11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
Lack of popular support does NOT make this album bad!,
This review is from: In Through the Out Door (Audio CD)
This is Led Zeppelin's most maligned album, most of said malign coming from ultra-orthodox rock fans who can't stand musical diversity. Because unlike their previous, guitar-riff based albums this one features John Paul Jones on keyboards in the lead role, with Jimmy Page playing along beside him instead of in front of him (for once).
Since Page was pretty whacked out on heroin during the making, his guitar playing skills do leave something lacking especially compared to his best work on songs like Achilles Last Stand or Black Dog.
However, the use of keyboards on the songs gives them a very different and unique feel.
In The Evening: A song with a standard rock sound and standard blues lyrics, the huge, slamming riff makes a great opener. Too bad you can't understand any of the lyrics except 'oh oh I need your love'.
South Bound Saurez (sic): An interesting little piece featuring Jones' piano, but not an especially classic piece. You can't understand any of the lyrics, though.
Fool in the Rain: A mellow, happy little riff about a slightly less happy subject; a guy waiting for his date and imagining he's been stood up, when actually he's waiting in the wrong place (whoops). Very enjoyable and spiced up by the fast little jam section in the middle.
Hot Dog: wierdness. A mock-country song that demonstrates their sense of humour if not much else.
Carouselambra: Whoa, they really opened the floodgates now. The first part contains keyboards, drums, bass and vocals but no guitar. The second bit has Page plucking out fuzzy little arpeggios while Robert Plant occasionally belts out something, and then it returns to a full synthesized speed-fest. You can't understand any of the lyrics (starting to notice a pattern?) which is a shame because they can almost compete with Bob Dylan in terms of inscrutable mysticism. Great, underrated song.
All My Love: Another synth-heavy one. It's the most sincere song on the album, dedicated to Robert Plant's son (not daughter as a lot of people think for some reason) who died in '77. Nice melody and cool solo.
I'm Gonna Crawl: A cool bluesy ending to the album, it might seem a bit repetetive at first until they start to mix things up.
All in all...well, if you're a really over-the-top fan like me you'd buy it even if it was crap. It isn't. It's as good as any of their other albums, just very different, and musical diversity is what made the band so great. So head out to your closest locally-owned, non-chain music store and get this album!