Classic Rock Review

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Led Zeppelin The Complete Studio Recordings [Box set, Original recording remastered] (1993)

51RDhbfiMHLFrom amazon.com

Review At college, a bunch of my CDs were stolen, including every Led Zeppelin CD I owned. My insurance replaced them within a week. I didn’t own every Zeppelin album on CD, and I owned two of the pre-remastered editions. When I replaced them, I got this set to compensated for my stolen Zep. I could not be more pleased with the results of this box set. There are three great things about it that will be discussed here.

The music: Every true rock fan knows the greatness of Led Zeppelin.

Every song and album is a gem, and is essential to any music collection. Everyone has heard songs such as “Whole Lotta Love,” “Stairway to Heaven,” “The Song Remains the Same,” and “Kashmir,” to name a few. There are also many not so well known great tracks here, including “Achilles Last Stand,” “In My Time of Dying,” “All My Love,” “Bron-Y-Aur Stomp,” and “Black Mountain Side,” to name a few. Plus, with the album Coda, you get bonus tracks unavailable anywhere else unless you buy the other two box sets, including the non-LP B-side “Hey Hey What Can I Do,” the outtake “Baby Come On Home,” and the excellent songs recorded for the BBC “Travelling Riverside Blues” and “White Summer/Black Mountain Side.”

Once you buy one Zeppelin album, you will want to buy more, and more, and more (just ask anyone), so you may as well get it all and more now instead of buying all the albums separately and wishing you had just bought all of them this way and also gotten the great bonus tracks. Plus, though not in the short run but definitely in the long run, it is cheaper to buy all the albums this way than to buy them separately, and this way, you get more for less.

The sound: Having heard two of the albums before Jimmy Page himself took control and remastered them, I know from personal experience that the new sound shows a difference between night and day. Before, they sounded like a lot of old, unremastered CDs do, dull, not enough volume, and need improvement. Here every single track from start to finish sounds so fresh, almost as if it were recorded quite recently. It shows that Jimmy Page really cares about the fans, as there are many under 21 who are discovering or will discover Led Zeppelin, and fans from the time upgrading their music collection to CD, and the sound should be as sharp and “current sounding” as possible. And here, Jimmy Page not only satisfied himself, but also satisfied CD buyers everywhere with the incredible sounds coming off of these 10 discs.

The packaging: The way this box set is packaged is excellent. What exactly is on the cover of the box, I do not know, but it is cool. The lid of the box set fold up and can be pushed in so you can access the CDs right from your shelf without having to take the box off the shelf and disassemble it, which is quite convenient. Inside there are five hardcover books, each housing 2 CDs. In order for the packaging to work, the Presence album is coupled with Houses of the Holy in order to give the double Physical Graffiti its own book.

But that doesn’t matter, you can listen to the CDs in any order you want. Each of the books contain graphics of the original vinyl packaging, such as the six different covers (front and back) from In Through the Out Door, the turning wheel from III, all the inner sleeves, everything is here. There is also a very entertaining booklet, filled with a biography and plenty of pictures.

If you like Led Zeppelin at all, this is the way to go. All the studio albums with graphics of the original vinyl and as originally sequenced. Please take my advice, if you like Led Zeppelin, invest your money and buy this set. If you have any hesitations at all, it is very likely that you have friends that like Led Zeppelin. Listen to their copies of the ablums and find out for yourself. Even if you have to make sure that the investment is worth it, you will not be disappointed in the end. This is sure to provide you enjoyment for a long time to come.

Review How do you review a boxed set of an artist’s complete studio recordings? I guess you would first review the band, and then review the features of the boxset. So, that is what I’m going to do.

First off, Led Zeppelin, how could you describe them? They’re so versatile. The only adjective that comes to my mind is “raw”. They have a raw sound, something that makes you know they’re real. They had an awesome attitude about their music, and were always attempting to grow as artists. There is no use trying to pick a best album, or a best song, they are all masterpieces. This set tells the story of Led Zeppelin. If you like Led Zeppelin, you’ll like the box set. If you don’t like Led Zeppelin, you probably won’t. In my opinion, they are a perfect mix between being serious and having fun, a perfect mix for rock and roll (in my opinion).

Next off- The boxset. It’s great. It’s an awesome package, and is well priced for the items contained inside. Inside is a book with an essay and pictures, which is well written, and is very informative. Also, inside are the five other booklets which contain two cds each and the original album art on a black background. It has every page of all the booklets and sleeves that came with the original albums, which is always a plus. Overall, the box has no problems. I get paranoid sometimes, though, pulling out the cds of their cardboard holders in fear of scratching them. So far, though, they haven’t been scratched. That’s why it’s only paranoia, and nothing real. If you are careful, they won’t get scratched from the cardboard containers.

If you are looking for all the Led Zeppelin songs, there is no other way to go. If you buy all the albums separately, you’ll have them all at the same price, but with no booklet or no cool box. If you buy the other box set and the two cds to compensate for the songs not on that box set you’ll have all the songs in mixed up order with no original cover art and no essay. So that is why, in my opinion, this is the only way to go. The songs should not be mixed up, because they are put in an order for a reason.

So, the only thing wrong with this box set is the fear I get from maybe scratching the CDs. Again, If you’re careful this won’t happen. That’s why this box set gets 5 Stars (4.9).

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May 23, 2013 Posted by | Led Zeppelin The Complete Studio Recordings | | Leave a comment