Led Zeppelin – The Destroyer (The Diagrams Of Led Zeppelin TDOLZ Vol.17R)

The Destroyer (The Diagrams Of Led Zeppelin TDOLZ Vol.17R) front slip cover

The Destroyer (The Diagrams Of Led Zeppelin TDOLZ Vol.17R) front cover

Richfield Coliseum, Cleveland, OH – April 28th, 1977 
Disc 1 (61:47) Introduction, The Song Remains The Same, Sick Again, Nobody’s Fault But Mine, In My Time Of Dying, Since I’ve Been Loving You, No Quarter

Disc 2 (43:49):  Ten Years Gone, The Battle Of Evermore, Going To California, Black Country Woman, Bron-Yr-Aur Stomp, White Summer / Black Mountain Side, Kashmir

Disc 3 (62:13):  Out On The Tiles / Moby Dick, guitar solo, Achilles Last Stand, Stairway To Heaven, Rock And Roll, Trampled Underfoot

The Destroyer – The Storongest Edition was among the very first titles issued in 1996 by the upstart TDOLZ label and given the sound quality become one of their most popular and sought after titles.  It wasn’t a surprise when they released a remastered version in their final batch of titles three years later.  The Destroyerlooked to improve on the earlier release with some success.  In the years following the release of this other editions were released on Flesh Records (which was universally panned) and by Empress Valley (where they dropped twelve minutes of “Moby Dick” for some reason).  A fuller sounding version of this tape source appears on The Return Of The Destroyer on Live Remains but has been remastered heavily.  The bottom line is the definitive edition of this tape has yet to see silver release despite it being in circulation for more than thirty years.

This audience recording remains, despite the cuts and flaws, one of the outstanding documents from Zeppelin’s eleventh tour.  It captures the same kind of sound that Jimmy Page was trying to achieve on the studio recordings by taking into account, not only the instruments, but the effect it has upon the room it is played.  This tape pick that up perfectly and displays the power and mystery of Led Zeppelin in concert with one of the best live versions of “No Quarter” on record. 

There are also little mysterious little fragments in the show like the impromptu “Surrender” before “Since I’ve Been Loving You.”  Since it is cut before and after the context is missing and one hopes that another tape source were to surface in the future which would provide the missing information.  Before “Black Country Woman” Plant mentions “Dancing Days” and sings the first line of “Bob Dylan’s Blues” (Well, the Lone Ranger and Tonto / They are ridin’ down the line / Fixin’ ev’rybody’s troubles / Ev’rybody’s ‘cept mine / Somebody musta tol’ ’em / That I was doin’ fine).  This is the only recorded instance of Led Zeppelin ever quoting Dylan on stage and raises the interesting issue of the relationship between the two.  Robert Plant would also mention Dylan on stage when he introduced “In My Time Of Dying” since Dylan covered the same tune for his debut album in 1962.  Jimmy Page also mentions Dylan’s 1978 show in Nuremberg in a long interview before the Knebworth festival in 1979, but otherwise there is nothing. 

Although Dylan collaborated with and admired many artists, he has never said anything about Zeppelin and the only hint of his attitude of the band comes from the famous story from the Los Angeles Swan Song party in 1974.  Manager Peter Grant introduced himself to Dylan as the manager of Led Zeppelin and Dylan’s reply is “I don’t come to you with my problems, do I?”  It gives the impression that he didn’t (and still doesn’t) think much of our four heroes.  Nevertheless the second night in Cleveland is one of the legendary concerts in Led Zeppelin’s live history and the TDOLZ isn’t a bad version of the tape.  Some version should be in the collection.  The first edition in 1996 was issued in a pretty cardboard gatefold sleeve, but the reissue comes in a fatboy jewel case with a slipcover with the Frank Frazetta The Destroyer painting on the front cover.      

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  1. There was an LP Destroyer with the soundboard recording of the previous night.

  2. Oh, you forgot to mention that the 2nd Edition also comes with a mini-poster of the Frazetta illustration.

  3. Just found this at my local used LP shop, along with a dozen other titles, the packaging was quite nice, and the sound is as good as one can reasonably expect. The performance *is* amazing, I can see why people thought this was one of the best (if not *the* best) shows for this tour (if not for this year)!

    But this is not the same performance as the original “Destroyer” bootleg LP, to my ears, although I’ll admit that it’s been at least two decades since I heard the original 2-LP set, and my reccollection might be foggy… can anyone verify?


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