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Nitpicking Page 1973

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1 hour ago, Bonzo_fan said:

Well, he hardly ever soloed with the mellotron--aren't this, 6/3/73 LA & 7/29/73 NY the only times "Thank You" was played after his switch to the mellotron from the Hammond, thus the only times he had a mellotron solo?

According to Led Zeppelin Database the following shows have mellotron solos:

10/5/72 (Nagoya), 11/30/72 (Newcastle-upon-Tyne), 12/12/72 (Cardiff), 12/22/72 (London), 1/22/73 (Southhampton).   

It lists both the 6/3 and 7/29 versions of "Thank You" as having organ solos. I was just curious though. Being random. 

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20 hours ago, Daeron said:

According to Led Zeppelin Database the following shows have mellotron solos:

10/5/72 (Nagoya), 11/30/72 (Newcastle-upon-Tyne), 12/12/72 (Cardiff), 12/22/72 (London), 1/22/73 (Southhampton).   

It lists both the 6/3 and 7/29 versions of "Thank You" as having organ solos. I was just curious though. Being random. 

Ahh, interesting; thanks for checking--love that site!

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Nitpicking Page 6/2/1973 Kezar Stadium, San Francisco (Imperial Kezar)

An outdoor show during daytime, noted in history by the photo of Plant holding a dove. Very clear sounding audience/part soundboard (Matrix?) recording.

Rock And Roll- Robert starts off pretty solid for 73. Solo- Near flawless and very gritty. 6:08, Bonzo is also feeling good. "A".

Celebration Day- Good energetic start. 1:33, Page plays in the wrong key, which doesn't sound bad but very different. First solo- Good. Outro solo- Hesitant in places, but overall very solid picking. "B+".

Black Dog- A solid first half with Plant singing expressively. He gets an excellent scream in before the solo. Solo- Page is just slightly erratic, but his fingers are very nimble and he does some amazing runs. He also does some that seem to start and stop too quickly, like at 4:18. 4:48, hangs up. Sounds a little too spastic at times. "B+".

OTHAFA- Beautiful intro, decent verses. Solo- Good phrasing at the start. 3:34, the articulation on the low notes is a little sloppy. Not a great solo, but not bad either. Just as is. This version feels like they were in a hurry to get through it. "B".

MMH- Powerful intro. Plant is singing with conviction. Solo is played pretty solid with weird phrasing at the end. Not bad. "B+".

SIBLY- The intro is average for the time period. Not perfectly articulate and lacking some impact. Solo- Opening run is a little sloppy. 4:35, he's doing the thing where his fingers outrun his brain. 4:45-5:10, the final series of phrases sound excellent, with passionate bends. Slightly erratic solo overall. Plant gives his all, but his vocal impact is lacking and this version sounds rushed. Plant even states afterwards "That was ok". Maybe it doesn't fit the outdoor, daytime atmosphere. "B".

No Quarter- Solid first half. Solo- Page starts off with some good speedy, fluid runs, but it never really develops into anything special. The ending is somewhat abrupt. "B".

TSRTS- Good, steady paced intro. 0:30, minor flub. Solid verses. First solo- Page gets a good flow going on the start. He gets going a little fast on the second half and Bonham plays catch up. Outro solo- Very good, with a nice descending riff at 4:33. "A".

The Rain Song- Plant sounds good until he goes for high notes, then he sounds terrible. Good playing throughout. Rock section- Good, but again Plant's higher notes are a squeak-fest. 7:37, Page uses his tugboat effect. "B+".

Dazed And Confused- Excellent thunder from Bonzo on the intro. First workout- Some impressive runs by Page. 5:45, excellent groove that should've went longer. San Francisco- 7:24, I think Bonzo accidentally jumps ahead to the ending part, but pretty un-noticeable. Good bow section. Second workout- 17:17, Page launches into a solid "73" run. 18:27, blazing run but loses it at the end. 20:25, Bonzo misses the cue but survives. Mars- Devastatingly heavy. 25:26, a little confusion for the climax but they get on track quickly. A very dynamic performance, but also the very definition of "Tight but loose", with Bonham and Page having a hard time recognizing each other's cues. Still very good. "B+".

Stairway To Heaven- Excellent first half. Solo- Comes in a little lethargic, but solid noodling. Small tape cut at 6:47. 7:48, sloppy. Zzzzz. Very laid back solo. Minor chord flub at 19:18. "B+".

Moby Dick- Finally, some energy. Too bad it's cut on this version.

Heartbreaker- Monstrous intro and solid verses. Solo- Good amount of raunchiness and technique. As usual he gets his best runs in at the end. "B+".

WLL- Good energy on the start. The funk section really comes alive with some excellent riffing by Page. The theremin section is very trippy. Boogie Chillun- The soundboard really does justice for this as they get a good jam going. The return is excellent as Plant even gets in a good scream. "A".

Communication Breakdown- Heavy intro with Plant sounding good. Solo- Solid. "A".

The Ocean- Plant mentions a "Confrontation" backstage. Very gritty version with Page doing some nifty ad-libs. Accapellas sound good. Good doo-wop. "A+".

Final Assessment-  Not a bad performance overall by Zep standards, but there are a lot of loose ends. Bonham is very foot heavy and feeling experimental. Page is pretty solid but somewhat erratic in his leads. A complete soundboard would really make a better impression of this show as the encores tend to have more impact compared to the thin audience source.

Any requests for other 73 shows?

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thanks for the review

Seattle July 17, maybe ?  . Regarding Moby Dick, I assumed this  was complete on the SB source ? Have to check my Watchtower disc (I always skip this track😇

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I know I sent you this on Reddit already, but I'd like to see any of the following at some point:

1/15 Stoke

3/24 Offenburg

5/13 Mobile

6/3 Los Angeles

7/17 Seattle

7/21 Providence

7/23 Baltimore (if you can stomach the shitty sound :lol:)

No rush or anything though!

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3 hours ago, duckman said:

thanks for the review

Seattle July 17, maybe ?  . Regarding Moby Dick, I assumed this  was complete on the SB source ? Have to check my Watchtower disc (I always skip this track😇

I actually started reviewing 7/17 by accident while doing the 7/6 review when the music player skipped albums without me knowing. I did three songs before realizing Page suddenly got a hell of a lot better. So I guess it's next.

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I don’t know if you’re planning to do any more of these shows but Pittsburgh is on my list and I would love your take. The bootleg is a little rough but Jimmy sounds fantastic to me, as good as MSG if not better. If someone could put out a good sounding recording of this concert, they’d be doing god’s Work...my brother was at this concert but I was too young

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Nitpicking Page 7/17/1973 Seattle (Complete Seattle)

Not to be confused with the other 7/17 Seattle. My version is a soundboard up to Stairway, then a slightly muddy audience source.

Rock And Roll- Thundering drums and Plant doesn't sound too bad for 73. Unfortunately, almost no bass in the mix. Solo- Sloppy opening run, but gets it together by the third bar for a very raunchy solo. "B+".

Celebration Day- Lots of energy and attitude. 1:35, Page hits the wrong chord here just like at Kezar. Excellent first solo. The bass is a little more present towards the end. Outro solo- Page sounds a little sticky in places but otherwise knocks this out of the park with a good flow of lead phrasing. Quickly becoming my new favorite live song. "B+".

Black Dog- Plant sounds much better and he's singing this with true conviction. Guitar tone sounds a little thin and twangy. Jones' bass has a weird Steinberger tone to it. Solo- 4:29, Jones and Bonham get out of sync for two measures. Page isn't bad, but parts sound a little sticky and forced. "B".

OTHAFA- Excellent intro played at a good, speedy tempo. Solid verses. Solo- That opening released bend is perfection. 3:35-3:43, nice run. Ending runs on the lower octave sound a little sticky, but still pretty good. 5:28, Plant gets brave and goes high. Ending is simply beautiful. "A".

MMH- Plant again sounds lively, putting extra emotion into his performance. 2:17, good scream. 3:40, Page gets off track and has to sit out for two measures. "B+".

SIBLY- Intro is a little sticky and he doesn't really nail the phrasing like usual. Good opening verses with Page throwing in excellent ad-libs. Solo- 4:35, sticky. Page pushes a little too fast on some parts. 5:10-5:30, he sounds excellent once he chills out a bit here. Good solid finish. Not bad, but a "B" for 73 standards, though Plant did quite well.

No Quarter- Good first quarter. Second quarter- Jones sets the mood nicely and Bonham throws in some good fills. Solo- Page comes in sounding unsure of where to go. He noodles around well enough but never really gets going until 6:51. 7:38, nice fluid runs going up and down the scale. 8:28-8:54, fantastic phrasing through here. The wind-down gets very gloomy and surreal. Solid finale with Bonzo going off. Page's solo had me worried a little, but this is a solid version. "A".

TSRTS- Fiery intro with Jones' bass crowding the mix a little. The tempo drops dramatically for the verses. First solo- Hard to make out, but sounds fairly solid with good phrasing. Outro solo- Page lets his fingers fly. 4:41, minor bass flub. 5:00, this last series of phrases is great. A top notch "B+".

The Rain Song- Very mellow and intricate sounding. Good verses and emotion from Plant. Rock section- Blasts off like a rocket. 5:32, now that's a drum fill. Jones' organ gives this part a different feel compared to the 'Tron. Outro is wonderful though Plant's final note doesn't quite sound right. "A". (9:09, "It's so much fun to be back fishing and hanging about again")

Dazed And Confused- Moody intro with Plant accenting the vocals. First workout- Bonham, Jones, and Page lock into a rhythm that sounds like the worst nightmare you've ever had. 5:14-5:21, lordy I love that guitar phrase. 5:27, Page plays a cool unique rhythm and Jones matches it at the end. Page is on another level just for this section. San Fran- The lead in is a nice call and response between Page and the other two. 7:36-7:40, oh man. He's tapping into something great here. Plant comes in sounding fine, but I wish he'd held off for another couple bars. The wah section is perfect. Solid, eerie bow section. 14:58, awesome. Second workout- Here we go. 19:59, a wild flurry of pull-offs. 20:55, the worst run I've heard so far. 23:13, throwing in some excellent funk. 23:32, marvelous lead playing through here. I'm starting to run out of adjectives. Mars- An almost obscene amount of heaviness. The climax hits hard and it winds back down like you've just woken up from a bad dream. 31:02, stupendous riffing. Excellent flurry of riffs for the finale. This easily stands toe to toe with the Vienna version. "A+".

Stairway To Heaven- 0:40, 'Tron flub. 1:00, apparently it's acting up as he's reluctant to play it fully. Very solid verses with a nice steady tempo. Plant sings with decent conviction. Solo- Comes roaring in just like it should. Page keeps a good, passionate flow going on the beginning. Loses some flow on the softer part. 8:59, excellent drum fill. Fairly good solo, though it lost some impact on the last half. The climax sounds noticeably empty without the bass. 10:02, Plant delivers this verse perfectly. "B+".

Moby Dick- Not sure if it's the dullish sound or his playing, but this one seems to repeat itself too often without really taking off. A soundboard would probably make a better impression.

Heartbreaker- Another cool intro that staggers in like a drunk elephant. Very slow tempo. Solo- A little sloppy on the initial speedy run, but he gets a good gritty solo going and his tone is simply wicked. 5:00-5:20, very nice stretch here. 5:48, The bass overtakes the guitar in the mix, but Page sounds pretty solid . "A".

Whole Lotta Love- Good, groovy feel on the beginning. Page gets some awesome riffing in on the funk section with Jones also flexing. Atmospheric theremin section. Page hammers down a passionate solo. You can actually hear Page singing on the final chorus. Boogie Chillun- Starts great, but Page hangs up at 8:56. Plant's voice has smoothed out some. 10:05-10:24, world record bend! 11:00, bad articulation, but he gets on track for the rest of the jam. A good return for the finale and a hell of an ending. "B+" despite some flaws.

The Ocean- Plant is sounding a little rough now. Verses are solid but the tempo seems to drag a little. Stick with the Kezar version. "B".

Final assessment- This show gets a lot of praise, but I'm willing to meet it halfway. Nobody plays perfect here, but there are some monumental performances and parts where Page ascends to phrasing heaven. Highlights are a near perfect OTHAFA, a gloomy, surreal No Quarter, one of the best Dazed I've ever heard, and a solid Heartbreaker. I don't know if a soundboard exists of the encores but I'd love to hear it.

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^ I agree with you final assessment.  I tried to really pay close attention when I was listening to it on Tuesday, and I reached a similar conclusion: not spotless enough all the way through to be on par with, say June 3 L.A. and July 21 Providence for best show of the tour, but it's certainly in the upper-echelon of '73 shows, and has some tremendous peaks.  As I'm typing that, I realize that it has a lot in common with 6/23/77!

As far as Dazed from this show goes, it's always been one of my favourites as well.  During the outro, Bonham sort of teases the stop-start rhythm he does on March 21 in Hamburg, but never fully commits to it, instead basically doing dotted 8th notes on the snare.  I find what he does on this outro much harder to imitate than the full stop-start stuff he does in Hamburg.

P.S. Can you please do 7/21 Providence next?

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6 hours ago, Bonzo_fan said:

 

P.S. Can you please do 7/21 Providence next?

I'm halfway through Stoke, but I'll get it after that. Providence might be a tough listen for the casual fan though.

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On 7/23/2018 at 5:55 AM, gibsonfan159 said:

I'm halfway through Stoke, but I'll get it after that. Providence might be a tough listen for the casual fan though.

Ok, sweet!  I don't think it's any worse than Philly '75...

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Nitpicking Page 1/15/1973 Stoke, UK (Voodoo In The Gardens- Winston Remaster)

Let's jump way back to the UK tour for some contrast. This was supposedly an important show for Bonham because he had friends and family in the audience. A muffled, unbalanced soundboard that doesn't sound too bad. The Winston is the way to go as he managed to bring the guitar up without all the hiss.

Rock And Roll- Bonzo is way up in the mix and Page is way down. Plant is hanging on to what high range he has left. Solo- Phrasing is naturally frantic on the start, but he gets on track for a solid set of runs. The ending phrase is a little off. The energy is there for the song, but this mix does it no favors. "B+".

OTHAFA- Solid intro, played very delicately. Plant opens with the original verse, I'm not used to that. The way he sings the second line of each verse on this version is different than later on, and I honestly think it sounds better. Solo- Decent noodling on the start. 3:10, nimble fingers. Again at 3:18. Very fluid and articulate, though the phrasing could've been better. Plant is squeaky on the return but it almost accents the emotion of the song. 5:18, that walk down and pull-off sounds fantastic. I gotta go "A".

Black Dog- Plant sounds a little subdued as he struggles with his range limits. 1:49, wa-wa-wa-WAAAOW. Solo- Superb phrasing and bends. 4:18, that bend. One of the better solos I think I've heard. "A".

MMH-  Bonham is a one man army on this. Fast paced and very solid. "A".

SIBLY- Not a blazing intro like the later versions, but very good. Plant is holding back quite a bit on the verses. Solo- Nimble fingers, of course. His phrasing is less frantic tonight and the transitions are smooth. Excellent solo. Considering Plant's struggles for 73, "B+".

Dancing Days- 0:39, guitar notes sound off. 3:08-3:17, Page experiments a little. The ending is sudden, but this song really doesn't have one. Plant did well. "B+".

BronYaur Stomp- Sounding good, lots of enthusiasm from Plant. The guitar breakdown is a little too straightforward. Not too bad, "B+".

TSRTS (cut)- Good intro. Not sure if it's the tape, but the verses sound slowed down. First solo- 2:41, excellent run. 3:03, Bonzo and Page get out of sync for a couple of seconds. Outro solo (4:22)- I'm not exaggerating when I say this is the best outro solo for the song I've heard. Page nails the phrasing and Bonham matches the energy perfectly, even doing a unique refrain at 4:38. Shame this isn't complete. "B+" considering the tape cut and Plant's squeaks.

The Rain Song (cut)- Fades in on the mellotron interlude, which sounds like an old movie from the 30s. 2:20, awesome drum fill. Rock section (2:38)- Again, I'm not exaggerating when I say this might be the best rock section of the song I've heard. Cuts out early also. No rating, but take a listen just for the middle part.

Dazed And Confused- Bonham very restless on the first verses, almost destroying his kit right off the bat. First workout- Bonzo and Page have a duel, with Jones just trying to keep up. Some unique stuff going on. Bonzo plays right through the San Fran section and it's simply beautiful. Bad Plant yodel at 6:46. 7:27, he makes up for the yodel here with a killer vocal ad lib. Bow section is barely audible in places, but good. Second workout- 14:40, the high range is back!! 14:42, nope, gone again. Page doesn't really take off like I hoped but he gets a good flow going. Nothing really special for 73. 17:04, Aaand we're looking for that confounded bridge. Takes Page a second to jump in. Honestly one of the better Crunge jams I've heard, too bad Plant never joined in. 23:04-23:10, good noodling by Pagey. Mars, Bringer Of War- I don't think Bonzo was ready but he managed to jump in. 23:48, Bonham hitting the double bass? Whatever it was sounded awesome. Good climax. Bonham goes wild on the finale. I think this one started off impressively but slacked a little after the bow section, but that doesn't really take away from the performance overall. "B+".

Stairway To Heaven (Cut)- Good balanced sound on the verses with that twelve string sounding like a harpsichord. Bonham comes in with a unique beat, the bass drum imitating a heartbeat. 5:19, legends are made from drum fills like this. The organ accents the solo section perfectly. Solo- No words. He's buried in the mix a little, but his phrasing sounds rather unique for the first half, hanging out on the lower notes longer than usual. 7:55, JONES WTF ARE YOU DOING? Mesmerizing solo. Plant strains slightly on the climax vocals, but survives. How have I missed/skipped this version? The last verse is cut but I don't even care. "A".

WLL (Cut)- Comes in at the end of the initial verses. "Everybody Needs Somebody" doesn't work well here. A little high on the cheese scale. Excellent solo. Boogie Chillun- 9:46, listen to those riffs. Solo- For anyone who dares to say Page was always sloppy, let them listen to 10:49-11:30. Some of the most articulate playing from Page ever. Baby, I Don't Care- Solid, not great. Let's Have A Party- Plant gets a little squeaky and the tempo moves like a tranquilized bear. Another excellent solo. The return is excellent and Bonham lays down a final series of drum fills that probably knocked the crowd back ten feet. "A".

Final Assessment- An interesting period considering Plant hasn't fully transformed into "73" Plant yet. There's still some high register in his voice, but he can't actually use it, and you can hear it dwindling away. Page and Bonham are flexing their respective talents. Most of the highlights for this show are best represented in sections rather than entire songs. Black Dog solo, Bonham on MMH, Plant's enthusiasm on BronYaur Stomp, TSRTS outro, Rain Song rock section, first half of Dazed, and the Boogie Chillun solo. OTHAFA and Stairway are must listens for their uniqueness. A new favorite show for myself.

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great review, Gibsonfan...  Although the Stoke SB gets an unanimous thumbs up from the community, I find the UK 73 boards a bit hard to digest. If only they had the shattering clarity of the continental 73 boards 😅

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OTHAFA - Bonham is owning that supreme.

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4 hours ago, duckman said:

great review, Gibsonfan...  Although the Stoke SB gets an unanimous thumbs up from the community, I find the UK 73 boards a bit hard to digest. If only they had the shattering clarity of the continental 73 boards 😅

From a sound quality perspective, which are the best 73 continental soundboards? And while we’re at it, which particular boot is the definitive version? Cheers

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8 hours ago, Xolo1974 said:

From a sound quality perspective, which are the best 73 continental soundboards? And while we’re at it, which particular boot is the definitive version? Cheers

Unfortunately only four ( extremely)fragmented European board tapes appeared. One from Austria (Vienna) and three from Germany (Berlin, Essen and Hamburg). Berlin features only 22 odd minutes from  WLL  and the other two more or less document (50-60 minutes) a snapshot from the finale: the Dazed improvisation, Stairway and WLL (medley). Vienna also includes a great Heartbreaker encore.They all sound trebbly (Jonesy is pushed back, the rest is really in your face). Extremely different soundstage compared to the 73 UK boards or the summer US  jaunt. 

All four of them are ferocious, but IMHO Vienna and Hamburg have the edge. Most silver versions sound the same, so check out Black Beauty to pick your best bet.

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Nitpicking Page 6/3/1973 L.A. Forum (Wipe With A Rolling Stone-Winston Remaster)

Another show that gets a lot of praise, and I've actually never listened to this at all. Let's see what's going on in L.A. This was a rain-check show for one that was cancelled due to Jimmy smashing his finger. Winston, again, is the way to go. He balances out the lopsided audience recording and gets the bass up a little more in the mix. Slight bootleg ears required.

Rock And Roll- Good, stomping energy out of the gate. Plant sounds alright as well. Solo- A textbook solo with some unique notes on the ending. 4:24, are there two Plant's on stage? Sound quality makes it hard to judge, but this sounds like a clear cut "A+".

Celebration Day- High energy and raucous. Plant strains a little throughout, but not bad at all for 73. Outro solo- 2:50, he sounds sticky but may be intended. He abandons the blazing runs halfway through and does some funky chorded riffs. "B+".

Black Dog (Cut)- This three hit combo of 73 might be their greatest opening set. Solid verses. Solo- cut. No rating.

OTHAFA (Cut)- Cuts in after the solo. No rating.

MMH- Solid start and verses. Bonzo goes ape at 4:03. "B+".

SIBLY- Solid intro. 1:10-1:20, Page is taking no prisoners. Plant straining lightly, but not too bad. Solo- A little frantic and rough, but passionate with good phrasing. Reminds me of the L.A. 77 versions. "B+".

No Quarter (Bad recording)- Shame, sounds like Page really gets going.

TSRTS (Bad Recording)

The Rain Song- (Bad Recording)

Dazed And Confused- Textbook intro and verses. First workout- Solid noodling. 6:43, nice finger roll. San Fran is good, but the bow section has tape issues. Second Workout- 19:03-20:00, superb noodling with JPJ and Bonzo laying down excellent groundwork. Page gets a great flow going thoughout. Mars- Spot on. 24:58-25:10, these notes don't work well at all. Good climax and a decent finale. This was a very straightforward performance, but certainly a solid version. "B+".

Stairway To Heaven- Solid verses with Plant sounding good. Almost unnoticeable flub at 3:37. Solo- Page goes into shred mode and lets his fingers fly. Blindingly fast and articulate. Though I personally think the phrasing is lacking, it's quite possibly the most technically proficient I've heard it played. Plant comes back in with powerful vocals for the climax. A soundboard of this would make my day "A".

Moby Dick- So-so.

Heartbreaker- Nice, solid intro and verses. Solo- Page gets an aggressive flurry of notes going on the start-up, then launches into some decent runs. 6:20, not the most fluid Page. Good energy overall though. "B+".

WLL- Fast paced with a chaotic theremin section. Page copies the studio version verbatim on the solo. Plant's voice is sounding top notch now. "Going Down"- Page lays down some blistering lead playing throughout. Excellent. "I'm A Man" doesn't pan out as well. The short version of "The Hunter" sounds solid. As usual, "Boogie Chillun" showcases some excellent lead work from Page, but he doesn't get the flow going here that he usually does. Plant gets a very good scream in for the return. This version treads a thin line between being energetic and sounding rushed. "B+".

The Ocean- The thick guitar tone suits this well. Very solid verses. The doo-wop section sounds good but seems to end abruptly. Pretty good overall. "A".

Communication Breakdown- Sounds like a 1969 boot with Plant sounding confident. Solo- Fingers ablaze for some solid runs and a good finish. "A".

Thank You- Introduced by a wonderful organ solo. Excellent beginning verses. 5:43, either the mic cuts out or Plant forgets the lyrics. Solo- Page sits out the first measure to prepare himself, then launches into a solid solo that is evenly paced and isn't over done. I'm not sure he tops the Southampton solo, but it's certainly close. I think the fade-out is better though, with Plant giving some emotional shouts. "A".


Final Assessment- Despite the recording problems, this honestly sounds like a more confident Southampton performance and it's a shame it's not complete.  I've read several reviews and opinions saying this is the best show of 73 and I think Plant sounding great influences that opinion a great deal. It's hard to judge based on the adversely affected recording, but I certainly don't think it adds up on paper as anything too monumental. I realize it's a very solid show overall, but there are better versions of each song from other shows. But again, it's an overall solid show with Plant sounding great, featuring an extended set list. So you've gotta accept that it actually is kind of special. Highlights are a perfect Rock And Roll, solid Dazed, wild Stairway solo, and an energetic series of encores.

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This show has always been one of my favorites, and if it weren't for the awful tape warbling from No Quarter through The Rain Song, this would be my go to show for the 1973 US tour. That being said, I love the vibe here. The crowd is clearly psyched to see them, and the fact that this show was rescheduled and the tour is ending a day later makes it feel very special. Maybe it's not the most technically proficient show of the tour, but it's probably the most "fun" if that makes sense. A soundboard for the first two thirds of this show would be most welcome.

Have you by chance read Strider's brilliant and detailed account of this show? IMO, it should be required reading for Zeppelin fans. Best concert account I've ever read: 

 

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1 hour ago, ZepHead315 said:

Maybe it's not the most technically proficient show of the tour, but it's probably the most "fun" if that makes sense. 

It really reminded me of 6/21/77, where you could just tell they were feeding off the crowd.

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Nitpicking Page 3/24/1973 Offenburg (A Little Bit Warm- Eddie Edwards Remaster)

Another legendary show from the European leg. The main audience source is very good with a huge soundscape and the missing parts are filled in by a subpar source. Plant is a little low in the mix, and his vocal range is noticeably lower compared to the Stoke show.

Rock And Roll- Plant sounds ok for 73. Verses sound great. Solo- Almost an exact replica of the soundtrack version from four months later. Very solid. "A".

OTHAFA- Small flub at 0:04, and Page gets a little hesitant. Otherwise great intro. Plant opens with the original verse, but it's barely audible. 1:47, a nice pinch harmonic. Solo- Good noodling on the start. 3:05-3:14, excellent run. Unfortunately, he doesn't extend this and returns to the verses. Plant sounds rough on the return. Good ending. "B+".

Black Dog- Muscular riffs matched by a somewhat reserved Plant. Solo- Plant gets a good yell in on the launch. 73 Page at it's best example. Good fluidity, good phrasing, good articulation. There's a slight hang up at 4:51, but nothing too noticeable. "A".

MMH- 0:10, does he say "This is a felony"? Plant is lower in the mix now. Solid solo. Personally, this song only works with Plant's higher register, but it's a solid version nonetheless. "A".

SIBLY- Blazing intro played perfectly. Maybe the best I've heard from the "Intro" versions. 1:21, that SRV bend. Moody verses, with Plant still sounding reserved. Solo- Page teases with a series of false start runs, then shredding a longer one. 4:45, a unique phrase that sounds great. Ending phrases are phenomenal. One of the better solos I've heard and don't let Bonzo's powerhouse drumming go unnoticed. Plant sounds tired on the return, but maybe it suits the song. 6:57, shred mode. Had Plant's vocals been stronger this could've been the definitive version for 73. Still an "A+".

BronYaur Stomp- Now the guitar is low in the mix. Good energy and Plant sounds good. Breakdown- Page abandons the usual flat-picking section and teases "That's The Way". Plant seems to get confused on the last verses. "B".

TSRTS- I wasn't prepared for how fast this takes off. Reminds me of the 5/25 Earl's Court version. 1:14, Page nailing these riffs through here. Verses are good. First solo- Page opens up with a barrage of articulate notes and phrases. 3:12, listen to the man's fingers. Perfection. Second solo- This dude is on another level here. Maybe a coke induced level, but another level.  "A+". 

The Rain Song- Good start. Mellotron is treading that thin line of "Batteries dying in a walkman". I love JPJ to death, but I think the live version of this would've been better without the 'Tron. A good bottom layer of bass guitar would've sounded much better. Rock section- The sound starts fluctuating and kills the vibe, but sounds ok. "B+".

Dazed And Confused- The sound fluctuations continue on the first part, but it's still very listenable. Good, basic intro. First workout- Page lets loose with some almost rockabilly phrases (5:31-5:44), then jumps into more suited runs. Weird sounding chord at 6:22. San Fran- Page gets very experimental with this, throwing in a multitude of phrases that all sound good. Bow section is pretty straight-forward. Second workout- Second source kicks in while Page gets some solid runs in. He's fluid throughout though. 23:23, a mix up on the Mars section and Page follows Bonzo into the climax. Good wah riffs on the finale. "B+".

Stairway To Heaven- Pretty solid verses, but the echo-ish mix doesn't help it. The tempo also drags a bit too much. Solo- Very relaxed intro, but builds nicely. 8:24, that's...shred guitar? Definitely one of the most technical phrases I've heard Page play. Overall, the solo is solid and well phrased but doesn't hit that hard for some reason. 9:31, slight flub. "B+".

WLL- Good beginning verses. The funk section never really gets together and Page dives into the theremin. "Everybody Needs Somebody" sounds good and leads into the solo, which is played perfectly. "Boogie Chillun" comes in like a freight train. Page gets an excellent solo going but doesn't quite hit on the level of some other shows. "Baby I Don't Care" sounds very punk and is played perfectly. Let's Have A Party- Page does some top notch pedal-steel bends on a very raunchy solo. I Can't Quit You- 18:55, leaves the earth. Excellent soloing throughout, this is Page's real showcase song for bluesy leads. 22:43-23:31, take a seat child. 24:06, Page is feeling the groove. Some of the heaviest blues ever. Good return for the ending. A good "A" performance, but had some loose ends.

Heartbreaker- Excellent first verses though Plant is quite low in the mix. Solo- A very un-sloppy start as Page plays the acapella part smoothly. Some nostalgia as he brings in "Bouree". He gets a flawless set of runs going as the others join back in. Excellent solo. The return is solid and rounds this out to a top notch "A".

Final Assessment- A must listen show, although there is a lack of energy from the crowd. Highlights are a rock solid Rock And Roll, one of the best versions of SIBLY, a phenomenal TSRTS, and a very strong encore set of WLL and Heartbreaker. Plant sounds average and Page is nearly flawless throughout, just like most of these early 73 shows. A soundboard would be great.

Shows like this (and most of 1973) make me wonder how they performed like this every other night for months at a time. The burn-out factor had to be extremely high. 75 and 77 had longer sets, but there was a looseness about their live performances during those years. 1973 is when they were still playing like they had something to prove. The more I listen to this European leg the more I want Page to release a multitrack from it.

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