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Led Zeppelin – Welcome Back Led Zeppelin (Tarantura NCNY-001,2)

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Welcome Back Led Zeppelin (Tarantura NCNY-001,2)

Nassau Coliseum, Uniondale, NY – June 15th, 1972

Disc 1 (60:10):  Immigrant Song, Heartbreaker, Black Dog, Since I’ve Been Loving You, Stairway To Heaven, Going To California, That’s The Way, Tangerine, Bron-Yr-Aur Stomp

Disc 2 (61:51):  Dazed & Confused (includes Walter’s Walk, The Crunge), What Is And What Should Never Be, Moby Dick (middle cut), Whole Lotta Love (includes Boogie Chillun’, You Don’t Let Me Stop, Hand Jive, Hello Mary Lou, Money Honey, Heartbreak Hotel, Truckin’ Little Mama, Millionaire Blues, Going Down Slow (guitar solo cut)

The eighth Zeppelin tour of the United States in the summer of 1972 has been said to be one of their greatest. Unfortunately, given the fragmentary documents of the tour, we really have to rely upon the written press reports of the time to appreciate it. This is the situation since the audio documents we have are either fragmentary or poorly recorded.

The most well known recording, the show at the LA Forum on June 25th, has been released many times. Opinion is divided on that show; some say it’s a classic, and others are not impressed with that show. Welcome Back, released by Tarantura in 1997, records one of the “legendary” shows, not only of the tour.

The legend of this show rests primarily upon the Roy Hollingworth article (“Led Zeppelin: The Forgotten Giants”). Another excellent review of the show is an eyewitness account by Hugh Jones in a 1998 issue of Proximity, where he says this is the last of the “innocent” Zeppelin, before their record-breaking ninth tour in 1973.

The tape for this show can be described as good bordering on very good. It is very clear and perfectly captures the atmosphere in the newly opened Nassau Coliseum that evening. The tapers are the marijuana-smoking Long Islanders who also tape many Zeppelin shows in the Metropolitan area in the 70′s (they also taped the 1971 MSG show (How’ve Ya Been?:  Riot At The Garden 1971 (The Diagrams Of Led Zeppelin TDOLZ 0020/21/28)) and the first MSG show in 1975 (Heavy Metal Hullabaloo (The Diagrams Of Led Zeppelin TDOLZ Vol. 63)). 

They are not too noisy during this show except in the beginning of “Stairway To Heaven,” where they are sorting out seating arrangements. The legendary status of this show is definitely confirmed on the tape. The band attack the set list with unbridled confidence and authority. The first part of the show is amazing, with excellent versions of “Black Dog” and “Since I’ve Been Loving You.”

The energy builds throughout the show, and both “Dazed & Confused” and the “Whole Lotta Love” medley are rightly praised as being one of the best ever. Unfortunately, the encores of “Rock & Roll,” “Communication Breakdown,” “Thank You,” and “Bring It On Home” are absent from the tape. Further, Tarantura have duplicated the beginning of “Whole Lotta Love” onto the end to provide continuity. This show, which can be found also on Tangerine (Mad Dogs) and Long Island Line (IQ) is an essential show for anyone’s collection.

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Led Zeppelin - Welcome Back Led Zeppelin (Tarantura NCNY-001,2), 2.5 out of 5 based on 3 ratings

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  1. Avatar of roertd7
    roertd7 says
    April 23, 2008, 9:49 am

    Glad to see this getting a review. IMHO it’s one of the all time greats even though it’s incomplete. I don’t even mind the stoned hippies wittering on about seating arrangements too much. Listen out for one of them asking, “What’s a piper?” at the beginning of STH. Sound quality is pretty good and the performance is real heavy – LZ at their best.

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