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John M

Which LZ Song Made the Biggest First Impression on You?

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For me it was Bring it on Home. 

II was the first Zeppelin album I heard and I was 12 at the time. Every song on the album made a big impression on me, but I can recall clearly the overwhelming impression made by Bring it on Home.

The intro seemed so dark, so forbidding, so mysterious and ancient to my young mind.  Plant did not sound like Plant, and there was just a bass and harmonica.  No drums or guitar, for what back then seemed like a long time.  There was so much space in the recording- the harmonica and the bass had such a “lonesome” and distant sound.  To add to the sense of foreboding, a friend told me that the line “watch this train going down the tracks” was really about watching a needle make tracks in your arm from shooting heroin.  That freaked me out at age 12.  To that point I had never heard an old blues record so I had no context was what they were doing in the introduction.

Then that compact yet unfolding guitar riff comes screaming in and gets double tracked.   The drums and bass blast off.  It was like the dark veil had been ripped wide open and the song had come to life in an instant, out of a dark, scary past.  To me it was the coolest guitar riff on the whole album.  Plant was reaching for the sky, and that second funky guitar riff behind the vocals – the whole effect was electrifying.  Then the ending took us back to the beginning with that dark, lonesome sound.  The harmonica is perfect, and that ending high note fits so well.  

Many other Zeppelin songs have had overwhelming first impressions on me, but then I was older and had heard a lot of Zeppelin, so the impact was slightly less.  I can’t imagine if Physical Graffiti was the first time I heard Zeppelin.   Especially In My Time of Dying. 

What Zeppelin song had the biggest initial impression on you and why?

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Posted (edited)

Immigrant Song.

Early 70's Australian AM Radio was littered with Tom Jones,Dusty Springfield,The Beatles etc. and then on a sunny Saturday morning that song is played.I was 9-10 years old and Planty's wailing consumed me causing my family's voices to become faint even though the radio was set at lowish volume.Then the beat appeared,I'd heard nothing like it,not on radio which I listened to a lot nor like anything in my Dad's,brother's or sister's record collections.

I don't think the DJ announced the band's name so it wasn't until a few years later that I learned who I'd heard that day and the everlasting light went on 💡

I nearly forgot,this song was standard AM Radio fare back in the day.If you close your eyes you can visualise all of the animals:

 

Edited by Ross62
To add a nice old song :(

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Posted (edited)

I was 15 and working as a floor sweeper at a clothing store, it was after closing time when the manager put Black Dog (didn’t know it at the time or about Zeppelin) over the store’s intercom ceiling speakers full blast and the weird intro starts and catches my attention, and BAM! I was transfixed, “What the hell is that?”  I stood there with a huge broom in my hand staring at the 50 foot ceiling wondering who or what this guy was talking about, and those breaks, start, then stop, and those lyrics were hypnotizing! As I walked out of the store around 10:30 at night I asked the manager who that band was . . . The next day I went to the record store looking for an album by a guy named Led Zeppelin, that’s was in June 1987. I saw the cover and thought what king of band puts a guy with sticks on his back, no title, the song I heard the previous day, Black Dog didn’t even have the words “Black Dog” in it, I thought this band is like no other I was used to, and then I went home and ran through the entire album, and every single song was like a revelation, Plants voice in battle of evermore was other worldly, I remember thinking Every song is outstanding, I was used to albums/bands where one or two songs at on their album at the most were good, but the ENTIRE ALBUM?! . . . I told my close friends about this like I discovered a portal to another world, and I was the only one who knew about it! There began my obsession with Led Zeppelin. 

Edited by Tainted cheese
Grammar errors

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Travelling Riverside Blues, without a doubt. I found an old VHS my aunt's boyfriend had left behind that had about three hours of MTV recorded from around 1990, or whenever their boxset had been released with that promotional vid. I was addicted to them right then. I remember holding a tennis racket and trying to mimic that leg kick thing Jimmy does from the footage of TSRTS.

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Posted (edited)

Whole lotta Love (Live version). This was my introduction to Led Zeppelin soon after my introduction to pot. It completely changed me. I was mainstream classic rock/soft rock radio raised. Mum had great taste, but nothing outside of mainstream. But really good music (I think). She used to play LP's at high volume like......

Hot August Night (I still love that)
Johnny Cash
Boz Scaggs
Wings
Carly Simon
Roy Orbison
Michael Jackson

Stuff like that. Pure mainstream. Radio also served up nice rock like ACDC, Van Halen, and typical mainstream rock.

So I had never heard of a song that ran more than a few minutes. Driving around my mates Panel Van (Holden WB with a modest 253 small block) he played it while i was immensely stoned. I just couldn't believe it. Such a great song. And how long it went for! And the interlude and all the changes! WHAAAAAAAT?!?!?!?!?!

He followed that up with In My Time of Dying.

I was hook line and sinker an absolutely mad Zeppelin fan from that first moment. It has only grown more strong, but from the first, it really was life changing (as corny as that might sound). For YEARS I listened to stuff like SIBLY from TSRTS and felt like I could understand exactly what Jimmy Page was conveying through his guitar - that language of emotion that was so detailed and textured - like it was a secret language I fully understood somehow. It felt like that for YEARS. There was never anything else musically for me that came anywhere near it.

I then had the absolute pleasure of discovering their catalogue. And only decades later, bootlegs. Oh my God, the bootlegs..... I couldn't have imagined back then how much more I'd get to enjoy. And to think the 50th means new releases. It is a great time to be alive! :yes2:

Edited by rm2551

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Think it might of been Black Dog for me too. Had never heard distortion or a time warp of a song like that before. The timing is so odd. Also the solo is one of a kind the tone of it is pure pure Page.

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October 1969: 14 years old, new LZ II LP on the Garrard turntable, Koss over-the-ears headphones on ... and the opening notes to "Heartbreaker" invade my "virgin" ears.

I had NEVER heard ANYTHING like that before, in my life ! ! !

WLL sealed the deal.

 

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I was born in 1974 and was blessed to have a dad that LOVED rock music. My earliest memories of music were The Who, Jimi Hendrix and Led Zeppelin. He was also a fan of Elton John, Blondie and The Cars. He used to set me up at this high table we had in the living room so I could "play" the piano along with Elton on "Benny & the Jets" and to get us revved up to clean the house on Saturday mornings, he'd blast Jimi's "Gypsy Eyes". To this day, hearing that opening drum kick makes me look for a broom!

But, on to Zep... one of my earliest memories was Stairway... for a long time, it was one of my least favorite Zep songs because my dad would play it over and over and over again and I thought it was so sad and melancholy. I've since come to appreciate it! 

Immigrant Song was another early Zep memory and I loved it! 

As far as first impressions go, I think Achilles Last Stand was the first song that I "discovered" on my own that really blew me away. I was in high school and remember playing the tape over and over and over again. 

 

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Posted (edited)

I got into Zep in 1978. I already had all of their albums by the time ITTOD came out, and while it's not my favorite album of theirs, it was the first one they released after they became my favorite band. I still remember buying it the day it came out and being amazed and perplexed by the intro to "In The Evening". What the hell was making that sound? Hearing that for the first time is still one of my favorite musical memories.

Edited by SteveZ98
Spelling

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Posted (edited)

I gave this one a lot of thought and actually it was Black Dog that got my attention with the opening guitar riff and vocals with no music behind them. I remember first hearing Black Dog on the car FM radio. 

Ramble On was the other LZ song they were playing on the radio at that time. 1990-1991 classic rock radio. I don't really remember hearing them at all in the 1980s.

Although Black Dog was an impressive rarity on the radio at the time, I didn't actually know who Led Zeppelin was until the mid-1990s.

Edited by Zepfan2001

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Posted (edited)

the song remains the same, for me. when i first heard led zep, it was kashmir, and i wasn't all that impressed. but then i heard tsrts. to this day haven't heard anything like it. an underrated classic imo.

Edited by thatguynamedjosh247

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On 5/15/2018 at 12:11 PM, TheStairwayRemainsTheSame said:

Think it might of been Black Dog for me too. Had never heard distortion or a time warp of a song like that before. The timing is so odd. Also the solo is one of a kind the tone of it is pure pure Page.

that's a great one too!

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I grew up listening to Poison, Warrant, Motley Crue, L.A. Guns, and Guns N' Roses, and was just exploring alternative/grunge, when I was at a party one weekend my buddy put on Led Zeppelin IV after most people left for the downtown club scene. He blasted Rock And Roll... and it blew my mind. It was so different to what I'd been listening too and I have been hooked every since.

 

 

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