Average: 4.8 (24 votes)

April 11, 1970

St. Louis, MO US

Kiel Auditorium

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, How Many More Times, Whole Lotta Love.

Notes:

Press Review: Kiel Crowd Cheers British Rock Group

Full of sound and fury, Led Zeppelin played long and hard Saturday night and drew repeated standing ovations from a crowd of about 9,000 at Kiel Convention Hall.

The four-man British rock group played for more than two hours. Usually, a top-billed group spends a maximum of one hour on stage and leaves the rest of the time to secondary groups.

Led Zeppelin is dominated by the technical proficiency of Jimmy Page on guitar and the screaming vocals of Robert Plant. Most of their performance was concerned with individual exhibition rather than music.

Although there are flashes of fire that few other groups can duplicate, such as the heavy blues that had the crowd gyrating in front of the stage at the end, a Led Zeppelin concert overall is about as interesting musically as a long playing record of train whistles.

Much of their music goes in the direction of egoistic excess that makes so much of contemporary jazz essentially boring music. At one point in the concert, they even resorted to that hoary jazz trick of leaving the drummer onstage alone for a 15-minute solo.

The things Page can do with a guitar are astounding. He wrenches sound from the strings, picks up a bow and pulls incredible shriekings from them, drops the bow and still makes the guitar sound like a violin.
But his music like that that of the rest of the group, is a series of crescendos with no build-up, no sense of space. There is a long, creeping explosion, then a regrouping and another explosion. One longs for a BB King or an Eric Clapton to break through the mass of noise and play some music.

It was interesting to watch members of the audience try to dance to the Led Zeppelin.  Strong surging blues beat would come in, and there would be a delighted wiggling and scraping of feet. The dancers would keep going for a minute or so and look at each other with puzzlement. The beat had fled like a runaway child, to return at its own whim.

The sound in the convention hall, as usual, was miserable. Plant wore a pair of pretty high-heeled shows and several people threw flowers.

[H. Barnes | Post-Dispatch | 4.13.70]

Submit your personal review of a particular show you attended, updates, corrections, etc., which will be considered for addition to the official online archive.



You may also contact the webmaster at: webmaster@ledzeppelin.com

Comments

Submit your personal review of a particular show you attended, updates, corrections, etc., which will be considered for addition to the official online archive.You may also contact the webmaster at: webmaster@ledzeppelin.com

Eye witness

I was nearing the end of my first year at college, and things looked bad for me with a lousy draft number and grades to match. You couldn't hang on to a student deferment with a "D" average.

Going to this concert was one of the best decisions I had made that year. Right now, I'm sorry but I can't really remember who I went with, or even how I got the ticket. They were good though. Center section, third or fourth row. Can't find the stub, but somehow I scored a poster. I don't really get Harper Barnes' review? It's like he went with expectations of something else. Some people I knew who were musicians at that time in St. Louis only regarded the Blues Masters as people entitled to play the blues. This was the evolution of Heavy soon to be Metal happening right in front of me.

I had not seen many pictures of the band and was amazed at the clothes and hair. Dark, tight, leather, lace, bangles, necklaces and BIG hair on Robert especially. Being close to the stage, I thought the sound was very good, especially when I could really get into John's solo. Never knew he did so much with his hands until I saw it. Lots of calling and answering between Jimi and Robert, but the whole show was huge and continuous.

John Paul Jones was the glue, but never really drew attention to himself like the other three. Did a lot of organ stuff which I know I should have expected but thought would be too hard to do on stage. The real stunner for me was when doing "Ramble On", they achieved live stereo with the PA. As I remember, they didn't have a lot of gear on stage but I could see a folding table on the side behind Jimi with a bunch of amps on it. I think this was part of the power behind the PA stacks that flanked the stage. Before this, most bands I had seen ran mostly vocals through the PA, but this show had miked everything and allowed the whole guitar thing to fly back and forth across the stage along with Robert's vocal. Heavy.

Wished I had scored some chemicals, but we did have some decent weed before the show. As Heavy Metal grew in the coming years, it kind of lost me because this show was printed in my head for how "Heavy" should be.

The brutal touring that was going on in those days did not deter this band from delivering a powerful and lengthy complete display of their virtuosity and showmanship. That's one thing that was becoming apparent to me at the time. British bands would always be something to watch as much as to hear.