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gibsonfan159

Nitpicking Page (The quest for the best performance of 1975)

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3 hours ago, hummingbird69 said:

:goodpost:

:ahhh: I feel so stupid now :oops::buttsmack: Sorry I will not say another word.

Haha no need to stop posting! :lol:

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Nitpicking Page 3/20/75 Vancouver (Canadian Crush)

The follow up to the excellent show from the previous night. Great sounding, balanced soundboard (with Jones again up front a little and excellent clarity on the drums).

Rock And Roll- Tape cut jumps straight to the verses leading into the solo. Plant doesn't sound as warmed up tonight. Solo- Adequate, but a little sticky. 1:20, Plant yodel. Side note- 1:21, the guitar sound makes me think Page is using extra light strings because it sounds like it's tuned a little high, but what's happening is he's pushing down hard on the D5 chord here and the light string guage (being more flexible) is ringing out higher. I suspect the light strings accomadate his injured finger, though they also sound more thin and twangy.

Sick Again- Plant has smoothed out some. First solo- Very solid, with just a slight absence of fluidity. Outro solo- Some slop at 4:16. 4:27-4:33, sticky fingers. Plant mentions the "Pugnant" smells coming from the audience, I think he meant "Pungent".  Overall a fairly solid version. "B+".

OTHAFA- Good intro. I really wish Page could have opened this live with an acoustic, maybe mounted to a stand of some sort so he could keep his electric on for the main riff. Minor chord flub at 1:17. 2:08, Plant wasn't ready. Solo- Weird note at 2:47. Some good fluidity at 3:00. 3:40-3:50, good noodling. 3:54, missed note. 4:12, listen to Jones! 5:17, Page improvs some staccato style chords that sound pretty good. 6:38, careful Robert. Good version with a fairly solid solo. "B+".

IMTOD- The guitar drops a little in the mix. First solo- Good flow, with Bonham and Jones really accenting it. Page doesn't go wild, but he puts down some solid phrasing. Second solo- Page gets more creative and does some unique stuff, excellent. "A".

TSRTS- Page cranks up his electric banjo, sounding especially twangy here. First solo, 2:53, a little sticky. Outro solo- Nimble fingers return. Good energy for a solid "B+".

The Rain Song- Excellent sound. Mellotron- 1:54, weird notes. The sound quality actually makes the fake symphony sound a little cheesy and over-bearing. Rock section- Hits pretty hard with Plant belting out some good throaty vocals. "A", despite the not-so-mellow-tron (heh).

Kashmir- Warning: Over-bearing mellotron. But fortunately the bass pedal is subdued. 3:16, a rare Jones flub. 4:17, Plant goes for the heavens. 4:49, Plant squeak. 7:38, there's that confounded bass pedal. Page sounding good on the outro. 8:22, that awesome drum fill again. I have to say, I personally enjoy the versions where Jones is non existent on this. Still a solid version, "A".

No Quarter- Nitpicking Jones- 7:39-8:00, wonderful little melody. Very un-Zep like. This section plays out more like a film soundtrack. Page comes in elegantly. 12:44-13:00, nice series of runs and riffs. Page is in the zone here, playing with good fluidity and phrasing. 15:18, wah pedal kicks in and makes the guitar very toneless and shrill. 18:00, Page never seems to have much to offer on this wind down part and is stepping on a good jam between Jones and Bonham. He's be better suited hanging out until the main riff comes in again, but that's my opinion. Outro- a solid finish. "A".

Trampled Underfoot- Energetic with Plant sounding good. Jones is doing some neat stuff on his solo. Page- Maybe not shredding, but playing in a way that really accents the music and falls in line with the groove. 5:52, takes Jones and Bonham a couple seconds to get back on the main riff. Strong version, "A".

Moby Dick- A dynamic performance with enough change ups to keep it interesting, combined with superior sound quality. 

Dazed And Confused- 2:21, Plant yodel. First workout- 5:09, awesome run. Page has a good flow going. The dry guitar tone doesn't sound great though. Woodstock- A flamenco style lead in to a stunning version, with Plant sounding like his older self. One of the best I've heard. Bow section is a little subdued except for when the drums enter, which sounds great. Second workout- 27:20-27:37, Page and Jones have a duel. Articulation is a little rough, but his phrasing is excellent through here. 29:00-29:20, Page is tearing it up. 29:40, some turkey sounds but still a nice run, aggressive run. Mars- Guitar is out of tune (I actually noticed it after the bow section, but he managed to avoid playing that string somehow til now). The climax hits hard though the guitar tone becomes very twangy, not Pagey's fault though. Finale- 36:35, Page is somehow doing dive-bombs on a Les Paul. The finale drags on a little.  An excellent performance with Plant sounding enthusiastic and Bonham adding lots of nice little accents to Jimmy's playing. 39:37, a fan mentions the "Jack Daniels pic, which Plant acknowledges. Gotta be "A+" for 75, especially considering the Woodstock section.

Stairway To Heaven- Good tempo, but the mellotron is just slightly flat, almost unnoticable. 3:28, some flubbed chords on this ascending riff. Solo- 7:02-720, very sloppy. He gets back on track shortly after with some good phrasing and knocks the final four runs out of the park. I've gotta rate this track more critically than others and the flubs keep it at a "B".

Whole Lotta Love- 0:49, I love the way Page bends the chord here. Funk sections- Plant with the nimble toungue on "Licking Stick". Ozone Baby riffs galore. Theremin- Everything from a broken Atari to whale's screwing, with Jones putting down some RHCP bass lines. I can't imagine anyone on acid for this would've walked away sane. A cool version, but no "Crunge". "A".

Heartbreaker- Page's fingers aren't quite hitting the strings on the intro for some reason. 1:56, he puts down some very good fluid leads here. 2:48, not sure what's going on, maybe a technical problem. The solo- Sure it's subpar compared to others and he struggled some, but I've heard him do worse in some versions of Trampled Underfoot and D&C. 5:20-5:50 isn't bad at all. This is a bedroom jam solo and that's what it sounds like. 8:46, a very nice fluid run. 9:36, some flubs. Still gotta give it a C+. 

Final Assessment- Another great showing from Page in Vancouver, where he always appears to be sober when he plays. I'm not sure if either show is better, but they're both definitely great for 1975 with Plant sounding very good. Apart from Trampled, Dazed and Whole Lotta Love, I'd pick the 19th as the overall better show, with a more fluid Page.

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20 hours ago, gibsonfan159 said:

Nitpicking Page 3/20/75 Vancouver (Canadian Crush)

The follow up to the excellent show from the previous night. Great sounding, balanced soundboard (with Jones again up front a little and excellent clarity on the drums).

Rock And Roll- Tape cut jumps straight to the verses leading into the solo. Plant doesn't sound as warmed up tonight. Solo- Adequate, but a little sticky. 1:20, Plant yodel. Side note- 1:21, the guitar sound makes me think Page is using extra light strings because it sounds like it's tuned a little high, but what's happening is he's pushing down hard on the D5 chord here and the light string guage (being more flexible) is ringing out higher. I suspect the light strings accomadate his injured finger, though they also sound more thin and twangy.

Sick Again- Plant has smoothed out some. First solo- Very solid, with just a slight absence of fluidity. Outro solo- Some slop at 4:16. 4:27-4:33, sticky fingers. Plant mentions the "Pugnant" smells coming from the audience, I think he meant "Pungent".  Overall a fairly solid version. "B+".

OTHAFA- Good intro. I really wish Page could have opened this live with an acoustic, maybe mounted to a stand of some sort so he could keep his electric on for the main riff. Minor chord flub at 1:17. 2:08, Plant wasn't ready. Solo- Weird note at 2:47. Some good fluidity at 3:00. 3:40-3:50, good noodling. 3:54, missed note. 4:12, listen to Jones! 5:17, Page improvs some staccato style chords that sound pretty good. 6:38, careful Robert. Good version with a fairly solid solo. "B+".

IMTOD- The guitar drops a little in the mix. First solo- Good flow, with Bonham and Jones really accenting it. Page doesn't go wild, but he puts down some solid phrasing. Second solo- Page gets more creative and does some unique stuff, excellent. "A".

TSRTS- Page cranks up his electric banjo, sounding especially twangy here. First solo, 2:53, a little sticky. Outro solo- Nimble fingers return. Good energy for a solid "B+".

The Rain Song- Excellent sound. Mellotron- 1:54, weird notes. The sound quality actually makes the fake symphony sound a little cheesy and over-bearing. Rock section- Hits pretty hard with Plant belting out some good throaty vocals. "A", despite the not-so-mellow-tron (heh).

Kashmir- Warning: Over-bearing mellotron. But fortunately the bass pedal is subdued. 3:16, a rare Jones flub. 4:17, Plant goes for the heavens. 4:49, Plant squeak. 7:38, there's that confounded bass pedal. Page sounding good on the outro. 8:22, that awesome drum fill again. I have to say, I personally enjoy the versions where Jones is non existent on this. Still a solid version, "A".

No Quarter- Nitpicking Jones- 7:39-8:00, wonderful little melody. Very un-Zep like. This section plays out more like a film soundtrack. Page comes in elegantly. 12:44-13:00, nice series of runs and riffs. Page is in the zone here, playing with good fluidity and phrasing. 15:18, wah pedal kicks in and makes the guitar very toneless and shrill. 18:00, Page never seems to have much to offer on this wind down part and is stepping on a good jam between Jones and Bonham. He's be better suited hanging out until the main riff comes in again, but that's my opinion. Outro- a solid finish. "A".

Trampled Underfoot- Energetic with Plant sounding good. Jones is doing some neat stuff on his solo. Page- Maybe not shredding, but playing in a way that really accents the music and falls in line with the groove. 5:52, takes Jones and Bonham a couple seconds to get back on the main riff. Strong version, "A".

Moby Dick- A dynamic performance with enough change ups to keep it interesting, combined with superior sound quality. 

Dazed And Confused- 2:21, Plant yodel. First workout- 5:09, awesome run. Page has a good flow going. The dry guitar tone doesn't sound great though. Woodstock- A flamenco style lead in to a stunning version, with Plant sounding like his older self. One of the best I've heard. Bow section is a little subdued except for when the drums enter, which sounds great. Second workout- 27:20-27:37, Page and Jones have a duel. Articulation is a little rough, but his phrasing is excellent through here. 29:00-29:20, Page is tearing it up. 29:40, some turkey sounds but still a nice run, aggressive run. Mars- Guitar is out of tune (I actually noticed it after the bow section, but he managed to avoid playing that string somehow til now). The climax hits hard though the guitar tone becomes very twangy, not Pagey's fault though. Finale- 36:35, Page is somehow doing dive-bombs on a Les Paul. The finale drags on a little.  An excellent performance with Plant sounding enthusiastic and Bonham adding lots of nice little accents to Jimmy's playing. 39:37, a fan mentions the "Jack Daniels pic, which Plant acknowledges. Gotta be "A+" for 75, especially considering the Woodstock section.

Stairway To Heaven- Good tempo, but the mellotron is just slightly flat, almost unnoticable. 3:28, some flubbed chords on this ascending riff. Solo- 7:02-720, very sloppy. He gets back on track shortly after with some good phrasing and knocks the final four runs out of the park. I've gotta rate this track more critically than others and the flubs keep it at a "B".

Whole Lotta Love- 0:49, I love the way Page bends the chord here. Funk sections- Plant with the nimble toungue on "Licking Stick". Ozone Baby riffs galore. Theremin- Everything from a broken Atari to whale's screwing, with Jones putting down some RHCP bass lines. I can't imagine anyone on acid for this would've walked away sane. A cool version, but no "Crunge". "A".

Heartbreaker- Page's fingers aren't quite hitting the strings on the intro for some reason. 1:56, he puts down some very good fluid leads here. 2:48, not sure what's going on, maybe a technical problem. The solo- Sure it's subpar compared to others and he struggled some, but I've heard him do worse in some versions of Trampled Underfoot and D&C. 5:20-5:50 isn't bad at all. This is a bedroom jam solo and that's what it sounds like. 8:46, a very nice fluid run. 9:36, some flubs. Still gotta give it a C+. 

Final Assessment- Another great showing from Page in Vancouver, where he always appears to be sober when he plays. I'm not sure if either show is better, but they're both definitely great for 1975 with Plant sounding very good. Apart from Trampled, Dazed and Whole Lotta Love, I'd pick the 19th as the overall better show, with a more fluid Page.

Enjoy your approach. You have one of those ideas that's so simple and good, everyone wonders - myself included - why they didn't think of it and execute.

Song by song , minute by minute, finish to close, you pick apart - pun intended - each flaw and success. And you help us to see concerts in a new way.

Hope at the end you decide on a best of 75. I'll have to re listen to Vancouver 3/19 to see if it can knock off NYC 2/12, which for me is still tops for the year.

And I'll wait for a complete earlier 1975 NYC soundboard to add to my collection.

Thanks.

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Posted (edited)

Nitpicking Page 3/21/1975 Seattle (Deus Ex Machina/Matrix)

A redo of this review was in order since I mainly only pointed out the negatives originally. Jumping between the matrix and Deus Ex Machina because the EVSD soundboard is dry as hell and the matrix has the guitar low.

Rock And Roll (Matrix)- Page's extra light strings are noticeable again, especially on that D5 chord. Solo- Not the smoothest he's played it, but still really good. Flub at 3:08. The energy and no squeaks from Plant make it an "A". 

Sick Again (Matrix)- Bonham is a wild man on this, throwing fills in almost every bar. First solo- Excellent start, good fluidity. Small hang up at 1:55. 3:50, Plant yodels. Outro solo- 4:02, bad notes. 4:26, slight straining. 4:48, slight hang up. Not too bad, "B+". "A+" for Bonzo.

OTHAFA (Matrix)- Intro flub at 0:16. 1:17, slight flub. Plant's voice sounding very smooth. Solo- Pretty good noodling on the lower octave. 4:14-4:22, good speedy run. A very solid solo without the turkey gobbling it usually has. 5:56, a flubbed chord which sounded surprisingly good. "B+" because of the intro flub.

IMTOD (Deus)- A rare chord flub at 3:30. First solo- Not bad, some sloppy phrasing. 5:40-5:44, Page isn't playing as precise with the slide on this one as he usually does. Second solo- Repetitve in spots, not a great flow. 9:10, nice little riff. Some lackluster slide work holds this to a "B".

TSRTS (Deus)- Smooth opening. Small flub at 1:31. First solo- Pretty solid. Second solo- Not as precise, but still good. "A".

The Rain Song (Deus)- Plant sounds great. The mellotron, although in tune, is so choppy it almost sounds like a tape being played backwards. Rock section- Page chokes the chords a little which takes away from the impact. An adequate version that almost seems too relaxed, "B+".

Kashmir (Deus)- 3:21, someone misses a chord. 3:47, the guitar and mellotron really aren't gelling through here. There's some harmonic dissonance between them. 7:32, Page flub. Not bad, but enough flubs to make it a "B".

No Quarter (Matrix)- 1:31, Jones flub. 2:36, flubbed notes? Something sounds weird anyway. 6:05-6:37, Ladies and Gentlemen, JPJ. 7:29, got me shouting "Halleluja praise the lawd" over here. Again at 8:38. Bonham comes in for a spectacular jam. Enter Page- 13:33, good run. 15:30, decent run. 15:48, good aggressive run. I think Page feels pressure to match what Jones did. 22:49, some fine guitar work with an excellent outro. A top tier version, "A+".

SIBLY (Deus)- 3:14, Maybe he meant to, but Jones hits a major chord instead of a minor which sounds interesting. Solo- Pretty solid. "A".

Trampled Underfoot (Deus)- 0:27, what are those lyrics, Plant? 0:54, wrong bass pedal note. Jones seems lazy on the solo. Page- 4:07, turkey gobbling supreme. Page slows down and focuses on the phrasing, which isn't great. 6:04, fooling around. Right hand comes alive at the end. Outro is just ok. Nothing exciting here, "B".

Moby Dick (Deus)- A good version with lots of change ups.

Dazed And Confused (Deus, sounding less dry now)- Plant is cracking a little and Page has a string sounding flat. 3:49, Page stops for a second to tune up maybe. First workout- Good jamming by Page. 6:24, articulation is a little rough, but his phrasing is on point. Woodstock- 8:17, guitar is still outta tune. 9:08, how is Jones making that bass note sustain so well? 9:24, very cool riff and jam. 10:51, Plant crack. 11:12, good riff. 12:00, Plant does some good stuff through here. Bow section- good amount of creepiness without dragging on too much. Second workout- 22:35, Page comes alive with a good aggressive run. 23:15, sticky fingers. 23:25-23:41, nice series of runs. 24:40, I don't think he played that right, but it still sounded ok. 25:26-25:50, excellent phrasing and good fluid runs. 27:02, Bonham can be heard saying "Do it again!" to Page. 29:43, Bonham gets impatient. 30:05, a little sloppy. Mars- pretty solid. 32:50, I love this little riff. 33:38, the climax gets miffed a little bit. Finale- 38:35, Plant lands his spacecraft. 39:53, I love how Jones matches Bonzo's kick here. Page's playing was surprisingly better than I realized for this and unlike a lot of versions, there were no boring parts and very little bedroom jamming. Although this is a very entertaining version for 75, I don't think it was explosive enough to stand out in any real way. It's a very solid "A" performance.

Stairway To Heaven (Deus)- 2:18, Jones ends on the wrong note. Solo- Very average until 8:08, when Page starts a nice intricate flow. 9:18, a good series of descending runs. 10:41, a little sloppy sounding. A good climax to end the song. Edit the solo from Montreal into this and it would have been superior. "A".

Whole Lotta Love (Deus)- Good aggressive start. Funk section- The Crunge is held together quite nicely. 3:20, Page gets off track a little but jumps right back on with some good riffing. Plant tries Licking Stick, but Page moves on. Theremin- Goes on way too long, although Bonham and Jones are tearing it up. 9:00, Page finally jumps back in with some more funk riffs. Excellent finish leading into Black Dog. "A".

Black Dog (Deus)- Page's guitar has some good grit and is less twangy than other 75 versions. Solo- 3:59, sticky fingers. 4:20, he catches those tough bends nicely. Not a lot of fluidity on the solo, but fairly good phrasing. "B+".

Communication Breakdown (Deus)- 1:20, guitar and vocal in perfect unison. Solo- I don't like this with the chorus effect he's using, but he's playing like a madman, very good flow and articulation. Why didn't he play the Black Dog solo like this? "A".

Heartbreaker (Deus)- 0:26, caught a Jones flub. It's like spotting an animal thought to be extinct. Solo- Good phrasing and playing throughout with lots of energy. 

Final assessment- The initial nitpick because I got tired of people saying "Page was on fire" when I knew, from a technical standpoint, he really wasn't. He was just "ok" for the most part. He played like he should have as a pro musician, nothing really exceptional. Although Page wasn't as on as some other shows, this is still maybe the most solid show overall, with the rest of the band sounding very good with Plant not cracking much at all. "No Quarter" and "Dazed" are certainly standouts as some of the best of the tour. Plus surprisingly good versions of "SIBLY" and "Communication Breakdown". Another strange performance where Page seems to improve as the show went on.

Edited by gibsonfan159
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Posted (edited)

honestly, while I don't like thinking about the playing on some of these shows in a negative light, I've gotta say this is a very good topic and thread. Very interesting and all around a good read. As someone who's not even close to being musically inclined enough to pick up on the intricacies of things like phrasing and whatnot, it's easier for me to enjoy the shows for what they are. I do look forward to going back to some of these shows with the positive things you wrote in mind. I know there aren't many shows left worth nitpicking but keep up the good work!

Edited by Sue Dounim

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1 hour ago, Sue Dounim said:

honestly, while I don't like thinking about the playing on some of these shows in a negative light, I've gotta say this is a very good topic and thread. Very interesting and all around a good read. As someone who's not even close to being musically inclined enough to pick up on the intricacies of things like phrasing and whatnot, it's easier for me to enjoy the shows for what they are. I do look forward to going back to some of these shows with the positive things you wrote in mind. I know there aren't many shows left worth nitpicking but keep up the good work!

Much appreciated. I think a live performance can be like an impressionist painting; If you stand back you see an amazing picture, but you get in close and you can see all the little details and smudges that create it. Zep were far too interesting a band to just take their music at face value. The details are just as great (to me) as the whole picture.

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Nitpicking Page 3/17/1975 Seattle (Haven't We Met Somewhere Before)

First night in Seattle. I've shamefully ever only skimmed through this one, so this will be fairly new to me. Maybe there's some hidden gems on here. Jones again way up in the mix.

Rock And Roll- 1:13, Plant is a little shaky. Solo- 2:42, flub. A decent open. "B+".

Sick Again- Good start. Solo- Some noticeable straining, but he makes it through. 3:32, minor flub. Outro solo- Phrasing and articulation are absent. 5:00, amateur bedroom jamming. A "B" version, despite good energy.

OTHAFA- Some interesting technical issues; 0:33, G string is flat. There's a slight pause at 0:36 (Jimmy giving the peg a slight turn) and when he hits it at 0:38, it seems to be tuned up. Good intro. 1:37, loose guitar cable. 1:52, the wah pedal kicks in for some reason (which sounds quite interesting). The guitar tech probably checked the cable to the wah pedal and checked to make sure it was working. Back to the song/ Solo- His articulation kicks up a notch and he gets a good flow going. Very good. 4:15, excellent run. 4:33, listen to Jones and Bonham. 5:20, a little sticky. 6:03, Bonham switches the beat up. 6:08, Page's fingers slide right off the neck. 6:24, flub. 7:06, Plant sings some great lines through here. 7:33, Page strays from the original theme for some reason, sounds great though. This version has a ton of energy despite the technical issues and is actually one of the most entertaining versions I've heard. The solo was very impressive for 1975. So I don't really know how to rate it. I suppose the flubs and issues make it a "C+", though if you take those out it's an "A".

IMTOD- 1:38, Page managed to get the slide stuck in the strings. 2:42, funny Plant flub. 4:08, sloppy slide through here. First solo- Decent start and does an excellent ascending run at 4:47. 5:26-5:55 is gold. Some of the best phrasing I've heard him do on this song. Second solo- 7:02, Bonham and Jones go insane through here. Page plays solid, but he's getting overshadowed. 8:03, damn, listen to Jaco Paul Jones. I think the tempo has doubled toward the end. Those couple of flubs are really unfortunate as this could have been one of the best versions ever. "B+".

TSRTS- This unbalanced mix lets you imagine what this track would be like with only bass and drums. Wrong note by Jones at 0:55. Solo- Not too bad. Outro- Also not too bad. An adequate version. "B+".

The Rain Song- 1:20, this sounds out of place for Plant. Overwhelming mellotron sounding choppy and drowning out Page. Rock section- Page drops out momentarily. Plant does excellent though. Great scream at 8:13 by Plant. "B+".

Kashmir- Overwhelming mellotron. A remaster of this with heavy reverb might sound a lot better. 8:46, I don't know what happens on this one chord, but it sounds freaking awesome. Page apparently hits a power chord that resonates with the bass note and it sounds like it shakes the walls. It only happens once though. An excellent version with good vocal work, despite the mallowtron. "A".

No Quarter- Nitpicking Jones- Very subdued and not getting a good flow going until the last half. Even the Bonzo jam is simplistic and overly repetitive. Page- Comes in with some decent noodling. 14:15, a good run. 19:00 and on finally has some good melodic moments and Bonham comes alive. The jam section just wasn't very dynamic like it usually is. "B+".

Trampled Underfoot- Solo- Page gets some good phrasing down, although there's absolutely no good fluid runs. A perfectly average version. "B+".

Moby Dick- Page's guitar sounds weird. 0:50, complete lack of articulation on the pull offs. A pretty dynamic version with lots of little change ups and triplets galore. 

Dazed And Confused- Bonham sounds delightfully impatient on the intro. 4:21, Plant squeak. First workout- Very good with the three really feeding off each other. Woodstock- Page goes off the beaten path a little before going into the main motif. Bow solo- Page doesn't transition into it very smoothly. Sounds kinda dull, even on a soundboard. Second workout- 20:43, Plant squeaks. 21:28, good run. The rest is mediocre at best.  26:22, gobbling. 27:10, sticky. Mars- Solid. Climax- Pretty good. Outro- Page doesn't have a lot to offer. This is all in all an average version with nothing really to point out, though Bonham does do some powerful drum fills. Page and Jones play pretty average. Plant sounds good for the most part. "B+". 

Stairway To Heaven- Plant sounds asleep at first, but picks it up later. Solo- Gets a good flow going and stays pretty solid throughout. 8:56, Bonham's offbeat drum fill throws Jones off. 9:27-9:32, that's one of the best riffs I've ever heard for this solo and should have been used again in every version. 11:06, very slight flub. 11:57, Plant squeak. A very good solo and an overall good version. "A".

Whole Lotta Love- "Leaves are falling all around". Good raunchy intro. Funk section- The Crunge in full force with Plant getting almost all the lyrics in. Page slips at 2:27. Again at 3:08. Theremin- 5:08, Plant is having fun. Drags on way too long with nothing unique. 

Black Dog- Page steps on his cable at 3:06. Solo- Plant accidentally starts the chorus again. Page starts up some nice aggressive runs, sounding almost like 1971. Very good solo. good finishing run at 5:28. Despite the flubs, I think this qualifies as an "A" version.

Final assessment- Like 3/21, this is an overall solid show, although a few notches lower on the energy level. It's a very listenable show, but don't expect to be blown away by anything. The mishaps on OTHAFA are very interesting to listen to though. Kashmir and the Stairway solo are the highlights.
 

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On 4/12/2018 at 4:30 PM, ZepHead315 said:

True, but the '73 setlist feels a lot tighter and seems to fly by much quicker, at least to me. The '75 setlist feels like an update of the '73 setlist, only with (imho) worse pacing. Having a 20-30 Moby Dick followed by a 40 minute Dazed and Confused is just way too excessive. It makes it lose momentum and it's more difficult for me personally to get through. Also, don't forget that the band occasionally skipped songs in the '73 setlist due to crowd issues or health issues. Not to mention novelties like hinting at Georgia on My Mind in Salt Lake City or playing Dazed out of order in Baltimore. ;)

The few  versions of going down they played during whole lotta love medley are some of my favorite moments from the 73 u s tour. When they did play it they played amazingly and plant sounded  terrific especially the  Houston version. Thst one smokes

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On 4/14/2018 at 5:43 PM, blooze said:

I agree to a certain extent. Yeah the setlist is the same every night and there aren't many surprises, but what I like about 75 is how they make each show sound unique regardless (IMO). It's because of the jams each night on songs like No Quarter, DnC, and the funk section of WLL. They truely sound "free" in some moments. Its the 77 tour where they really start to sound monotonous. Now, admittedly, I've listened to much more of 75 than 77 but there I think all the shows blend together. They way I've often thought about it was...once you've heard Listen to this Eddie (or whatever your one favorite show is) is there any need to go back and listen to the others? You were getting about the same show night in, night out. They experimented a bit in NQ, but not nearly as much as they did in 75 where Jonesy was given authority to take the song wherever he pleased.

Is there any other shows you need to hear from 77 once you have heard Eddie? Yes and thst would be June 22 77. Many feel that a better quality recording would reveal it to be better then eddie. It has probably the best in my time of dying they ever played and possibly the best over the hills and far way solo. Page is fantastic at that show and is easily one of his best performances post 73. The in my time of dying is essential. No quarter is amazing at that show as well.  Performance wise I think it beats eddie and badgeholders. The msg shows from 1977 are quite exceptional too.  The June 77 run is as good as anything from 75  

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On 4/14/2018 at 9:19 PM, ZepHead315 said:

I see what you're saying. There's definitely more jamming in 75 than 77. But I personally prefer 77 because, for one, they shook the setlist up. You no longer had to hear Percy croaking his way through Rock and Roll, and I always thought TSRTS was a much better opener anyway. And, with the exception of the back to back drum and noise solos, I really like the pacing of the 77 setlist. They brought the acoustic set back, and they saved the "big" (ie. Kashmir, Stairway, etc.) songs for the latter part of the show. And the 77 setlist actually has more variation than the 75 setlist. You had the substituting of IMTOD and OTHAFA, the occasional appearance of Dancing Days in the acoustic set, sometimes including Trampled Underfoot (and occasionally putting it right after the acoustic set), sometimes including Black Dog in the encores, sometimes including Heartbreaker, and other variations. That's why I'd argue that 77 is less monotonous than 75.

Heck, even if you listen to just the LA run, every show is different, both in terms of the setlist and the vibe. 6/21 is the only show of the run to include Heartbreaker and is probably the tightest and most energetic, 6/22 has both OTHAFA and IMTOD and is probably the most confident, 6/23 has OTHAFA and TUF and is very loose, 6/25 has IMTOD and TUF and has Bonzo being a tad erratic, 6/26 has It'll Be Me and is probably the most "even keel" of all the shows in terms of performance (just solid all the way through), and 6/27 has Dancing Days and has Page being a tad erratic. They all have a unique character, at least to me. :)

Plant actually sounded pretty decent on rock roll in 1977  but  it was played as an encore . I was always impressed how great plant sounded on the song remains  the same in 1977. It's a very hard song to sing with all the high notes and he pulled it off and as a set opener. Perhaps he actually warmed up in 77. I have always liked 77 more then 75 simply because plant sounded so much better and had alot more range in 77. The l a 77 run has his best singing post mid 72.

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On 4/15/2018 at 6:20 PM, gibsonfan159 said:

Nitpicking Page 2/14/75 Uniondale, second show (Throwing The Wild Seeds)

The follow up to the good show the previous night. Let's see if Page can get it going again. I'm using the matrix version.

Rock And Roll- Sounds like the building comes crashing down when they launch into this. Plant is a little rough, but not too bad at all. The solo- Not as solid as the previous night, but pretty good. No real flubs. "B+".

Sick Again- Good energy. First solo- Solid, but sounds like he strains just a little to put the last couple of measures together. Maybe the finger is hurting tonight? 2:56, slight flub. Outro solo- Not a good flow at all. He's really struggling a bit here, but manages to survive without disaster. "C+".

OTHAFA- Another relaxed start. Solid beginning. The solo- I already don't like how this starts out of the gate. 3:27-3:31 is nice. 3:33-3:45, sticky fingers galore. At the 5:30 mark and I don't know what to say. He's playing. He's hitting notes in the key. But there's absolutely no fire behind his playing and very little fluidity. Articulation? Nope. I've listened about six times now trying to find something that stands out. I mean, there are some decent bits like 4:25-4:36, but calling this professional guitar playing by the biggest rock band on the planet seems like a crime. 4:53, he attempts something nice, but it comes out a slopfest. I wonder if he realizes how he's playing or if in his head he's playing like Vienna 73? 5:45 and on isn't too bad I suppose. He ends the song just fine. After the song Plant comments that Page hadn't slept much. Maybe he's noticed his playing as well. Let's just go ahead and assume Page indulged a bit before the show. "C".

IMTOD-  The guitar is really low in the mix on this. First solo- Not bad but the flow of it seems off, like the rhythm section is about to take off and leave him. Second solo- A little more fire on this one with a little better phrasing. A "B+" version, mainly because of Jones and Bonham.

SIBLY- This is one of those songs like The Rain Song where Page almost never screws up, no matter how off he is. Intro is beautiful. Solid playing through the first half. Solo- Not mind blowing, but a good solid solo played with accuracy. 6:18, Plant sounds really rough. Page's playing though the last half is present, but not making any kind of impact. I'm glad to hear this played in 75, but it's a mediocre version at best. Plant thinks it was great though. "B".

TSRTS-  Good energetic start. Slight flub at 0:53. First solo- He struggles a bit to get it going, but gets through okay. Second solo- Much more accurate and aggressive. Really not bad, a "B+" version.

The Rain Song- A flub at 4 seconds in, but I'll give him a break on that. The vibrato on the mellotron is way too heavy. Rock part- The phaser effect on Plant's vocals almost ruin this. Otherwise alright. The ending exposes a string out of tune. "B".

Kashmir- Bonham corrects his beat at 5:53. Plant sounds really tired toward the end. Not a bad version. "B+".

No Quarter- Nitpicking Jones, an absolutely wonderful groove jam. I almost feel like Page comes in too soon and interrupts. 8:26, Bonzo has some fun and doubles the tempo for a measure (and will continue to do so throughout). Page solo- Good solid phrasing and surprisingly good fluidity. Bonzo's impatience really makes this stand out. 14:30, I don't know if Bonzo is trying to outshine Page or if he's just feeling great, but this is a rarity for 1975. 16:05, these three guys are killing it. 18:02, wrong chord Pagey. Outro solo- Page comes alive with some fire, smothered in wah pedal of course. 20:24, Jones misses the correct chord change. A very strong and unique version, but the small flubs make it a "B+".

Trampled Underfoot- 0:34, somebody screwed up. 1:40, listen to those pull offs! 3:00, some serious turkey gobbling. Solo- Articulation isn't great, but his phrasing is really good. 4:18-4:28, excellent flow. 5:13, sounds like a chase scene in a movie. I can't hear 5:40 well, but it sounds pretty awesome. 7:16, Page is feeling the groove as the right hand comes alive. His outro accents are great as well (7:53). A very good version apart from the few flubs. "A".

Moby Dick- Maybe it's this recording but Page's guitar sounds all out of whack. Bonham sounds tremendous and energetic. The sound quality really helps too. I'm only an amateur wannabe drummer, but this sounds like a tour de force. 19:00, Jesus. I imagine this bores the shit outta people who don't appreciate drumming, but I'm thoroughly impressed. Now let's hope Jimmy didn't chug a fifth of Jack backstage.

Dazed And Confused- Excellent guitar tone. First workout- 4:39, good run. Some articulation problems at 5:36. Bonzo and Jones are laying down a hell of a rhythm. Tape cut. San Fran, not a great start, guitar out of tune. Sounds excellent later on though. Fair bow solo. Workout- 19:40, starts a good run but loses it. 20:04, loses the flow. 20:17-20:22, not bad. 20:31, oh no. 20:50, jamming in the bedroom. 21:05 sounds like someone who's played guitar for a year took a Zep bootleg, cut out Page, and overdubbed their own playing onto it. 21:52, sticky fingers. 22:12 also. And 25:15. 26:12, slightly embarrassing. Mars- Not good. 30:32, Freebird licks. The wah pedal outro solo isn't too bad. "C".

Stairway To Heaven- A quick paced intro. The guitar drops way down in the mix and even this matrix sounds more dry soundboard-ish. Solo- Good flow at the start. Slight flub at 7:03. 7:28-7:42, I love these unusual low notes he's noodling with, and does an excellent run coming out of them. 8:00-8:25, really good articulation and phrasing through here. 8:58-9:06, yes sir. 9:25-9:29, a run reminiscent of 73 Page. 9:46, a very slight flub. 10:13, some articulation problems. Flub at 10:43. He barely catches the very last note at 10:47, maybe the most important one of the solo lol. If you could go back in time and slap the whiskey out of Page's hands for this show, this might have been the best Stairway solo ever. He was definitely feeling it here. The phrasing was perfect, but his ability was lacking a little. Even with flubs, a "B+" version.

Whole Lotta Love- Page sounds very loose now. Funk section- 2:25, Jones with the slap, Flea style. Page is doing some wicked stuff with the theremin here. Incoming Crunge. If you find the bridge, throw Page's whiskey stash off it. An "A" for a 75 version WLL.

Black Dog- Bonham loses beat at 0:46. Guitar at maximum twanginess. Plant belts a confident scream before the solo. Solo- A little hesitant at first. 3:52-4:17, well hot damn. 4:33-4:48, excellence, even with a dry soundboard tone. 4:58, struggling a little. 5:04-5:14, throwing in TSRTS style solo just for fun. Possibly the best Black Dog solo of 75? Shame the tone was so thin. "A". Maybe "A+" for 75 Page.

Heartbreaker- Awesome, unique intro. Slip up at 1:30. The solo- Page sounds a little unsure of what he wants to do. 5:28, slight flub. Mess O Blues, sounding good. The second part of the solo sounds a lot smoother, with some nifty finger work. 9:08 and on is pure comedy gold. 9:33-9:50, I'm dying. What a way to end. I'll give an "A" for uniqueness, performance wise- "C+".

Final assessment. Bonham was really impatient for this show which made for some great moments (and some bad ones). Page was up and down, one minute playing a lightning fast run and completely zoning out the next. There's absolutely no rhyme or reason to his playing ability in 1975. Somehow he manages to sober up enough to impress in between drooling on the strings. Plant was rather mediocre, sounding very out of breath at the beginning and straining to hang on to notes. I'd still say 2/13 is the best of the NY run. But that's an opinion, not a nitpick.

 

 

 

 

 

 

I thought plant sounded far better  on the 14th then he did the night before.  The 14 th was the best vocal performance by plant up to that point   although it was still pretty mediocre.

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Always thought the MSG shows in 75 were overrated. 

Uniondale much better show. 

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Nitpicking Page 5/17/1975 (The Earl's Court Tapes Vol. 1)

Bootleg ears required. Distant and echo heavy. I'm gonna blow through this one rather quickly considering the bad audio makes it hard to nitpick.

Rock And Roll- 1:27, Page disappears and Plant sounds terrible. Solo- Page's guitar is cutting in and out. Solo sounds good though, if you can hear it. "B".

Sick Again- Decent start. Solo- Page lays down a decent solo. Outro solo- Really not bad. Page plays with some ferocity on this outro and seems to be pretty coherent. "A".

OTHAFA- Solid intro with Plant sounding a little better. Solo- Hard to make out details, but sounds alright with decent phrasing and he really comes alive toward the end. Pretty solid version, "A".

IMTOD- Good beginning. First solo- Murky, but sounds alright. Second solo- He's doing some unusual stuff here, like he's just slowly sliding up and down the neck. "B+".

TSRTS- Good energy on the intro. First solo- Articulation doesn't sound great. Outro solo- A little smoother. Not bad, "B+".

The Rain Song- Plant doesn't sound so hot here, but the other three sound fantastic. The rock section comes in a little soft. "B+".

Kashmir- The recording is clearer now. 0:48, Plant squeak. Powerful outro, though Plant is straining a little. 8:45, "That's what I've been waiting for". "B+".

No Quarter- Nitpicking Jones, Not bad, but his solo drags a bit. He gets a nice melody going right before Bonham comes in. Page comes in with some smooth runs. He isn't perfect, but he's playing with gusto and knocking the phrasing out of the park. Parts sound very Pink Floyd-ish. 15:00-15:07, Bonham hammers down some cool fills. A nice wind down before returning to the verses. 21:17-21:37, Page does some wicked stuff on this outro. Seriously badass playing here. I think it's fair to say, especially for 75, that this is an "A+" performance. Page was unreal for the most part.

Tangerine- Guitar is noticeably out of tune. The chorus comes in and the harmony sounds really off. Solo- Page gets a solid slide routine down and the harmony on the chorus sounds much better this time. 2:25, Plant almost sounds like his old self for a second. Outro- ending is a little wonky. Not bad, "B+".

GTC- Page's bottom string (E tuned to D) sounds a little flat. Plant sings unenthusiastically. "B".

That's The Way- A very good version with Plant sounding great for the most part. "A".

Bronyaur Stomp- Audio gets more distant. Good breakdown section from Page. A rollicking version with Plant belting out good vocals. "A".

Trampled Underfoot- Good energy. Solo- Page comes alive with some frantic playing. Excellent bends and articulation sounds good. Strong performance, "A+".

Moby Dick- Bonham gets off to a thundering start. 8:30, he actually sounds like a drag car getting ready to take off here. A good, dynamic version that's exciting for non-drummers as well. "A".

Dazed And Confused- The first workout section has some good playing but goes by fast. Woodstock- Strong, confident intro. It wouldn't be an understatement to say Page is on a 73 level here. He's playing smoothly with good phrasing. Mars- Page disappears after the second measure, but comes back in soon without really affecting it. His playing here is really impressive. This version is no joke and if you close your eyes, you'll swear it's Europe 1973. "A+".

Stairway To Heaven- Some weird notes at 1:29. Flub at 2:55. Solo- 7:15 and beyond is great. I hear no flubs or dead spots, but it seems a little too straight forward though it has a great finish. A soundboard might really bring it alive. The earlier flubs make it a "B+".

WLL- The funk and theremin sections aren't bad, but they go by pretty unnoticeable. "B+".

Black Dog- Lots of energy. Solo- Page starts out nice but starts to lose his way a bit as it goes on. Still a very solid version. "A".

Final assessment- I had only skimmed through this one before (because of the audio quality) but I'm pleasantly surprised. Even though the crowd is extremely unenthusiastic, the band still puts down a solid performance with Page playing great for the most part. No Quarter, Trampled Underfoot, and Dazed are the highlights.

Edited by gibsonfan159

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6 hours ago, gibsonfan159 said:

Tangerine- Guitar is noticeably out of tune. 

GTC- Page's bottom string (E tuned to D) sounds a little flat.

Seems crazy to me that the biggest and best band in the world, arguably at their height in '75, would walk out on stage with not properly tuned guitars. Almost sounds like a joke. 

6 hours ago, gibsonfan159 said:

if you close your eyes, you'll swear it's Europe 1973.

Bold words. I'll have to give it a listen....

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1 hour ago, paplbojo said:

Seems crazy to me that the biggest and best band in the world, arguably at their height in '75, would walk out on stage with not properly tuned guitars. Almost sounds like a joke. 

I always thought this was strange as well...

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3 minutes ago, paplbojo said:

Doesn't make much sense. 

Sort of goes hand-in-hand with not sound-checking, although I understand the logistics of that decision, given that they were often flying in from a different city just in time for the gig.  But you'd think good ol' Raymond Thomas with the broken leg would've had them tuned up.

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9 hours ago, Bonzo_fan said:

Sort of goes hand-in-hand with not sound-checking, although I understand the logistics of that decision, given that they were often flying in from a different city just in time for the gig.  But you'd think good ol' Raymond Thomas with the broken leg would've had them tuned up.

Guess he had a broken hand as well

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12 hours ago, paplbojo said:

Seems crazy to me that the biggest and best band in the world, arguably at their height in '75, would walk out on stage with not properly tuned guitars. Almost sounds like a joke. 

I think "Tight but loose" was referencing the guitar strings.

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Nitpicking Page 5/18/1975 (The Earl's Court Tapes Vol. 1)

Not a great recording, but definitely a step up from the previous night.

Rock And Roll- Pretty good start, though Plant sounds rough. Solo- Very solid with Bonham throwing in a unique drum fill. "B+".

Sick Again- Good energy. First solo- fluid perfection. No complaints. Outro solo- Good start; but those bends at 4:45 sound very strained. Pretty good, "A".

OTHAFA- Decent intro, but Plant sounds very shaky going into the chorus. Solo- 3:31-3:39, exceptional run reminiscent of 73. Again at 4:00-4:20. Page is ripping this apart. Flub at 5:32. Not bad, but Plant really brings this down a notch. "B+". 

IMTOD- Good intro. First solo- Page takes off with some good slide phrasing. Second solo- A little repetitive in spots, but not bad. Plant doesn't sound good on the cheeses part. Bonham does some amazing fills after the 9:00 mark. Pretty solid version despite Plant being subpar. "B+".

TSRTS- Bonham comes in with a lot of energy for the intro. First solo- Page has a little trouble starting, but then sounds great with good articulation. Outro solo- The guitar drops out almost entirely for a few seconds, but sounds like he was playing good. If Plant's vocals weren't so crackly all the way through it would be a great version. "A" for 75.

The Rain Song- Good start. Mellotron is a little flat compared to the guitar tuning. The rock section comes in like it's supposed to- blowing the doors off the place and Bonham knocking down the walls. Too bad Plant isn't sounding great. Good version, "A".

Kashmir- Plant is having a really hard time staying in key. A heavy, stomping rhythm throughout. Page's lead work on the outro is sloppy. "B".

No Quarter- Amazingly clear intro. You can hear the "swishing" from the chorus effect. Nitpicking Jones- 6:27-7:16, some of the most elegant, perfectly structured piano phrasing I've heard from Jones. Then Bonzo comes in for an excellent, dreamy jam section. I think Page even holds off a little longer than usual to let it flow. Solo- Page is playing very relaxed which works well for this. Good, smooth runs. 14:39-15:04, perfect phrasing and articulation. 15:42-16:25, Stevie Ray Vaughn level of bends and phrasing here, sans the beefy guitar tone. That bend at 16:16 gets me rigid. He merges the ending theme with some creepy chorded arppegios. Perfection. It seems wrong to bring the verses back after that. Decent outro solo, though the intensity is lacking after the previous solo. Page may not have had the frenetic energy he did in 72/73, but his fingers and brain are just as nimble. "A++" considering Jones really nailed it too.

Tangerine- Guitar is in tune (albeit twangy) and the harmony sounds better this time. Solo- Very loud and shrill, not great phrasing. Plant sounding much better. No bottom end makes this song sound slightly thin live. "B+".

GTC- This performance has a much better flow than the previous night's. Plant strains a little on the bridge. 4:14, that mandolin. "A".

That's The Way- Not gonna lie, this song bores me to death. Good mandolin playing throughout and Plant sounding good. "A".

Bronyaur Stomp- Solid version. Page's breakdown gets a little mundane and he disappears from the recording almost entirely at 4:52. "B+".

Trampled Underfoot- Recording gets a little murkier. Solo- Page gets some decent licks in, but the phrasing could have been a lot better. He kind of gets lost at the end. "B+".

Moby Dick- This one failed to hold my attention. It's alright I suppose.

Dazed And Confused- Powerful, menacing first part. First workout- Page goes wild at first and then tapers down. Woodstock- Takes a while to get going, but sounds pretty good. Plant always sings the verses like he's making them up on the spot. Bow section takes a while to get going. Not bad, not great. Second workout- Page's phrasing is alright, but his runs are just a tad sticky, like at 22:15. This one just isn't flowing as well as the previous night, though it's certainly not bad. Mars- Very basic. Climax sounds good with Bonham raisning the energy level. Page gets some nice fluid runs in at the very end. This is a very solid version with everyone sounding good, it's just very straightforward. "A".

Stairway To Heaven- Superb sound at first but gets a little muddy as it goes on. Excellent verses. Solo- Good energetic start with Page in shred mode. 7:20, speedy right hand. A very lively solo that's almost too energetic, but I'm not complaining. Plant is a little scratchy on the final verse. "A".

WLL- Very thin sound. Funk/theremin section is again nothing special.

Black Dog-  1:42, my ear drums are crying. Solo- Starts off good, but he loses it some at the end with some bad articulation. Good flurry of notes from Page on the finale. "B+".

Final assessment- Another good showing by Page, though I don't know if this show outweighs the previous night. Both are pretty good showings for 75. No Quarter is a must listen. Great Going To California and a very solid Dazed.

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You should have listened to the Empress Valley's "No Quarter" from their "Earl's Court: The Final Option" box set. The version you picked (assuming it's the 4CD "Complete Earls Court Arena Tapes II") unnecessarily switches between three different sources, and it's overly EQ'd. The Final Option version uses the best source (first released on the Immigrant label as Complete Earls Court Arena '75) as its main source. And it's been tastefully EQ'd to eliminate hiss. It's definitely the best audience tape from this Earls Court run, imho, and it does a good job at presenting this show in the best light possible.

Glad to hear you like NQ so much. This one is my personal favorite from 1975 actually.

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1 hour ago, ZepHead315 said:

You should have listened to the Empress Valley's "No Quarter" from their "Earl's Court: The Final Option" box set. The version you picked (assuming it's the 4CD "Complete Earls Court Arena Tapes II") unnecessarily switches between three different sources, and it's overly EQ'd. The Final Option version uses the best source (first released on the Immigrant label as Complete Earls Court Arena '75) as its main source. And it's been tastefully EQ'd to eliminate hiss. It's definitely the best audience tape from this Earls Court run, imho, and it does a good job at presenting this show in the best light possible.

Glad to hear you like NQ so much. This one is my personal favorite from 1975 actually.

I've been trying to stick to the stuff available on the "longliveledzeppelin" site since it's the most convenient way to get the boots. Some of those "FileFactory" links are a bit of a hassle. But I'll definitely get those for my personal listening.

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4 hours ago, ZepHead315 said:

You should have listened to the Empress Valley's "No Quarter" from their "Earl's Court: The Final Option" box set. The version you picked (assuming it's the 4CD "Complete Earls Court Arena Tapes II") unnecessarily switches between three different sources, and it's overly EQ'd. The Final Option version uses the best source (first released on the Immigrant label as Complete Earls Court Arena '75) as its main source. And it's been tastefully EQ'd to eliminate hiss. It's definitely the best audience tape from this Earls Court run, imho, and it does a good job at presenting this show in the best light possible.

Glad to hear you like NQ so much. This one is my personal favorite from 1975 actually.

This one and the version from the 23rd are the best versions of NQ IMO. Also, Page uses the Strat on both of these night's and does some very freaky stuff with the whammy bar (especially on the 23rd), but does not go overboard with it. That is one of my favorite aspects of Page's use of the whammy, he knows when to use it and how to use it but never over-uses it.

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Nitpicking Page 5/23/1975 (The Earl's Court Tapes Vol III)

Not a great recording, but better than the 17th. Let's hope Page didn't stop by the liqour store during those four days off.

Rock And Roll- Plant comes in sounding like he's 90. Solo- Pretty solid. Poor Plant. "B+".

Sick Again- Minor flub at 1:17. Solo- Nimble fingers, maybe the best solo of the three I've done so far. Outro solo- Pretty fluid first runs. Strains a little on the bends. Still a solid version, "A".

OTHAFA- Good intro. 2:15, Plant squeak. 2:26, flub. Solo- He struggles to get a good flow going, despite some decent runs. All the little parts sound ok, but they just don't fit together well. Good exit. The solo wasn't bad enough to really hurt it, "B+".

IMTOD- Guitar drops in the mix at 0:53. First solo- Hard to make out, but he seems to put down some good phrasing. 5:41, Bonham and Page start the next part on different beats. Second solo- He does the weird phrasing again here, not too impressive. 9:18, Bonham almost loses the beat. 9:47, Page and Bonham just aren't on the same page for this one. "B".

TSRTS- Good start with Plant sounding good on the verses. First solo- not the best articulation. Outro solo- Much better. "B+".

The Rain Song- Very smooth version with a good rock section. "A".

Kashmir- 2:14, Plant squeak. Absolutely no energy for this version. 3:35, Plant gets ahead of himself, Bonham tries to go another verse, but Page stays on track. 4:04, maybe the slowest fill I've ever heard by Bonzo. Plant belts out a good scream to lead back into the verse. 5:57, Bonham strangely hits the kick drum three times in a row. I suppose some might like this extremely slow tempo, it sounds like their batteries are dying to me. The mishaps and Plant's squeaky vocals keep this at a "B".

No Quarter- Jones is almost inaudible on the intro. Nitpicking Jones- Taking a while to get going. Nice melody at 7:08. 9:52, wonderful octave run. Not too bad, but it pales drastically in comparison to the 18th. Solo- Page fails to get the flow going he had on the 18th, also lacking articulation. He does some neat whammy bar bends at 19:12-19:18. Not a bad performance, but I personally thought it was very bland. "B+".

Tangerine- Guitar tuning is iffy. Solo- Sounds ok until the awkward ending where Page has to pause to switch back to the rhythm. Not too bad. "B+".

GTC- I enjoy Plantations, but he needs to pipe down on this beautiful intro. No real complaints, a solid version. "A".

That's The Way- Excellent version. "A".

Bron Y Aur Stomp- Good first half. Page's breakdown section isn't bad, but fails to leave an impression. "B+".

Trampled Underfoot- Good energy. Solo- Not bad at all, though the recording is a little murky. 7:59, weird sounding drum fill. "B+".

Moby Dick- Maybe it's just me, but this one sounds very spastic and uneven. 11:48, I do like this part though.

Dazed And Confused- 4:35, Damn, where'd that come from? 1969? First workout- Fair. Not incredibly articulate or well structured. 7:09, blown eardrums. Woodstock- Sounds pretty good. 9:37, this sounds really good. Page jams a little more before the bow solo. Bow section- Great sound quality through here and very spooky. Second workout- A straightforward beginning, nothing special. 21:55, decent run. 25:24, a little sloppy. Mars- Damn heavy with good accents from Plant. Page's articulation comes alive during the last flurry of notes and Plant scrreams his head off. A solid performance, but Page didn't really do anything above average. Kudos to Plant though. "A".

Stairway To Heaven- Good first half. Solo- Like the 18th, Page is trying to throw too much in at once instead of creating a good build up. The beginning almost sounds like the finale and the whole thing sounds kind of emotionless. He's playing pretty good though and I'm certainly not one to tell Jimmy Page how to craft his solos. "A".

WLL- Page gets some good funk licks in before the usual theremin section, which is pretty basic. "B".

Black Dog- Solid first half. Solo- Not bad, some straining on the bends. Decent for 1975. "A".

Final assessment- Page certainly wasn't bad for this one, but not quite on the level he was for the first two shows. The performances remind me of 6/26/77, where all the songs were performed adequately but lacked a certain amount of magic. Sick Again and a solid Black Dog are the standouts.

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Nitpicking Page 5/24/1975 (The Earl's Court Tapes Vol IV)

I'm using a remaster of the Watch Tower boot Zephead315 sent me (which sounds great). It has the same time stamps as the EC Tapes boot. 

Rock And Roll- Plant sounding pretty rough. Good energy though. Solo- I think "raunchy" is a good way to describe Page's lead playing that is sloppy in a good way. A little rough on the ending, but still a fairly good solo. "B+".

Sick Again- Good energetic vibe and Plant has warmed up quickly. First solo- Struggling pretty badly. 2:58, Jimmy's barely hanging on here. Outro solo- 4:25 starts a good, articulate run, which is immediately followed by some struggles. 4:55 goes off the track a little. Page brings this down to a "B".

OTHAFA- Cholera, sleeping sickness, Plant always has to cover for Jimmy lol. Perfect intro. 1:32, funny Plant yodel. 1:53, easy Robert. Solo- Phrasing is a little off at the start then finally tightens up some. 4:08, decent run. 4:55, turkey gobbling supreme. Not too bad, but probably the worst solo of the run so far. I really hate how Page always ends the song with that awkward finger slide."B".

IMTOD- Smokin' intro. 3:45, Page disappears. Reappears at 4:11. First solo- Excellent phrasing on this one with smooth transitions. Second solo- A little more basic, but not bad. Jimmy's rhythm work wasn't perfect, but still a great version. "A".

TSRTS- Good, speedy intro. The way it should be. First solo- Starts off good but loses some articulation on the fingerpicked part. A little smoother with a great finish on the pull offs. "B+".

The Rain Song- Everything sounding great on this, with the mello sitting just right in the mix. Rock section- "Now listen!" Very good emotion from Plant. Superb version, "A+".

Kashmir- Great first half. 6:30, flub. Good exit. "A".

No Quarter- 2:20, "The snow fulls hawrd". Nitpicking Jones- A little slow moving, but hauntingly beautiful. Solo- Page gets a good groove going. He's not doing anything mindblowing, but he's playing very solid all the way through. A good jam section from the three. 19:39, Page does an excellent descending run here that is drowned out by Rob's ad libs. An extremely rock solid version, though I wouldn't pit it against 5/18. "A".

Tangerine- Finally some bass coming through. Solo- Nailed it. The best so far. Perfect ending. "A+".

GTC- Audio switches to audience recording. 1:54, Plant tests his limit. Sounds like a 71 version. Very nice. "A".

That's The Way- Mandolin comes through nicely and Plant is lively, telling a story with the lyrics. Excellent mando on the outro with Plant nailing the last note. Plus a jab at Neil Young. "A+".

Bronyaur Stomp- Guitar is low in the mix. "There's no companion for a blue-eyed merle". Deducting points for lyrical flub. Good version overall. "A".

Trampled Underfoot- 2:58, Plant squeak. Solo- Jones is inaudible. Page comes in with some fiery riffs. He's keeping a good flow and not forcing anything. Plant throws in some nice Gallows Pole phrases. Very nice, "A".

Moby Dick- Not quite as dynamic as some others.

Dazed And Confused- First workout- Page doesn't get a great flow going and it sounds a little forced. Woodstock- Some good noodling before going into the main motif. 10:25, these wah riffs sound a little too erratic. Bow section- A little boring. Second workout- Phrasing is pretty straightforward. 20:44, not great articulation. 22:53, unique riff. 26:06, Page has used that descending run at least fifteen times now. Mars- Doesn't have much impact. 26:53, flub.  27:49, Page builds up to the climax then misses it. Page's finale noodling is decent. Not a terrible version, but arguably subpar. Plant sounds lazy and Bonham is half asleep. "B".

Stairway To Heaven- Good first half. Solo- Page starts out more subtly on this one instead of overdoing it. 8:27, nice run. 8:53, hiccup. A few hesitant licks, but a very good solo. 10:20, Plant yodel. A fairly good version, "B+".

WLL- Good energy. Page throws in some good funk riffs. Theremin- Plant comes alive with a good vocal duel as Jones shreds his bass. "Love Light" at the end. I suppose this is "A+" for an experimental track.

Black Dog- The tempo seems to be dragging some, which doesn't sound good for an encore. Solo- Pretty rough articulation though Page is playing with some fire and the phrasing is good. Unique ending with Bonzo being dramatic. "A".

Final assessment- Page's technicality has slowly declined as these shows have went on, but he's still better than most of 75. A perfect Rain Song, Solid Kashmir, haunting No Quarter, lively acoustic section, solid Trampled Underfoot, and textbook Stairway are the highlights. Not a bad show at all. Throw that Dazed out the window though.

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