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Led Zeppelin will release a limited edition 7” single featuring 2 previously unheard mixes: “Sunset Sound Mix” of “Rock And Roll” and “Olympic Studios Mix” of “Friends.”

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This coming Record Store Day, April 21, Led Zeppelin will release a limited edition 7” single featuring 2 previously unheard mixes produced by Jimmy Page: the “Sunset Sound Mix” of “Rock And Roll” and the “Olympic Studios Mix” of “Friends.”

The previously unreleased version of “Rock And Roll” provides an additional peek into the fabled “Sunset Sound Mixes” of Led Zeppelin IV. Only two previous “Sunset Sound Mixes” have been released, the first being the version of “When The Levee Breaks” on the original album and the second the “Stairway To Heaven” mix that debuted on the 2014 deluxe edition. The previously unheard “Olympic Studios Mix” of “Friends” is a stripped-down version, without the orchestration of the final mix, offering a true fly-on-the-wall feel from the band’s recording sessions for Led Zeppelin III at Headley Grange.

The single will be available as part of Record Store Day, exclusively from independent music retailers, on April 21 2018.

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Ok, admittedly a bit underwhelming.  Guess I have to be patient 

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Aaaaand he's scraping the bottom of the barrel. I guess Plant was spot on when he labeled it as "Water in the bottom of the boat". Let's just hope this is the first of many things to come.

 

Edited by gibsonfan159
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OMG. I guess the guitar will be 2 db louder. LOL

Really who needs aditional mixes? Give us at least different takes. I can make more interesting releases with the 10 CD studio outtakes box.  This is really disappointing.

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Oh well, I'm out, seven inch single, no thanks, don't care what's on it..

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And is that the official album cover? Why would they use a reference to the third album if it has a song from another album?

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17 minutes ago, gibsonfan159 said:

Aaaaand he's scraping the bottom of the barrel. I guess Plant was spot on when he labeled it as "Water in the bottom of the boat". Let's just hope this is the first of many things to come.

 

For all his cheekiness and evasiveness, Plant is far more honest - about himself, about Zeppelin, and about just basic facts - than Page. Plant never believed his own PR, while Page partially did - still likes the mystery, and enjoys being in the comfortable environs of Zep fans, talking about past details and so on.

However, I do think this RSD release is not a total disappointment, for three reasons:

  1. It could have been far worse - it could merely have been a reissue of a previously released single, like Immigrant Song/Hey Hey What Can I Do. I think it's been about, what, 20-25 years since the last reissue of that?
  2. RSD releases - at least the singles and EPs - are never earth-shattering. They're always neat little curiosities (like the Beach Boys 78rpm RSD single of Good Vibrations for example). So this is in keeping with that - and given that it's Zep joining an existing promotion rather than a standalone Zep reissue, it makes sense and IMHO is appropriate and respectable as far as RSD singles go.
  3. Many might disagree with this one, but as a primarily digital, not vinyl, person, I'd be a bit unhappy if something truly amazing were a RSD exclusive. Anything truly special I would like to see available on digital as well as vinyl. (Yes, RSD releases sometimes do come out later in other formats, but still...)

 

12 minutes ago, the-ocean87 said:

OMG. I guess the guitar will be 2 db louder. LOL

Really who needs aditional mixes? Give us at least different takes. I can make more interesting releases with the 10 CD studio outtakes box.  This is really disappointing.

No disagreement here, but I do think the story is somewhat different for each track:

Rock and Roll: Definitely going to be a snoozefest most likely. It's an alt. mix but presumably with all the final overdubs and such. The version on the Zep IV companion disc actually had some overdubs missing, and so it was more different than this new RSD is likely to be - and even that one on the companion disc was barely different than the official version. So this new one likely will sound nearly identical to the official release. Boring.

Friends: This, apparently, is a mix with vocals but without the strings. For folks who really like Zep III - and I am one of them - this would be a welcome version to hear. The version on the Zep III companion disc is similarly stripped down, but it contains no vocals. The lack of vocals and strings - and the repetitive nature of the backing track - makes the companion disc version not very interesting. The addition of Plant's vocals to this version makes it intriguing to me.

 

Edited by tmtomh

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I'm looking forward to hearing the version of Friends.

I don't know much about record store day, do these things ever get a CD release?

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37 minutes ago, gibsonfan159 said:

And is that the official album cover? Why would they use a reference to the third album if it has a song from another album?

It'll be a single cover rather than an album cover & the symbols from IV are on there along with the LZ III references.

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36 minutes ago, tmtomh said:

Rock and Roll: Definitely going to be a snoozefest most likely. It's an alt. mix but presumably with all the final overdubs and such. The version on the Zep IV companion disc actually had some overdubs missing, and so it was more different than this new RSD is likely to be - and even that one on the companion disc was barely different than the official version. So this new one likely will sound nearly identical to the official release. Boring.

Friends: This, apparently, is a mix with vocals but without the strings. For folks who really like Zep III - and I am one of them - this would be a welcome version to hear. The version on the Zep III companion disc is similarly stripped down, but it contains no vocals. The lack of vocals and strings - and the repetitive nature of the backing track - makes the companion disc version not very interesting. The addition of Plant's vocals to this version makes it intriguing to me.

 

Hard to say if "Rock and Roll" will be a "snoozefest." I think it might be more interesting than the previously released mix, just because I think that one must date to sometime around the final album mixing sessions in London (since it sounds so close to the album) whereas a Sunset mix might be vastly different.

And come on, that backing track of "Friends" was amazing. :P

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"Rock and Roll" is my FAVORITE rock song of all time, so I'll be a buyer of this one.  Hoping this is just an appetizer for what is to come!

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28 minutes ago, Melcórë said:

Hard to say if "Rock and Roll" will be a "snoozefest." I think it might be more interesting than the previously released mix, just because I think that one must date to sometime around the final album mixing sessions in London (since it sounds so close to the album) whereas a Sunset mix might be vastly different.

And come on, that backing track of "Friends" was amazing. :P

Interesting perspective on RnR - hope you are right! RE Friends, I love the song and am glad to have any version. But I still say the upcoming version with vocals is likely to be more interesting than the backing track version. :)

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Curious as to how many of these will be released.  Will it have the Swan Song label or Atlantic ?  What does one charge for a 7" vinyl record these days ?  Will the yellow vinyl be the same shade as my Grand Funk's "We're an American Band" LP ? (that's a 70's joke kids) 

 

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I will get this for sure, if they don't sell out. Any version of Friends is fine by me! Glad they're finally doing a record store day thing. We all know how much Jimmy loves to shop for records, so this is cool

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1 hour ago, tmtomh said:

Interesting perspective on RnR - hope you are right! RE Friends, I love the song and am glad to have any version. But I still say the upcoming version with vocals is likely to be more interesting than the backing track version. :)

Well, compare the "Stairway" mix we got on the companion disc to the album--not worlds different, sure, but quite a bit rougher and with those extra guitar flourishes that were mixed out on the album but that Page would play live.

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9 minutes ago, Melcórë said:

Well, compare the "Stairway" mix we got on the companion disc to the album--not worlds different, sure, but quite a bit rougher and with those extra guitar flourishes that were mixed out on the album but that Page would play live.

No disagreement there - I really like the alt. Stairway on the Zep IV companion disc. Different sonic feel and as you say some little differences in the music too. I'm just not sure RnR lends itself to the highlighting of such differences - would love to be wrong though!

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Looks like Plant might be closer to the truth than some are willing to admit.

Oh sure...I'll buy the single. More for the "Friends" than "Rock and Roll". And Bong-Man, RSD singles usually go for $7 more or less.

But Led Zeppelin was never about singles. Except for the first album, all of the companion discs barely had 30-40 minutes of music. They could have easily fit much more alternate takes and mixes on those companion discs. Is this what the next 10 years is going to be...alternate mixes drip drip dripping one or two at a time?

I think people will tire of that release strategy fairly quickly. 

We all have heard the story of the genesis of "Rock and Roll". The band was getting frustrated trying to nail "Four Sticks" timing, especially Bonham. On the spur of the moment he starts bashing the intro to Little Richard's "Keep-a-knocking" and Jimmy and Jones join in and a song is born.

If Jimmy wants to give us a fly-on-the-wall perspective, that's the type of stuff he should be releasing. Give us the humanity, the frailty, that went hand-in-hand with the Hammer of the Gods. Stop euthanizing and sanitizing Led Zeppelin for the masses. 

Led Zeppelin was always an R-rated band. They weren't the Beatles or even the Stones, trying to be all things to all people and playing the pop-star game. Give us John Bonham grumbling "fucking Africans" before counting into "Four Sticks". Give us Bonham and Jimmy arguing about the timing of "In My Time of Dying".

It is ironic that the original "Physical Graffiti", with its airplanes and studio chatter, gives us more fly-on-the-wall perspective than any of the companion discs.

Bob Dylan's companion discs are filled with studio banter and false starts and humour and you truly see a song taking shape. I wish someone at Atlantic or in Jimmy's circle had the brains and the balls to suggest that this is the direction the companion discs should have taken.

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52 minutes ago, Strider said:

Looks like Plant might be closer to the truth than some are willing to admit.

Oh sure...I'll buy the single. More for the "Friends" than "Rock and Roll". And Bong-Man, RSD singles usually go for $7 more or less.

But Led Zeppelin was never about singles. Except for the first album, all of the companion discs barely had 30-40 minutes of music. They could have easily fit much more alternate takes and mixes on those companion discs. Is this what the next 10 years is going to be...alternate mixes drip drip dripping one or two at a time?

I think people will tire of that release strategy fairly quickly. 

We all have heard the story of the genesis of "Rock and Roll". The band was getting frustrated trying to nail "Four Sticks" timing, especially Bonham. On the spur of the moment he starts bashing the intro to Little Richard's "Keep-a-knocking" and Jimmy and Jones join in and a song is born.

If Jimmy wants to give us a fly-on-the-wall perspective, that's the type of stuff he should be releasing. Give us the humanity, the frailty, that went hand-in-hand with the Hammer of the Gods. Stop euthanizing and sanitizing Led Zeppelin for the masses. 

Led Zeppelin was always an R-rated band. They weren't the Beatles or even the Stones, trying to be all things to all people and playing the pop-star game. Give us John Bonham grumbling "fucking Africans" before counting into "Four Sticks". Give us Bonham and Jimmy arguing about the timing of "In My Time of Dying".

It is ironic that the original "Physical Graffiti", with its airplanes and studio chatter, gives us more fly-on-the-wall perspective than any of the companion discs.

Bob Dylan's companion discs are filled with studio banter and false starts and humour and you truly see a song taking shape. I wish someone at Atlantic or in Jimmy's circle had the brains and the balls to suggest that this is the direction the companion discs should have taken.

The problem is the assumption all of that still exists. And for whatever reason, Page doesn't seem interested in creating new mixes.

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4 hours ago, Mook said:

It'll be a single cover rather than an album cover & the symbols from IV are on there along with the LZ III references.

You know what? They are. How did I not notice them?

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2 hours ago, Strider said:

  Give us John Bonham grumbling "fucking Africans" before counting into "Four Sticks". Give us Bonham and  

 

 

I hate to say but with today's anti racism climate it would go over like a lead balloon.  Even if the context is in relation to an African type beat being tough to pull off it would be taken wrongly and make bad PR for the band. I mean look at what they say when you talk about wanting illegal aliens with criminal backgrounds to be deported. You are automatically called racist or worse so I don't think Jimmy would put that on the band.

As releases go this is a snooze fest all the way. Unless RR has a different solo there is nothing new here, the only reason to even collect it is just because its Zeppelin and that just doesn't fly with me anymore.

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4 hours ago, Mook said:

I'm looking forward to hearing the version of Friends.

I don't know much about record store day, do these things ever get a CD release?

Sometimes they show up in digital form, as tracks on a future album (and therefore a CD), and sometimes as digital downloads (as when Plant's 3-live-track "More Roar" 10-inch RSD vinyl release showed up in high-res download format on HDTracks a month or two later). Sometimes, though, they are true exclusives and never show up in the same format/version anywhere else.

 

3 hours ago, Bong-Man said:

Curious as to how many of these will be released.  Will it have the Swan Song label or Atlantic ?  What does one charge for a 7" vinyl record these days ?  Will the yellow vinyl be the same shade as my Grand Funk's "We're an American Band" LP ? (that's a 70's joke kids) 

 

Altantic:

28279048_10159848419215276_8563972484601123544_n.thumb.jpg.415ff66e18bf12daaec5a0feb603b56d.jpg

 

2 hours ago, Strider said:

Looks like Plant might be closer to the truth than some are willing to admit.

Oh sure...I'll buy the single. More for the "Friends" than "Rock and Roll". And Bong-Man, RSD singles usually go for $7 more or less.

But Led Zeppelin was never about singles. Except for the first album, all of the companion discs barely had 30-40 minutes of music. They could have easily fit much more alternate takes and mixes on those companion discs. Is this what the next 10 years is going to be...alternate mixes drip drip dripping one or two at a time?

I think people will tire of that release strategy fairly quickly. 

I don't disagree with you about singles - Zep never were a singles band; but that's what IMHO gives this RSD single some cachet as a one-off: Zep singles are somewhat rare and unusual things.

I also agree with you that dropping random singles will get old - but I don't see them doing that except as a once a year RSD thing, and they might not even do it in the future, only now because it's the 50th anniversary year.

 

 

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I guess Jimmy's rationale is that this release is part of the 2014-15 remastering project he began and not to be considered part of the 50th anniversary releases.

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