February 1, 1975
Pittsburgh, PA US
Rock and Roll, Sick Again, Over the Hills and Far Away, In My Time of Dying, The Song Remains the Same, Rain Song, Kashmir, No Quarter, Trampled Underfoot, Moby Dick, How Many More Times, Stairway to Heaven, Whole Lotta Love, Black Dog, Communication Breakdown.
REVIEW: "A Cold Flaws Zeppelin,But the Legend Still Lives"
WHEN GUITARIST Jimmy Page and vocalist Robert Plant are in top form, the music of Led Zeppelin possesses an awesome power. Friday night's Zeppelin concert in Pittsburgh's Civic Arena fell short of what could have been. But, the British quartet is such a fine band that even less than best is still awfully good.
Early in the more than two-and-one half hour show, which drew 15,000, Zeppelin performed a new composition, "Sick Again," from their forthcoming two-album release.
The song was an appropriate choice for the band. Plant, who normally has an incredibly high range, was suffering from a cold.
PRIOR TO the concert he had promoters combing Pittsburgh grocery stores in search of honey for his throat.
And if Plant finally did get his honey, it didn't seem to help his voice.
He sang in a lower range. This, coupled with the fact his voice was cracking and came across like the gravely Rod Stewart's, seriously flawed the show.
But the patrons who had paid as high as $8.50 a seat didn't seem to let this bother them. They went to see a modern rock legend and that they did see.
PLANT made a nice, if often unsuccessful, attempt at trying to keep his vocals as close to the recorded versions as possible. Former Yardbird Page lived up to his reputation as a virtuoso lead guitarist.
He was into his flashy guitar runs almost immediately. His playing throughout the night merited the silver stars that he wore on his pants legs.
After opening with "Rock and Roll" and blending that number into "Sick Again," Plant greeted the crowd.
He told them the band intended to cover the spectrum of the changes it has been through in the past six and one-half years. To represent this time span, Zeppelin offered "In My Time of Dying," an electric blues from the new album, "Physical Graffiti," due in three weeks: "Over the Hills and Far Away, from the "Houses of the Holy" LP, and tastes of early albums.
John Paul Jones, bassist-keyboard man, was featured on mellotron on "Kashmir" a new one. Drummer John Bonham had the spotlight on "Moby Dick," from "Led Zeppelin II."
He turned in a first-rate solo, but it was too long, serving as a not-so-sly way for the other members of the group to leave the stage for a break.
The band returned to present a, selection from the first album, and conclude with the Zeppelin classic, "Stairway to Heaven." If any song emphasized Plant's ailing voice, it was this one.
An encore brought a medley including "Whole Lot of Love" and "Black Dog." A second encore had the band into "Communication Breakdown."
Lighting and staging were superb. (By REX RUTKOSKI, Feb. 1975)