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Audio CD, Original recording remastered, July 31, 2015
Vinyl, Original recording remastered, July 31, 2015
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What was that thing in the center of the dining room table? It's still a mystery, but this 1976 album fits comfortably into the canon, with Achilles' Last Stand; Nobody's Fault but Mine; For Your Life; Hots On for Nowhere , and more.
Presence is one of Led Zeppelin's more overlooked albums, languishing in the monstrous shadow of its predecessor, Physical Graffiti. It's more noted in Zeppelin mythology for the circumstances in which it was recorded, in double-quick time with vocalist Robert Plant's leg in plaster after a car accident. The lack of time does show--much of the album feels like generic heavy rock, bigger on volume than variety. It's worth the price of the album, however, for the 10-minute-plus "Achilles Last Stand" (a crashing, galloping epic with John Bonham sounding like he's replaced his drumsticks with tree trunks) and "Nobody's Fault but Mine," a Blind Willie Johnson blues regenerated with a 3,000-watt boost by Jimmy Page. --David Stubbs
Top Customer Reviews
I may not be objective because this came out when I was in high school, knee deep in the 70's. It's better today than it was almost 4 decades ago.
Musically, Presence has some really excellent compositions, although I caught the faintest whiff of arena rock on some tracks – the “sword and sorcery” mysticism of earlier albums was definitely wearing off. Then again, this was 1976 and flower power was ancient history. In terms of the performances of the group members, they really are very good –John Bonham in particular does a fantastic job on Achilles Last Stand. I guess my only regret is that they didn’t save some of the Physical Graffiti material for this album – Presence would have been spectacular. Then again, had they done that, we would not have Physical Graffiti.
This remastered album is not bad – it has good sound quality and some generic liner notes that include the track listing, production credits etc.
All in all this is a good album by the group and has enough to offer the Led Zeppelin fan that it should provide some good listening. Recommended along with II (1969), III (1970), IV (or ZoSo) (1971), Houses of the Holy (1973) and Physical Graffiti. Although I enjoy the 1979 follow-up album In through the out Door, it does not have the energy of Presence.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
but not bad enough to put you off.
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