Average: 4.4 (36 votes)

June 29, 1969

London, UK

Royal Albert Hall

Setlist:

setlist includes: Communication Breakdown, I Can't Quit You Baby, Dazed and Confused, White Summer / Black Mountainside, You Shook Me, How Many More Times, Long Tall Sally.

Notes:

UK '69 Programme

Click here to view the concert programme
(interactive flipbook)

2 shows - 5:30pm and 8:30pm 

Press Review: Led Zeppelin took flight to score a massive personal triumph when they closed Sunday’s first night amid incredible scenes and gave the Pop Proms the kind of start the organizers would have been brave to dream of.

At the end of Zeppelin’s excellent set, with an encore, it was after 11pm, the house lights had gone up and a quarter of the near capacity crowd audience had filed out.

Those that remained clustered to the foot of the flower bedecked stage and first came the clapping, then a prolonged bout of foot stomping flowed by thunderous cries for more until the whole cycle began over again and continued for several minutes, some of the crowd who had left poured back into the auditorium to see what all the fuss was about.

It was obvious they weren’t going home till they got more but when the group returned to the stage, they found the power had been switched off. “Hey, put the power on”, demanded singer Robert Plant as the group stood bewildered. Stalemate, Plant took up a harmonica and let fly on that and all the others could do was clap until a few minutes later the flow of juice was resumed.

With the first few bars of Long Tall Sally, the audience was on its feet dancing in the aisles and in the boxes and there was incredible mayhem happening on and around the stage.

The saxists from Blodwyn Pig and Liverpool Scene added their support in to the Zeppelin’s rock and the air around the stage became thick with paper aeroplanes (symbolically) thrown from the boxes along with a tickertape reception of handbills and balloons and petals of the flowers from the foot of the stage.

The Zeppelin truly deserved the acclaim – it is boggling that in a matter of months they have achieved such a high degree of musicianship and become one of the biggest crowd pullers around.

Concentrated touring has given them an extra edge in every department and with drummer John Bonham and bassist John Paul Jones laying a solid rearguard the frontal dialogue between Page and Plant has developed to a startling and stimulating extent.

In one way, they appear to be fighting each other for dominance, in another they become as one but in the final analysis they serve to haul each other onto greater and greater heights. Plant, with shoulder length blond curls, employs his voice as a fourth instrument. Page, a contrast with shoulder length black hair, evens the score by using his instrument as an extra voice. The result at low key is fascinating; at its high devastating.

Sticking mainly to tracks from their best selling debut album, I Can’t Quit You Baby, Communication Breakdown, You Shook Me, How Many More Times and Dazed and Confused were highlights, the latter fast becoming a pop phenomenon with Page attacking his guitar, sometimes using a bow, with ferocious intent and Plant torturing his vocal chords like a man intent on self destruction. (NME, July ’69)

 

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Pop Proms by Richard Coxell