Average: 4.6 (16 votes)

April 2, 1970

Charleston, WV US

Civic Center (Charleston)

Setlist:

includes: We're Gonna Groove, Dazed and Confused, Heartbreaker, Bring It On Home, White Summer / Black Mountainside, Since I've Been Loving You, Organ solo / Thank You, What Is and What Should Never Be, Moby Dick, Whole Lotta Love.

Notes:

Charleston newspaper Review: Led Zeppelin brought the frustrated Charleston rock community sweet release at the Civic Center Thursday night in a brilliant, bombastic contemporary blues recital.

Everything came together. The five thousand freaks were hungry. The capricious sound system — bolstered by imported British components — bore up nobly. And Led Zeppelin took full advantage of an extended program to fully elaborate on their varied, blues-based repertoire.

ZEPPELIN'S blues are guyed to Jimmy Page, fragile, virtuoso lead guitarist. Page doesn't deal in phony frills and cheap thrills. He is one of the world's leading guitarists, regardless of fie!d. Sitting alone on the Civic Center stage, he played blues, the classics, jazz and then jacked up the voltage and played his own pet product, progressive blues, the Page solo was the high point of an extraordinary performance.

Drummer John Bonham also triumphed in a solo, demonstrating a tenacious capacity to muster and sustain high-density sound at high volume. He drummed for 20 minutes, paying respects along the way to jazz deans old and new, and ended it flailing the skin with his flesh.

ZEPPELIN IS NOT thin on material. They dip liberally into their two millionseller albums and have been previewing — on this their fifth U.S. tour — a sure hit from "Led Zeppelin III," a blues called "Since I've Been Loving You." Their third album will be released in June, after which the group will return to the U.S. for appearances at several of the summer rock festivals.

It is apparent that Zeppelin lead singer Robert Plant deserves his growing reputation as the most sexually exciting personality in rock. But he deserves more. Plant is more musician than he is pretty goldilocks rock and roll star. He has the guts to get into a blues like "Bring It on Home" and the range and musical sense to do something with it.

Additionally, there is the Robert Plant howl. It starts in the airless womb of an electron tube, lodges itself in the main  columns of the building, is conducted to bedrock and is now entombed in eternal torment in the hoiwjycombed interior of the Appalachain range. (Ray Brack)

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Was It Fantastic or Medicore? Charleston Gazette Apr 18, 1970

Charleston Gazette

April 18, 1970

Readers Review Show

Led Zeppelin: Was It Fantastic or Mediocre? Members of the rock group quiet

Public opinion on the April 2 concert of Led Zeppelin at the Civic Center remains quite
varied. Some rock freaks feel the show was fantastic while others thought it was mediocre.It is true that at times the group was below par, but at other moments they shined.

Jimmy Page established himself as one of rock's better guitarists, although at times he made a number of inexcusable mistakes as well as dragging "White Summer" into the ground.

Vocalist Robert Plant, although not up to par with his on record performances, was still quite good as he and Page traded licks.

Bassist John Paul Jones performed heavy and steady throughout except when he began
"Whole Lotta Love" out of key.

Drummer John Bonham was the only member who performed better than on record. His dynamic solo was the high point of the evening without question. Bonham is undoubtedly the driving force behind the Zeppelin and possibly rock's best percussionist, if not the best.
Bonham is the first drummer we've seen in the past three years who did not copy Ginger Baker, a feat for which he should be given a Grammy Award.

If you forget the facts that the group started late and quit early, performed below par, extended each number to take up time: that their balance was lousy (especially on Page's guitar); that their special effects were terrible—then we can all feel it was the best rock concert even given in Charleston. Particularly since very few rock concerts are ever given in Charleston except for heavy (?) groups such as the Cufflinks and Grassroots.