Physical Graffiti (3 CD Deluxe Edition) – Led Zeppelin
The band had decided to set up their own record label Swan Song Records and as well getting other bands and artists singed up to it to release their music, Led Zeppelin’s 6th album Physical Graffiti was their first album to be released on Swan Song Records.
The band had written 8 new songs for the new album, and with a lot of other unreleased material they had recorded during the sessions of the albums Led Zeppelin III/VI and Houses Of The Holy they decided to use that material and make up a double album.
After what I thought was a very disappointing album even though Houses Of The Holy sold more than 11million copies in America alone. The album Physical Graffiti for me personally was a welcoming return to what the band do best, and that is rock and blues music. Though I have to confess the album did have me a bit confused and felt very strange, when I first brought it upon it’s release back in 1975.
There is no doubt that Led Zeppelin had a slightly different approach to the new rock material they wrote for this album. It was not quite the same that we heard on their previous albums, and even the older material they used to make it up with, did not quite sound like it came from those earlier years either. It was most likely down to the albums production that gave it that different feel and sound.
I was still at school and in the last year of it when I brought the album Physical Graffiti back in 1975. I also remember buying it from one of those mail order catalogue clubs that I had joined called Britannia Music.
I have to confess upon first hearing the album I honestly hated practically everything that was on the album, apart from “In The Light“. That track may have appealed to me more because around that time I was certainly listening to a lot more of progressive rock.
The album just sounded completely strange to me at the time, and the fact that I was not liking it, made me send the album back and replace it for something else.
It was not until around the mid 90’s that I decided to buy the album again on CD and the strangeness about it had disappeared and I finally got to enjoy it, and started to have more of a liking for it. Personally I think it was the last very good real studio album Led Zeppelin made.
The Packaging & Artwork…
The one good thing about these Deluxe Editions with the Digipaks is that they replicate the original vinyl album very well, and once again this release is different to the majority of these Deluxe Editions in the way that it’s been very well constructed.
The contents come in a box with the windows cut out to reveal the lettering of the albums name just like the original vinyl album did. Also just like the vinyl album the card with the letters on that also contain the track listing and writing credits is removable from the box.
It’s just as well it is removable, because it is easier to pull the whole of the contents out of the box, than try an pull one of the CD’s out individually and try and get it back in :)))))))).
The original vinyl album also came with cards with pictures of famous people on so that you could use those instead of the card with the name and writing credits to show in the cut out windows.
You can do the same with this box set because they have printed the famous people’s faces on the cardboard sleeves that contain the CD’s.
The 3 CD’s are stored in 3 individual cardboard sleeves. I would of liked to have seen them have a gloss finish on the inside of the pockets, or even in a paper sleeve inside with polyurethane just like the vinyl album had for better protection. But this is quite acceptable and at this price point one cannot really complain.
The bonus CD comes with the artwork inverted on one of it’s sleeve has seen in the picture on the far right hand side. It also comes with a 16 page booklet, and just like most of the others in these Deluxe Editions 14 of the pages contain photographs and only the final 2 pages contain the track listing and writing credits.
The package concept design and linear notes were done by Peter Corriston & Mike Doud of AGI. Corriston was looking for a building that had a symmetrical shape and was interesting enough to fit the square album cover. It was a brownstone tenement block that eventually caught his eye in St. Marks Place in New York City (pictured below).
96 & 98 East 8th Street St. Marks Place.
Although the building was 5 stories high Corriston had to crop the photograph down to 4 stories to make it fit the square album cover. The inner sleeve idea with the pictures of famous people in the windows was done by Mike Doud. Maurice Tate done the tinting treatment and it was Dave Heffernan who done the window illustration and had the idea of cutting them out.
In charge of the photography were Elliot Erwitt, B.P. Fallen, and even Roy Harper took some snaps.
The picture of the dude sitting on the steps of the building with a black dog. Is rumoured to be John Bonham.
The name for the album was inspired by a second hand clothing store located in the basement of 96 St. Mark’s Place called “Physical Graffiti”. There is still a store their today with the same name.
The album cover was nominated for a Grammy Award in 1976 for the best album package. Though it never won. But both Corriston & Doud did win the award for their work on other artists albums like the Rolling Stones and Supertramp respectively.
It’s great to see the original albums package finally make its way onto CD with this new Deluxe Edition release and it looks very well for it too.
Led Zeppelin Physical Graffiti Original Artwork Package. (Now On CD)
Physical Graffiti (3 CD Deluxe Edition) Review…
The new remastered Deluxe and Super Deluxe Editions of the bands 6th album Physical Graffiti was released on the 23rd February 2015. It comes in 6 different versions to suit your taste and your pocket. The Super deluxe Edition being the most expensive comes with 3 CD’s. 3 Vinyl LP’s and other souvenir bits & bobs and an hardback book.
Super Deluxe Edition.
No doubt it’s a very nice package, though it does come at a price of £115.99 currently on Amazon. (Please note prices do tend to fluctuate from time to time). Too steep for my pocket and perhaps a bit much in the way that it’s only one album, or a double album that is now a triple album in this case, and you have it twice over with the LP’s and the CD’s. Not sure one really needs the both.
The other versions of the releases come in the shape of a 3 LP & 2 LP Editions and a 2 CD & 3 CD Editions. Plus a Digital Download Edition.
I myself opted for the 3 CD Deluxe Edition to which I purchased from Amazon for £12.63. It was a couple of pound more than the previous albums I brought, and you could of got the 2 CD version for the same price of the others I already purchased at £9.99. But I wanted the bonus disc and in this case I would also say that it was well worth paying the extra too.
It’s also perhaps worth noting that buying these albums from Amazon. You do get a free AutoRip of the album too. So it saves ripping the album yourself onto your hard drive on your computer.
CD 1 & 2.
The overall sound quality of these new remasters even on CD I have to say, is of very good quality, and I can certainly live with them too. I do not really see the need to buy the vinyl album versions at all. But no doubt pure vinyl-lists will most likely beg to differ.
I can assure you when it comes to music, quality is very important to myself, and if I thought these CD’s never lived up to that quality I would be dragging my old turntable out of the loft and spending the extra on the vinyl album.
For me personally no vinyl album is ever gonna match the quality that can be put onto SACD’s. DVD’s and Blu Rays. This type of media is capable of storing much more information, and even the high quality downloads that are available sadly only with the Super Deluxe Edition of 24/96k is better than both these CD & Vinyl Editions. Though that is perhaps way over the odds I would pay myself.
Hopefully in the future these albums will be given the 5.1 treatment and released on DVD & Blu Ray at a more respective price. I shall certainly buy those if they do get done and released.
The bonus disc or companion disc that comes with this release is another one of the better ones, and is really excellent and well worth having. The bonus CD contains 7 tracks and has a playing time of 41 minutes, 29 seconds. Once again we get some early and rough mixes here which are interesting and they are all pretty good.
The highlight of the bonus disc for me has to be “Everybody Makes It Through” which is an early version of “In The Light“. This version is really early and has a different structure to it, and it even has different lyrics.
Musicians & Credits…
Recorded between July & December 1970. January – March 1971. My 1972 and between January & February 1974 at various locations. Produced by Jimmy Page. Executive producer Peter Grant. Recording & Mixing Engineers Andy Johns. Eddie Kramer. Keith Harwood. George Chkiantz & Ron Nevison. Artwork Cover Design by Peter Corriston & Mike Doud. Illustrations by Dave Heffernan. Photographers Elliott Erwitt. B. P. Fallon & Roy Harper. 2015 Reissue mastering by Jimmy Page.
Jimmy Page: Acoustic & Electric Guitars/Lap Steel Guitar/Mandolin/Sitar.
Robert Plant: Lead Vocals/Harmonica/Acoustic Guitar (On Boogie With Stu).
John Paul Jones: Bass Guitar/Acoustic & Electric Piano’s/Keyboards/Guitars/Mandolin/String Arrangements.
John Bonham: Drums/Percussion.
Ian Stuart: Piano (On Boogie With Stu).
Iman Karniparinpil: Jews Harp (On Kashmir).
Jack Royerton: Spoons.
The Original Album Tracks Review…
Led Zeppelin’s original double album Physical Graffiti was released on the 24th February 1975. The double album contained a total of 15 tracks spread over the 2 albums. The 1st album contained 6 tracks and has a playing time of 39 minutes, 19 seconds. The 2nd album has a playing time of 43 minutes, 26 seconds and had 9 tracks.
The album was both commercially and critically successful hitting number 1 in the album charts in both America and the UK. Has to be expected most of the albums sold in America and in 2006 it was certified 16 X Platinum because it was a double album selling over 8 million copies in America alone.
Just by looking at the album sales it was pretty obvious that Physical Graffiti contained far less commercial material on it, than their previous album Houses Of The Holy which would of appealed to a more wider popular audience. Their previous album sold 3 million more copies than this one in America and for me personally Physical Graffiti was much more of a solid and way better album, and not so much the mismatched mixed bag we seen on Houses Of The Holy at all.
The original recording sessions for the album took place at Headley Grange in November 1973 using Ronnie Lane’s Mobile Studio. However these sessions very quickly came to an halt and the reason at the time they did so, was because it was rumoured that John Paul Jones was ill. However the real reason was later revealed that Jones was not ill at all, and he wanted to quit the band because of all the pressure of live touring was getting to him.
The bands manager Peter Grant suggested that it may be a good idea for the band to take a break, and resume the recording sessions after Christmas in the new year. This allowed Jones some time to rethink the whole thing over, and they resumed their recording sessions back at Headly Grange in January 1974 and got down the 8 new tracks for the album between January and February.
The album was never intended to be a double from the start, and the reason why it eventually came to be one, was down to the fact that the 8 new tracks the band had recorded, were too long to fit them all on one vinyl record. So they did decided to look back at the older material they never released, and made up the double album with those tracks.
Additional overdubs and the final mixing of the album was done at the Olympic Studios in London in October 1974 engineered by Keith Harwood.
I have to admit that considering the band struggled to make one decent album with their previous release of Houses Of The Holy. Making a double album was going to be a much harder task. But I think the break they took did them a lot of good.
So let’s see how good the double album worked out with my review of the individual tracks. I shall go through the 2 albums individually.
Track 1. Custard Pie.
Well no doubt the band get off to a flying start with the opening track “Custard Pie” and it’s a great rocker on the album penned by Page & Plant. The song is constructed by a really great Page guitar riff and it also features a fine wah solo from him which is fed through an ARP Synthesizer.
I have to admit that “Custard Pie” is quite a strange title to use for a rock song, and a custard pie itself is most commonly associated with comedy, as in having one thrown in your face so to speak. But the lyrics Plant wrote here are very much sexual references that pertain to a woman’s genitals. Not a song to be released as a single no doubt :)))))).
Bonham’s drums are consistent throughout the piece and Page’s guitar riff is very strongly supported by Jones on the clavinet. Plant even throws in a great bit of harmonica towards the end too, to give it that bluesy feel. His lyrics even pay some sort of homage to the likes of several blues songs such as Sleepy John Estes “Drop Down Mama“. Bukka White’s “Shake ‘Em On Down” for example.
Track 2. The Rover.
“The Rover” is one of the bands better written songs and was originally written back in 1970 and was intended to be put on their previous album Houses Of The Holy. To be perfectly honest I cannot see for the life of me why they decided to leave it off the album, because this is ten times better than some of the crap that made that made up that poor album.
It was also written and meant to be an acoustic piece when they originally wrote it at the Bron-Yr-Aur cottage in Wales at the time. The song was eventually recorded at Stargroves House in Hampshire England in 1972 and penned once again by Page & Plant.
Track 3. In My Time Of Dying.
This bluesy rocker of a song is my personal fave on the first album of the 2 albums we have here. It’s also the longest track on the double album. In some ways it’s a bit like the material they wrote for their classic 2nd album with how it changes it’s direction, and the combination of rock and blues, it carries a bit of weight to it as well.
The song was penned by all 4 members of the band and in all respects sees the band back to their very best. They performed the song live during their 1975/76 tours and both Page and Plant also performed it with other bands much later after the band had disbanded. The song is a very high contender for top spot on the album.
Track 4. Houses Of The Holy.
Recorded at the Electric Lady Studios in June 1972 is another of the earlier written songs the band used to make up this particular album. “Houses Of The Holy” was originally intended to be the title track on their previous album. It’s claimed that at the time that they could not fit it on the album. Just how on earth can you miss out the albums title track one has to wonder?.
Maybe the band never felt the track was strong to represent that album. But in reality this song is not that bad at all, and is better than some of the tracks on Houses Of The Holy which in my own opinion, should never of been on their in the first place.
The song was penned by Page & Plant and has quite a funky guitar riff with some interesting jazzy chords thrown into its equation, and has a great up-tempo feel and mood about it.
Track 5. Trampled Under Foot.
Another bit of funk that features John Paul Jones on the clavinet. Jones credited the inspiration and beat of the song to Stevie Wonder and got it from his song 1972 hit “Superstition“. The song was penned by Jones, Page & Plant and once again Plant’s lyrics are sexual references based around a car and its parts. Plant got his inspiration for the lyrics from Robert Johnson’s 1936 blues song entitled “Terraplane Blues” which is about a classic car.
The song was released as a single in America only on the 2nd April 1975. The song was often played at their live shows. I think the songs OK but it’s perhaps a bit too repetitive in the way that it repeats itself throughout. But no doubt it does have that Led Zeppelin feel and style about it, but it speaks very little to myself in relation to their earlier material.
Track 6. Kashmir.
Another song that can be repetitive but least it does have more written words for it than the previous track, and some changes along the way too. No doubt the song does have some great progression, though I would not call it progressive rock myself, it’s diversity is perhaps a bit too consistent in the way it changes and repeats itself. In other words it does not have many directions to go along its path. Though some may see this has prog rock no doubt.
The song adopts a touch of the east with its eastern flavour, which was later added by John Paul Jones with his stringed arrangement on the keyboards. The song is actually credited to the other 3 members of the band as it was written without Jones at the time. Apparently he got to the studio late that day.
To be honest I find it rather odd that his name was left out of the writing credits, because it’s his stringed arrangement that is perhaps the most dominant part of the song and stands out a mile. Though no doubt the chord progression was written by Page on the guitar.
Though for my own personal taste I think this song would rock even more if it never had any strings at all. It’s that same eastern touch Jones applied to the song “Friends” from the bands 3rd album. Personally I am not that much into world music that much and it’s that element that is why perhaps I do not really see this song as a classic in the way that many others would.
I still think it’s a great song though, and I suppose it has to be a contender for the top spot on the album too. The song also features Iman Karniparinpil playing a Jews Harp, and it rounds off the first album very well.
Track 1. In The Light.
The 2nd album kicks off with a track that does have the power to rock, and I would even associate it with progressive rock. It was the only track on this album that spoke to me back in 1975 when I originally brought the album, and sent it back. Since I purchased the album again in the 90’s the album spoke more to me, and a lot more than this one song started to speak to me. Though I must confess this is still my personal favourite track on the double album.
The music was presidentially composed by Jones on his synthesizer, though Page did contribute to the writing of the music too, and the lyrics were written by Plant. I love the section where it comes down with the clavinet played by Jones and Page’s lead section on the guitar is almost theme like and makes a majestic statement.
To be honest this song has less progression than “Kashmir” in reality, yet somehow “In The Light” feels more like a prog rock song to me, and that maybe not just down to its changes but the elements of instrumentation that’s used in it.
Robert Plant stated that the song was one of Led Zeppelin’s finest moments, and it was also Jimmy Page’s favourite track on this album too and I can see why. It’s more adventurous I feel and goes into boundaries the band had never ventured before.
It’s a song that Plant always wanted to do live on stage. But it was never played live due to Jones not being able to create the same sound on his keyboards to get it to be good enough for the stage.
I personally think it’s a magic song and it merits my top spot on the double album award.
Track 2. Bron – Yr.
Another acoustic Gem written and played by Jimmy Page. It’s such a beautiful little acoustic guitar ditty and the shortest track on the double album. Page wrote the piece back in 1970 whilst working on new material for their 3rd album. Just like the song “Bron-y-Aur Stomp” that featured on Led Zeppelin III it’s name came from the holiday cottage they stayed at in Wales.
I like it that much and would even consider this little ditty a contender for the albums top spot.
Track 3. Down By The Seaside.
This another acoustic song that was originally written in 1970 during the time both Page & Plant spent at the Bron-Yr-Aur cottage in Wales. It was penned by them both and they recorded an electric version of the song in 1971 and this was an outtake from the sessions they were recording for the bands 4th album, and originally was intended to be used on Led Zeppelin VI too..
“Down By The Seaside” is quite a light hearted song and could be perhaps seen as a pop or folky song. Never the less it’s a very well written song and does not feel out of place on this album either. Plant’s vocals are well suited and Page’s use of tremolo guitar running though a Leslie Speaker adds to good effect. Jones also accompanies it very well on the electric piano too.
Robert Plant later went on to record the song again in 1995 as a duet with Tori Amos.
Track 4. Ten Years Gone.
Originally intended as an instrumental piece written by Page. Then Plant decided to write some lyrics for it. The songs title and subject matter of the lyrics Plant wrote were about a girlfriend he was with 10 years earlier who gave him the choice of either being with her or the music. She never had a leg to stand on :))))))))).
The song got played live during their 1977 tour of America. Later on both Page & Plant performed it live during their 1996 tour of Japan. Page also performed it live with the Black Crows in 1999 along with many other Led Zeppelin songs.
Page used a total of 14 guitars overdubbed to create the harmony section of the song. Its another great song.
Track 5. Night Flight.
This another one of the songs that was originally written for Led Zeppelin VI back in 1971. The song has quite a good 12 bar upbeat feel about it, and reminds me quite a lot like something the Who would of done. Plant’s voice also sounds a bit different on this one, and in some ways is his voice is even almost verging on Roger Daltrey’s with his approach to the song.
The song was never performed live, but they did play part of it now and again in the way of a sound check for some of their live shows. It’s a great little number penned by Jones, Page & Plant.
Track 6. The Wanton Song.
Penned by Page & Plant “The Wanton Song” is another song that contains a Page guitar riff with a hook. It’s perhaps likened to the “Immigrant Song” for its switching back and forth between two notes an octave apart. But I also think it’s opening riff is not that far away from the riff that was used on “Custard Pie“.
Once again Page uses the same tremolo put through a Leslie Speaker effect only he also adds backwards echo which is a technique he used way back when he was the Yardbirds.
The song was played live during their 1975 tours of Europe and America and then dropped. However it was played extensively as the opening track of both Page & Plant’s tours in 1995 & 1998. It’s another great little rocker of a song.
Track 7. Boogie With Stu.
Time for a bit of boogie woogie and this great little number this one that came out of a free form jam at Headley Grange which was recorded on the Rolling Stones Mobile Studio back in 1971. The song features the Rolling Stones band manager and friend of the band Ian Stuart on the Honky Tonk Piano, hence the title here, and I have to say he does a grand job on it too. It even makes me want to jump on the old Joanna too :)))))).
It’s said that Robert Plant played the acoustic guitar on this track. It’s also said that Plant gave the song a working title of “Sloppy Drunk” at the time. Although later on it was discovered that it was the title of a Leroy Carr song that went by the name of “Sloppy Drunk Blues“. But he only ever put his own music to the words of an original 1931 song written originally by Lucille Anderson and done a cover version.
The music to this song “Boogie With Stu” was based more around the music that Leroy Carr put to the original song. However once again Robert Plant was back to his old tricks again and the lyrics he claimed he wrote for the song was very close to those from the 1958 song “Ooh My Head” written by Ritchie Valens.
Although Valens had died long ago died back in 1959 his music publisher Kemo Music filed a lawsuit which was settled out of court. “Boogie With Stu” was originally credited to all 4 members of the band plus Ian Stuart. But these days Valens wife is also added to the writing credits too.
Track 8. Black Country Woman.
Another acoustic song that was originally written by Page & Plant back in 1972 and recorded in the back garden of the Stargroves Manor House in Hampshire. The song was written at the same time they wrote “D’yer Mak’er” and was intended to be put on their previous album Houses Of The Holy. Honestly it makes me sick to even think of how they could of included “D’yer Mak’er” on the album and not this song. This is a million times better :))))))).
The voice of the recording engineer Eddie Kramer can be heard at the start and an aeroplane flying over the house. Plant based the lyrics around the black country which is close to my own town of Birmingham where both Plant & Bonham were brought up. It’s a great little country blues number to which all 4 band members do a cracking job on it. It was also the B-Side of the single release of “Trampled Under Foot“.
Track 9. Sick Again.
The guys rock it up a bit for the final track on the album entitled “Sick Again“. It’s another song penned by Page & Plant. The lyrics Plant wrote for the song are based around the subject matter of teenage groupies, it said that he felt sorry for all the young girls who hang around the bands hotel rooms offering them favours.
The song had a great bluesy rock feel to it and the band played it live at many of their concerts and it rounds off the double album very well.
To sum up the 3 CD Deluxe Edition of Led Zeppelin’s 6th album Physical Graffiti it represents great value for the money, and unlike some of the Deluxe Editions that come with these bonus discs, the bonus disc is worthy of having I feel. It’s price point of £12.63 for 3 CD’s is still very much a bargain.
Once again the packaging of this particular release is very well constructed and it’s a very good mini replica of the original 1975 vinyl album. No doubt it also merits top marks in my overall packaging score rating.
To conclude my review here I would say that the bands double album Physical Graffiti is an album that does not contain a lot of classic songs, or contenders for the top spot on the album with the material they writ for it. I would also say that the material used to make this double album is quite a mixed a bag.
However this mixed bag does have a great variety and feel about it with how everything flows so well and smoothly across the both albums. I also think the production is very strong, and helped and played a big part with how a lot of why everything works so well, especially considering this is an album that’s been made up of new and older material in the first place.
In all respects I cannot fault the album at all, and I really do not think it contains one bad track either. I do however feel that a lot of material here is perhaps not up to some of the higher standards that we got from the material on the bands first 4 albums, and no doubt those earlier albums do contain a lot more classic Led Zeppelin songs.
The highlights for me personally are the following: “In The Light“. “In My Time Of Dying“. “The Rover“. “Kashmir“. “Bron – Yr” and “Custard Pie“.
The album Physical Graffiti is perhaps a more fresher and newer approach to rock music, to what came before it. In many ways it’s a lot lighter, yet it still holds up incredibly well and is a very good album, and very much perhaps a must for fans alike.
I’m about to lose my worried mind…
The album track listing is as follows:
01. Custard Pie. 4:15.
02. The Rover. 5:39.
03. In My Time Of Dying. 11:08.
04. Houses Of The Holy. 4:04.
05. Trampled Under Foot. 5:36.
06. Kashmir. 8:37.
01. In The Light. 8:47.
02. Bron – Yr. 2:06.
03. Down By The Seaside. 5:15.
04. Ten Years Gone. 6:34.
05. Night Flight. 3:38.
06. The Wanton Song. 4:08.
07. Boogie With Stu. 3:52.
08. Black Country Woman. 4:24.
09. Sick Again. 4:42.
01. Brandy & Coke (Trampled Under Foot) (Initial/Rough Mix). 5:39.
02. Sick Again (Early Version). 2:22.
03. In My Time Of Dying (Initial / Rough Mix). 11:48.
04. Houses Of The Holy (Rough Mix With Overdubs). 3:51.
05. Everybody Makes It Through (In The Light) (Early Version/In Transit). 6:29.
06. Boogie With Stu (Sunset Sound Mix). 3:39.
07. Driving Through Kashmir (Kashmir Rough Orchestra Mix). 8:41.
5 thoughts on “Lee Speaks About Music… #59”
Though I don’t listen to Led Zeppelin often these days I am very familiar with this album and heard it many times. It is one a of a few albums I even had on Vinyl before the CD started to rise. I agree with you, that PG is much stronger than its predecessor and I also can not believe, that they dropped songs like “Houses of the holy” for such boring exercises like “The crunge” on HOTH. And while HOTH also suffers in my opinion from the production, which is sometimes artificial, PG brings a rawer sound on the table, which suits LZ much better, though it was criticized often. The band can show off their talent in various styles and I also hear a touch of Prog Rock in “In the light”. They even manage it to keep the high quality over the whole distance of four album-sides, though I register a drop on the last side, which contains less attractive songs in my opinion. The only other things I would criticize are the guitar-overdubs in “Ten years gone”, just way too many layers to sound convincin and Robert’s vocals are not as strong anymore as they were on Led Zeppelin 1-3. My personal highlights here are Kashmir, The rover, In my time of dying, In the light and The Wanton song
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Personally I do not see any difference regarding Plant’s voice at this stage of his career at all. Listening to him live his voice was pretty much the same as it was when he started with the band in 1968. I think a lot of Page’s production can adjust some of his finer qualities on the studio recordings, especially on HOTH he murdered it (LOL). I quite like this album over all it’s sides, and you may be very well surprised if you was to give the album a spin again after all those years. Sometimes I think a lot of music can speak a bit differently when you have not played and album for a decade or more. For example some of the things we originally felt was the best songs, may not be so any more and more light can project from some of the songs we never really rated at the time. I always tend to play my albums from start to finish. I am not the one for lifting the needle off the record so to speak just to listen to certain tracks on the album.
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I think I heard it the last time, when I did the cover-versions with Giacomo on SC, so it’s time to come back to it
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Well, this is one we largely agree on. I still have the original vinyl, as I do for all my Led Zeppelin albums. I think the packaging of Physical Graffiti is one of the best ever devised for an LP, although LZ took great care with all their artwork from the third album onwards. It is a patchy album with some tracks among the best Zeppelin ever did, and some which hold less appeal for me. Kashmir is one of my five favourite songs of all time. I love music with eastern motifs and this is one of the best. The Rover and In My Time of Dying are also outstanding. The rest of sides one, two and three are pretty solid. I like the laid back feel of Down by the Seaside and Ten Years gone. Bonham’s groove is always great, and, if Plant has lost something vocally, he is, and remains, a fine interpreter of a song. Side four, I have t admit, rarely got played. Just not my style.
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I think most albums have their moments and stand out tracks. Though personally I quite like all the material on this album, and there is nothing here remotely that bad at all, to really annoy my listening pleasure of listening to the album throughout it’s entirety. I agree some of the tracks are not as as strong, but I do like this album as whole over their previous one. But for me I still rate the bands first 4 albums the best they ever did. I even rate Coda but that’s a made up album with the material that’s upon it, and was put out after Bonham had died.