Average: 4.6 (64 votes)

April 12, 1977

Bloomington, MN US

Met Center

Setlist:

Setlists during this tour include: The Song Remains The Same, (The Rover intro) Sick Again, Nobody's Fault But Mine, In My Time of Dying, Since I've Been Loving You, No Quarter, Ten Years Gone, Battle of Evermore, Going to California, Black Country Woman, Bron-Y-Aur Stomp, White Summer ~ Black Mountainside, Kashmir, (Out On the Tiles intro) Moby Dick, Jimmy Page solo, Achilles Last Stand, Stairway to Heaven, Rock and Roll.

Notes:

77 programme

Click here to view the '77 Tour Programme
(interactive flipbook)

Press Review: The Zep was a test for the ears and they'll be at here tonight

WARNING: Mad Dogs may be hazardous to your health… Mad Dogs? Well, wasn't Led Zeppelin's original name? After "The New Yardbirds" and before Jimmy Page settled on Led Zep? I dunno.

After Tuesday night at the Metropolitan Sports Center, my ear drums are so fractured I may avoid music for the rest of the week.

LED ZEPPELIN IS one of the most celebrated bands in the world. And the  Zep, like it always does, sold out the Met Tuesday night. But what is surprising is the same band will do the same thing tonight at the Civic Center here in St. Paul.

That is, if the Zep ever finished sometime this morning. Because of lightning, thunder and fear of flying, the band didn't arrive in the Twin Cities Tuesday until a half hour after the 8 o'clock' scheduled concert time.

And it didn't hit the stage until 9:11. Sometime nearing midnight I crashed — dazed by three hours of crunching Jimmy Page guitar, soaring Robert Plant vocals, buzzing John Paul Jones' bass and keyboard work and bruising, crashing and thrashing on the drums by John Bonham.

Zep did a job on me — but then again, I expected it. Listening to Zep for an hour on the phonograph is enough to create ear buzz for a week. Which is too bad because Led Zeppelin is a group of superior talent.

"SKINNY JIMMY" Page is probably one of the best three guitarists ever to attempt rock 'n roll. The former poet from Heston in Middlesex, England, has a range exceeded by none and the clarity of wind chimes when he wants to play it that way.

Jones, a former Rolling Stones' session man, is a wonder of a keyboard player and Bonham, like Plant, emerged from Band of Joy to pound away with some of the best.

Plant, himself, has the most distinctive voice in metallic music, a piercing, diving, anvil which thunders from under his delicately-curled reddish locks. It was nice to see him healthy again after a lengthy recovery from a near-fatal car crash in Greece two years ago.

BUT EVEN THOUGH Zep had a beautiful sound system Tuesday, the guttural roar from Page's shrieking guitar was enough to craze even the best of us.

Except the middle segment of the concert, which was an acoustic joy.

The Zep put away the hammers, the pliers, the saws and unveiled the quartet sitting four in a row, acoustics in hand, doing three songs including "Black Country Woman" and "California." At least I think those are the titles — I was a bit deaf by then and am unfamiliar with a couple of their albums but I think it's a mood first captured in "Houses of the
Holy."

Page showered us with his versatility during the trio of songs, Jones did also and Plant actually revealed a brush of a voice rather than a sledgehammer.

SOMEWHERE IN THE wee hours, I expect they got into the "Stairway to Heaven" and "Whole Lotta Love" stuff — the music which earned them a place in the Rock Hail of Fame. Me, I fazed out with "Mag Dogs."

And Bonham's madness of a solo that did criminal work, abrasive damage, to my eardrums.

So if you're headed up to the Civic tonight, beware and don't get too close. And yes, thanks Bob - by Plant for wishing our Kicks  well this season and we'll give Mike Bailey your best.

And Jimmy Page, can you see if you can find James Patrick Page the poet sometime soon? The guy who used to play lead for the Yardbirds? The best session guitarist in England? I loved him madly, as the Duke might have said. By CHARLEY HALLMAN, Staff Writer, St. Paul Dispatch, April 1977.

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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

Page from the Past

It's a testament to the outlandish aura that Led Zeppelin had about them in those days that 36 years down the road, I still can't remember who I was with at this concert, but I can recall certain moments during the show with absolute crystalline clarity (if you could call the barely controlled chaos a show in the usual sense of the word).

In 1977 I was living in Fargo, a college kid. A radio station had sponsored a tour bus to the show, a four-hour drive down the interstate. The drive was long, but the upside was the tickets: we had floor seats only 9 or 10 rows back. There was much drinking and hilarity on the bus; it was exactly like you'd imagine.

The first sign that I'd entered the rending of normality that accompanied any exposure to Led Zeppelin came when a stage manager sauntered up to a microphone at 8 p.m. and announced—as if this were the most routine thing in the world—that the band wasn't actually in Minneapolis. They were in Chicago, in their plane, on the runway, waiting for... God knows what. (Better weather, I read here in the comments.) At the time, we didn't have a clue.

Since there wasn't a warm-up band we were consigned to an hour of thumb-twiddling, burning off nervous energy, getting increasingly more stoned if that was your bag (it wasn't mine, although it would have come in very handy that night). Every so often the spokesperson would venture out and give little updates: "they're in the air" (big whoops), "they're descending!" (cheers) and so on. The audience made the best of it, but there was no denying the downer vibe that hung in the air along with the smoke from pot and firecrackers—a strange mix of sweet and acrid.

When the band finally did take the stage, it was close to two hours late, and despite the tremendous cheer that went up, I could see immediately that Jimmy Page was utterly out of it. Normally, Jimmy's  stage moves brilliantly pantomimed a stagger, but this time it was no act. He could barely stay upright. He slashed at his strings, but what came out bore only a vague resemblence to "The Song Remains the Same."

I'd heard that Minneapolis and big rock acts sometimes didn't mix well. Mick Jagger once wrote that they didn't wear makeup to a show there because "Minneapolis didn't deserve any." The Beatles were famously hassled by cops there. I'm sure word gets around in the biz. Maybe Led Zep was showing some disdain. There was some karmic kick-back when the audience started throwing firecrackers onstage. I'm sure it did scare the hell out of the band. But what did they expect after keeping thousands of drunken kids waiting for hours? Keep in mind, they never addressed the crowd or apologized for being late or anything uncool like that.

Things got better as the show went on. Jimmy seemed to wake up and they got into a working groove. They played a long time, well past midnight. When the show ended and the house lights came up, I made my way to the stage and was checking out the band's equipment. Suddenly I looked up and Jimmy—thin as a rail in his white dragon-suit—was standing right in front of me. I hadn't realized they'd do another encore... but by God, here they were.

Jimmy launched into "Rock and Roll," but something was terribly wrong... there was no guitar sound! I'll never forget Robert Plant shooting Jimmy this look of weary incredulity: "all this, and now you don't have your guitar plugged in?" A roadie scrambled over on all fours (as they do), grabbed the plug and got Jimmy his power. The song went on. Afterwards Jimmy pitched his guitar pick over the security guards' heads, and I caught it. I sold it years later for $250. I think it nicely covered my time while the band knocked back drinks in The Starship on the Chicago runway.

The review the next day in the Minneapolis Star Tribune said that Peter Grant was "visibly shaken" when the band arrived at the Met Center that night. For some reason that line stuck in my head. How did the writer know? What did it look like? No matter. Was it a great concert? I couldn't tell you... it was the only time I saw them. They came within a hairsbreadth of blowing it, but in the end they delivered on their contract. That's rock-n-roll, baby.

I have most of their vinyl, straight from the 70s, and I still listen now and then. The music retains its mystery, just as Jimmy imagined it would.