Seattle Center Coliseum, Seattle, Washington – July 17, 1973
Disc 1 (52:29) Band Announcements, Rock And Roll, Celebration Day, Bring It On Home Intro / Black Dog, Over The Hills And Far Away, Misty Mountain Hop, Since I’ve Been Loving You, No Quarter
Disc 2 (51:38) The Song Remains The Same, The Rain Song, Dazed And Confused
Disc 3 (75:11) Stairway To Heaven, Moby Dick, Heartbreaker, Whole Lotta Love, Crowd Anticipation, The Ocean
I acquired my first Zeppelin box set back in the late 80’s at a record convention, it was called The Trademark Of Quality Years (# 264 on page 375 of Robert Godwin’s 3rd edition of The Illustrated Collectors Guide To Led Zeppelin), it was made up of re issues of the labels earliest and best work, it contained my first taste of Seattle 73 on the V 1/2 title. As CD’s came to prominence and more shows in complete form started becoming available, I sold most of my vinyl, something I regret to this day. Years later I would come to discover there were actually two excellent audience sources for the Seattle show, the vinyl releases all come from source one, V 1/2 Performed Live In Seattle (Highway HiFi HH Seattle 1-4), Seattle Daze (Box Top HH Seattle 1-4), Seattle 73 (Phoenix 4472A-D), and The Final Option (Various) are just some of the titles. The second source would make up the majority of the CD releases, Grandiloquence (Antrabata ARM 17773), and Seattle Daze (Image Quality IQ 007/8/9) are two titles that come from the second source. It would be a now legendary label that would combine the two audience recordings into the entire concert, Complete Seattle (The Diagrams Of Led Zeppelin TDOLZ Vol 98) is an excellent title that has been in my collection for years. It should be noted that there is a third source, an incomplete soundboard recording that has been released many times over, curiously I only have the audience sources in my collection. Please follow the link and read GS review for this title, the body of it is very old when he was contributing reviews to the excellent Underground Uprising site.
This new release from Eat A Peach uses a mix very similar to the TDOLZ title, the sound for both sources is excellent. When compared to that title this new Peach title is a bit louder and has a bit more hiss as well but offers a nice full sound I prefer. It is nice that these labels are starting to leave the tapes alone and use a much more gentle mastering technique. The first source is used at 13:02 of No Quarter and is handled much better than the TDOLZ, the sound level is closer making for an easier transition, for those that remember the TDOLZ was a much harder transition and was very noticeable. There was also a small glitch during the tail end of Moby Dick, on the TDOLZ titles it’s at 32:56, that glitch is not found on this title.
The playing on this concert is superb, the band always seemed to play well in Seattle, a little something for Hendrix’s home town I suppose. Page’s leads while transitioning from Misty Mountain Hop into Since I’ve Been Loving You is breathtaking, it’s like your first love, you just don’t forget it. Many reviewers praise No Quarter, I agree it is mysterious and what I like the most is the sound of Bonham’s drums, they have an excellent sound and are thankfully clear and very well defined in this recording. Dazed and Confused is epic, by this point in the tour it was exceeding 30 minutes, Plant asks if anyone remembers the Seattle Pop Festival (the only time the band played a bill with The Doors). After the lyrics are through and the instrumentalists take over, prepare to be trampled under Bonham’s foot, it sounds like a herd of running animals leading into a devastating oriental riffs section then into San Francisco.
Robert seems to have great affection for the audience, his Plantations are very sincere and his vocals at the beginning of Stairway echo this sentiment, the song is the culmination of the evening and the band deliver an excellent, passion filled version. The energy level is raised a notch by the time they rip into Heartbreaker, Luis Rey refers to Page’s solo as epileptic, I can only agree and one can picture Page’s body contorting as the music is channeled through his body and out through his guitar. A superb rendition of The Ocean brings a close to the proceedings….”It’s A Good night from the four lads!”, a good night yes indeed.
The packaging is brilliant, they use the original vinyl cover from the Highway HiFi title, it looks yellowed like discovering a very old document, this art work is also used for the CD’s, each have a different color which is nice. The CD sleeves all have nice live shots from the tour and there is an 8 page insert with more live shots and liner notes from The Rover. A very nice presentation, great to see a label committed to providing excellent packaging with well planned and executed releases, Peachy keen for sure.If you liked this review, buy me a cup of joe. (Suggested: $3 a shot or $7.5 for a double)