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  1. Well, here goes nothing... Sue here, long time poster, first time reviewer. The show in question for my first review is Led Zeppelin's gargantuan and and explosive final show at their home-away-from-home, The Forum in Inglewood, California on Monday, June 27, 1977. A bit of background before I get straight into it. This was the second Led Zeppelin show I ever downloaded, the first being 1977/06/21. This was also my favourite show of the tour, and possibly overall back when my ears weren't such a discerning critic. I used to listen to this show moreso than any other, though with the passage of time, I've rarely gone back to it in the last few months, save for the occasional trip through the Noise Solo. Just randomly, I went back through it today, because I managed to find 4 hours to kill. About halfway through, I was re-experiencing so much that I had to tell somebody, and where better than a whole forum (no pun, I swear!) of people who love Led Zeppelin like I do! I've actually been meaning to post a review for some time too, but I couldn't decide on a show to do it with. Pehaps next I'll do Pontiac '77. Anywho, reviewing time! After a brief soundcheck typical of most Zeppelin shows, 'The Song Remains the Same' bursts out of the gate, albeit not all in one direction. Jimmy's a bit sticky fingered, as he will be for most of this show, but it does nothing to detract from the overall energy this night around. Bonzo's clearly feeling very experimental tonight, as nearly every song has many unusual drum fills, most better than others. While not at the same height of energy as the first night, it's still a very enjoyable version, especially with Jonesy leading the way. The 'The Rover/Sick Again' from this show is usually described as "constantly on the edge of falling apart" by some, but I feel this isn't totally true. While it is very loose, I find this to be one of my favourite versions of 'Sick Again', simply because of how unbelievably heavy it is. It seems to go on forever, much like most '77 iterations of this song, but I feel like this is one of the song's strongest qualities. After Robert says hello and jokes about the band falling over from playing, The band launches into the longest ever 'Nobody's Fault But Mine', with an excellent extended solo from Jimmy, though Robert's harmonica portion is a tad weak, and he doesn't even try to hold the final "Noooo" at the end. 'Over the Hills and Far Away' is a mixed bag for me this time 'round. I like how Jimmy plays the intro with a touch of restraint and sensitivity, something I feel most '75 and after versions were lacking. That's the good part. Now when I hear the solo, the extension makes me hope it's gonna be somthing like the one from 1975/03/27, long but good, unfortunately, the solo here is long, but okay. Jimmy seems to forget himself about halfway through, but somewhat makes up for it for the rest of the song. Again, no real effort from Robert. 'Since I've Been Loving You' isn't something I feel I can comment on too much when it comes to '77, because IMHO, they should've played 'Tea For One'. It just makes much more sense. But ranting aside, Jimmy does some pretty decent soloing here. Very dramatic. Next, 'No Quarter'. Ohhh boy, THIS 'No Quarter'.. Definitely my favourite version after 06/23. Jonesy's playing here, as per usual, is brilliant. Very dark too. I like how he takes a little more time on the electric piano before Jimmy segues him over the grand piano. Very somber, that is of course, until the boogie jam. An especially nice one tonight too. Love 'em or hate 'em, the boogie jams were always interesting, to say the least. Jimmy seems to have gotten himself in shape long enough to really pull of some excellent playing here. Bonzo keeps the rhythym excellently. This jam seems to have a real high-energy, old-fashioned, honky-tonk groovy feel going on here. People love to shit all over the jams, but just remember, No Quarter is a journey, and who ever said that journeys are all doom-and-gloom? Perhaps the people on said journey took a break and got some drinks, and continued their plight the next day. Anywho, now onto the big soloing part of the journey. Everyone's in excellent form here. Jimmy's quick-paced soloing is slathered all over Jonesy's playing like strawberry jam on a fresh piece of golden-brown toast, while Bonzo's the knife spreading that jam real nicely and evenly. I love the jam Jimmy gets into approx. 27 minutes in.The entire outro of the solo, and the return to the main piano riff is amazing. When Jones hits though high keys it never fails to hurt my ears, but my mind is so thoroughly blown at this point I don't care. I still find it amusing that Robert dropped the mic, ruining an otherwise near perfect version of this song. The outro is very good, a nice finish to the last truely epic version of this amazing piece of music. As the band sets up for 'Ten Years Gone', Robert makes a few amusing jabs at Jones about some strawberry tart (like how I foreshadowed that?). This version has some fairly sticky playing from Jimmy, but nothing so bad as to distract from the overall emotion that he's playing with, meanwhile Robert finally puts some real feeling into what he's singing. Now onto the acoustic set, which is definitely my favourite from this tour, and possibly overall. 'The Battle of Evermore' is generally very good here, though if you listen closely, Jimmy flubs pretty hard somewhere in the middle. 'Going to California' is beautiful, as well it should be, considering where it's being played. Robert seems to have finally started putting the effort here too. Now comes my favourite, the 'Just Can't Be Satisfied/Black Country Woman/Bron-Yr-Aur Stomp/Dancing Days' mashup. Excellent, from deep-south beginning to foot-stomping end. Jones' bass playing keeps my foot thumping every second of Jimmy's (finally) nimble-fingered strumming. I love the acoustic rendition of 'Dancing Days', it's played with so much feeling! It's a shame that it wasn't more fully fleshed-out this way. Jimmy's acapella soloing truely is serene in moments during 'Bron-Yr-Aur Stomp', just stunning! After Robert unfortunately makes the all-too accurate prediction that they'll never play Dancing Days again, Jimmy treats the crowd to a 12 minute rendition of 'White Summer/Black Mountain Side', which for the most part, is pretty good. Not sure what made him to decide to play a few licks of 'Kashmir' ahead of time though. Speaking of 'Kashmir', the version from this show is another mixed bag for me. Maybe it's just the version of this show I have, but this 'Kashmir' seems to fluctuate every so often between brilliance and laziness. It finishes up nice and tight though. After Robert makes what I assume is a tongue-in-cheek dedication to 'The good doctor', Jones guides the band into an incredibly groovy 'Trampled Under Foot'. It feels a tad short though, considering how extended everything else up to this point has been. Still a fine rendition nontheless. 'Over the Top' is also pretty short, not even 20 minutes, but that seems to be the norm in LA this year around. The drum solo starts off pretty weak, but the tympani portion is definitely worth the price of admission, as it usually is. And now onto my favourite part of the night, Jimmy's infamous 'Noise Solo'! This version is especially detested by most fans, moreso than usual due to it's extended (distended?) length. However, I love it. That's right. Love. It. The Noise Solo here is great to just get lost in thought to. I love the repeated playing of 'America' during the harmonizer portion, and how Jimmy really plays around the whole time. The theremin portion is very good too, very spacey, a sign of things to come in Seattle. The pickup section is extra squeaky, like he's intentionally flubbing, which I also like. The main event, the Violin Bow Solo itself, is also very spaced-out. The crescendo finale is very dramatic and creepy, which segues right into 'Achilles' Last Stand'. I'm not particularly fond of this version, I must say that I feel a slight trepidation in saying that because I never really know how to feel about this version. There are bits I like, but the fact that it sounds a bit weak compared to every other version from the LA run, even though it's played at the same speed, along with the unfortunately-timed tape cut puts me off of this version every time. 'Achilles' is also what I use to rate '77 shows, so that's probably why I hadn't given it a listen in quite some time. 'Stairway to Heaven' is pretty par for the course here, extra long solo aside. Not much to say here. Lastly, the encore. 'Whole Lotta Love' is played very heavy after Robert lists off the cast and crew. 'Rock and Roll' is also good, especially with that new outro they've been toting around since Landover. It's just too bad that they didn't do one more song, y'know? Oh well, beggars can't be choosers. After finally coming back to this show, I mostly can't remember why I ever left. 8/10 Well, that's my review, I hope you, the reader, enjoyed it! Feel free to leave any kind of feedback! I especially want to hear back from you, Strider, considering you were actually there! Thank you for taking the time to read this the whole way through!
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