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gibsonfan159

The Lemon Song (studio)

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(I couldn't find a previous topic about the song, if there is one then please move this)

Is there any evidence that this recording was purposely slowed for the studio release? Two things spark my suspicion; Not only does the studio version sound like it's been slowed, the live versions we're played much faster like the original Killing Floor. 

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The song was cut "live" in the studio, so I presume that the recording reflects the tempo chosen by the band. It sounds pretty close to the live versions from the second American tour  of 1969. But my ears could be deceiving me. LOL.

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I don't think it's slowed down. The band played a few songs faster live.

Very underrared song though, John Paul Jones is amazing on this.

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My feeling about Led Zeppelin II is that because it was recorded on the fly so-to-speak because they were constantly on the road, there wasn't much time for in-studio experimentation and trickery. Save for "Whole Lotta Love", the album has a basic raw live-in-the-studio feel. There isn't as much studio tricks and psychedelia as the first album had.

"The Lemon Song" to my ears does not sound manipulated, either slowed down or sped up.

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The band often were - or at least strove to be- heavier live than in-studio. At the risk of overgeneralizing, in the early years that live extra heaviness sometimes took the form of increased speed for a more intense, frenzied impact (Lemon Song/Killing Floor, and of course Communication Breakdown, come to mind); in the latter years that heaviness sometimes took the form of slowing things down, for a more menacing impact (some instances of In My Time of Dying and Sick Again come to mind). I would guess nerves might have played a part in it, and perhaps also the "young and hungry" early phase vs the "confident and swaggering" later phase.

At any rate, I would guess that "That's the Way" is the earliest example of full-on speed manipulation on a Zep album, yes?

Edited by tmtomh

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2 hours ago, tmtomh said:

The band often were - or at least strove to be- heavier live than in-studio. At the risk of overgeneralizing, in the early years that live extra heaviness sometimes took the form of increased speed for a more intense, frenzied impact (Lemon Song/Killing Floor, and of course Communication Breakdown, come to mind); in the latter years that heaviness sometimes took the form of slowing things down, for a more menacing impact (some instances of In My Time of Dying and Sick Again come to mind). I would guess nerves might have played a part in it, and perhaps also the "young and hungry" early phase vs the "confident and swaggering" later phase.

At any rate, I would guess that "That's the Way" is the earliest example of full-on speed manipulation on a Zep album, yes?

Kinda what I thought. I may just be looking at it backwards. Or, could be the boots I have of Killing Floor run a little fast. I was suspecting they also might've purposely slowed it down to avoid a lawsuit.

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1 hour ago, gibsonfan159 said:

Kinda what I thought. I may just be looking at it backwards. Or, could be the boots I have of Killing Floor run a little fast. I was suspecting they also might've purposely slowed it down to avoid a lawsuit.

That would not stop a lawsuit.

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One of my all-time favorites Zeppelin tracks. The guitar tones the interplay between Bonham and Jones the riffing between Page and Plant is fantastic. Zeppelin often played their studio songs slower than live.  In my opinion I much prefer this slower ballsier feel. Same goes with how many more times the original album version is slow and majestic and huge sounding. Zeppelin sped it up so much live it sounded more like an R&B romp. Anyway a couple of interesting things about the studio lemon song. It was recorded live but with a second guitar overdub. Interestingly enough the opening guitar that is doing the riff is the overdub. That rhythm guitar track in the left channel may have been done through the Vox 4120 that you see in the pictures at Olympic studios. With a distortion in front of it.  Or a Vox super beetle which he claims he used on zeppelin II that has a built in MRB distortion circuit. That’s where that nasty awesome main riff tone comes from.  Same amp as used for the studio Whole Lotta love riff. During the lead breaks in the right channel you hear the Les Paul through most likely the Marshall. Both of these amps you can see set up in the pictures from Olympic studio.  What Page did is track the song originally with the right channel guitar, the Les Paul through the Marshall. He overdubs the left channel guitar which is the main rhythm track and removed the riff from the right channel leaving only the lead breaks on the right channel. You can hear the faders being pulled in and out when this happens. I know this is  geeky stuff but I love hearing how he created that great interplay between the guitars in the left and the right channels.  Someone mentioned panning the balance left and right. Well try having it all to the left and listening to just that nasty overdubbed rhythm track it’s killer! 

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1 hour ago, Ed A said:

 In my opinion I much prefer this slower ballsier feel

Same here. I was kind of surprised the first time I heard the live versions. Reminded me more of Bo Diddley than anything.

Thanks for your insight!

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I think they got the form down for how they wanted to record the song during their second US Tour of 1969; see shows like the Fillmore West performances for some good examples, it's really close to how the actual studio version of the song was recorded.

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On 12/19/2018 at 2:24 PM, Ed A said:

One of my all-time favorites Zeppelin tracks. The guitar tones the interplay between Bonham and Jones the riffing between Page and Plant is fantastic. Zeppelin often played their studio songs slower than live.  In my opinion I much prefer this slower ballsier feel. Same goes with how many more times the original album version is slow and majestic and huge sounding. Zeppelin sped it up so much live it sounded more like an R&B romp. Anyway a couple of interesting things about the studio lemon song. It was recorded live but with a second guitar overdub. Interestingly enough the opening guitar that is doing the riff is the overdub. That rhythm guitar track in the left channel may have been done through the Vox 4120 that you see in the pictures at Olympic studios. With a distortion in front of it.  Or a Vox super beetle which he claims he used on zeppelin II that has a built in MRB distortion circuit. That’s where that nasty awesome main riff tone comes from.  Same amp as used for the studio Whole Lotta love riff. During the lead breaks in the right channel you hear the Les Paul through most likely the Marshall. Both of these amps you can see set up in the pictures from Olympic studio.  What Page did is track the song originally with the right channel guitar, the Les Paul through the Marshall. He overdubs the left channel guitar which is the main rhythm track and removed the riff from the right channel leaving only the lead breaks on the right channel. You can hear the faders being pulled in and out when this happens. I know this is  geeky stuff but I love hearing how he created that great interplay between the guitars in the left and the right channels.  Someone mentioned panning the balance left and right. Well try having it all to the left and listening to just that nasty overdubbed rhythm track it’s killer! 

Wasn’t this one of the tracks recorded in America? 

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On 12/16/2018 at 9:47 AM, gibsonfan159 said:

(I couldn't find a previous topic about the song, if there is one then please move this)

Is there any evidence that this recording was purposely slowed for the studio release? Two things spark my suspicion; Not only does the studio version sound like it's been slowed, the live versions we're played much faster like the original Killing Floor. 

When spirits play live there is no thought in the slightest of being recorded, lest it be intentional. That's the beauty of it all in live play without fear of bootlegs.

Spirits can play however - tight but loose.

Studio - you say it's been possibly slowed down.

On 12/18/2018 at 1:26 PM, gibsonfan159 said:

they also might've purposely slowed it down to avoid a lawsuit.

Are you daft? 'Tis a bit too infinitesimal. Look! They had already covered how many people in their first two albums? Sonny Boy Williamson already in Led Zeppelin II, Willie Dixon.

Do you wish to get into the first LP? Who cares about a lawsuit when you cannot get blood from a turnip at this point? It's brilliant. The sound wasn't lowered to avoid a lawsuit.

A lawsuit would have been welcomed in 1969. These spirits welcomed negative press. It was the press that catapulted them and gave them a platform to which people could witness for themselves who Led Zeppelin were.

And history was made. Never will another like them be.

Nevermore, Nevermore...

 

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On 12/18/2018 at 6:26 PM, gibsonfan159 said:

 purposely slowed it down to avoid a lawsuit.

Have the lawyers checked the tempo differences between Stairway and Taurus?

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3 hours ago, babysquid said:

Have the lawyers checked the tempo differences between Stairway and Taurus?

Just a suggestion, but they did change the name from Killing Floor for some strange reason. Not too crazy to think they changed the tempo to make it sound at least more original. The live versions did go a tad faster for whatever reason. 

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7 hours ago, gibsonfan159 said:

Just a suggestion, but they did change the name from Killing Floor for some strange reason. Not too crazy to think they changed the tempo to make it sound at least more original. The live versions did go a tad faster for whatever reason. 

Well Jimi Hendrix did his (live) take on Killing Floor already. And with the accusations from Jeff Beck on 'copying' You Shook Me, they must have thought that their heavy rendition would benefit from another title. The contrast between the slow parts and the uptempo chorus is much more pronounced. 

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