When I go and visit my home city of St. Louis, a quick spin the dial will usually give you 5-6 choices of various forms of classic rock, where the library ends about the time Clinton assumed office. For someone coming to his home region, steeped in nostalgia, this is a good thing, as the music sets the mood, and the memories come flooding back.
But as Thomas Wolfe said: You can't go home. I've changed, and was not the same 18 year old who was so keen on getting out of town and conquering the world (and how is that conquest coming along, mister? Hmmm ... ). But one memory that stuck in my head was a "contest" they had circa 1985 or so - the DJ got in his head to play several Led Zeppelin songs (Black Dog, Communication Breakdown, Immigrant Song and Dazed and Confused) - and people were asked to call in to vote for their favorite. They declare a winner, and it is all a success. I couldn't get my call in because all the lines were busy the whole time. This was the power of Led Zeppelin in St. Louis in the mid 1980's - arguably the whole Midwest.
|This was the radio station I grew up listening to|
Going back? Nothing changed, it is still as
awesome as ever!
The Cynicism melted away, and I preorderd the vinyl. And then found out that the vinyl pressing plants were so busy that the vinyl would have to wait a couple of weeks, but CD's were out, and the FLAC files were downloadable. I couldn't wait. I downloaded all 3 in 24/96. You call it weakness, I call it Led Zeppelin!
You know? This is the best and most detailed (not analytical) I have ever heard them - Communications Breakdown, Dazed and Confused, The Immigrant Song ... all sound as they should, and if you system is revealing enough - it will have the sense of "presence" we're all trying to achieve. What I noticed is none of the instruments, vocals and other things never get congested as they sometimes did in earlier mixes on the reference system. And of special note, is that on Whole Lotta Love (LZ2), there are a ton of cymbal hits. Previously I thought they messed up the recording. Nope. On this master, the cymbals sound like cymbals. For recording quality, you won't find better out there, I don't think - all the tracks are far better than I have heard on CD and used vinyl. Not only is it a rational path for a record collector frustrated with locating a good sounding copy, I'd say the FLAC version offers nearly a definitive version.
I only, as of the writing, Have I and II on vinyl, and with a quick spin, it sounds better than the FLAC. I was wondering if they did a special version for vinyl - or saved the highest 24/192 for it? Or perhaps it is just that the "imperfections in vinyl" forced the engineers to work their hearts out and came up with a better product. Or my theory ... Classic Rock of this caliber needs an LP to be absolutely right.
I could continue to heap accolades upon this release, but really all I have to say is to pick up the music in your preferred format and ENJOY it - and the better your system sounds, the better the presentation will be, and this is one of those rare cases where favorite music has an uncompromising sound quality.
I have to go, my air guitar solo starts soon, I'm playing Led Zeppelin II, The Lemon Song ...