Average: 4.5 (41 votes)

June 14, 1972

Uniondale, NY US

Nassau Coliseum

Setlist:

Immigrant Song, Heartbreaker, Black Dog, Since I've Been Loving You, Stairway to Heaven, Going to California, That's the Way, Tangerine, Bron-Y-Aur Stomp, Dazed and Confused, What Is and What Should Never Be, Moby Dick, Whole Lotta Love (medley incl. Let That Boy Boogie, Bottle Up and Go, Hello Mary Lou, Lawdy Miss Clawdy, Going Down Slow), Rock and Roll, Communication Breakdown, Weekend, Bring It On Home.

Notes:

Review: Last night at Nassau Coliseum, 16,000 heavy rock fans cheered Led Zeppelin through three hours and four encores and tonight (June 15) another 16,000 will make the pilgrimage. No opening acts have been scheduled because Led Zeppelin stands alone – the band is the personification of heavy rock. Limiting its personal appearances, and carefully refining the basic concept in its annual album, the band appears quite likely to continue long after the various challengers – Black Sabbath is currently ranked first – have their plugs pulled. And every bit of that ascendancy is deserved.

Jimmy Page is a highly proficient electric blues guitarist whose expertise is essential to the group’s effect, but the star of the show is vocalist Robert Plant. By talent or design, Plant is the man who discovered that the key word in the term “power blues” was not “blues” but “power”. Blues singing is about emotion. Its influence on popular singing has been so widespread that, at least among males, singing and emoting have become almost identical – it is a matter of projection rather than hitting the notes.

Some find this effect chilling, but I think it is exciting when it works, which is most of the time. It’s not that Plant can’t emote. On some of the band’s acoustic elections, especially Stairway to Heaven, he hints at real feeling. But just as he begins to reach out, his voice shifts into one of its shrieks or wails, and you realize that Page’s guitar is so heavily miked in the huge arena that he could just as well be playing electric – it’s another mechanical effect. At some deep level, Led Zeppelin’s music is about technology. Philosophically, the band prefers humanity pure and simple, but in practice it must realize its humanity technologically. That seems truer than most good-time pastoral fantasies.

Led Zeppelin attracts a rougher, less affluent and self-righteous crowd than the country-flavored bands that dominate rock these days. For some reason, this crowd gets off not only on the kinky textures of Led Zep’s ensemble playing, but also on displays of dubious instrumental virtuosity - Page bowing his guitar, or John Bonham clubbing his way through a 15-minute drum solo. Also, the music ran a little long for everyone as jaded as myself. But Since I’ve Been Loving You, with John Paul Jones providing a great thick wall of organ behind Plant and Page, is the ultimate power blues and Rock and Roll, the first encore is simply the most dynamic hard-rock song in the music.

It was a heavy evening. (R. Christgau / NY Newsday, June ‘72)

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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

My first ever concert!

OK, it was a long time ago, there's not a lot I remember, but some things do still remain vivid.... June 14, 1972, a day that LITERALLY changed my life. I cant imagine how things might be different for me today, had I not gone to that show. It was my first ever concert, I was fourteen and very naive. I had never seen or smelled pot, never seen or heard a show like this, and the fact is I didnt know anything about Led Zeppelin. No clue who the band members were. The only song I had ever heard was the Immigrant Song. I was very green... After seeing that show, I was so stunned, so blown away, that I immersed myself in all things Led Zeppelin. By the following year, I had every album, magazine and available bootleg I could fine. I started to learn how to play electric guitar which became a big and very important part of my life. Next week I am leaving for England to see the reunion show at the O2.... Had I not gone to that June 14th concert, my life could have been very different (maybe I would of worshipped Jethro Tull instead and ended up playing the freaking flute!).... So, here are my recollections..... My buddy and I got tickets for the Nassau Coliseum at the mall, $4.50 behind the stage. They actually were not behind the stage at all, they were in the 300s on the side, directly perpendicular to the stage on Jimmy's side. The night of the show we get dropped off by our parents (kinda surprises me now when I think about it that they let two 14 year olds go alone). We walk into a sea of older people all wearing jeans and flannel. We take our seats and I see some guys walking around on the stage during set-up wearing Led Zeppelin shirts. I ask my buddy if they were in the band (of course they werent) and he doesnt know anyway. The next thing that happens is the part I will never forget. Understand I knew NOTHING about rock shows. I had only recently started listening to FM (WPLJ), as opposed to AM radio. I assumed the lights in the arena would stay on and some guys would walk on and play. But the place goes black and a minute later explodes with The Immigrant Song. I see all of this colored light and the singer is looking down toward the floor with his long hair hanging down. The music is loud and ripping and suddenly he throws his head and hair back and lets out the opening scream. Im thinking, my God what the hell is this!?..... Also realise that you can listen to a million bootlegs, but the volume and echo and live ambience in the arena itself can never be duplicated. It sounded downright scary to me.... I was really taken back by the LOOK of the band on stage, what they were wearing, how they moved, the colored lights, the volume and the ridiculously high voice of the singer which I found mesmerizing. I remember telling kids on the bus that he had long white hair and he had a white shirt. I dont why I thought his hair was white, I guess the bright lights bouncing off them made me think so. I remember Jimmy wearing red. Years later a single photo has surfaced from this show. It shows Page wearing the red striped Zoso sweater, a true rarity for 1972! By the way, Im pretty convinced that the photo was taken during the opening Immigrant Song. Firstoff it was taken by a pro photographer from the photo pit, usually they were only there for two or three songs. And secondly, the position of Page and Jones hands on the necks as well as the body language of the band all point to that thundering riff!.... At this point I wish I could tell you about each song, but I cant, because it was so damn long ago, plus I didnt know any of their other songs! But I do have some other images ingrained in my mind. I remember them sitting down for the acoustic set and Plant introducing Going to California. I remember him introducing Stairway to Heaven and being shocked that someone had invented a guitar with two necks. I remember a big black balloon floating around over the crowd on the floor that said 'Good Evening' on it in white letters. And I remember a big black dude dancing with a small blonde white chick in the aisle at the end of the show during one of the encores. Many of these memories were first time things for me, the smell of pot, the incredibly up vibe of the crowd, all things that I will never forget. And finally I do remember the concert being four hours with four encores. I recall telling people the next day that the show started at 8:15 and was over by 12:15. Maybe in reality it was a bit shy of four hours, but it was a LONG show. I remember after the first encore moving down from our seats to the aisle between the 300s and 200s. It was loud as hell on the side of the stage there and the P.A. was hanging right in front of us! I also remember after the third encore (which of course years later I found out to be Weekend), that the house lights went up. Half of the arena had emptied including my buddy and me. We were out in the concourse area by the concessions and heading for the door, when we heard people screaming inside. We ran back in to find the lights out again and watched them do a fourth encore.... Even though I had no idea at the time, apparently this show and the following night were some of the best shows they had ever done and some of the most enjoyable for the band. And it was during those couple days I believe that they recorded some cuts for Houses of the Holy at Electric Ladyland in New York..... When I met Robert Plant on the set of MTV in 1982, he claimed he clearly remembered my gig and said it was a good one!.... Next when I have a chance I will give my recollections of July 29, 1973.....