Friday, August 05, 2016

Led Zeppelin - 2015 - Past, Present and Future (10 cd Box)

Led Zeppelin 
2015
Past, Present and Future / Great Return Of Zoso
(Empress Valley Supreme Disk - EVSD-750 / 759 + EVSDDVD 019 & 020)




Great Return Of Zoso
Falkoner Theater, Copenhagen, Denmark
July 23 & 24, 1979
"The Copenhagen Warmups"



July 23, 1979:

101. Opening
102. The Song Remains The Same
103. Celebration Day
104. Black Dog
105. Nobody's Fault But Mine
106. Over The Hills And Far Away
107. Misty Mountain Hop
108. Since I've Been Loving You
109. No Quarter
110. Hot Dog
111. The Rain Song

201. White Summer - Black Mountain Side
202. Kashmir
203. Trampled Underfoot
204. Achilles Last Stand
205. Guitar Solo
206. In The Evening
207. Stairway To Heaven
208. Rock And Roll




July 24, 1979:

101. Opening
102. The Song Remains The Same
103. Celebration Day
104. Black Dog
105. Nobody's Fault But Mine
106. Over The Hills And Far Away
107. Misty Mountain Hop
108. Since I've Been Loving You
109. No Quarter
110. Ten Years Gone
111. Hot Dog
112. The Rain Song

201. White Summer - Black Mountain Side
202. Kashmir
203. Trampled Underfoot
204. Sick Again
205. Achilles Last Stand
206. Guitar Solo
207. In The Evening
208. Stairway To Heaven
209. Whole Lotta Love


Past, Present and Future
Knebworth Festival, Stevenage, England
August 4 & 11, 1979



August 4, 1979

101. Opening
102. The Song Remains The Same
103. Celebration Day
104. Black Dog
105. Nobody's Fault But Mine
106. Over The Hills And Far Away
107. Misty Mountain Hop
108. Since I've Been Loving You
109. No Quarter

201. Ten Years Gone
202. Hot Dog
203. The Rain Song
204. White Summer - Black Mountain Side
205. Kashmir
206. Trampled Underfoot
207. Sick Again
208. Achilles Last Stand

301. Guitar Solo
302. In The Evening
303. Stairway To Heaven
304. Rock And Roll
305. Whole Lotta Love
306. Heartbreaker




August 11, 1979

101. Opening
102. The Song Remains The Same
103. Celebration Day
104. Black Dog
105. Nobody's Fault But Mine
106. Over The Hills And Far Away
107. Misty Mountain Hop
108. Since I've Been Loving You
109. No Quarter

201. Hot Dog
202. The Rain Song
203. White Summer - Black Mountain Side
204. Kashmir
205. Trampled Underfoot
206. Sick Again
207. Achilles Last Stand

301. Guitar Solo
302. In The Evening
303. Stairway To Heaven
304. Rock And Roll
305. Whole Lotta Love
306. Communication Breakdown


Copenhagen Warmups

Night One: Two years after tragedy brought the 1977 North American tour to an abrupt end, the band has risen from the ashes to prepare for the biggest shows of their career with two warm-up gigs in Denmark. The setlist has undergone a few changes to make room for a couple new songs from the band's yet to be released final studio album In Through the Out Door, along with some old favorites. As the band takes the stage, Plant complains about the lights, telling the crowd "we must apologize... the lights keep going down, so we're gonna play with like half a light show, okay?" After a long pause, the show finally gets underway with the familiar opening chords of The Song Remains the Same. The band is full of energy as they hammer through the song with incredible intensity. Plant is still getting a feel for his mature voice, missing a few notes that used to come more easily. As the song ends, Page launches into the first appearance of Celebration Day since 7/29/1973.

Plant tells the crowd "it's been eight years since we were here last time, so there's not too much talkin' to do... quite a bit of playing" before introducing a bone-crushing Black Dog. Page is on fire, shredding wildly during the guitar solo. Plant walks away from the microphone to retrieve his harmonica before introducing Nobody's Fault But Mine, telling the crowd "this is from Blind Willie Johnson." Over the Hills and Far Away is immediately followed by a high-speed Misty Mountain Hop, its first appearance since the end of the 1973 North American tour. Page seems a bit lost during the guitar solo. Since I've Been Loving You is played in a jazzy new arrangement. Page blazes through a fantastic extended guitar solo. Plant's voice is still a bit rusty, he has trouble reaching some of the higher notes. No Quarter has been stripped down to basics, replacing the overindulgent marathons of the past with a much more efficient arrangement. The crowd begins clapping rhythmically during any lull in Jones's piano solo. Page tears through the guitar solo with amazing fluency and precision.

Plant mentions the new album before the first premiere of the night, Hot Dog. Someone in the crowd can be heard shouting a mispronounced "D'yer Mak'er!", to which Plant responds "never 'eard of it" before introducing a beautiful rendition of The Rain Song, performed for the first time since the final night at Earls Court. Kashmir is preceded by an abbreviated White Summer/Black Mountain Side. Plant hints at Back Door Man before a thunderous Achilles Last Stand, played at a more relaxed tempo than usual. The second premiere of the night comes with the first performance of In the Evening, which is preceded by a short bows solo from Page. Plant delivers a powerful performance, belting out each line with bravado. The crowd erupts as Page begins Stairway to Heaven. As the band leaves the stage following a raucous Rock and Roll, Plant announces "thank you very much, it was... okay, goodnight." An excellent first outing for a new, more professional Led Zeppelin. Must hear.

The tape is absolutely fantastic, one of the best audience recordings ever made.




Night Two: Following a successful premiere the night before, the band returns for their second and final warm-up gig before returning to England to headline the Knebworth Festival. The energy is high as the band hammers through the opening numbers. Page shreds frantically through the guitar solo during Celebration Day. Plant announces "very nice to have the lights back with us tonight" before Black Dog. Nobody's Fault But Mine features a blistering guitar solo from Page. The band races through a fast-paced Misty Mountain Hop. No Quarter is short and dynamic. Page blazes through an excellent guitar solo. The crowd's rhythmic clapping returns during the intro to Ten Years Gone. Page plays with incredible fluency during the guitar solos. The Rain Song is beautiful.

There is a slight cut during the transition from White Summer/Black Mountain Side to Kashmir. Plant delivers a powerful performance during the latter. The band hammers through an aggressive Trampled Underfoot, which is followed by the return of Sick Again. Plant introduces a frantic Achilles Last Stand as the best track on Presence. The walls of the theater quake under the power of Bonzo's thunderous pounding as Page tears through the frenzied guitar solos. A brutally heavy performance. In the Evening is explosive, a major highlight of the new setlist. Page blazes through an outstanding guitar solo during Stairway to Heaven, one of the best in recent memory. The band closes the show with a radical new arrangement of Whole Lotta Love. Another excellent performance




August 4: A pretty good show but nothing compared to the standards Zeppelin had set in the past. The first 45 minutes or so sound good and strong, and Ten Years Gone is very pretty, but towards the middle section, the individual performances, though good, don't quite gel into a good ensemble performance. "Well, it's nice to see you again" said Plant to the audience at the beginning of the show, in fact they not played in the United Kingdom for the last four years! The crowd roared. Achilles Last Stand is aggressive and In The Evening is intense, but Stairway To Heaven sounds timid and tired ... Robert's introduction is so lackluster it is obvious he didn't want to play it. The encores are energetic and good, and Whole Lotta Love features the new arrangement first tried in Copenhagen in July. A short Heartbreaker finishes the event. After the last note, Plant said: "All you people that have come so far. It's been kinda like a blind date. Thanks for eleven years!"

Following a four year absence, Led Zeppelin make their triumphant return to England with two of the biggest shows of their career. However, despite two successful warm-up gigs in Denmark two weeks earlier, the band is still nervous to be performing for their home crowd after such a long break. The apprehension is evident as The Song Remains the Same gets underway. Page has lost the fluency of his Denmark performances, causing him to stumble a bit during the sticky-fingered guitar solos and Plant's voice is a little rusty at times. On the other hand, Bonzo is a thunderous explosion of energy, his powerful hammering is the backbone of the band. Following a high-speed Celebration Day, Plant greets the massive crowd, joking "I told Pagey that one or two people would be here, but he said he doubted it very much." Page's fingers get stuck in the strings during the guitar solo in Black Dog. Plant unleashes some spine-chilling shrieks during the initial verses. The band hammers through an abrasive Misty Mountain Hop.



Since I've Been Loving You is absolutely fantastic. Page leads the band on an intense emotional journey, tearing each note of the guitar solo from the depths of his soul. A phenomenal performance, one of the best in recent memory. Jones is introduced as "the man from Casablanca" before No Quarter. Page is on fire as he blazes through an excellent guitar solo, shredding furiously during the blistering outro jam. An outstanding performance. Plant shouts "come on, let's hoedown!" at the beginning of Hot Dog. The Rain Song is beautiful. The crowd erupts as a powerful Kashmir launches into motion. Plant's howls echo over the field and into infinity as the band thunders through the intimidating march. Page shreds wildly through the guitar solo during an incredibly aggressive Trampled Underfoot. The band hammers through a brutal Sick Again, introduced as a song that "relates the experience of the lobby and going down to get some cigarettes at ten thirty, rather than bein' in bed." Page tears through a frenzied guitar solo near the end of the song. Afterward, Plant jokes "so we got the cigarettes and carried straight on up to bed."

Bonzo thrashes wildly at his drums during an explosive Achilles Last Stand. Plant dedicates Stairway to Heaven to the crowd, thanking them for coming "on a blind date." Page blazes through a blistering guitar solo. The crowd sings the final line along with Plant. The first encore is preceded by ten solid minutes of cheering. As the band returns to the stage following a riotous Rock and Roll, Plant leads the crowd in a sing-along of You'll Never Walk Alone. The new arrangement of Whole Lotta Love is devastatingly heavy. As the song ends, Plant announces "thanks for eleven years." The band returns to the stage one more time to close the show with the first appearance of Heartbreaker since 6/21/1977. Page shreds wildly though the guitar solos. The crowd is left begging for more as the band leaves the stage for the final time.



August 11: Not as good as the first week and also a little more tension in the air. Some songs sound very sloppy, almost like the band doesn't want to be there, but then again, some sound excellent. The opening 45 minutes or so sound strong and good, but the intensity starts to flag towards the end. Jimmy butchers the solo in Whole Lotta Love, and the end encores sound tired ("Can you do the dinosaur rock?" reflected what the band thought playing these old tunes). This was also the last concert in the United Kingdom but Robert, before as he left the stage, said: "We'll see you soon. Very soon. Don't know about the Marquee, but somewhere soon." They couldn't knew what happened a year later. Some problems with Page's guitar and PA system truncated Over The Hills And Far Away and Misty Mountain Hop.

A week after night one of the 1979 Knebworth Festival, the band returns for what will prove to be their final performance in England. The nerves of the first show have subsided and the band launches into The Song Remains the Same with power and gusto. Plant pushes his voice to the limit during a frantic Celebration Day. The massive crowd sings along with every word during a bone-crushing Black Dog. Plant has some trouble with his microphone during the initial verses of Over the Hills and Far Away, which causes a series of loud popping noises. Page's fingers get caught in the strings of his guitar during the song's outro.



Since I've Been Loving You is simply outstanding. Page blazes through a fantastic guitar solo with incredible fluency and precision. An unbelievably powerful performance, one of the best in recent memory. Jones briefly hints at Your Time is Gonna Come near the end of an excellent piano solo during the band's final performance of No Quarter. Page tears through an amazing guitar solo, shredding wildly during the song's explosive outro. In mentioning the new album, Plant tells the crowd "it's called In Through the Out Door, which is... one of those methods of entry that proves to be harder than one would originally expect." Hot Dog is dedicated to "the texas road crew and all the people to be found in the sleazy hangouts around there." Someone in the crowd can be heard shouting "New York City!" as Page begins The Rain Song. Bonzo pummels the crowd with his thunderous fills near the end of Kashmir. Page stumbles through a sticky-fingered guitar solo during Trampled Underfoot.

Achilles Last Stand is a bit dull and uninspired, despite Bonzo's efforts to inject some energy into the performance. Page gets lost near the end of the song. Plant delivers an incredibly powerful performance during In the Evening. As the song ends, someone in the crowd can be heard shouting "happy birthday Robert Plant!", to which Plant responds "not yet, one week." The crowd erupts as Rock and Roll crashes into motion. Page flubs the guitar solo during Whole Lotta Love. The biggest surprise of the night is the inclusion of the Boogie Chillen' section for the first time since 7/29/1973. Page blazes through an outstanding guitar solo. Plant shreds his voice as the band hammers through a blistering Communication Breakdown. An explosive finale to a somewhat uneven performance. As the band leaves the stage for the last time, Plant announces "thank you very much indeed... we'll see ya soon, very soon."




BONUS:

Led Zeppelin
Past, Present and Future DVD
Knebworth Festival, Stevenage, England
August 4 & 11, 1979




August 4, 1979 

01. The Song Remains the Same
02. Celebration Day
03. Black Dog
04. Nobody's Fault But Mine
05. Over the Hills and Far Away
06. Misty Mountain Hop
07. Since I've Been Loving You
08. No Quarter
09. Ten Years Gone
10. Hot Dog
11. The Rain Song
12. White Summer / Black Mountainside
13. Kashmir
14. Trampled Underfoot
15. Sick Again
16. Achilles Last Stand
17. Guitar Solo
18. In the Evening
19. Stairway to Heaven
20. Rock and Roll
21. Whole Lotta Love
22. Heartbreaker


August 11, 1979 

01. The Song Remains the Same
02. Celebration Day
03. Black Dog
04. Nobody's Fault But Mine
05. Over the Hills and Far Away
06. Misty Mountain Hop
07. Since I've Been Loving You
08. No Quarter
09. Hot Dog
10. The Rain Song
11. White Summer / Black Mountainside
12. Kashmir
13. Trampled Underfoot
14. Sick Again
15. Achilles Last Stand
16. Guitar Solo
17. In the Evening
18. Stairway to Heaven
19. Rock and Roll
20. Whole Lotta Love
21. Communication Breakdown



Thursday, July 28, 2016

Led Zeppelin - 2015 - The Garden Tapes: The Song Remains The Same Concerts

 Led Zeppelin 
2015
The Garden Tapes: The Song Remains The Same Concerts 
(Expanded And Revisited Collector's Edition)

Empress Valley Supreme 
EVSD 805~822 



Rocking The Big Apple: First Night At The Garden
Version A

0101. The Rain Song
0102. Dazed And Confused
0103. Stairway To Heaven

0201. Moby Dick
0202. Heartbreaker
0203. Whole Lotta Love
0204. Audience
0205. The Ocean
0206. Audience

Version B
0301. The Rain Song
0302. Dazed And Confused
0303. Stairway To Heaven

0401. Moby Dick
0402. Heartbreaker
0403. Whole Lotta Love
0404. Audience
0405. The Ocean
0406. Audience

Bonus Disk
0501. Moby Dick
0502. Heartbreaker
0503. Whole Lotta Love
0504. Audience
0505. The Ocean
0506. Audience


Taking The Building Into Stratosphere: Second Night At The Garden
Version A

0601. Audience
0602. Rock And Roll
0603. Celebration Day
0604. Black Dog
0605. Over The Hills And Far Away
0606. Misty Mountain Hop
0607. Since I've Been Loving You
0608. No Quarter
0609. The Song Remains The Same
0610. The Rain Song

0701. Dazed And Confused
0702. Stairway To Heaven
0703. Moby Dick

0801. Heartbreaker
0802. Whole Lotta Love
0803. Audience
0804. The Ocean
0805. Audience

Version B

0901. Audience
0902. Rock And Roll
0903. Celebration Day
0904. Black Dog
0905. Over The Hills And Far Away
0906. Misty Mountain Hop
0907. Since I've Been Loving You
0908. No Quarter
0909. The Song Remains The Same
0910. The Rain Song

1001. Dazed And Confused
1002. Stairway To Heaven
1003. Moby Dick

1101. Heartbreaker
1102. Whole Lotta Love
1103. Audience
1104. The Ocean
1105. Audience

Bonus Disk

1201. Moby Dick
1202. Heartbreaker
1203. Whole Lotta Love
1204. Audience
1205. The Ocean
1206. Audience

Final Magik: Third Night At The Garden
Version A

1301. Audience
1302. Rock And Roll
1303. Celebration Day
1304. Black Dog
1305. Over The Hills And Far Away
1306. Misty Mountain Hop
1307. Since I've Been Loving You
1308. No Quarter
1309. The Song Remains The Same
1310. The Rain Song

1401. Dazed And Confused
1402. Stairway To Heaven
1403. Moby Dick

1501. Heartbreaker
1502. Whole Lotta Love
1503. Audience
1504. The Ocean
1505. Audience
1506. Organ Solo
1507. Thank You

Version B

1601. Audience
1602. Rock And Roll
1603. Celebration Day
1604. Black Dog
1605. Over The Hills And Far Away
1606. Misty Mountain Hop
1607. Since I've Been Loving You
1608. No Quarter
1609. The Song Remains The Same
1610. The Rain Song

1701. Dazed And Confused
1702. Stairway To Heaven
1703. Moby Dick

1801. Heartbreaker
1802. Whole Lotta Love
1803. Audience
1804. The Ocean
1805. Audience
1806. Organ Solo
1807. Thank You



The Garden Tapes – The Song Remains The Same Concerts Expanded & Revised Collectors Edition (Empress Valley Supreme Disc EVSD – 805/6/7/8/9/10/11/12/13/14/15/16/17/18/19/20/21/22 + DVD)

Like most people of my age who were too young to see Led Zeppelin in a live setting, their seminal concert film The Song Remains The Same was a first glimpse of the band onstage. I had some live tapes, the 1969 and 1971 BBC material taped from the radio, but The Song Remains The Same was something different. First off it captures the band during what many consider the pinnacle of their onstage playing, second for a young rock fan in the early 80’s, it added to the still mysterious nature of the group. Back then we had no VHS player so my only access to the film was sporadically on late night cable television, but the soundtrack was a different story, it was down at your local record store and I devoured it. The soundtrack was for many years my most beloved source of live Zep, yet I had no idea of the amount of work that went into the project, sure the soundtrack was much more polished than the film but to what extent I had no clue. Fast forward 20 plus years and reading Eddie Edwards excellent The Garden Tapes website I was really shocked, and intrigued, by the work that had been done. By this time I had the second night soundboard as well as a fragment of the final night soundboard in my clutches, Eddie’s web site was an revelation and I certainly watched and listened to the project in a new light.

The source material for The Song Remains The Same comes from the final three nights of the tour, at the famed Madison Square Garden. All three nights were filmed and recorded by the band for use on the project and all three nights were recorded un-officially by members of the audience. While there have been many Zeppelin box sets from various labels over the years that would focus on other triumphs, curiously no one has gathered together the various recordings that circulate in the collectors market from those three incredible nights in late July 1973, until now. When this set was announced I was excited and intrigued, after shopping around I found the best deal I could and then all that was left was the waiting, the hardest part. The box itself is similar in design to the Godfather box sets, the box has an official look to it by using graphics from the official The Song Remains The Same soundtrack. The box houses five gatefold sleeves for the individual nights as well as a fold out liner notes that gives the same information that is found on the back of the sleeves. The gatefold sleeves feature a live shot on the front but it is the inside that made it for me, all feature a picture of the band at Shepperton studios in August 1974 filming the “missed” shots needed to complete the film. There is a complete overview of each of the three concerts, there are audience and soundboard sources for each of the dates and all are represented in this collection. Empress Valley uses both recordings from the respective dates to complete and compliment each other, the mastering is excellent, the switch to the alternating source is seamless making for a nice listening experience.  Overall the packaging is very nice, although I do find that the liner notes could have been better, more detail would have been nice. Also there are no extras, some lobby card reprints or small poster would have made excellent additions to the set. Doing reviews of this nature is a daunting process, thankfully there are a few excellent web sites I used for resources, a big shout out goes to Eddie Edwards Garden Tapes, The Led Zeppelin Data Base, and some old dusty books on my bookshelf, most notably Luis Rey’s Led Zeppelin Live, Dave Lewis’ Concert File, and Robert Goodwin’s Illustrated Collectors Guides (the last three).

Rocking The Big Apple: First Night At The Garden July 27, 1973

Disc 1 Version A (49:22): The Rain Song, Dazed And Confused, Stairway To Heaven

Disc 2 Version A (54:35): Moby Dick, Heartbreaker, Whole Lotta Love, Audience / MC, The Ocean, Audience / MC

For the first two discs we have the audience recording for the show Version A, the source is a good to very good recording, it does suffer from distortion at times but has wonderful ambience and is by far the most enjoyable, yet fragmented, of the audience sources. It features the last 100 minutes of the concert, there is a gap in Moby Dick at 13:16 to 16:05 that is filled with the soundboard and the splice is seamless.

Disc 3 Version B (49:22): The Rain Song, Dazed And Confused, Stairway To Heaven

Disc 4 Version B (54:37): Moby Dick, Heartbreaker, Whole Lotta Love, Audience / MC, The Ocean, Audience / MC

Disc 5 Bonus Disk (53:40): Moby Dick, Heartbreaker, Whole Lotta Love, Audience / MC, The Ocean, Audience / MC

Version B features the longer of the two sound board sources, it’s an excellent well balanced yet incomplete fragment of the last 60 minutes of the concert. Empress Valley uses the audience source to fill in the gaps and elected to also add The Rain Song and almost all of Dazed from the audience source as well. The last 40 seconds of Dazed and Stairway come from a third soundboard tape; the quality is excellent although the mix does float around a bit during Stairway. The second soundboard tape is used for the rest of the show, filled with bits of the audience source for the first 40 seconds of Moby Dick, (just audience cheering), during Whole Lotta Love gaps at 1:45 to 2:22 and 6:14 to 7:55, and the very last minute and a half of audience cheering at the end of the tape. The bonus disc is the earliest version of the sound board to appear, it shares the same cuts as the above version, the main difference is the balance is slightly different. I would go mental in even finding them so let’s not even bother. All three sound boards are excellent, well balanced recordings that have just a bit of hiss on them, all are extremely enjoyable recordings.

The first night at the Garden is the most incomplete, while both audience and soundboard sources exist they are sadly incomplete. The performance is extremely important to The Song Remains The Same project, from what we have we can tell it is the tightest of the three and much of the show is used officially by the band. The audience source has been released before as The Out Of Song Remains (Holy SH003), the soundboard has been out as Discover America (Tarantura T3 CD 10), Grandiloquence (Antrabata ARM 17773), Best Of Tour ’73 Vol 2 (Dynamite Studios DS92J020), The Safecrackers Show (Midas Touch 62211), and Complete Madison Square Garden (Wendy WECD 18-20). The audience source provides such an atmosphere that you know what’s happening, during the audience shots of the official film you can see the crowd is going absolutely bonkers, these recordings back it up.

Plant tells the audience just prior to Stairway “Things are beginning to vibe up a bit…now listen we got to get one thing straight…stop acting like pigs, alright…cool it. This is a song of hope…a very quiet song so shut up” all during screaming insanity and the distant sound of fireworks being let off. This is the introduction used for the soundtrack slightly edited but here it is in all its glory…curious to hear since the “song of hope” has become a Zeppelin standard. We get the complete unabridged version of Dazed and Confused that is truly excellent, so much in fact Page uses this version for the soundtrack slightly edited of course. A real pleasure to hear it in its natural form and the audience recording does is total justice. After The Ocean encore the tape continues to run and the vibe in the building is electric, the fireworks and loud booing are the audience response to Led Zeppelin being gone, a superb first night at the Garden.

Taking The Building Into Stratosphere Second Night At The Garden July 28, 1973

Disc 1 Version A (64:41): Audience / Tune Up, Rock And Roll, Celebration Day, Black Dog, Over The Hills And Far Away, Misty Mountain Hop, Since I’ve Been Loving You, No Quarter, The Song Remains The Same, The Rain Song

Disc 2 Version A (73:19): Dazed And Confused, Stairway To Heaven, Moby Dick

Disc 3 Version A (31:54): Heartbreaker, Whole Lotta Love, Audience, The Ocean, Audience

Second night at the Garden, Version A features the audience recording and to my knowledge has never been released on bootleg. It is for good reason, first off the recording is incomplete clocking in at about 113 minutes, there is a sizable chunk of tape missing from the last 8 minutes of Dazed and Confused and all of Stairway to Heaven and Moby Dick. The sound is fair, distant from the stage, muffled sounding and a slight layer of hiss is present yet surprisingly there is clarity (thankfully) and once your ears adjust it can be enjoyed. The cuts throughout the recording have been filled with the soundboard recording that can be jarring due to the sheer difference is qualities. The soundboard is used for the Audience / Tune up at the beginning and for the first five seconds into Rock And Roll, after Black Dog at 5:45 to 5:51, after No Quarter at 12:05 to 12:27, and for the last 13 seconds of the first disc. It resumes for the first 36 seconds of the second disc, and at the 22:00 mark of Dazed And Confused continuing on for the rest of the disc. There is a cut between Whole Lotta Love and The Ocean that is filled with the soundboard source, about a minute and half long of nothing but cheering and the last 50 seconds of the disc, again just cheering.

Disc 4 Version B (64:56): Audience / Tune Up, Rock And Roll, Celebration Day, Black Dog, Over The Hills And Far Away, Misty Mountain Hop, Since I’ve Been Loving You, No Quarter, The Song Remains The Same, The Rain Song

Disc 5 Version B (73:09): Dazed And Confused, Stairway To Heaven, Moby Dick

Disc 6 Version B (31:48): Heartbreaker, Whole Lotta Love, Audience, The Ocean, Audience

Disc 7 Bonus Disc (61:05): Moby Dick, Heartbreaker, Whole Lotta Love, Audience / MC, The Ocean, Audience / MC

Ahh, the soundboard source for the second night at the Garden, the most complete of the three nights as well as the best quality of all the circulating shows from MSG. Again there are two versions of the soundboard, the oldest version is found on disc 7 the bonus disc. The main soundboard is excellent, well balanced, except for small cuts in The Rain Song from 3:16 to 3:34, Whole Lotta Love at :16 – :46, and finally in The Ocean at 1:52 – 3:08, and 3:49 – 3:57. All cuts use the alternate soundboard source as well as the audience source. There has been a bounty of releases for this recording, Another Magic Vol 1 & 2 (DS98M023/24), Madison Square Garden (Turtle TR-09), Wizardry (Joker JOK-008-A), Madison Square Garden (Pirate Master PM-712), Tour-De-Force (Tarantura TCD-MSG-1,2,3), 9th US Tour (Whole Lotta Live WLL 004/5/6), One More Magic (Immigrant IM-019-21), Out From The Movie (FSS 99-003), MSG (Cannonball CA-2004019/20/21), The Effect Is Shattering (Empress Valley EVSD 285/286/287), Towa No Uta (Tarantura TCD 73-1,2,3), and Complete Madison Square Garden (Wendy WECD 18/19/20).

The soundboard is excellent, well balanced and does not suffer from the flat sound that some of the other 73 board tapes do. There is a very minor amount of hiss present but this recording does sound great when cranked up. For me the performance suffers from the middle show syndrome, it is a good but not great show. The playing at times showcases the band getting a bit loose, I love the version of No Quarter from this show, parts of it were used in the soundtrack and The Song Remains The Same and The Rain Song are were lifted intact. Plant gets some of his most amusing Plantations during this show, talking about going to Bangkok and its accented reference and his hilarious rap about hashish. The interesting part of this show is what is featured on the bonus disc, while discs 4, 5, and 6 feature the tape we all know and love the sound is consistent with the best versions circulating, the bonus disc features a 60 minute fragment of the end of the show but the quality is noticeably brighter, clearer and very enjoyable. It does have cuts in Whole Lotta Love and The Ocean that are filled with the other soundboard and audience sources. It would be something to get the rest of this show in this quality.

Final Magik Third Night At The Garden July 29, 1973

Disc 1 Version A (64:10): Audience, Rock And Roll, Celebration Day, Black Dog, Over The Hills And Far Away, Misty Mountain Hop, Since I’ve Been Loving You, No Quarter, The Song Remains The Same, The Rain Song

Disc 2 Version A (73:01): Dazed And Confused, Stairway To Heaven, Moby Dick

Disc 3 Version A (48:40): Heartbreaker, Whole Lotta Love, Audience, The Ocean, Audience, Organ Solo, Thank You

The final night at the Garden and an excellent show by the group. There is a single audience tape that is almost complete save for some small cuts, the recording is a fair to good source that is distant. While it is a bit muddy you can certainly make out the vocals and instruments clearly and is not a difficult listen. There are times where the audience response is almost deafening, like during Plant’s introductory speech. The cuts are filled with the soundboard source, the first cut is during No Quarter from 7:45 to 8:07, in the middle of Dazed And Confused at 22:19 to 22:38, during Moby Dick at 20:21 to 20:56 and the last is the audience cheering and first couple seconds of the organ solo prior to Thank You. What is most curious about the audience source is again, the deafening roars in the beginning and after Stairway To Heaven, it gives you a scope as to how big the events were. There is very little audience noise near the taper, the only real disturbances are during Moby Dick when they get a bit restless. Another curiosity is the show features the least amount of fireworks, while there are a few it is not as “war like” atmosphere as the previous two nights.

Disc 4 Version B (63:27): Audience, Rock And Roll, Celebration Day, Black Dog, Over The Hills And Far Away, Misty Mountain Hop, Since I’ve Been Loving You, No Quarter, The Song Remains The Same, The Rain Song

Disc 5 Version B (73:42): Dazed And Confused, Stairway To Heaven, Moby Dick

Disc 6 Version B (48:51): Heartbreaker, Whole Lotta Love, Audience, The Ocean, Audience, Organ Solo, Thank You

The last night in the Garden, the band pull out all the stops on the final night of the 1973 US tour and the last live date until the January 1975 date in Rotterdam. The soundboard recording, while excellent, is not as clear but is more powerful than the other two nights, Jones’ bass is well represented in the mix giving a nice fat sound. It is almost complete, missing the end of Dazed And Confused as well as all of Stairway To Heaven and a bit of the Organ Solo prior to Thank You. Plant calls the concert a fitness test, and one can agree, yet the playing is perhaps the best of all three nights. For me the concert comes alive with the soundboard recording, it conveys the power of the collective. The audience source was issued as The Last Of The Last (Tarantura TCD-115), while the sound board has been released under such titles as The Trade Mark Of Quality Masters (Flying Disc FD 101-105),  A 2 Last Nights (Tarantura T2CD-5-1,2), and Madison Square Garden 1973 (Firepower FP032) feature the soundboard portion, Grand Finale (Empress Valley EVSD 173/4/5/6), Missing Doll (Tarantura TCD-12-1/2/3), and Madison Square Garden Trios (Wendy WECD 188/189/190) use the audience source to fill the gaps.

Page is in great shape for the last show, his fingers are nimble and he rapes his fret board during the opening stretch of Celebration Day and Black Dog, nice chunks of both songs are used for the soundtrack and movie. The roar to Plant’s opening speech comes through nicely followed by a brilliant Over The Hills And Far Away. No Quarter has the first musical cut, from 8:48 through 9:00. The version of Dazed is great, it has a mysterious yet laid back vibe to it, Luis Rey describes it as Latin meets Spanish and is epic as far as 1973 versions go clocking in at well over 32 minutes. The ending of Dazed is cut at the 25:34 mark, the remainder of the song as well as Stairway To Heaven comes from the audience source and the soundboard resumes just prior to Plant’s introduction to Moby Dick.

This concert features the longest version of Whole Lotta Love of the three nights, it is a great loose version of the song. The funky Crunge section is…well funky and Jones’ bass playing during the Theramin section is excellent. Page and Plant take their time getting into Boogie Chillun’ but once they do it’s great, yet loose as they are having a great deal of fun. The song is brought to a riotous conclusion as Bonham does an extend coda while belly dancers take the stage, Plant loves every minute of it! The audience recording is used for the audience after the song as well as Plant and Bonham’s introduction and the first 10 seconds of The Ocean. A rare for 73 version of Thank You closes the event in superb fashion, a restfully easy version that has Plant expressing his affection during the song “You to me, are the only ones” in reverence to his houses of the holy.

Out From The Movie: The Song Remains The Same Outtakes And More

Bonus DVD (63 minutes): The Song Remains The Same Outtakes, Madison Square Garden July 27, 1973 Amateur Footage, Madison Square Garden July 28, 1973 Amateur Footage, Madison Square Garden July 29, 1973 Amateur Footage, B&W News Footage

The Song Remains The Same Outtakes were released in the early 90’s and feature a 35 minute hodgepodge of clips mostly incomplete. For me the best of the lot is The Song Remains The Same and Rain Song, we get different scenes of Robert’s “journey” that I find very enjoyable. While the footage is professional it is not up to the movie quality by any means yet it is interesting to watch and since my last copy was on VHS, this is a nice inclusion to the set. The amateur footage has been released many times in various incarnations, 1973 (Cosmic Energy CE 1973), Film Noir (Hercules), Assemblage (Cosmic Energy CE-017) and Assemblage II (Cosmic Energy CE-021). The footage from the 27th was shot close to the stage and is silent with a soundboard audio of The Song Remains The Same and Rain Song plays along with the footage. The footage was transferred by using a video camera while the footage played on a home video screen. The footage from the 28th was shot some distance from the stage, we get a great view of the full stage and all the action, again it was silent with Black Dog and Over The Hills And Far Away playing along. The footage of the 29th is a mere snippet of Dazed And Confused with actual dubbed sound, curiously it looks like it may be semi professional since it was shot very close to the stage from the right side and looks to be at stage level. The black and white news footage is interesting, it is not on the DVD menu and consists of a news story about an investigation into the wealth being generated by the music industry, it does feature footage of Zeppelin and the Starship.

The final word?  Empress Valley have released a definite edition of the three Madison Square Garden shows, sound quality meets or exceeds all previous versions, the mixing of the sources is seamless and well done and the mastering is excellent. The presentation is visually appealing and the subject matter is of major historical importance. After spending literally weeks listening and enjoying these performances I find myself very happy with this box set and while the price tag was reasonable for a set of this magnitude, for me it was worth every penny.

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Led Zeppelin - 1971-09-23 - Tokyo (New EVSD with forthcoming soundboard bonus)

Led Zeppelin 
1971-09-23 
Budokan
Tokyo 





Rock Carnival 
EVSD 567-568


101. Introduction by Goro Itoi
102. Immigrant Song
103. Heartbreaker
104. Since I've Been Loving You
105. Black Dog
106. Dazed And Confused
107. Stairway To Heaven
108. Celebration Day
109. Bron-Y-Aur Stomp / That's The Way


201. Going To California
202. What Is And What Should Never Be
203. Moby Dick
204. Whole Lotta Love
205. Communication Breakdown





Rock Carnival 
EVSD 567-568
Special Bonus Disk - First Attack of the Rising of the Sun - Remastered

101. Introduction by Goro Itoi
102. Immigrant Song
103. Heartbreaker
104. Since I've Been Loving You
105. Black Dog
106. Dazed And Confused
107. Stairway To Heaven
108. Celebration Day
109. Bron-Y-Aur Stomp / That's The Way

201. Introduction
202. Going To California
203. What Is And What Should Never Be
204. Moby Dick
205. Whole Lotta Love
206. Communication Breakdown



Led Zeppelin
1971-09-28 
Festival Hall
Osaka 
(Soundboard)



01. Black Dog

From the Bonus CD of the new EVSD Rock Carnival release