THE EARLY YEARS

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#1
Winterland Ballroom, San Francisco, California, April 26, 1969 (2 CDR)
Great early Zep show. Audience recording but one of the best for this time period
BootCD>CDR
Sound: A (Audience)
Time  disc 1: 58:30    disc 2: 62:31
Flaws: None, sound wavers
Kahuna's Rating:****1/2
Disc 1
1) Communication Breakdown
2) I Can't Quit You
3) Dazed & Confused 
4) You Shook Me
5) How Many More Times (includes Smokestack Lightning, Roll Over Beethoven, The Hunter, Girl of the North Country)
Disc 2
1) White Summer/Black Mountain Side
2) Killing Floor (includes Lemon Song, That's Alright), 
3) Babe I'm Gonna Leave You
4) Pat's Delight 
5) As Long As I Have You (includes Fresh Garbage, Shake, Hush Little Baby)
6) Whole Lotta Love 
Here's what Led Zep Sessions says:
Both sets are from audience recordings most likely from the same taper. The sound quality for both sets is very good plus. The instruments are very clear in both sets. Tape hiss is present up to the first two minutes of I Can't Quit You, but vanishes afterwards.  Page's guitar work in I Can't Quit You is a model of delicate, controlled power phrasing. The playing in Killing Floor and Sitting And Thinking shouldn't be overlooked either. An essential early 1969 show.

#2
Fillmore West, San Francisco, California, April 27, 1969 (2 CDR)
Another Great early Zep show. Audience recording but one of the best for this time period
Boot CD>CDR (SNB & Audience sources)
Sound: A
Time  disc 1: 68:16    disc 2: 64:14
Flaws: None, tape hiss
Kahuna's Rating:*****
DISC I 
1) The Train Kept A Rollin'
2) I Can't Quit You
3) As Long As I Have You (includes Fresh Garbage, Shake, Cat's Squirrel, No Money Down, I'm a Man)
4) You Shook Me
5) How Many More Times (includes Babe I'm Gonna Leave You, The Hunter, Mulberry Bush) 
6) Communication Breakdown
DISC II 
1) Killing Floor (includes Sweet Jelly Roll)
2) Babe I'm Gonna Leave You
3) White Summer/Black Mountain Side 
4) Sitting and Thinking 
5) Pat's Delight
6) Dazed & Confused 
Here's what Led Zep Sessions says:
This is not a reissue of the famous soundboard tape but,as the title suggests,a combination of soundboard and audience sources.No,it isn't a reissue of the Twinight release either,this time around,TDOLZ have outdone themselves by filling the gaps on the soundboard tape with the audience source with a mastering job that has to be heard to be beieved.The audience source is spliced onto the soundboard tape,and viceversa,so cleanly it's amazing.The differences of quality and volume between both recordings are notorious but the painstaking care with which the tapes were combined is truly awesome,allowing the concerts to flow.Other versions of the sounboard tape like Aulica's De Luxe Live At The Fillmore West and Living Legend's 20 Years
The Train Kept A Rolling pale in comparison to the greatly detailed and dynamic sound quality and the stereo separation of TDOLZ's offering. I hadn't heard the audience tape,so listening to these complete performances is a revelation as th! e quality of the audience source is very clear.The total time suggests that these sets are probably as complete as they can be save for Plant's introduction to Train,according to Brian Ingham's excellent review on IQ's version of the audience tape.The Bootlegs Site recently registered Jelly Roll's Simplistic Atmosphere,which perhaps is a similar item but the playing times displayed on this
website are inferior to those of TDOLZ's Collage.The set list is the same for both releases,with Communication Breakdown as the first set's encore,most other releases have placed this number as the second set's encore.Maybe the experts(a.k.a. trainspotters),could tell us if this is right or wrong.

#3
Plays Pure Blues - Texas International Pop Festival 8/31/69 (1 CDR)
The best sounding early zep show. Snb all the way
Boot CD>CDR
Sound: A
Time  disc 1: 62:38
Flaws: None, some instrument feedback
Kahuna's Rating:*****
DISC I 
1) Train Kept a Rollin
2) I Can't Quit You
3) Dazed and Confused
4) You Shook Me
5) How many More Times
6) Communication breakdown

#4
Konserthuset - Stockholm SWE 3/14/69 & Teen Club Copenhagen, DEN 3/15/96 (2 CDR)
Two Different shows here both Audience. First disc songs bad but second disc is right up there with the two Winterland shows
Boot CD>CDR (Audience)
Sound: A/B+
Time  disc 1: 50:45    disc 2: 65:00
Flaws: None, disc 1 distant poor sound & tape hiss on both
Kahuna's Rating:***1/2
DISC I 
1) Train Kept a Rollin'
2) I Gotta Move,
3) I Can't Quit You
4) Dazed And Confused
5) White Summer/Black Mountain
6) How Many More Times (Communication Breakdown Blues, The Hunter)
DISC II 
First Show
1) Train Kept A Rollin
2) I Can't Quit You
3) As Long As I Have You
4) You Shook Me
5) Communication Breakdown
Second Show
6) Train Kept A Rollin
7) I Can't Quit You
8) Dazed and Confused
9) You Shook Me
Here's what Led Zep Sessions says about the second disc:
March 15 1969,afternoon show at the "Teen Club" in Gladsaxe Denmark.Set List:Train/Can't Quit You/As Long/You Shook Me/Communication.34 mins.Approximately. The guitar and vocals are very detailed and very bright;hiss was the price to pay though.The lower frequencies are not as clear but fairly discernable in general. Despite the short set list,the recording is seemingly uncut but for the spoken introduction to Communication,in which a line is clearly repeated,The second set the quality becomes sharper but nothing really changes all that much,my guess is that a lower generation tape was used,the vocals are a bit drowned but that has to do more with the band cranking up for the finale rather than with a change to an alternative recording.The sound quality is surprisingly enjoyable to me,the performance is excellent and very interesting as it
captures the band in a small club.This recording contrasts with the professional,clean quality of the Danish TV Special and the"diluted" Swedish radio broadcast in the nasty and loud attack.Plant's vocals are in superb form but he doesn't use his higher register as often as in the radio broadcast,but he is amazing and so are Page,Bonzo and Jonesy.The gig is incredibly powerful and the pieces are played very aggressively ,without losing control.As Long As I Have You features an impressive guitar introduction,Plant uses a line of Muddy Watters' I! Just Wanna Make Love To You to"counterattack" the
instrumentation in an awesome improvisation.When the number finishes,Page checks the guitar-tuning with a bossa nova riff,quickly fol- lowed by the other two instruments for a few seconds,Plant says:"We'll try to carry on despite Che Guevara" (South American communist revolutionary) much to everyone's amusement. Communication is also graced with one of Page's great introductions.In my view,this gig is as powerful as the April affairs at San Francisco,only the arrangements are shorter and the dreamy psychedelic approach is not used.

#5
Teddy Bear's Picnic - Newcastle 11/11/71 (1 CDR)
Good Sounding show with acoustic stuff. Great Songlist.
Boot CD>CDR
Sound: A
Time  disc 1: 56:03
Flaws: None
Kahuna's Rating:****1/2
DISC I 
1) Immagrant Song
2) Heartbreaker
3) Black Dog
4) Sence I've Been Lovin You
5) Rock n Roll
6) Stairway to Heaven
7) That's the Way
8) Going to California
9) Tangerine
Here's what Led Zep Sessions says:
First time out on CD for the show from Newcastle City Hall, Newcastle on November 11, 1971. The single disk covers the first part of the show to almost the end of the acoustic set. The vocals are upfront in the recording, with the instruments more distant and a bit more muffled - hiss is present in quieter moments. This mix coupled with a lack of top end means the detail in the guitar solos is lost in places. In Heartbreaker the guitar solo section features fast and fluid playing, and the solos in Since I've Been Loving You and Stairway To Heaven are played with passion. Plant's vocals are good throughout the show and the three acoustic numbers are excellent. Just about worth investigation by the general collector.

#6
Pape Satin - Lyceum Ballroom, London, U.K., October 12, 1969 (1 CDR)
Good Sounding show for 1969
Boot CD>CDR
Sound: A-
Time  disc 1: 53:31
Flaws: None, some record sounding scratchs
Kahuna's Rating:****
cover coming cover coming
1) Good Times/Bad Tomes
Communication Breakdown
2) I Can't Quit You baby
Heartbreaker
3) You Shook Me
4) Dazed and Confused
5) How many More Times
Here's what Led Zep Sessions says:
The recording used for this release is taken from a good to very good, clear audience tape. The balance shifts slightly during the first 2 tracks, but centers itself during Heartbreaker. A cracking show in good quality. A little distortion, occasional hiss, and slightly weak bass do not prevent this from being a highly enjoyable document. The drums are (for once) clearly audible, and the band are in fine form. It is probable that this show includes the live debuts of both Heartbreaker and What Is And What Should Never Be. The former gets an intense but hurried performance -- Jimmy starts his unaccompanied solo almost before anyone else has stopped. These songs are by no means the only reasons to get this show: GTBT/CB explodes from the stage, and Dazed and Confused gets a long experimental workout, with a fantastic introduction and many Yardbirds references. The highlights are I Can't Quit You (Jimmy is all over the place), You Shook Me (despite the cut -- from before the guitar solos right to the finale) and How Many More Times (incomplete, although the medley appears intact -- there are some Whole Lotta Love references here c.f. Texas on August 31). I remain unconvinced that Dazed and Confused appears in the right place -- most other shows from this era (i.e the fourth U.S. tour) have D+C right after Heartbreaker. It is probable that the show was shuffled around to fit onto vinyl, and there are fades in/out during applause to support this.

#7
Stroll On - Exhibition Hall, West Allis, WI 7/25/69 (1 CDR)
Fantastic sounding '69 Led Zep boot. Also great hard jamming show
Boot CD>CDR
Sound: A
Time  disc 1: 52:14
Flaws: None, some breaks between songs
Kahuna's Rating:****1/2
1) Train Kept A Rollin
2) I Can't Quit You
3) Dazed and Confused
4) White Summer/Black Mountain Side
5) How Many More Times
6) Communication Breakdown
Here's what Led Zep Sessions says:
Now this is what's known as an upgraded release. When you take into consideration the fact that the previous CD release of this show ("State Fair" Digger Productions label) rated a M-Aud 5, you realize that this TDOLZ release truly is a significant improvement. It is difficult to believe that TDOLZ used the same source for "Stroll On". This is primarily a clear/vibrant recording, though some low end distortion and disturbance do exist (it is not detrimental to the enjoyment of the recording). The rhythm section is slightly in the background, with the vocals and Page's crystal clear guitar to the forefront (once again, this slight imbalance is not excessive, nor is it enough to hurt the overall quality of the recording like it is in the recent "Killing Floor"26/1/69 release). I would rate this release a fairly strong 8 throughout, with a few regressions into the 7 region.If you are an enthusiast of the outdoor venues or festivals of the 3rd US Tour (i.e. 7-21-69, 7-6-69, 7-16-69, 8-8-69, 8-31-69 are among your favorite shows) then this release is a must have. The sound quality is nearly the equal the best '69 audience tapes, and superior to most. The set is concise and brilliant. Plant's voice is extremely raw and powerful in one of the most devastating versions of "I Can't Quit You" ever performed. Page is out of his head (not unlike the marvellous 8-31-69 rendition). As Rey indicates, the version of "Dazed+Confused" featured is more complex
than most from this and previous periods (foreshadowing elements of the future development of the song). Zerxes once mentioned that he found this to be one of the more inspired versions of "WS/BMS" he had heard, a sentiment with which I agree.As for "How Many More Times", it would have to make my "best of live list". As J.R. Rider would say, "The boys don't fake the funk..." on this one. Filled with vocal and funky instrumental improvs, this is one of '69's best of one of Zep's best live tunes. Robert casually throws in a few "Travelling Riverside Blues" lyrics prior to "The Hunter", "If you see my baby, tell her hurry home...".
Following "The Lemon Song", the band does the onstage simulated vocal/instrumental climax.... which Robert concludes by singing the line "I've got you, under my skin" (a variation to his "You make me feel so young" used in other concerts on this tour). The nearly one hour set concludes with "Communication Breakdown" slightly more distorted/muffled than the rest of the set, before the band bids the fairgrounds farewell. The paper slip case packaging on this release is attractive, and actually features circa '69 photos (though not from this concert). If you are a fan of the '69 live material, this TDOLZ release is a must have.

#8
Dead Battery - Hampton, VI 9/9/71 (2 CDR)
Fantastic sounding '71 Led Zep boot. The band is getting tighter as time goes on
Boot CD>CDR
Sound: A
Time  disc 1: 49:19    disc 2:
Flaws: None
Kahuna's Rating:*****
Disc I:
1) Immagrant Song
2) Heartbreaker
3) Sence I've Been Lovin You
4) Out on the Tiles/Heartbreaker
5) Dazed and Confused
Disc II:
1) Stairway to Heaven
2) Celebration Day
3) That's the Way
4) Going to California
5) What Is and What Should Never Be
6) Moby Dick

 

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