Led Zeppelin
Physical Graffiti


5.0
classic

Review

by DistantDylann USER (18 Reviews)
July 7th, 2024 | 13 replies


Release Date: 1975 | Tracklist

Review Summary: A coup de maître of musical delicacies

At last, we come to the bands tour de force of downright brutally delightful musical styles. This is one of the greatest albums ever released, and certainly Zeppelin at the top of their game. It serves as a capsule of various times of the group's career, with many different styles of rock 'n' roll goodness rolled into one.

You've got some insane long blues with "In My Time of Dying" which is one of the band's best cuts, amazing work of going through multiple dynamics within one song with Jimmy Page's heavy-hitting riff as the heartbeat of the song, and Bonzo's complete obliterating of his drums as the soul. Plant's vocal performance is at its peak as well. "Custard Pie" is a perfect, not-so-slick dirty opener of Plant longing to get in a girls' pants backed by one of the most terrific riffs in history.

"The Rover" demonstrates Plant's ability to write genuinely meaningful lyrics, and an absolute scorcher of a riff that makes it a massive shame it was never played live in full, Jones shines with his bassline here as well. "Houses of the Holy" proves rock is this band's forte with some great cowbell and drumming, though it confuses me why it was held off the album of the same name. "Trampled Under Foot" is a very unique funk rock track with great use of clavinet; something not used in rock or pop typically. "Kashmir" ends side two with a bang, a perfect touch of Eastern swirl, and a pinch of orchestra backing Page's guitar. There is no solo here, but the utter epic that makes this timeless classic more than makes up for it.

Disc 2 is hardly a step-down, with the cosmic spiritual enlightenment ballad of "in The Light", which opens with a low droning keyboard intro done by John Paul Jones meant to sound like entering a mysterious light, like that of the heavens before the full band kicks in with a master craft of a riff. The heart-wrenching "Ten Years Gone" also resides here, which remains a fan favorite of many entranced by Zeppelin's raw talent. It has one of Zeppelin's most hypnotic and fantastic riffs, with lyrics that tell the tale of having to choose between following through on your dreams, or sticking with a woman you really love that isn't that supportive of your endeavors. This is clearly something that meant a lot to Robert Plant as it ended up being one of the many highlights of this record. Side three is a great ride still overall, they don't seem to let up much!

"Down by the Seaside" is a Neil Young-esque treat that lets a bit of country shine through and spreads environmental awareness. "Bron-Yr-Aur" is admittedly weak, but a nice breather. Sadly, Side 4 is noticeably weak with the only standouts being the magnificent tale of a soldier featured in the IV outtake "Night Flight", and the epic riff and solo done through a Leslie speaker on "The Wanton Song" which suffers a bit from Plant's blown vocal chords. The last three songs aren't necessarily bad, but quite weak, and "Sick Again" is certainly a perfect title for a song that is an uncomfortably pedophilic anthem about taking advantage of underage groupies. This one once again suffers Robert's strained vocals paired with a sloppily played solo that doesn't seem to work too well with the main composition; its a real letdown, this could have at least made a great song with the main instrumental.

Overall, it is their greatest achievement, a fantastic tour de force of rock, and a must-hear for any real fan of music.

Track by Track:
Custard Pie: ★★★★
The Rover: ★★★★★
In My Time of Dying: ★★★★★ 🎖️
Houses of the Holy: ★★★★★
Trampled Under Foot: ★★★★★
Kashmir: ★★★★★
In The Light: ★★★★★
Bron-Yr-Aur: ★★★
Down by the Seaside: ★★★★
Ten Years Gone: ★★★★★
Night Flight: ★★★★★
The Wanton Song: ★★★★
Boogie With Stu: ★★★
Black Country Woman: ★★★
Sick Again: ★★★



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Comments:Add a Comment 
DoofDoof
July 7th 2024


15467 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

'In the Light' and 'Down By the Seaside' are still quite underrated so good to see them get high track ratings from you, good review.

bighubbabuddha
July 7th 2024


1036 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Nice review, I do rate Bron-Yr-Aur higher though

DoofDoof
July 7th 2024


15467 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

likewise, in fact I like the first four on the second half ('In the Light' to 'Ten Years Gone') so much it might have become my favourite stretch of LZ songs to listen to now

bighubbabuddha
July 7th 2024


1036 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Yeah Custard Pie to Night Flight all rank 4 to 5 stars averaging at a 4.5. The reason this record is a 4 is down to the last 4 songs which are a significant drop off, particularly Boogie With Stu which is dreadful

DoofDoof
July 7th 2024


15467 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

The Wanton Song and Sick Again aren't that bad but yeah, still a drop off.



Still an easy 5 though



Top 4: In My Time of Dying, Ten Years Gone, Kashmir, In the Light



Just those four are 37 minutes of perfect music, enough music for most 'full length albums' in 2024 and also better standing alone than any other full LZ album! The other stuff on the album is mostly top tier too - it's outrageous really, is Physical G

e210013
July 8th 2024


5308 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

"Physical Graffiti" never belonged to my favourite albums of the band. It's true that is a great album, but, somehow, I always prefered all their five previous works, maybe due a kind of a bit lack of homogeneity, in my point of view. Anyway, it remains an excellent work.

rabidfish
July 8th 2024


8739 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

i wish they just made a straight up blues album, tbh.

sigh...

DoofDoof
July 8th 2024


15467 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

'"Physical Graffiti" never belonged to my favourite albums of the band. It's true that is a great album, but, somehow, I always prefered all their five previous works, maybe due a kind of a bit lack of homogeneity, in my point of view. Anyway, it remains an excellent work.'



It's easily their most varied album, and tracks like Ten Years Gone, In the Light, Kashmir and Down By the Seaside don't sound much like any of their other songs to me :/

e210013
July 8th 2024


5308 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Agreed.

facupm
July 9th 2024


11957 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

but this is top notch anyway

e210013
July 9th 2024


5308 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

It's true, but I prefer the five previous ones.

trickert
July 10th 2024


229 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

This is probably my fave Zep album, although, depending on mood, it could also be III or IV. Don't agree with the sentiment about side 4, though. Boogie and Black Country Woman are fab prefabs. Totally dig them, especially the turnaround percussion ending on Boogie with the laugh that they finally got it right at the end. I do agree that Sick Again could have better lyrics, although it's actually got more complexities than admitted to here; still, it's a great song otherwise.

facupm
July 13th 2024


11957 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

houses of the holy >



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