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solar

What worked? What didn't?

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OK, more than a month and six audio versions later, I think I'm ready to weigh in on a few things after finally watching the show. Namely, which songs worked and which didn't.

I think it was about a 75/25 split with the new drop tunings (not counting how they'd played some of the others before live). Here's how I see it:

Worked:

Black Dog

Nobody's Fault But Mine

No Quarter

Dazed & Confused (although it was sloppy in parts)

Stairway to Heaven

Rock And Roll

Didn't work:

Good Times, Bad Times

Ramble On

TSRTS

Those three that didn't work...I just didn't like the way they felt contextually in a lower register, especially TSRTS. I thought that was probably the only song that I felt should have been excluded (it sounded way too lethargic compared to the original). I think GTBT and Ramble On could be improved but probably shouldn't be next to each other.

Then the good.

Black Dog had all the energy to send the band into the stratosphere after clearing out the sound kings.

NBFM was sin and salvation incarnate -- passionate and desperately clawing for redemption.

Stairway killed. It sounded like an entirely different song in a good way, almost like an epilogue to an epic tale that was the original.

D&C simply sounded sinister. No Quarter somehow got even spookier.

Then there's For Your Life. I think up until that point in the show, Jason Bonham was playing a little tentatively, perhaps a bit starry eyed and overwhelmed. But when it came time to play FYL, he simply began to shine and that was probably THE highlight of the show with its sheer power.

There still were spots where you could tell he was learning the difference between mimicing his father and improving with the others (namely the confusion in D&C), but Jr. survived and rose to the occasion. By Kashmir, the interplay was definitely there. No question.

IMTOD, Trampled Underfoot and Kashmir were excellent. SIBLY, to me, seemed a little amiss on the interplay between Jason and Page (such was the subtlety of Bonzo's impact on that song originally). Misty Mountain Hop sounded great, yet at the same time incredibly dated compared to the rest of the setlist. Page owned Whole Lotta Love again. And Plant sounded like he was ready to belt out Rock and Roll in its original register two hours later.

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OK, more than a month and six audio versions later, I think I'm ready to weigh in on a few things after finally watching the show. Namely, which songs worked and which didn't.

I think it was about a 75/25 split with the new drop tunings (not counting how they'd played some of the others before live). Here's how I see it:

Worked:

Black Dog

Nobody's Fault But Mine

No Quarter

Dazed & Confused (although it was sloppy in parts)

Stairway to Heaven

Rock And Roll

Didn't work:

Good Times, Bad Times

Ramble On

TSRTS

Those three that didn't work...I just didn't like the way they felt contextually in a lower register, especially TSRTS. I thought that was probably the only song that I felt should have been excluded (it sounded way too lethargic compared to the original). I think GTBT and Ramble On could be improved but probably shouldn't be next to each other.

Then the good.

Black Dog had all the energy to send the band into the stratosphere after clearing out the sound kings.

NBFM was sin and salvation incarnate -- passionate and desperately clawing for redemption.

Stairway killed. It sounded like an entirely different song in a good way, almost like an epilogue to an epic tale that was the original.

D&C simply sounded sinister. No Quarter somehow got even spookier.

Then there's For Your Life. I think up until that point in the show, Jason Bonham was playing a little tentatively, perhaps a bit starry eyed and overwhelmed. But when it came time to play FYL, he simply began to shine and that was probably THE highlight of the show with its sheer power.

There still were spots where you could tell he was learning the difference between mimicing his father and improving with the others (namely the confusion in D&C), but Jr. survived and rose to the occasion. By Kashmir, the interplay was definitely there. No question.

IMTOD, Trampled Underfoot and Kashmir were excellent. SIBLY, to me, seemed a little amiss on the interplay between Jason and Page (such was the subtlety of Bonzo's impact on that song originally). Misty Mountain Hop sounded great, yet at the same time incredibly dated compared to the rest of the setlist. Page owned Whole Lotta Love again. And Plant sounded like he was ready to belt out Rock and Roll in its original register two hours later.

Would agree with most of what you said . I liked GTBT but agree Ramble On could have come later in the show.or maybe not at all. I would have prefered I'm Gonna Crawl or I Can't Quit You instead of SIBLY. Your totally right about TSRTS. Not a big fan of Trampled or Misty. Would have dropped them. But that's a whole other debate. Stairway I'm still debating over. The rest of the show was KILLER ..For Your LIfe... NFBM... Dazed... IMTOD.. and No Quarter just blew me away.

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GTBT - I think it was the right song to start with (1st song off 1st album), and lyrically it has even more meaning now than it did then. "In the days of my youth I was told what it means to be a man / Now I've reached that age I've tried to do all those things the best I can".

Black Dog - interesting change on the vocal melody. Classic riffage.

IMTOD - epic.

FYL - the debut. Shows Page's ability to take a pretty simple riff but make it special with an unusual time.

Trampled - Classic keyboard intro, then when the rest of the band kicks in, you realise the VOLUME and power of Zep.

I like what you said about No Quarter. The transposed key (the went down a full stop yes?) made for a much darker feel and in hindsight you think maybe they should have done that back in the good old days.

SIBLY did not reach the same mark as it did in the 70s, but Jimmy has played it this way for 10 years so it wasn't necessarily because it was a bad night.

D&C - This song shows how far some contemporary bands/guitarists have to go if they want to reach the heights Zep did. The bow solo is still interesting, when it could be cliche or boring.

Stairway - they had to do it, but nothing special.

MMH - great groove

Kashmir - not many bands can play anything that has the balls that this song has.

Just my thoughts

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With an honest review man, for an arena it was a kick ass show yeah there wasnt a 8 min solo in Stairway but it was the ebst excecuted Stairway since the 70's man, and if i can still fucking stand at 60 let alone hold a guitar then ill put my two cents in but till then i cant i dont know how it is for them or if they wanted the songs to sound the way they did or if they wanted them to sound different. and for god sake man Sue em for trying something different.

i for one am glad that it wasnt all the same as they use to play it only for the fact is shows they are human and that it comes from their hearts and then through the instruments.

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Nice review. The only place my opinion differs is on No Quarter. I still prefer it in the original key. But that's me. I think it worked wonderfully on Dazed, making it even creepier. Loved it!

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GTBT - I think it was the right song to start with (1st song off 1st album), and lyrically it has even more meaning now than it did then. "In the days of my youth I was told what it means to be a man / Now I've reached that age I've tried to do all those things the best I can".

Black Dog - interesting change on the vocal melody. Classic riffage.

IMTOD - epic.

FYL - the debut. Shows Page's ability to take a pretty simple riff but make it special with an unusual time.

Trampled - Classic keyboard intro, then when the rest of the band kicks in, you realise the VOLUME and power of Zep.

I like what you said about No Quarter. The transposed key (the went down a full stop yes?) made for a much darker feel and in hindsight you think maybe they should have done that back in the good old days.

SIBLY did not reach the same mark as it did in the 70s, but Jimmy has played it this way for 10 years so it wasn't necessarily because it was a bad night.

D&C - This song shows how far some contemporary bands/guitarists have to go if they want to reach the heights Zep did. The bow solo is still interesting, when it could be cliche or boring.

Stairway - they had to do it, but nothing special.

MMH - great groove

Kashmir - not many bands can play anything that has the balls that this song has.

Just my thoughts

Another one that has to find a way to bash Stairway to Heaven. The song rules!

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ramble on "didnt work" simply because JPJ did not have enough mids on his bass sound and way too much low end on the PA subs-- you could barely make out the notes he was playing on the bass and its CRUCIAL in Ramble On cause the bass line is like the melody. You need to be able to hear every note, not jus feel it.

ALSO, you got Jason Bonham hitting the floor toms during the verse part --- which didnt help in hearing the bass guitar either and it took away from the light and shade aspect. Jason's toms were overloading too much low end sound thru the PA while the song is supposed to be very very soft and steady. It was almost annoying.

Change these two things and Ramble On would have been 10 times better.

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As a swan song, it worked.

What didn't work is the one night stand. Left everyone wanting more.

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ramble on "didnt work" simply because JPJ did not have enough mids on his bass sound and way too much low end on the PA subs-- you could barely make out the notes he was playing on the bass and its CRUCIAL in Ramble On cause the bass line is like the melody. You need to be able to hear every note, not jus feel it.

ALSO, you got Jason Bonham hitting the floor toms during the verse part --- which didnt help in hearing the bass guitar either and it took away from the light and shade aspect. Jason's toms were overloading too much low end sound thru the PA while the song is supposed to be very very soft and steady. It was almost annoying.

Change these two things and Ramble On would have been 10 times better.

Why Robert Plant contiues to sing Ramble On minus half the lyrics

(nows the time the time is now, going round the world gotta find my girl, been this way 10 years to the day, etc) is beyond me. This song showcases his lost abilities. Same with Black Dog IMHO.

FYL and IMTOD on the other hand sounded fresh and powerful. I think GTBT is getting some bad reviews due to the mix. The day after the show I dl'd an mp3 of GTBT and the sound was crystal clear and you could hear every note Jimmy played. This recording has not materialized in the torrent community, or at least not on the TD.

My final analysis: The O2 gig was quite good, but left so much room for improvement that it seems to cry out for a second chance. Cream came to the U.S and got worse. I think Zep would get better.

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Why Robert Plant contiues to sing Ramble On minus half the lyrics

(nows the time the time is now, going round the world gotta find my girl, been this way 10 years to the day, etc) is beyond me. This song showcases his lost abilities. Same with Black Dog IMHO.

I agree with that. It made sense to hold back in order to conserve his voice in the middle of the P/P tours, but sounds just lazy to do this in a one-off.

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ramble on "didnt work" simply because JPJ did not have enough mids on his bass sound and way too much low end on the PA subs-- you could barely make out the notes he was playing on the bass and its CRUCIAL in Ramble On cause the bass line is like the melody. You need to be able to hear every note, not jus feel it.

ALSO, you got Jason Bonham hitting the floor toms during the verse part --- which didnt help in hearing the bass guitar either and it took away from the light and shade aspect. Jason's toms were overloading too much low end sound thru the PA while the song is supposed to be very very soft and steady. It was almost annoying.

Change these two things and Ramble On would have been 10 times better.

This morning I listened to a bootleg of the 1995 Page-Plant show which I attended in Montreal, and it made me think of Ramble-On at the O2.

In 1995, they did Immigrant intro into Wanton Song, straight into Bring-it-On Home, and Ramble-On, followed by Thank You.

I felt it worked much better back then, because the beggining was so powerful that even that even Ramble-On's mild start didn't break the level of energy.

I don't think Good-Times Bad-Times was a proper opener.

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Stairway killed. It sounded like an entirely different song in a good way, almost like an epilogue to an epic tale that was the original.

I agree. I thought I was going to hear the same exact song I've been hearing for years when I checked YouTube, but was pleasantly surprised.

Edited by Trashbag

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The only songs I found disappointing were...

Ramble On - Maybe it was just the placement of the song being so close to the start or something. But really, I just MISSED the acoustic riff.

Black Dog - Hated what Plant did with this song.

Misty Mountain Hop - Page just CAN'T play this one the way he used to. They shouldn't have played this for the same reason they'll never play The Ocean again.

Edited by Xia

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HEY FOLKS CHILL OUT , WAS AT EARLS COURT IN 74/75 AND AT O2 THE SHOW REMAINS THE SAME , WHATEVER YOU HEAR ON VINYL OR CD IS GOING TO BE DIFFERENT FROM A LIVE VERSION , JUST GLAD TO SEE THE BOYS BACK ON STAGE -PEACE AND LOVE TO YOU ALL AND BRING BACK THE 70,S FLOWER POWER AND ALL , WE HAD THE CHANCE TO CHANGE THIS MIXED UP WORLD .

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HEY FOLKS CHILL OUT , WAS AT EARLS COURT IN 74/75 AND AT O2 THE SHOW REMAINS THE SAME , WHATEVER YOU HEAR ON VINYL OR CD IS GOING TO BE DIFFERENT FROM A LIVE VERSION , JUST GLAD TO SEE THE BOYS BACK ON STAGE -PEACE AND LOVE TO YOU ALL AND BRING BACK THE 70,S FLOWER POWER AND ALL , WE HAD THE CHANCE TO CHANGE THIS MIXED UP WORLD .

B)

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Another one that has to find a way to bash Stairway to Heaven. The song rules!

I don't think I bashed it at all. I never said it was bad, I just don't think it was anything special. They have a lot of great songs and this is just one of them.

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Didn't work:

Good Times, Bad Times

Ramble On

TSRTS

Those three that didn't work...I just didn't like the way they felt contextually in a lower register, especially TSRTS. I thought that was probably the only song that I felt should have been excluded (it sounded way too lethargic compared to the original). I think GTBT and Ramble On could be improved but probably shouldn't be next to each other.

I'm with you.

Overall I love what I heard, but these ones should be in the original key IMO

Good Times Bad Times - I think it's a good opener and the energy and excitement of the show opening carries it through in a way. I don't think it sounded bad by any means. I just don't understand why they chose to downtune this one. Those E chords that open the song are so familiar, change it to D and you change the song. The thing that perplexes me about this choice is that it's not a hard song to sing. It shouldn't be anyway. Robert sings WLL pretty much perfectly and in the original key, this song is MUCH easier. Not very high at all. In fact, on the second verse it sounds to me like he was struggling more to sing it that LOW. Weird. Still...the energy of it makes it work.

Ramble On - Again, I don't understand why it was downtuned. Robert sings this all the time with Strange Sensation in the original key and it sounds just fine. This is one of those songs, I think, that if you change the key it sounds like a different songs. For some reason when you take the main chord progression of the song and put it in D instead of E, it doesn't sound like Ramble On anymore. Until the vocals came in this sounded unrecognizable to me.

The Song Remains The Same - This was probably the biggest disappointment for me. It's one of my favorites and was always my dream choice for an opener at a reunion show. But now I'd think twice about even including it. Maybe it was different in person, but on the bootleg you're right, "lethargic" is the right word. It seems like changing the key on this one took all the life out of it. Something like IMTOD or NFBM aren't hurt by being lowered, in kinda adds to the heaviness. But this one is more about spark and excitement and it kinda just sounds...I dunno...less sparkly and exciting.

One other quick gripe, while I'm in negative mode :D Too much wah on Dazed! I think anyway...I know the wah is a big part of that song, but he didn't used to use it through the whole song. There was the riff without the wah, parts of the bow solo without the wah, parts of the middle solo without the wah...I think at the 02 Jimmy used the wah through the whole song.

Anyway...

I still loved it.

Really, I did.

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OH gawd !!

Another person who can't stand to see critical posts about the band or their performance !

It's called 'getting real'....not in some lala land where everything is beautiful......

:rolleyes:

Some expect uninterrupted hero worship. We are not pulling our idols of high pedestals, we are having critical discussions. I can't feed my head with idol worship.

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HEY FOLKS CHILL OUT , WAS AT EARLS COURT IN 74/75 AND AT O2 THE SHOW REMAINS THE SAME , WHATEVER YOU HEAR ON VINYL OR CD IS GOING TO BE DIFFERENT FROM A LIVE VERSION , JUST GLAD TO SEE THE BOYS BACK ON STAGE -PEACE AND LOVE TO YOU ALL AND BRING BACK THE 70,S FLOWER POWER AND ALL , WE HAD THE CHANCE TO CHANGE THIS MIXED UP WORLD .

You mean the five nights at Earl's Court (5-17, 5-18, 5-23, 5-24 and 5-25) in 1975?

Yeah, I know all about them. I have all five shows. So yeah, I know they sound different live. As did Train Kept A Rollin in 1968-69 concerts from the version in 1980.

And don't get me started on the '60s hippie thing. That's a different topic for a different thread. This is, as someone else put, a critical discussion of elements within the O2 concert.

Edited by solar

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I thought the set was great overall...

SIBLY didn't project the desperate intensity it should have - it had a lounge-y complacency. The Page/Plant reunion gave a better treatment to this one.

Dazed was great - although it went off the rails at times. Fantastic to hear Page playing with an unstoppable wall of gorgeous distortion and feedback-hell-howl instead of the rather thin and contained sound he favored in latter Zep.

The studio version of No Quarter was was treated with varispeed in the mix, so the whole step sounded natural to my ears.

TSRTS missed the elder Bonham, although I think that Jason could make good on this if he's given another crack at it perhaps taking a cue from the glorious overplaying evident on the 77 Forum boots. Also, I think the studio version might have had some varispeed in the opposite direction from NQ, adding to its slightly lumbering quality here.

I actually liked Ramble On - or maybe it was just Robert Plant spiking the microphone stand! It seemed like a turning point. GTBT seemed a little bit like a band on autopilot, it was too spot-on (like a tribute band!) Ramble On, seemed to loosen things up a bit..

The rest of the set was pure bliss as far as I'm concerned.

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Bottom line--there were problems, here and there. It wasn't a perfect performance, and I don't think Zeppelin has ever had one of those (thank goodness, because then they would just sound like muzak). But it was a HELL of a lot more than "quite good."

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Bottom line--there were problems, here and there. It wasn't a perfect performance, and I don't think Zeppelin has ever had one of those (thank goodness, because then they would just sound like muzak). But it was a HELL of a lot more than "quite good."

I say "quite good" because it wasn't as good as most of the Page Plant shows I saw. If it fails as a description it is because I'm struggling to describe degrees of excellence.

o.k,pretty good,quite good,ruffle in my petticoat good, etc.

I don't think it would take LZ as long as it took P/P to sound wire tight. The improvement between Unledded and 1995 World Tour was dramatic.

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any and all inprovs to thier songs either on the fly or planned sounded awsome. Of course theres were sound problems and mis cues, but cmon they never played their songs the same way twice, i didnt expect any less from them at the O2... Its just how Zeppelin is!

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