Physical Graffiti

So I have to admit I went a little Led Zeppelin crazy after I wrote about their first album about a year and a half ago.  At that time, the only other Zeppelin album I had was Lord Bachhus’ old copy of Zep IV, and so I started snatching up Zeppelin albums whenever I would see them used.  Within about six months, I had their entire studio output, but this particular album was one of the last ones I came across, and I finally found it at the Half-Price Books on Lane Avenue for $9.99 (minus my 10% teacher discount).  Thus, it was one of the last Zep albums that I heard, and when I listened to it I realized that only song on it that I really knew was “Kashmir” (which immediately brought back memories of working at the movie theater in college and the stupid Puff Daddy/P. Diddy version of “Kashmir” that used to play when the credits of the 1998 Godzilla remake would roll).

So I wish I had more to say about this album, but its pretty much just Zep rocking out for an hour and a half.  The first disc is mostly blues, and Robert Plant gets down and dirty with the innuendo on “Custard Pie” and “Trampled Under Food”, while Jimmy Page shows off his guitar chops with syncopated riffs, bluesy fills, and of course a few blistering solos.  The second disc is pretty much a hodgepodge of styles, but in listening to it, I seem to wonder if maybe it helped inspire the grunge rock movement of the nineties.  At least I know Led Zeppelin was very influential on quite a few of those early Seattle bands, especially Soundgarden, Pearl Jam, and even Nirvana.  Here Page’s riffs start to get very grungy, and there is even some of the loud/soft/loud type dynamics that Kurt Cobain and Billy Corgan loved to use in their songs.  The Rolling Stones have joked that Exile on Main Street was the first grunge album…maybe Physical Graffiti was the second.

Other lists: “Kashmir” is #141 on Rolling Stone’s list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.

Ch-ch-changes: This album dropped 3 spots from its original position of #70 due to the addition of CCR’s Chronicle and the rise of Radiohead’s Kid A and Paul Simon’s Graceland.

My favourite track: “Kashmir”

Honourable mention: “Down by the Seaside”

Quote: “In my time of dying, want nobody to mourn.  All I want for you to do is take my body home.”

 

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