Alabama Getaway (Empress Valley Supreme Disc EVSD 358/359)
Auditorium, Mobile, AL – May 13, 1973
Disc 1: Rock and Roll, Celebration Day, Bring It On Home Introduction/ Black Dog, Over the Hills and Far Away, Misty Mountain Hop, Since I’ve Been Loving You, No Quarter, The Song Remains the Same, The Rain Song
Disc 2: Dazed and Confused (includes San Francisco), Stairway to Heaven, Moby Dick
This show appeared on CD back in 1991 as part of a handful of ‘73 soundboards which came out on the Flying Disc/Ghost Records family. Upwardly Mobile and Mobile Dick were featured on Ghost Records. In 1996, Midas Touch released this as Goin’ Mobile which included a longer introduction and ran at the correct speed where Ghost’s ran way too fast. This tape also appeared as IV1/2+ on Last Stand Disc with part of the Chicago show from 7/6/73. This is definitely one of the better soundboard tapes to surface from the 1973 American tour. The bass is not only present, it has depth and warmth to it and the balance between the instruments and vocals is excellent.
The American Tour in 1973 came just one month after Led Zeppelin had finished their third European Tour. This tour of Europe was what many consider to be some of their greatest shows. This show in Mobile is about a week and a half into the American tour and the band sound refreshed after the short break, really giving an inspired performance.
Page has some great solos in “Since I’ve Been Loving You” and really lets loose in the newest addition to the set, “No Quarter”, where Jones shows off some awesome piano work as well. “Dazed” is unfortunately missing the first few notes but does contain some great Bonham/Jones interplay. There is a level problem in the left channel in “Stairway to Heaven” not found on the other releases but the channel in finally restored to it’s proper level at about 4:45 into the song (I found it difficult to detect when the level actually drops but it is obvious when it comes back). This is a show for Bonham fanatics, not only is his playing right on in “Moby Dick” but the sound of the drums in this recording is captured very well. The tape unfortunately ends after “Moby Dick” missing “Heartbreaker”, “Whole Lotta Love” and the encore. Empress Valley has boosted the levels over Midas Touch and as a result, got a much livelier sound. (WGPSEC)If you liked this review, buy me a cup of joe. (Suggested: $3 a shot or $7.5 for a double)