In the context of our musical adventure, Led Zeppelin’s debut album is like nothing we’ve heard before. This is real rock. It is loud, brash and banging.
The record opens with Good Times Bad Times, which showcases the talents of John Bonham on drums and Jimmy Page on guitar. Next comes my favourite song on the album, Babe I’m Gonna Leave You. A medieval, acoustic beginning is accompanied by a soft whine from Plant, but it is when he releases his emotion that the song really takes off. Plant’s caveman screams give the song a nice simplicity, which emphasises the lyric. Together with the thunderous drums, this is a great headbanger. The moping You Shook Me becomes a little repetitive, but allows a rest after the energy of the previous track. The guitar seems to sing along with the vocals, before a frenzy towards the end.
Dazed and Confused sounds as if it is being sung in Hell, flames rising all around the band as they play. A sinister opening and an eerie middle section explode into a wild guitar solo and crashing drumming. The falling background guitar sounds like the screams of people as they burn. But these seem distant compared to the roaring of Plant, who sings with the power of the Devil himself. Your Time Is Gonna Come follows, with its heavenly organ contrasting beautifully. Slower and more chillaxed, it’s like a hymn with a chorus fit for a gospel choir.
I Can’t Quit You Baby highlights the blues influence on the record, although along with the other Willie Dixon adaptation, You Shook Me, it is my least favourite song on the record. How Many More Times, with it’s fantastic bassline, awesome drumming and varied structure, is an epic finale to the record.