Dusseldorf 1970 (Reel Masters 001)
Rheinhalle, Dusseldorf, Germany – March 12, 1970
Disc 1 (56.08): 1. Communication Breakdown 2. I Can’t Quit You Baby 3. Dazed And Confused 4. Heartbreaker 5. White Summer / Black Mountain Side
Disc 2 (63.42): 1. Since I’ve Been Loving You 2. Thank You 3. Moby Dick 4. How Many More Times 5. Whole Lotta Love
Dusseldorf 1970 is sourced from a newly surfaced audience tape that somehow slipped through the fingers of the usual suspects, Empress Valley and Tarantura. It is the first Led Zeppelin release (to my knowledge) by the Reel Masters Label.
What an excellent debut it is for this label! This performance was the last of the Spring 1970 European tour before the band headed back to North America. The recording is very good for an audience source from that time period. The sound quality compares favorably to the famous March 7, 1970 show at the Casino in Switzerland. We have had partial audience releases of the latter part of the Dusseldorf 1970 show available in mariginal sound quality in the past. However, the Reel Masters release is much better sounding and nearly complete. It also confirms the unique setlist that has the band opening the show with “Communication Breakdown,” a song typically reserved as a encore.
The tape has a handful of small cuts that do not detract from the listening experience. The concert overall is above average with a good audience atmosphere. One highlight of the recording is the version of “White Summer/Black Mountain Side” with Page in excellent form (with some assistance from Bonzo). This title is a welcome addition to the live catalogue and will appeal to the general collector.