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Christopher Lees

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About Christopher Lees

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    Zep Head
  • Birthday 01/25/1974

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    Male
  • Location
    Massachusetts

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  1. I see, and this is perfectly understandable. Now I know your angle.
  2. Agreed. I haven't listened to Zurich or Fankfurt in many years (maybe 15) but I remember being pleasantly surprised at both of these shows. It had me thinking, if only for a moment, that Zeppelin wasn't too bad in 80 after all. I haven't heard all the shows from the 80 tour, but I was distinctly unimpressed with what I had heard so far, until Zurich and Frankfurt. I think their version of Money is great too. I will listen to these two soon enough, but actually, I just got done listening to July 5th for the first time ever and it was a great show, especially for 1980! Really strong performance, especially from Plant, but Page also. I noticed you can't bring yourself to give them an honest grading Botched intro, botched ending, Plant sounding rough, "I've heard worse" and then give them a "B" anyway? Or, you give them a grade sometimes like "An 'A' for 1980" and I know what you mean, but you're not being brutally honest! I know it's tough because I have this inner dialogue with myself all the time, which is why I get some chuckles out of this. If everything is an A or B (with the odd C+ thrown in) then the A's and B's lose their essence. It's like when everyone wins a trophy lols. We need to be honest about this and unafraid. We need to thinking critically and keep our biases in check, lest we award a B when it should be a C-. If we can agree that an A+ is something like, say, the WLL from Osaka 71 and an A+ solo from Jimmy (being clean and fast) is Heartbreaker from 9-14-71, then what we would consider an A- is still pretty close to perfection! If we backslide from there just a wee bit to a B+, it should still be totally awesome. See where I'm going with this? I guess what I'm getting at is an objective standard where WLL from Osaka 71 is graded on the same scale as NFBM from Zurich. Just my two cents and none too serious. All the same, I enjoy reading these concert descriptions with a focus on Page.
  3. It's hard to pick just one because it can change with my mood, but I would have to go for Osaka 71 or Blueberry Hill 70. There are some great shows in 75 and 77 but the problems with those shows is either Plant's lower range or Page's erratic playing. For instance, a very popular on is Eddie, but Plant's using his B voice, not his A+ voice (Honolulu 70'), and Page, while being in good form for 77' isn't as sharp as in his best shows from the early days. Another show I love is Nassau 75', but for the same reasons I guess I couldn't choose it as my favorite. I have a hard time understanding how people can choose shows from 75-80 as their all time favorites given Plant's harsh limitations and Jimmy's inability to play like he did in 71-73. One thing about the later shows though is that the set lists are big and varied. We get to hear some of the great songs from the later days.
  4. Amazing cover of Carouselambra by Randy Jackson (Zebra). He does this solo, singing and playing on a 12 string. Brilliant rendition!
  5. Where to find these? I need to hear the ITTOD guitar tracks! About the II tracks being sloppy, some may just be quick ideas he's getting down that he can work on later. Another thing about Page being sloppy on the albums, is that sloppiness doesn't really exist unless it ruins the song. If you can isolate a guitar solo and hear some funky noises, that's one thing. But if those noises are inaudible in the mix, then they are meaningless. It's like if a tree falls in the woods and there is no one there to hear it, does it make a sound? Something like that. The albums were good enough to become legendary in their own time and then to pass the test of time decades later, so although one may identify imperfections, it seems an overreach to label them sloppy. When I read the reviews of the concerts from 69 when Zeppelin was new, some reviews don't like Plant all that much, some do. Some mention Bonham and say things like he's loud but not particularly inventive (I know, go figure!), but all of them mention Jimmy Page and say that he is an extraordinarily fine guitarist, a virtuoso. They didn't say, "Meh, he's just okay". They didn't say he was "kinda sloppy". This idea of Page being sloppy came about in the 80s (perhaps in the late 70s when he played some bad shows) when everyone was obsessed with speed exercise playing (some call it shredding), which has very little to do with real music. Page was playing real music that also happened to be something of a controlled chaos. He was the author of a brand new way of making music. It was an original and new framework with which he could add his solos. He played solos with a producer's mindset, not a guitarists mindset, as he was big-picture oriented and no minutiae oriented. Those people who go on and on about Page being sloppy are swamped in minutiae and can't see the forest through the trees.
  6. In the early days, Jimmy was pretty stationary on stage, focusing on his playing. Then, starting in 73 and especially in 75-77, Jimmy and the rest of the band, started to move around a lot more. They wanted to up their stage presence. I think I read that in the Jimmy Page biography that came out about 10 years ago, if I'm not mistaken. It was excerpted from an interview. So that means more show boating, dropping the guitar down even lower, using your arms in a theatrical manner and focusing on movement and showmanship. When you do that, the playing suffers, but Jimmy wasn't hung up on the super-anal perfectionist critiques that would appear in the future. He was hung up entirely on the moment, delivering something exciting in the present, and that includes the visual aspect. Of course we can't explain away all of Jimmy's slop on this. He was also drunk, on hard drugs and without proper sleep. You can't play drunk. You can't play floating around on heroin. Put it all together and you get Page Slop in 75-80.
  7. Once I got over the shock of hearing how sloppy Jimmy played in 75 vs how laser sharp he was in 73 (Europe, NYC), and how Plant croaked like a frog and couldn't hit a note to save his life, I started to like 75. They reached some great peaks with NQ, Dazed and Stairway as well as some great improvs on Trampled and Sick Again. I think the 80 tour was pretty far below the 75 tour, but then again, it was a totally different kettle of fish too. The 80 tour had the songs cut down to size (Plant wanted that) and the 20 minute improvs were gone. That was probably a good idea. Just listen to the Stairway solo in Berlin, which was long and indulgent but also terrible in my opinion, and you can imagine that a whole concert like that would have been horrible. I remember when I got the Berlin boot back in high school (late 80s, early 90s). I had it in my hands all day at school and couldn't wait to get home to hear it. At this point, Jimmy could do no wrong. He was my hero. It was a hell of a thing to face the facts when listening to this for the first time. I just couldn't get over how uninspired he sounded. It was awful. I think the 80 tour stays all by itself in last place. Zeppelin had a lot of bad concerts from 75 onward. It's the truth.
  8. Fascinating insights and opinions on this song! For me, Four Sticks was always a so-so song sandwiched in between two great tunes, Misty and GTC. Fast forward 30 years and I have a greater appreciation for it. The vocals are awesome especially at the end. With good headphones on I get this image of Morroco or India or somewhere out there with these big hills or mountains, and the mysterious voice just echoing poignantly through the valley. I'm in a band and we cover this tune. It's a lot of fun to play and it sounds great live and loud. It's definitely a unique song, and while it may not be Zeppelin's best, it is still Zeppelin. We can't overlook these tunes and still understand Zeppelin as a whole. Fact is, this tune, Candy Store Rock, Carouselambra, Hot Dog and others are Zeppelin tunes and make up the reality that is Led Zeppelin. They liked these songs enough to put them on the albums! Also, Four Sticks has this sound of controlled chaos which is a nice contrast to the serene GTC. Zeppelin liked to arrange their songs according to contrast for dramatic effect, and it worked.
  9. Just more of the same from Plant. For 35+ years now he's had a stick up his ass about anything related to Zeppelin. And it doesn't really matter if he can "relate" to the lyrics anymore. His personal feelings don't matter because it's a song, with melody, harmony, structure and imagery. It's for the people's enjoyment. It's not supposed to be his little comfort doggie.
  10. Oh don't make me, don't make me, don't make me, don't make me, don't make me lose it!
  11. Hitting on the MOONSHINE, rocking in the grain. Oh don't make me, don't make me, don't make me, don't make me, don't make me lose it! Sing loud for the sunshine Pray hard for the rain.
  12. 1 - Black Mountain Side 2 - Moby Dick 3 - Hats Off to Roy Harper 4. Battle of Evermore HOTH - The Rain Song Physical - Sick Again Presence - Candy Store Rock ITTOD - Caraselambra Coda - Wearing and Tearing
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