March 10, 1975
San Diego, CA 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, Dazed and Confused (incl. Woodstock), Stairway to Heaven, Whole Lotta Love (incl. The Crunge), Black Dog, Heartbreaker
Press Review: Rock (and Sock) Concert:
Led Zeppelin Is Really a Blast
Led Zeppelin plays music to launch a blitzkrieg by exploding in a three-hour volcanic eruption that spews boiling sonic lava into the wide-open ears of their willing victims.
Such was the nature of the English rock supergroup’s Sports Arena concert last night, an event for which all 15,832 tickets were sold out last December and for which ticket holders began getting in line last Sunday afternoon.
What those eager fans got for their time and money was a virtuoso demonstration of hard rock by the skull-busters extraordinaire, thunderous drums by John Bonham and lightning guitar by Jimmy Page, along with the screaming occasionally Janis Joplin-like vocals of strutting, bare-chested Robert Plant and the steady but somewhat unsteady piano of John Paul Jones.
Theirs is an unsubtle formula that has resulted in a totally sold-out concert tour (this Friday’s Sports Arena engagement, set up after the first concert sold out Sunday), six consecutive platinum albums, signifying sales of one million copies each and status as rock’s top drawing group of the day.
Led Zeppelin gives the fans a complete show, though without intermission, with swirling lights and the ol’ swirling smoke-over-the-stage routine.
Dazed and Confused opened for example with a purple pin spot on Jones’ fingers as the bass rumbled ominously; an explosion and column of smoke shattered the mood as Plant took over with a bluesy vocal.
Page then tool the fans’ attention, stroking his guitar with a violin bow, while smoke swirled about him and red and green laser beams drilled needle-holes of light from the stage to the back of the arena. Unfortunately, the music produced this was by Page resembled only horror-movie howls and screams.
The group chose its repertoire from its entire history, from its beginnings to the new double Physical Graffiti album; musically the most gratifying moments came on No Quarter opening with Jones’ meandering piano solo during which the noise-loving crowd grew noticeably restless.
Bonham picked up the pace with his drums, however, inserting a march feel into the proceedings, and Page commenced one of his most compelling guitar solos of the evening, his instrument dancing to the rhythms established by Bonham and Jones.
MOUNTAIN OF SOUND
It closed as did so many other numbers, in a cacophonous explosion that rendered meaningless the phrase “wall of sound”, often used to describe loud rock; this was a pyramid, an Empire State Building, an Everest of sound. (San Diego Union, 3.11.75)