Live In Sydney 1972 (Equinox EX-00-005)
Showground, Sydney, AU – February 27th, 1972
(71:00): Black Dog, Bron-Yr-Aur Stomp, Rock And Roll, Whole Lotta Love, Rock And Roll / Whole Lotta Love, Germaine Greer interview, Perth radio interview
The first recordings of Led Zeppelin’s Sydney show on February 27th were extremely fragmented. Found due to the diligence of some well known Zeppelin collectors, four songs began circuating on Australian Tour 1972 Part 1 (Black Cat BC-34) released in 1992. This title has “Immigrant Song” to “Dazed & Confused” from the Melbourne show on disc one and “Rock And Roll” and “Whole Lotta Love” from Sydney on disc two. The tape is poor sounding and runs too fast.
In the summer of 2000 the Equinox label released a great seven disc box set called Thunder Downunder with all of the tapes from the tour that were available at that time (Adelaide, Melbourne, Sydney, and Brisbane). Live In Sydney 1972 is a one-disc title that has an upgraded generation of the older fragment of “Black Dog,” “Bron-Yr-Aur Stomp,” “Rock And Roll,” and “Whole Lotta Love.”
The sound is distant but clear and was a great release until an alternate tape with much more of the show surfaced several years afterwards and pressed on Ayers Rock (Tarantura TCD-2). The best version of the more complete tape can be found on Balloon Goes Up On Led Zeppelin (Empress Valley EVSD-461/462).
The Equinox Sydney can be found either in the boxset or separately. Its real value is not so much in the musical part, but in the extra tracks. For those who like to collect radio broadcasts and interviews, there is a half hour of rare material which is very interesting to hear.
The Germanine Greer interview is five minutes and the footage can be found on the official DVD. The final track of the set is a half hour long broadcast on Perth radio. The beginning captures a news broadcast speaking about farmers, corporations, and that Zeppelin’s Melbourne concert would NOT be broadcast on radio as had been rumored.
The final is a Radio Perth interview with Jimmy Page, Robert Plant and John Paul Jones speaking about the history of the band and their current artistic expression on their fourth LP. Page speaks about the New Yardbirds and their current album. Plant is asked about “Immigrant Song.” This interview if the source for the famous quote: “We went to Iceland, and it made you think of Vikings and big ships… and John Bonham’s stomach… and bang, there it was – Immigrant Song.”
At one point Page is asked about the incident with Eva Von Zeppelin complaining about a bunch of “screaming monkeys” using her family name. This story is traditionally said to have occurred in February 1970 when in Denmark, prompting them to change their name to The Nobs for that performance. But Page mentions von Zeppelin confronting them at a television studio while Zeppelin were taping a rare TV appearance. She flipped out, according to Page, when she saw the cover of their first album, which was used for incidental shots in the telecast.
This suggests that event occurring not in 1970 but in March, 1969. Zeppelin didn’t appear on Danish TV in February 1970 but a year earlier in March 1969. It was a live performance and the cover of Led Zeppelin was used in the telecast. It could be argued that Zeppelin changed their name to The Nobs in 1970 in response to the event in 1969.
Sydney comes packaged in a single pocket cardboard sleeve with nice graphic and pictures from the Melbourne show. There are other, better sources for the actual concert, but this disc is worth having for the rare interviews.If you liked this review, buy me a cup of joe. (Suggested: $3 a shot or $7.5 for a double)