Led Zeppelin – Physical Graffiti
For the second time since its inception Record Player played host to the mighty Zeppelin. This time in the form of my favourite LP of theirs, Physical Graffiti. Back in my youth when I could only afford to be very selective in my music purchases I used to generally avoid buying stuff that my mates had and just tape their copies. I made an exception with this LP.
Not only was the music spellbinding, the sleeve itself was a true work of art. Featuring a modified photograph of two New York tenement buildings, 96 & 98 St Mark’s Place, the front depicting them in daytime and the rear at night. The windows are cut out which allows the owner to create their own sleeve design by choosing one of the 4 LP inserts to display. My preference was to show the album title.
Musically this is simply a tour de force. Released in April 1975, the first on their own Swan Song label, it captures the band at what many people consider to be their peak. Originally intended to be a single LP the band found themselves with too much good material to fit and went back to some of the unrecorded songs from previous sessions to add to the mix.
I’ve always had a soft spot for the first disc which tends to feature the more hard rock orientated tracks on the LP and have particular affection for In My Time of Dying and Kashmir. However, of the 15 tracks on offer the only one that doesn’t particularly float my boat is LP closer Sick Again. All in all one of the strongest selections of music ever to have been assembled for an LP. Stylistically they cover pretty much every base in their repertoire, from the hard rock of The Rover through the Funk edged Trampled Under Foot and acoustic Bron-Yr-Aur.
Again the evening was blessed with some new faces in the crowd and everyone seemed to really enjoy themselves. Even Geoff, who is definitely not a rock fan, said it had it’s moments and thought Zeppelin were better than the Beatles. That’s not the compliment you may think it is by the way as Geoff holds the Beatles in as much contempt as I do U2. The quiz was a bit of a washout for Gill and I and we failed to recognise several well known guitar riffs which I put down to my wine intake and her being distracted by photos of Percy’s trouser snake. Winners Keith, Christian and Vicky looked quite chuffed though.
Recommended Drink: Given the close association of the LP with Wales how about some lovely beer from those nice chaps at Tiny Rebel? Urban IPA should do nicely.