Zeppelin - Physical Graffiti
Physical Graffiti is Led Zeppelin's
only studio album that was released as a double album. Around half of
the material is outtakes from previous albums, but are generally
good songs and their release is welcome. It is more in the
style of its predecessor, Houses
of the Holy, than any of their other albums.
Physical Graffiti has three songs
that are longer than eight minutes. The most famous of the three is
the eastern influenced "Kashmir," which is my least
favorite; likely due to my preference of blues over eastern music. Contrarily, I do find their interpretation of Blind
Willie Johnson's 1927 "Jesus Make Up My Dying Bed,"
that Led Zeppelin call "In My Time Of Dying" to
be an excellent eleven minute blues excursion with some thrilling
slide guitar. Towards the end of one of Page's main solos, he and Bonham lock in brilliant fashion to bring the band
back to the versus.
No question an original remake of this blues tune, but more
are four shorter tracks that make up the rest of the first disc that
Rover"; a slow power chord rocker. Perhaps
the song is too slow, but by the end the mood they create gets under your skin.
It is a
also a good lead in to "In My Time of Dying." The song "Trampled
Under Foot" is heavy on wah-wah and guitar effects for Page's
part, while Jones continues with the keyboards. They get into a
good groove during the song and during the solo they build the mood
second disc's opener, "In The Light" is a lengthy, strong track that has many moments
of interest, perhaps some of the connecting parts are too keyboard
oriented; Page's ending solo uses a good layering approach. The
folk themed "Bron-Yr-Aur" from the Led Zeppelin III
sessions is acoustic guitar based. It along with 1971's Hawaiian themed "Down By The Seaside"
provide us with some interesting music.
Year's Gone" builds nicely with some great work by Page, where
on "Night Flight" he uses a crunchy chordal approach. "Boogie With Stu"
is filler, bet nevertheless is a neat little jam, where Stu is Ian Stewart that most known for
his work with The Rolling Stones. "Black
Country Woman" is a bluesy style tune with some mandolin and
harmonica. They close in electric fashion with a hard rock track
"Sick Again" that they would perform during their tours.
Graffiti gets great praise. I like it a great deal and for Zeppelin
fans it is a must. For a casual fan this is not where to start
with Led Zeppelin.
Barry Small ©
Grade A -
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