exception of Zoso, of course).

A few years ago when I first attempted to listen to this great work of genius, I wasn't nearly the Zeppelin fan I am today. In fact I was only a (dare I say it?) singles fan. So all I was really interested in was, you guessed it, the singles. The hits. Then I went out and got this album for myself a year or so ago, and man was I blown away. I mean AMAZED. This album really has it all. There are the huge heavy rockers, the quiet mellow ballads, some Eastern-influenced heavy metal hitters, acoustic numbers. This is probably Led Zeppelin at their most diverse and maybe even best.

Of course, everyone knows the mighty "Kashmir". Its DADGAD guitar tuning, its orchestration, its mystical lyrics. And the fact that it's eight and a half minutes long. Now, I'm all for Zeppelin's long songs, but I'm just gonna come out and say it: this one wears thin on me. It's a great song, but there's really no soloing, that riff can kind of get annoying in the wrong mood, and lets face it it's too lengthy. Still it is one of the classic Zeppelin numbers, and fortunately there are five other songs on disc one, each one seeming to surpass the next. "The Rover" is a flat-out MONSTER. A grooving riff, outstanding rhythms, and one of Jimmy's best solos too. This all adds up to being a classic, but sadly this song isn't recognized as much as it should be. That's a common trend on this album, especially the second disc. There are many underrated gems, which can be a good thing seeing as that way the listener hasn't grown tired of hearing these phenonmenal tracks on classic rock radio over and over and over. Really, that's a plus for whoever is hearing this for the first time.

"Custard Pie" adds another cool riff, while "Houses of the Holy" gives off a tone that makes you want to get up and move. Really I'm not sure why it wasn't used on the album of the same name, as it would've fit right in on there. No matter, though, as it gives Graffiti another great one. Speaking of great ones, "Trampled Underfoot" is a funky, John Paul Jones keyboard driven foot-stomper that's sure to delight, and "In My Time Of Dying" is an eleven-minute plus epic that was clearly influenced by delta blues legends. Page and Plant play together, if you will, at the slow parts as Robert moans "In my time of dying....want no one to mourn." I believe this is one of the songs Zeppelin "stole" although they do what they do best after "theivery" by making it their own. Yes, the song can get repetitive, but really it's a jamming song that even features Jimmy playing slide guitar.

As outstanding as the first disc is, it's arguably part two that gets the job done. More Eastern influences open it with "In The Light" that's probably my favorite "long song" on the record (under the category of eight minutes and up). Its another of the bands forgotten jewels that really stsrts disc two off in the right direction. If you're a fan of previous Zeppelin rockers such as "Heartbreaker" and "Black Dog" then look no further for more. "Night Flight", "The Wanton Song", and "Sick Again" each pack a wallop with swaggering guitar riffs and powerhouse drumming from Bonzo. "Bron-Y-Aur" is the shortest song, a two minute acoustic instumental where Page can shine yet again. "Down By The Seaside" is slow but worth a listen, while "Ten Years Gone" easily makes my all-time top ten for Zeppelin and is my favorite on the album. Its beautiful guitar work in the beginning, mixed with the loud and strong band that comes in behind add up to an amazing tune. The solo is perhaps the best Jimmy has ever played in terms of instrumentation and passion. He doesn't just shred his notes; he plays them tonefully and with heart and soul. Plant's voice gets to me after the solo when he cries

"Do you ever really need somebody, really need 'em bad?
Did you ever really want somebody, the best love you ever had.
Do you ever remember me baby? Did it feel so good?
Cause it was just the first time, and you knew you would."

These lines seem to choke me up a bit and Plant sings them excellently. This song really demonstrates the bands ability to rock hard and seem loud, even when they're playing softly. Unfortunately, all great things must come to an end, for after this masterpiece and the previously mentioned unknown classic "The Wanton Song", the boys deliver filler. Even more depressing is the fact that the two (yes, two) filler songs appear back to back. "Boogie With Stu" is frankly a boring song that lacks quality production and sounds like a slowed down version of "Rock 'N Roll" without the intensity, while "Black Country Woman" doesn't fair much better and leaves me uninterested and ready for it all to end. Thankfully, aforementioned "Sick Again" ends the double album in a bang and makes the listener regret wishing for it all to end.

Yes, the double album can boost popularity and fanbase, but it can also bring a band straight into the ground. With Led Zeppelin you knew the latter wasn't going to happen. Although two or three songs could have been omitted entirely, there really isn't anything to complain about on this one other than filler. It's true when they say this one has something for everybody. Just don't make the mistake I once did of not giving this whole album a chance, as it is probably their best album behind II and maybe Zoso.

KEY TRACKS:
-The Rover
-In My Time Of Dying
-The Wanton Song
-Ten Years Gone
-In The Light
-Sick Again
-Trampled Underfoot

~Pros~
-Diversity
-Guitar work
-Heaviness
-Ten Years Gone

~Cons~
-Some songs can get boring and repetitive
-Filler towards the end



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user ratings (2044)
Chart.
4.3
superb
other reviews of this album
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Comments:Add a Comment 
Zeppelin14
January 17th 2013


38 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

sorry it's a long review, but it IS a long album after all

NightProwler
January 17th 2013


6348 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I liked the review, don't think it was too long. And I pretty much agree with your views on every song (besides Kashmir, but I see what you're getting at). Well done, I'll pos!

This album rules, need to hear it again soon.

Digging: Goat - Commune

JamieTwort
Contributing Reviewer
January 17th 2013


20675 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Nice reivew, pos'd.

This is my favourite Zeppelin album. I personally don't think there is any 'filler' on here, in fact I think it's incredibly consistent for a double album.

Digging: Townes Van Zandt - Townes Van Zandt

Chortles
January 17th 2013


17956 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

sweet review man, pos'd

DominionMM1
January 17th 2013


9940 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

2nd best zep.

manosg
January 17th 2013


6093 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Amazing album by a legendary band. I wonder what happened after this one and the material was so mediocre for a band of Zeppelin's abilities.

Digging: John Coltrane - Ballads

DominionMM1
January 17th 2013


9940 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

i hope you're not referring to presence

manosg
January 17th 2013


6093 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

"i hope you're not referring to presence"

Sorry friend, Presence included. It's not a bad album but a couple of songs are very similar while a
couple of others are fairly average for a band such as Zeppelin. Achilles and Tea for One are great
songs, but overall I consider it an average release for Zeppelin's stature. For any other band of that
era it would be a great. It's just my opinion though.

SowingSeason
Staff Reviewer
January 17th 2013


16008 Comments


Good album but I much prefer IV and Houses of the Holy.

Nice write-up, by the way.

Digging: Yellowcard - Lift a Sail

Zeppelin14
January 17th 2013


38 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Yeah Jamie it's a great album probably second or third favorite for me

SgtPepper
Staff Reviewer
January 17th 2013


4424 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Good review, man. I think Zeppelin I is my favourite overall because its just heavier compared to their other albums, but when it comes to songs I prefer their epics like "Achilles Las Stand", "In My Time Of Dying", and "Since I've Been Loving You". I really love this album though, its got a lot of excellent tracks.

YoYoMancuso
January 17th 2013


11080 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

great album, Down By The Seaside might be my favorite Zep tune. pretty good review i'll pos

VermicideReloadead
January 17th 2013


1433 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Excellent review. In my time of dying is one of my favorite tracks ever. 11 minutes of epicness.

johnnydeking29
January 17th 2013


9085 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Ten Years Gone is the best song ever

Digging: Dark Tranquillity - Character

tommygun
January 17th 2013


24932 Comments


rocks

Digging: Broods - Evergreen

Jethro42
January 17th 2013


12440 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Good review, posd.

DominionMM1
January 17th 2013


9940 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

MAMA PLEASE SAVE ME A SLICE

YoYoMancuso
January 17th 2013


11080 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Bonzo tears shit up on Night Flight

tommygun
January 18th 2013


24932 Comments


bonzo was more animal than man

facupm
August 25th 2014


7686 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

how can kashmir be boring

in my time of dying is prob the best zeppelin song



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