Jump to content
Slate Blackcurrant Watermelon Strawberry Orange Banana Apple Emerald Chocolate Marble
Slate Blackcurrant Watermelon Strawberry Orange Banana Apple Emerald Chocolate Marble
BlyZeppelinaren

Seattle 1977, Bad recording or bad performance?

Recommended Posts

So I've started to collect as much of Zeppelin's performances recorded on video as I can, Assemblage I and II, DVD, TSRTS(and the GREAT fanedit In for a Quick Garden) and now I've come across the Seattle show and I'm confused...

I mean 1977 was a bit of a rollercoaster year for Zep, we have shows like the LA Forum which is among the best they've done and then there's Tempe and Oakland too... So my question is about Seattle, I can't figure out what's wrong with it, I mean Jimmy is not at his best but it feels like it's more of a mixing fault or something, it just sounds dry and... I don't know, wrong I guess?

I want to give it another shot so what releases would you recommend? Or is it just a mediocre performance? Haha

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I find the show to be slightly above average. Bonham is on fire throughout, Achilles is amazing. The last epic version of NQ is featured and both Bonham and Jimmy play well on it. Also contains an excellent Moby Dick which is also the last version. Stairway has an excellent solo from Jimmy.

Honestly its the recording, the video soundtrack is dry. Various labels have tried to add depth but its difficult. There is an above average audience recording that was taped by a legendary group of recorders from the Pacific Northwest - seek it out and enjoy the show as it should be heard.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I find the show to be slightly above average. Bonham is on fire throughout, Achilles is amazing. The last epic version of NQ is featured and both Bonham and Jimmy play well on it. Also contains an excellent Moby Dick which is also the last version. Stairway has an excellent solo from Jimmy.

Honestly its the recording, the video soundtrack is dry. Various labels have tried to add depth but its difficult. There is an above average audience recording that was taped by a legendary group of recorders from the Pacific Northwest - seek it out and enjoy the show as it should be heard.

I definitely will, it's just a shame that one of the very few shows recorded on video has such a dry sound to it, I'd kill for a RAH-style recording for something like the LA Forum gigs or maybe from the Japan tour in 72'

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I definitely will, it's just a shame that one of the very few shows recorded on video has such a dry sound to it, I'd kill for a RAH-style recording for something like the LA Forum gigs or maybe from the Japan tour in 72'

Nothing except a multi-track recording will sound like the 1970 Royal Albert Hall concert, so temper your expectations by a lot. Don't expect much from the 1977 LA Forum soundboards -- a section from the guitar solo on the 23rd circulates, but is not stellar sounding at all...by Japan 1972, do you mean Japan 1971? :P

Now, turning to the Seattle show itself...I feel it's a bit of a mixed bag -- the recording is dry, but the performance is also not the best. Not inspired like many of their other shows...but, at the same time, not nearly as bad as some people claim it to be.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I liked the show, but I think its a combination of both. The recording quality isn't the greatest which would naturally wouldn't audibly make it a good show, but as other people said they weren't performing at their peak. I like it because I don't mind when a band like the stature of Zeppelin is making mistakes or not performing well. Is it my favorite show? Not by a long shot. Just because the sound is below average as well as the show doesn't mean I'll pass on it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
reswati   

Honestly its the recording, the video soundtrack is dry. Various labels have tried to add depth but its difficult. There is an above average audience recording that was taped by a legendary group of recorders from the Pacific Northwest - seek it out and enjoy the show as it should be heard.

Has nobody ever synched this version up with the video?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Nothing except a multi-track recording will sound like the 1970 Royal Albert Hall concert, so temper your expectations by a lot. Don't expect much from the 1977 LA Forum soundboards -- a section from the guitar solo on the 23rd circulates, but is not stellar sounding at all...by Japan 1972, do you mean Japan 1971? :P

Now, turning to the Seattle show itself...I feel it's a bit of a mixed bag -- the recording is dry, but the performance is also not the best. Not inspired like many of their other shows...but, at the same time, not nearly as bad as some people claim it to be.

I should have been more clear about that, I of course meant a RAH-style VIDEO recording, sorry for the confusion haha

And I would of course love more shows from both 71 and 72, those Japan tours are just brilliant!

I want to like the Seattle show more since it's one of the few performances caught on video, I mean I've watched the Earls court gigs dozens and dozens of times just because it's video, it's just kinda nice you know?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I liked the show, but I think its a combination of both. The recording quality isn't the greatest which would naturally wouldn't audibly make it a good show, but as other people said they weren't performing at their peak. I like it because I don't mind when a band like the stature of Zeppelin is making mistakes or not performing well. Is it my favorite show? Not by a long shot. Just because the sound is below average as well as the show doesn't mean I'll pass on it.

Oh I definitely agree! Especially on the audio quality bit, I don't think there's a band in existance apart from Zep that I'll listen to a lousy taped recording of, the performance is the most important part after all, I LOVE the 1968-12-30 even though it's not a perfect recording by any means but becasue it's a killer show and obviously the historical importance, same with some of their scandinavian shows, often sub par recording but I love the shows because they were great and recorded where I live so I guess I'm partial :P

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The audio is shit because it's sourced from very high generation tapes. If we ever got a complete version of that low gen clip that's been circulating, people would probably view the show in a more positive light. Also I think they hired chimpanzees for cameramen considering all the random shots of stuff like Robert's left thigh, not focusing on Jones anywhere outside of No Quarter, and the cliche transitions like the checkerboard wipe during OtHaFA. Personally, I feel the show is never truly bad, and there are many enjoyable bits throughout.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Strider   

BlyZeppelinaren, as I mentioned in my review, the Godfatherecords is the best version out there of the videotrack/soundboard...much better than the sound on the VHS tape.

Another way to go is the audience tape.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

BlyZeppelinaren, as I mentioned in my review, the Godfatherecords is the best version out there of the videotrack/soundboard...much better than the sound on the VHS tape.

Another way to go is the audience tape.

Yeah I've actually gotten a hold of GR's version and I'm looking forward to listening to it! Maybe put on the vhs and just mute it and sync it up or something...

Oh and GREAT review, keep up the great work, Strider

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

BlyZeppelinaren, as I mentioned in my review, the Godfatherecords is the best version out there of the videotrack/soundboard...much better than the sound on the VHS tape.

No "soundboard" release for the Seattle concert -- all of them are derived from the video soundtrack (and all the bootlegs are from higher-gen tapes).

Have to disagree about the Godfather version. For me, the "best" version of the soundtrack audio would be from one of the low-gen tapes, like Sue mentioned above -- there is a short version circulating in video that looks and sounds much better than any of the bootleg releases...but that only features "Stairway to Heaven" through "Rock and Roll." The "best" complete version of the concert that I've heard is the version torrented by weedwacker (which is probably a gen or two away from the low-gen VHS).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

No "soundboard" release for the Seattle concert -- all of them are derived from the video soundtrack (and all the bootlegs are from higher-gen tapes).

Have to disagree about the Godfather version. For me, the "best" version of the soundtrack audio would be from one of the low-gen tapes, like Sue mentioned above -- there is a short version circulating in video that looks and sounds much better than any of the bootleg releases...but that only features "Stairway to Heaven" through "Rock and Roll." The "best" complete version of the concert that I've heard is the version torrented by weedwacker (which is probably a gen or two away from the low-gen VHS).

I just looked up the low gen video you mentioned and WOW that's way better, I'd put that above the EC releases! I'd kill for the full thing in that quality...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
tmtomh   

IMHO the performance sucks, end of story.

The LA-area performances of June 21, 22, 23, and even June 25 and 27 are all better, as are most of the Madison Square Garden performances from June 7-14.

I would also put the April 28 (and maybe even the April 27) Cleveland performance above Seattle. Ditto for the May 25 and 30 Cap Centre performances. And then there's Pontiac April 30 - but the source is so bad it's hard to tell for sure.

Edited by tmtomh

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

IMHO the performance sucks, end of story.

The LA-area performances of June 21, 22, 23, and even June 25 and 27 are all better, as are most of the Madison Square Garden performances from June 7-14.

I would also put the April 28 (and maybe even the April 27) Cleveland performance above Seattle. Ditto for the May 25 and 30 Cap Centre performances. And then there's Pontiac April 30 - but the source is so bad it's hard to tell for sure.

I'd put most of those performances above Seattle, too -- not one or two of the MSG shows, those could be hit-or-miss -- but I still wouldn't say that the "performance sucks." That can be reserved for Tempe, and some of the other real stinkers from the tour.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
60blues   

All I know is every time I see the words "Led Zeppelin Seattle 1977"...it brings back the many many hours I spent dialing ....yes DIALING.....the old rotary phone trying to win a seat on the local radio station bus that was heading down to Seattle to the show.....you won the seat you got a ticket. Zeppelin was a tough ticket to get by the late 70's.....and no....I didn't win a seat on the bus..... :(

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Strider   

This is an "OK" show, not the best or worst from this tour. What kills it for me is SEEING Jimmy. He looks like hell.

Which is why I, Nutrocker, and others, have discussed listening to the audio and not watch the video. The concert seems much better as a purely audio experience without the distraction of the lethargic appearance of the band.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Which is why I, Nutrocker, and others, have discussed listening to the audio and not watch the video. The concert seems much better as a purely audio experience without the distraction of the lethargic appearance of the band.

I had mostly dismissed this show until I had it playing in the other room and listened to it without seeing it. If I can't see Jimmy grimace at his mistakes, I just think he meant to do everything I hear and it fits so much better.

Edited by chef free

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Basically a tired, bored and lacklustre performance. I've heard dry soundboards by other bands that show exactly how atrocious that gig was.

Page's solo in No Quarter is excruciating to listen to - absolute torture.

Edited by Styrbjorn

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Gandolf   

I loved this gig! (And no, I'm not high!). Bonzo and Jonesy are playing top-notch, Robert sounds good (somewhat better than Earl's Court I.M.O) and Jimmy... Well, let's think of it this way, he's stoned out of his mind, he never played guitar in one month, and who doesn't like his Poppy Suit! I mean seriously! Plus he played an amazing solo in No Quarter (For '77 standards).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've been listening to this show... and while i agree that Jimmy & Robert may not be having their best show...i do wonder if the sound source from the video feed if that's truly where it comes from isn't deminishing the quality of the performance... i know jimmy clanks some notes in some of his solos but in terms of him sounding out of tune in parts (& I'm no expert on this) seems like it could be the recording... (may be phasing or something) again I'm no expert so if someone could elaborate or set me straight... i do know there are some audio experts on here...

It does seem like they are having a good time and are laying back a little... bonzo is intense and at times seems to be urging the band on...

...Roberts vocal abilities are a little rough here...i hate to see him grimmace in NQ and TYG...if he had been "On" during TYG that performance would be all around legendary... plus as a frontperson you are really the litmus test of how good a performance was and if Robert hadn't been having a slight off night it could have covered for Jimmy being "on one"...plus the video is so hazy and dark interesting vibe but could it be cleaned up at all?

Last thing ... it may have been mentioned before but could the vid be synced to another perhaps better source if such a thing exists?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now


×