Today on Blogcritics
Home » Led Zep – Top over-rated

Led Zep – Top over-rated

Please Share...Tweet about this on Twitter0Share on Facebook0Share on Google+0Share on LinkedIn0Pin on Pinterest0Share on TumblrShare on StumbleUpon0Share on Reddit0Email this to someone

I’d like to kick things off with that dinosaur classic, the most over-rated ‘heavy metal’ band of all time LED ZEPPELIN.

At least a full ONE-FOURTH of their output was either kitsch or filler (often both at the same time), as my humble list (below) demonstrates. Hippie dreck lyrics, hookless guitar ‘riffs,’ screeching vocals, acoustic meanderings, sorry folk imitations and brainless blues-rawk rip-offs – any of the below, if found on ANY other group’s records, would exclude them from all serious consideration.

But with Zep, all is holy. I wonder why? The press probably exults them because, owing to Jann Wenner’s vengeful exclusion of them in his pages, they have turned liberal guilt into guilty pleasure. Perhaps radio loves them because they’re so message-less that all the advertising makes its through the craniums first tenderized by Zep’s bludgeoning attack.

As an extra bonus, I’d add severe censure alone for ‘Stairway to Heaven’ – not that it’s kitsch or filler, but because it established the terrible template of the feminized (now corporate) ballad metal which tortures the world over to this overplayed day. A pox on the Zep!

Black Mountain
I Can’t Quit You Baby
How Many More Times
Lemon Song
Moby Dick (especially live)
Celebration Day
Since I’ve Been Loving You
Out On The Tiles
Bron-Y-Aur Stomp
Hats Off To (Roy) Harper
The Battle Of Evermore
Misty Mountain Hop
Four Sticks
The Crunge
Dancing Days
D’Yer Mak’Er
In The Light
Bron-Y-Aur
Boogie With Stu
Sick Again
For Your Life
Royal Orleans
Candy Store Rock
Hots On For Nowhere
South Bound Saurez
Hot Dog
Carouselambra
[All of Coda]

Powered by

About DAyTripper

  • Eric Olsen

    I agree that Led Zeppelin is overrated in some quarters, which is why I put them sixth and not higher. I also agree that many of the songs you list are filler, which they had increasingly more of on the later albums.

    But I completely disagree that the below songs are anything less than very good and most are great.

    Can’t Quit You Baby
    How Many More Times
    Lemon Song
    Moby Dick
    Since I’ve Been Loving You
    Misty Mountain Hop
    Dancing Days
    D’Yer Mak’Er
    In The Light

  • http://www.utopia2000.org Barry Stoller

    Lemon Song, to my ears, is certain filler (even if it’s nice playing) – plus a rip-off. Moby Dick – intolerable! – everyone at concerts went looking for grass; no one did that on Stairway. The last three are total trash – bad pop tunes played with no finesse whatsoever. If In The Light turns you on, get Iron Butterfly’s greatest hits immediately – they did that junk much better! The rest, whatever, I’ll concede (although the singing on Since I’ve Been Loving You is wretched).

  • http://www.cdbaby.com/X-15 Douglas Mays

    Interesting statement about Led Zeppelin. I like them, thought they were great, but not really god-like or anything. Maybe the greatest heavy metal band, but then again look at the catagory. Heavy Metal. What the hell is that? How about Heavy Pottery? Oh, I guess that would be Melissa Ethridge or something.

    Overall, Zep is great. But hey, I was heavy on Grand Funk Railroad in 7th grade, and Ten Years After I really liked.

    I remember once I was being a DJ in Steamboat Springs, CO for a week and I put on that Zep song about ‘When the Levy Breaks…’. Man, the house went crazy, it sounded soooo great.

    Naw, Zep is great. How great? I won’t say. I’m not gonna waste my energy throwing a fit about it.

    peaceloveguidance

  • duane

    These are filler:

    I Can’t Quit You Baby
    Lemon Song
    Moby Dick (especially live)
    D’Yer Mak’Er
    Candy Store Rock

    25% filler? That’s not a bad batting average, dontcha think?

    As for impugning anything on their 4th or 5th albums, masterpieces, with the exception of D’Yer Mak’Er, blaaaggghhhh. You just don’t like those songs.

    And presuming to censure LZ for Stairway to Heaven? It’s just the same old deal. First, 6 billion people go nuts for the song. Then they crawl all over each other to be the first to pronounce themselves too cool to like it. Blaaaaagggghhh. You probably don’t like “Hey Jude” either.

    Hippie dreck lyrics, hookless guitar ‘riffs,’ screeching vocals, acoustic meanderings, sorry folk imitations and brainless blues-rawk rip-offs…

    You’ve just given the reasons for their popularity, while spinning it to justify your own low opinion of them. Let’s rip up on Pink Floyd next! Now there’s some filler material.

  • http://www.cdbaby.com/X-15 Douglas (again…)

    Oh, ‘hippie dreck lyrics’? “Yellow juice runnin’ down my leg…”

    Well, not always… Couldn’t resist a comment on that one.

    peaceloveguidance

  • The Dude

    Of course, you do know that the line is “squeeze me baby/’til the juice runs down my leg” and it’s from Robert Johnson’s epic poem Travelin’ Riverside Blues.

  • http://www.cdbaby.com/X-15 Douglas (again…)

    Dude,

    yes, right on to bring it up! And in my abstraction (pretty much how all us kids sang it in 7th grade-early ’70s) it shows how things transfrom.

    Anyway, cool for showing the lineage of the song. RB sure fits into the influence catagory.

    peaceloveguidance

  • http://www.morethings.com/log Al Barger

    Why would you judge somebody by their least good work? Don’t listen to those. Listen to their best work.

    Led Zeppelin aren’t particularly my big fave- you may even claim that they are significantly overrated with their deity status.

    However, you just can’t deny their best work. There are at least a couple of dozen Zep tracks that are worthy of their exalted reputations, starting with pretty much every song on Zoso.

    Hey, I’m much more of an Elvis Costello type of guy, but even I recognize that Zep was major league.

  • Eric Olsen

    Apart from Bonham’s lumbering through it like a stegasaurus on a wooden floor, I love “D’yer Maker,” a loving, catchy tribute to reggae and proof tha they weren’t just Celtic blues-rock on steroids.

  • http://www.utopia2000.org Barry Stoller

    Are we SURE that’s a ‘reggae’ tribute? I mean, yes, Rolling Stone called it such when they trashed the album (rightfully so) in their infamous ’73 review – but is there anything else to back that claim? Seems to be that tune is nothing but the clumsy ‘early rock n roll’ attempt Zep tried again with Candy Store Rock, Hot Dog, eventually the Honeydrippers. Reggae? Eric, I think your devotion to Rolling Stone is pretty obvious here. And, again, the tune is trash, you’d stomp it to death yourself if you ever came across it on a Bloodrock album.

  • Eric Olsen

    Do you really think I recall what Rolling Stone said about something 31 years ago? When I DID read Rolling Stone, I also read about 20 other music publications. There was never anything special about Rolling Stone as opposed to other publications.

    Regardless, it’s a great song with an obvious reggae beat and structure whose title is a phonetic pronunciation of “Jamaica.” I would call it a reggae tribute regardless of who else did or didn’t say something similar.

    And if I heard the song on a Bloodrock album, it would still be a great song. I have no opinion either way on Bloodrock, having never owned an album of theirs, nor having heard more than a handful of songs.

  • http://www.utopia2000.org Barry Stoller

    Yes, Eric, I do really think you recall what Rolling Stone said about something 31 years ago (especially since they are followed, much like the NYT, by every other media in perpetuity). Your ‘greatest’ list, aka the ‘objective truth,’ points towards that conclusion.

    The title D’yer Maker might be some pun thing on reggae but, no sir, there is no ‘obvious reggae beat and structure’ to that 50’s schtick. Yellow Man – now there’s your obvious reggae beat and structure.

    Just for the sake of argument, If Zep was really trying for reggae with that tune, then they qualify for the whitest band on the face of the earth. Even Rush copped the groove better – and that’s a dire assessment.

    And if you heard that song on a Bloodrock album… well, you wouldn’t because the corporate rock n rock infrastructure wouldn’t encourage that. Not that Bloodrock ever recorded anything nearly as wimped out as D’yer Maker.

  • http://www.utopia2000.org Barry Stoller

    Check out
    http://www.furious.com/perfect/jimmypage.html
    for an unusual negative assessment of Jimmy Page.

  • Vern Halen

    Say what you want about Zep, much of it true: messageless, kitsch filler, hippie dreck. The fact of the matter is they had an identifiable sound and look, and for whatever reason, it’s kept them near the top of the rock heap for decades. Consider: take the above and trade “hippie dreck” for “hillbilly dreck” and you could be describing Elvis. Trade it for “punk dreck” and you could be describing Ramones/ Pistols/ Clash/ Nirvana (well, the Pistols & Clash had a message, I guess, but no one remembers and/or cares). All of whom have an identifiable sound & look & fans ready, willing & able to take offense at any slighting of their heroes.

    Think of Zep, Ramones, Elvis, (name your fave), and you realize that part of the reason they were so influential in rock history was because they were in some ways a cartoon, or maybe a better word is caricature – a picture drawn in extremes. And remember: real people don’t sit around thinking about the bustle in their hedgerow any more than they think about how there’s no stoppin’ the cretins from hoppin’.

  • http://www.foliage.com/~marks Mark Saleski

    whose title is a phonetic pronunciation of “Jamaica.”

    “jamaiker”

    as in “didja make her?” (it’s a sex thing)

    pathetically, i think i learned this from a vh-1 behind the music.

  • http://www.unproductivity.com Tom Johnson

    I didn’t really realize “D’yer Maker” riled so many people up. And I quite like the song. Go figure.

  • http://www.foliage.com/~marks Mark Saleski

    yep, especially all of that ‘hippie dreck’.

    i’ve got a post about The Darkness coming out tomorrow. maybe we can switch from making fun of zeppelin to making fun of me.

    ya never know.

  • http://www.utopia2000.org Barry Stoller

    [Barry’s comment is in response to a deleted comment attributed to “the Devil,” who hs been banned]

    Hey, shouldn’t you be over in Iraq killing civilians or something? Have no fear, your precious Zeppelin will still be on the airwaves (along with all that corporate advertising that’s obviously emptied out your skull) when you get back.

  • Peter G.

    Barry, what is the message of “I Am the Walrus”? If you are looking for messages (what ever that means)in rock songs, you are a complete idiot, but that is quite obvious. If you do not like Zeppelin, the simple solution is to not listen to them, duh! Of course from what I gather of you, Barry, it apparently is acceptable to be human filler.Hey Barry, what is the difference between rock and roll, and rock? Why don’t you ask Eric Olsen, neither of you is very bright.

  • http://www.utopia2000.org Barry Stoller

    The ‘message’ of ‘I Am the Walrus,’ as far as I can tell, is: ‘I love getting stoned and making music.’ The message of your post, as far as I can tell, is: ‘don’t criticize what you do not like.’ So take your own advice and stay away from rock criticism.

  • Peter G.

    Barry, you get that from ‘I Am the Walrus”? You are an idiot! By the way, I happen to enjoy that song as well as most all of the Beatles offerings, I’m just not an idiot such as yourself who thinks or tries to educate his empty mind through rock songs. Try Tolstoy, then again that would be a bit over your head. As for rock criticism, it’s mighty easy to critique. When your sorry ass influences rock and roll the way Zeppelin has, then you can spout off. Until then, why don’t you and the rest of the pathetic critics that you pander to find something constructive to do with your recognizably miserable lives. And the message of my first post magnanimous one is:you Barry are not very bright and you just proved it once more with your lastest post.

  • Peter G.

    Barry, I was wondering, since you are an obviously gifted intellect, would “All You Need Is Love” and “She’s A Rainbow” qualify as hippie dreck (whatever that means)? The fact you begin your initial posting using dinosaur and heavy metal in reference to Zeppelin more than proves you are not even capable of intelligent, original criticism. It certainly displays a limited grasp of rock music. I should stay away from rock criticism? At least I can come up with some original thoughts; what’s more, critics are merely people who have no talent of their own, so they need to bring down, or elevate, those who do in order to try and validate their own worthless existence. That applies to you Barry, any way you want to look at it. Bye. Looking forward to your next idiotic posting. Hurry up!

  • Peter G.

    I’m so damn bored this evening, Barry, that I’m going to continue to kick the shit out of your sorry ass! I’m thinking duane up there should take over for you. At least the guy can think ,let alone think for himself. I believe it’s safe to say that only Mr.Lennon would know what is being conveyed in “I Am the Walrus”,oh great genius Barry. I’ll venture to speculate that it’s a Lennon word play (see “Come Together”)influenced by perhaps Joyce or Dylan Thomas, two authors you need not bother attempting to read as you will not make it past the title pages. ‘I love getting stoned and making music’? How profound! Do you fancy Mr.Lennon that stupid?

  • Nick Jones

    Well, Peter, if you must be able to read Tolstoy to critique, then someone who has read FINNEGANS WAKE must be qualified to be Final Arbitrator of All Opinions Musical. I will use the royal “we” from now on. Bow.

  • Peter G.

    Missed the point there, nick ole’boy. Allow me to straighten you out like I have to straighten dumbass out(apparently your not much more advanced) My point was, PAY ATTENTION NOW, that if your looking for meaningful “messages”,better Count Tolstoy than rock music. Did you get all that,Nick ole’ BOY?

  • Peter G.

    I’m so much smarter than everyone else! Would, could anyone at least try and challenge me? Now we are so fortunate as to have yet another imbecile join the fold. Welcome, Nick!

  • Nick Jones

    We checked, and we can’t get what you claim to be saying from the paragraph cited:

    “I’m just not an idiot such as yourself who thinks or tries to educate his empty mind through rock songs. Try Tolstoy, then again that would be a bit over your head.”

    It would seem that you are first saying Barry should educate himself with Tolstoy rather than rock songs, then say that he should choose Tolstoy over rock songs in order to find meaningful messages. But why choose? May not both have meaning, albeit to different degrees,if one hath but eyes to see?

    Personally, we have always cherished “I Am The Walrus” as a favorite bit of psychedelic Dada/Surrealism, and 98% of “Physical Graffiti” as top-of-the-line late Seventies commercial rock.

    Bow.

  • http://www.rodneywelch.blogspot.com/ Rodney Welch

    Wow, Led Zeppelin is “over-rated”? Wow — has anyone ever written such an unusual opinion? Obviously not, as you can no doubt tell by the extraordinary amount of debate you have stirred up in our little community. No wonder they call you “Mr. Iconoclast”! You are truly a man who “marches to the beat of his own drummer”! I’ll bet you don’t “suffer fools gladly” either! I await your next brave opinion, which I’m sure will no doubt encourage all of us to give our comfortable opinions the re-think they so sorely need. Tell me, what do you think of this “rap” music? Is it really “here to stay”?

  • http://www.utopia2000.org Barry Stoller

    I suspect the above is some clever form of sarcasm totally over my head but, hell, I’ll venture. I remember the exact moment I first heard ‘The Breaks’ over the radio; I thought ‘novelty.’ Shortly after I heard ‘The Message’ (later ‘New York’) blasting across a street and I thought: this is fuckin’ IT – the new noise-art-political Subterranean Homesick Blues strong enough to kill Reaganomics. Well, that hope fell WAY short but rap has been important across the board. ‘Here to stay’? Depends on your skin color, probably.

  • Peter G.

    Who exactly is we, Nick? You have a rodent up your ass? It’s evident YOU can’t get it. This is THE point: all of rock music is over-rated to one extent or another; and a great many better ways exist to educate oneself and broaden one’s mind other than ROCK music; it does not even qualify necessarily as important. Far more important and beneficial to the world would be classical,jazz,blues,folk music(pick a continent, does not matter)anything but, get it now? No, one need not choose, just keep it in perspective. Rock and roll is fine and dandy, but no one ever involved in it would I consider to have anything THAT important to impart. Strange, can not seem to find where I suggested Barry choose. Over your empty little head indeed, Nick ole’girl. You have ceased to qualify as a boy. Bow? Only cocksuckers such as yourself do that. Real men die rather than bow, but you are what you certainly are.

  • Nick Jones

    With that rage (over NOTHING), shouldn’t you be up in a university tower with a sniper rifle?

    The “royal ‘we'” was a joke, a take off on intellectual snobbery, speaking of going over someone’s empty head. Read #24 again.

    And if you’re going to start with the “question your opponents’ manhood and/or sexual preference” tactic of debate and discourse, I’m not going to play. Although I do have to ask: your last initial…stands for ‘Gobbler’, yes?

  • Peter G.

    Don’t be ashamed of your sexuality, Nick. Anyone stupid enough to think using ‘we’qualifies as intellectual snobbery well, it kind of helps to be an intellectual in the first place. As for the sniper and rifle comment: only if you are in the crosshairs. What’s the rodent’s name could it be Barry? The last initial stands for GOD. No one is questioning your manhood, there is no need. You certainly are what you are.

  • SCOTTO

    Man, most all of you seem to be a little ‘touched’. Nick and Peter need either long vacations or therapy. It’s all arbitrary, so who really cares. Listen to what ever gets you through the night. I’ve always rather enjoyed Led Zep myself, but they are hardly gods or whatever some lonely people consider them. How about Van Morrison? Anyone want to take a shot at him?

  • Peter G.

    Touched, SCOTTO? You and ole’ Nick the girl should get together. Ladies and gentleman, idiot #4,592,342,230,500 has joined our “LITTLE COMMUNITY”. Welcome, SCOTTO! I need therapy? Is it my fault that I am intellectually superior to everyone?

  • SCOTTO

    Seek help, Peter, immediately! You are certainly no intellectual. Your emotions are way out of control. Nick is very sharp as even a blind man could see. You are definitely out of your league. Go read some of his other posts(Nick’s), he is my hero. How can I be more like you, Nick?

  • Nick Jones

    SCOTTO, I’m an Eno man myself. Thought I’d have a little fun with the whole concept of “my favorite [______] is better than yours, and your (sic) a moron” as a mode of legitimate discourse; never thought I’d touch off a firestorm.

    You’re right, it IS all arbitrary, but some people (over)react to the question of “who’s the best [______]?”, as if it were a matter of the balance of Good and Evil in the universe. I could be wrong, but I’m guessing it’s not.

    And I don’t need to come here to have someone become enraged and abusive because I disagree with them; I can get that from my brother.

  • SCOTTO

    That would be Brian, sure. I agree whole heartedly: enraged and abusive is an idiotic combination, and Peter G. definitely qualifies. Your so smart,Nick.

  • Nick Jones

    Not really. But I know what I like.

  • Shark

    Petey, I don’t wanna rain on your overly intellectual parade of long-since dead overrated Russian novelists, but any claim to intellectual superiority is immediately negated by your use of the phrase “duh!” in comment #19.

    Only a fucking moron would use that phrase. But you knew that — ’cause you’re so smart!

    Just trying to be helpful.

    PS: And Peter (may I call you a euphemism for a PRICK?) — I’m just happy to be a part of your first appearance on an internet message board. And to think it coincided with your first beer! Wow, how lucky we all are.

  • Shark

    Petey makes a really big, important point for the rest of the class:

    PeterG.This is THE point: all of rock music is over-rated to one extent or another; and a great many better ways exist to educate oneself and broaden one’s mind other than ROCK music; it does not even qualify necessarily as important. Far more important and beneficial to the world would be classical,jazz,blues,folk music(pick a continent, does not matter)anything but, get it now? No, one need not choose, just keep it in perspective. Rock and roll is fine and dandy, but no one ever involved in it would I consider to have anything THAT important to impart.

    Petey, just another tip: a lecture on expanding one’s mind through cultural diversity in music that is delivered via a retarded, rambling, junior-high level paragraph that can barely string together a series of coherent sentences doesn’t exactly support your assertion that you’re a real smart boy.

    My advice: make a passing reference to a dead Russian composer in your next post.

    (Try Google)

    PS: “…fine and dandy…” is a trite, archaic cliche that should be avoided by any writer concerned with quality and originality. But you knew that.

    Just trying to be helpful.

  • Nick Jones

    “Go read some of his other posts(Nick’s), he is my hero. How can I be more like you, Nick?”

    Are you familiar with the expression, “be careful what you wish for?”
    Okay, I’m not going to go into that.

    Read. Read everything, even things with which you would violently disagree. Evaluate. Adopt nothing that does not feel right in your heart and soul, whatever you believe those concepts to mean. Be aware that you can always be mistaken, and need to make adjustments.

    Be aware that most human beings are neither gods nor monsters. Anyone who tells you differently is trying to sell you something.

    If you are asked to do something that sounds like it is against your best interests, it probably is. Again, someone is trying to sell you something. Always ask ‘cui bono?’ – “for whose benefit?”

    Choose “inclusive” over “exclusive.”

  • SCOTTO

    Shark seems a little uptight. Why do you keep pandering to that fool, Peter G.? Overrated Russian novelist? You are not exactly any smarter than ole’ Petey, either. As for critiquing ole’ Petey’s writing, you may want to hire an editor yourself. Nick, where are you? Put this amateur, highly strung Shark in his place. You are far better qualified than I. Bow, Shark! P.S.: Only ONE Russian novelist mentioned. I believe Joyce was Irish, and Thomas Welsh. You and Petey need to go away and address your anger issues.

  • Shark

    Scotto, I’m never “uptight”. Just havin’ some fun with a garrulous motard.

    xxoo
    S

  • SCOTTO

    Petey is definitely a moron/retard. Did I get that correct? That’s very clever. Do you honestly consider Tolstoy overrated? Than what exactly would you consider literature? Rather enjoy the count myself. Nick, any profound thoughts pertaining to Russian lit?

  • Peter G.

    Shark, you have wounded me deeply! Welcome another imbecile folks! Hey, Scotto, you queer for Nick, or what, duh! Keep it to youselves, you sick bastards! I still RULE!!!!

  • SCOTTO

    Nothing wrong with having heroes other than ones self, oh superior Petey! By the tone and tenor of your frustrated posts, it would seem to me that it’s been a long time since you caught sight of a pussy other than in a photogragh. I do quite well myself, thank you. I must also, hesitantly, agree with Shark. Stop using duh. You come across like a prepubescent girl. Anyone care to take a shot at Van Morrison?

  • Nick Jones

    With all his talk about the alleged homosexuality of posters, anyone wanna take bets that he’s a self-hating closet case?

  • SCOTTO

    The one who points the finger……. Peter is too easy. Anyone want to take a shot at Kerouac? I know, I’m becoming redundant. Just trying to open as many cans as possible.

  • Justin GFY

    All of this rambling is seemingly pointless. Everybody has their own opinion and to become so heated over something that is only meant for entertainment is incohesively irate. In a situation such as a message board, nobody really knows anybody, so why do you all instantly seem to turn to the most primitive of all responses; anger?

    To be totally honest, I believe myself to be one of few people that critique led zeppelin that actually knows what playing an instrument (one relevant to rock music, although it’s not completely exclusive, IE john Paul Jones use of the mandolin, or Jimmy Page’s use of a 12 string guitar, most people who play guitar are outright AFRAID of 12 strings)is like, what’s involved, and what it takes. Jimmy Page is one of the most talented musicians ever, let alone guitarists. the man writes his own music, plays rhythm AS WELL AS lead guitars, does any of you have any idea how difficult it would be to stay in time when switching back and forth? Name anyguitarist out there, Jimmy Page is probably better, and please don’t name Hendrix, that’s just outright annoying

    as for whoever it was wh orepeatedly referenced authors of whatever genre of literature that would classify as, what does it have to do with rock music? maybe if someone wants to write a song they’ll turn to existing literature, but most people just have the ability to take their personal issues and make a song out of it. I cannot believe that any song done by Led Zeppelin was a “filler”. Even ones that may be considered a filler (possibly not up to Zeppelin’s amazing standards), could kick the ass out of most other bands leadoff singles. As for the Beatles, let’s talk about Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds, Yellow Submarine, were not those songs about drugs exclusively? So then why is it so infeasible that John Lennon’s genius was knowing that these topics would sell to rebellious young adults of the time? and to Peter G., worship someone besides yourself, it may help to increase your level of non academic intelligence, you know, the intelligence that actually matters? yeah that’s the one.

  • Nick Jones

    I usually turn to mockery before anger (not that the two can’t be interrelated), especially with Trolls, and no mercy at all for the sexist, racist, homophobic and xenophobic.

    I wouldn’t call myself a Zep fan, but I like a lot of their stuff. One of my regrets is hearing “Physical Grafitti” (which after thirty years is still in my album top ten) a week after they had played Indianapolis when I was in college; if I had known how great the album was, I wouldn’t have missed the concert.

  • http://www.makeyougohmm.com/ TDavid

    Well Al Barger thinks Sabbath is overrated so why not somebody else think Zeppelin is overrated? I chalk both these up to personal opinion because history thus far shows that both bands have stood the test of time — 30+ years so far — pretty well :)

    Now if you want to talk about one hit wonder artists like Aldo Nova (has he done anything noteworthy since Fantasy?) Poison, Kingdom Clone, er Come (who was hammered for being a Zep rip-off) and the like, well, then we can truly use the term “overrated.”

  • Eric Olsen

    I kind of like Poison

  • http://www.makeyougohmm.com/ TDavid

    The only Poison song I care for is I Won’t Forget You — what do you like by them, Eric?

  • duane

    Claiming that Black Sabbath is overrated is a more tenable proposition than claiming likewise for Zeppelin. LZ is much more diverse than Sabbath. Tony Iommi may have been a riff master, but it was pretty much all along the same lines (yes, yes, there were a few exceptions — I said “pretty much”). Zeppelin was exceptionally versatile for a 4-man rock band. I always used to say that they were underrated because they were mostly identified with a handful of favorites — “Rock and Roll,” “Whole Lotta Love,” and “When the Levee Breaks,” for example, which get round the clock airplay. These are very heavy, straight ahead rock tunes, although the distinctive Led Zep style distinguishes them from your run-of-the-mill rock fare. These songs epitomize Led Zeppelin to music listeners falling outside the LZ fanatic minority. I always thought that LZ carved a unique niche with songs like “No Quarter,” “The Song Remains the Same,” and “Achilles Last Stand,” for exmple, which, in addition to being complex, are unlike almost any popular music being made back then. They don’t merely kick ass. There music often displays subtlety (almost to the point of “How did they think of that?”), beauty (“Rain Song,” for example), tasty arrangement (recall the drum/guitar rhythm mismatch in “Black Dog,” supposedly a mistake that they decided to keep), funk (“The Crunge,” delivered with a 9/8 meter for your furrowed brow listening pleasure), the droning walls of sound (“Four Sticks”– “And when the owls cry in the night”), non-standard chord combinations (the elegantly simple G minor to A major change in “Kashmir” that forces the Middle Eastern modality), and much more for the discriminating (such as me) that sets them apart. But I like Sabbath, too. What can I say?

  • duane

    Pardon me for egregious grammatical errors. I wasn’t myself. I hope the Comment Police are out for donuts.

  • Eric Olsen

    TD, the usual hits: “Talk Dirty to Me” “”Nothin’ But a God Time” “Fallen Angel” “Every Rose” “Unskinny Bop.”

    Nothing amazing or anything, jsut serviceable hard rock with some good tunes and riffs.

  • http://www.unproductivity.com Tom Johnson

    Ah, Kingdom Come. I stumbled upon them before I got into LZ, actually. I will always fondly remember the memory of my dad asking me what CD I was rushing out to buy the day that their second album, In Your Face, and I blurted out “Kingdom come in your face.” The look of confusion and shock on my dad’s face was priceless, and it took me a few moments to figure out why. Stumbling to clear it up, I restated it awkwardly: “In Your Face, it’s Kingdom Come’s new album.” He just shook his head, smiled, and laughingly said, “Okay!”

  • SCOTTO

    As far as musicianship in one four man ensemble, does any other band rate with Zeppelin? Not to mention all of the other qualities such as their eclectism, production, live presentation. Zeppelin really thrived most of the time on stage. Perfect? Hell no. But then, what is? Justin, what makes you think no one else here is a musician? Hendrix annoying? Put down the instrument and take a writing course. Peter G. at least makes an attempt at proper grammar, although the fool has serious issues. Oh, grammar falls under academic intelligence. My sincerest apologies.

  • Justin GFY

    Nick, find one grammatical error (not spelling error) and I will sincerely apologize for my rashness. Academic intelligence matters, but for lack of better words, if you’re a dumass, you’re a dumass, and Peter G is a dumass, plain and simple, the guys probably trips over his own “godly” feet daily, and took 5 years to learn to tie his shoes. This isn’t a personal attack, more just a way to clarify the meaning of my previous post (although there was really nothing cryptic about it).

    Hendrix is definitely by no means annoying, but hearing popular opinion dictate that he is the greatest guitarist ever, is. Hendrix was one hell of an axeman, no denying it, but Page, there’s simply no comparison.

    anybody here who still thinks ze pis over rated, check out these songs

    battle of evermore
    black dog
    whole lotta love (love that solo)
    I can’t quit you babe
    heartbreaker
    rock and roll
    in my time of dying
    over the hills and far away
    communication breakdown
    gallows pole
    dazed and confused
    the ocean
    tangerine
    stariway to heaven

    couple more things, what’s the point of picking on zep’s later albums? everybody knows thir earlier stuff was more solid, not to say their later stuff was awfully BAD, but still, obivously most of their better songs were on zeppelin 1 through 4.

    NCIK, again, in case u weren’t aware, or just never thought about it, Rush is one hell of a band for versatility and instrumentalism. what other three man band can you think of that makes music like that? Just a sort of side tracking point.

    oh yeah, and to address one more point, if anybody else here is a musician of any kind, say so, I’d be glad to talk about that :)

  • http://www.utopia2000.org Barry Stoller
  • Nick Jones

    Interesting article, Barry. Thanks for the link.

  • Eric Olsen

    I find alien the concept of liking or disliking music (or whatever) based upon how popular it is or isn’t.

  • http://www.utopia2000.org Barry Stoller

    I find alien the concept of liking or disliking music (or whatever) based upon how popular it is or isn’t.

    I submit the idea that popularity is a motive force in the development of (pop) music: thesis and anti-thesis, unity of opposites (to employ some philosophical notions). Was not the ‘amateur’ Elvis-Berry breakthrough a rebellious response to the ‘professional’ hypertrophication of the Sinatra sound? When a style becomes too mainstream, too unhip, there’s always a ‘cutting edge’ – a momentary exclusivity – to supplant it. Certainly, punk challenged the hegemony, the over popularity of Steely Dan, etc. This is the process in which music grows. If not, we’d all still be sitting happy with our Frank records, God knows he was willing to keep crankin’ ‘em out.

  • Eric Olsen

    I don’t doubt dialectical aspects of the creation and dissemination of popular art, especially on a meta level, but I’m talking about why individuals would allow the popularity or unpopularity of music affect how they personally react to it. Of course the popularity will affect the likelihood of a given work being heard, but that is another matter.

  • http://www.utopia2000.org Barry Stoller

    …why individuals would allow the popularity or unpopularity of music affect how they personally react to it…

    Dialectics, exactly. We hear nothing in a vacuum – and most of this stuff we heard in high school. Music, for better or worse, is (in part) a badge – hence this very forum. Repetition, especially when it is driven by corporate design, and especially when it is used as a means to silence other (less corporate-friendly) artistic statements is a force to question and resist. Hence my contributions to your little community here.

  • Eric Olsen

    That is one approach – another is to address the music’s merits directly.

  • paul

    Talking of Led Zep
    I have Led Zep 2 on vinyle

    on the inside cover track lists track 3 as The Lemon Song

    label on vinyl says Killing Floor

    anyone know if this is an error or supposed to be like that .

  • http://www.DavisAdvertisingInc.com Robert Davis

    Earlier in this post, there seemed to be some confusion about the song title D’yer Mak’r. So I thought I would set the record straight. It is derived from an old pub joke about a man who is telling his friend that his wife left him and went to the Carribean. The friend responds, “Jamaica?” The man say’s, “No, she went on her own accord.” (misinterpreting Jamaica with D’yer Mak’r (did you make her). This title is butchered all the time and it seems that very few know the origins and correct pronunciation.

  • Eric Olsen

    I heard “Ramble On” over the weekend, which captured my attention more than it normally would because my younger daughter and I have been watching the extended Lords of the Rings 1/2 movie at a time, and when RP sang, “T’was in the darkest depths of Mordor, I met a girl so fair/But Gollum, and the evil one crept up and slipped away with her, her, her….yeah” it kind of kicked me in the gut. While the context of the lyrics may be a little silly, there is nothing remotely mediocre about that song: beautifully varied and nuanced vocals, remarkably inventive guitar, exceptional melody, the juxtaposition of delicacy and power. Extraordinary.

  • Nowhere Man

    Me and a good friend were recently discussing “classic albums”, albums that are good start to finish. Led Zep IV was on our list.

    Stealing/ripping someone else off is highly subjective indeed. Did Dire Straits “rip off” the Stones’ “Satisfaction” when they made “Money for Nothing”? Yes and no. Clear connection between the riffs, but I don’t see how either one is bad. Such is the nature of art. There is a lot of give and take. And, in cases where Zeppelin songs borrow from other artists, I see no harm done, and I find it weak to seize upon the bits of their catalogue that one finds un-original to stereotype their whole contribution to rock. The same goes for focusing on their weakest material (assuming that it is, in fact, their weakest).

    The whole portrayal of Rolling Stone as the NYT of music magazines either ignores outright or pre-supposes that the British music press is subordinate to Rolling Stone, a rather silly notion.

    And talking the talk isn’t necessarily walking the walk. Barry, you invited this upon yourself: Do tell what the lyrics to “I am the Walrus” mean.

  • http://www.iamrighturpie.blogspot.com/ jadester

    “stealing” still goes on alot in music today. Aside from words themselves, which i admit is easier to say for sure one way or another, when it comes to tunes, unless it’s about note-for-note, it’s more of a ripoff than a steal. I hear so many tunes these days, at least from rock bands, that have huge sections i think i recognise…then i go listen to another tune from another band, usually from several decades ago, and i realise where i first heard it. But they don’t credit these.
    As for just their quality of playing, i love much of LZ’s stuff. My only regret, is that i wasn’t even born when they were around, as they were truly meant to be seen live. That was what made them so popular “back in the day”, you can see on the DVD from 2003 that that’s how they were meant to be experienced, as are many rock groups.

  • http://www.potzhee.tk Andrea

    Whoaa.. you’re all crrrazy. Zeppelin has got to be THE best rock and roll band in history, those men were sexy and each at least 2 or 3 of them have been argued as a great performer in their line of expertise. Mr. Page on the guitar is praised for his amazing skills and his soothing, sloppy style of playing. Mr. Bonham, on the drums, is a hard-hitting, unbelievable live act, true that the recordings can bore me at times in the percussion section but listen to any live work of his and you’re guaranteed to be blown away. Now, Robert Plant, that man was SEXY. He has a seductive, steamy, raspy voice with quite a range, and when he holds a scream/note… oh man. He was an awesome front man, being completely drool-worthy all the time, and really working a crowd. Mr Jones really polishes off the band with beautiful bass, piano and mandolin melodies.. all necessary instruments for a super-band such as Led Zeppelin.. I’ll give you that they have a good handful of songs that are greatly over-played.. but I wouldn’t call a whole lot of them ‘filler’. A number of my favourite songs, well appreciated, are on your knock-off list over there, buddy.

    I Can’t Quit You Baby
    How Many More Times
    Lemon Song
    the guitar riff in Moby Dick
    Celebration Day
    Since I’ve Been Loving You
    Out On The Tiles
    Bron-Y-Aur Stomp
    Hats Off To (Roy) Harper
    The Battle Of Evermore
    Misty Mountain Hop
    Four Sticks
    The Crunge
    Dancing Days
    D’Yer Mak’Er
    In The Light
    Bron-Y-Aur (is beautiful)
    Boogie With Stu
    Sick Again
    Royal Orleans
    Candy Store Rock
    Hots On For Nowhere

    those are clearly not filler.

    along with some great works such as:

    Black Country Woman
    Night Flight
    Communication Breakdown
    Black Dog
    Friends
    Ten Years Gone
    You Shook Me
    We’re Gonna Groove
    Trampled Underfoot
    Hey Hey
    Heartbreaker
    Going to California
    That’s The Way
    Tangerine
    Sugar Mama
    Ramble On
    The Ocean
    No Quarter
    The Rain Song
    Whole Lotta Love
    Your Time Is Gonna Come
    Nadine (wonderful blues song)
    Misty Mountain Hop
    Immigrant Song
    Kashmir

    Oh my, there’s so many… I hope you get the idea… you’re wrong. :)

  • SFC Ski

    I am no great Zep Fan, there was a time where I taped over all my Zep cassettes and changed stations at the first note of “Stairway to Heaven”. THe thing that needs to be taken into consideration was how new and fresh Zep was when it first appeared on the scene.

    THe other problem with any classic rock staple is that CR programmers forgot that many bands put out albums, not just singles, and some of the best Zep is the stuff you never hear on the radio.

  • Dino

    No rock band is worthy of ‘deity’ status, however to simply dismiss Led Zep as ‘Kitsch’ or ‘filler’ not to mention the other adjectives misses the point of such a rock band. All I can suggest is that you listen to the BBC Sessions of Led Zep live and then review again your post.

  • GoHah

    I committed the ultimate rock ‘n’ roll faux pas at the first Live-Aid in Philadelphia in the 80’s when, due primarily to heat stroke, I was forced to remain seated during “Stairway To Heaven.” Blasphemy! Let’s just say lunch was on me: I got pelted with so much food and verbal abuse I was lucky to get out alive.

  • http://www.utopia2000.org Barry Stoller

    “All I can suggest is that you listen to the BBC Sessions of Led Zep live and then review again your post.”

    Yawn. I’m old enough to remember seeing Zep live, in person, ’73, then ’75, then (when they were so stoned they couldn’t even play their simple songs correctly) ’77. I’ve heard it all, my review stands.

  • http://alienboysworld.blogspot.com Christopher Rose
  • Blogcritics aren’t on the radar

    “But with Zep, all is holy. I wonder why?”

    You were there, you should know. They appealed to the masses, did things differently by ‘ripping off’ as then yet untapped sources, and had just enough recognizable skill to impress people into spending time criticizing them.

    When you claim they’re over-rated, you’re stating that when people exclaim they like them, they really shouldn’t like them. You essentially exclude all of the reasons for anyone liking them while including the reasons that you personally don’t. They aren’t great because X% of their music is not great. They aren’t great because if you put some song on someone elses album that album would be criticized.

    Your criticism stands, but it is void in many people’s opinions about what makes them great. It does enlighten us to your own tastes, however. Very useful.

    A friend of mine who has an encyclopaedic knowledge of music doesn’t really care for Led Zep, but has respect for anyone who has the public’s attention and meanders off into all of the avenues they did, thus D’Yer has come up time and time again as to how they are special.

    So, in closing, you are talking about Led Zep, they are not talking about you. Wouldn’t that make your opinion the over-rated? I will lend you the benefit of the doubt, and ache to hear your opinion regarding what bands should have attained Led Zep’s status if everyone else had your personal preferences.

    Cheers!

  • http://www.utopia2000.org Barry Stoller

    “So, in closing, you are talking about Led Zep, they are not talking about you.”

    Never claimed other wise.

    “Wouldn’t that make your opinion the over-rated?”

    I doubt it. My opinion is not broadcast over Clear Channel’s zillion affiliates everyday, 100 times a day.

    “I will lend you the benefit of the doubt, and ache to hear your opinion regarding what bands should have attained Led Zep’s status if everyone else had your personal preferences.”

    One thing that offends me is Zep’s reputation is inflated by the Stalinist power of today’s corporate radio and media. If you have never heard side one of Aphrodite’s Child, or Bloodrock’s “Breach of Lease,” or the Groundhogs’ “Earth Shanty” then I would suggest Zep’s position has benefited by free market censorship.

  • http://www.artfv.com/literature/genres/romance/authors/ geoff

    I like led zeppelin.

  • http://www.artfv.com/movies/titles/m/ geoff

    I don’t hate things just because they are popular. If a lot of people like Led Zeppelin and you don’t, who cares. Listen to Aphrodites Child.

    Plus who listens to the radio anymore?

    The reason they are considered rock gods is because a lot of people feel they are the best. Aphrodites child couldn’t get the following Zeppelin did. You may feel they are more talented musically but that doesn’t really matter to most people. I believe Mozart was more musically talented than almost any rock band yet I would much rather listen to rock and roll than Classical.

  • http://101strings.blogspot.com/ Barry Stoller

    “Who cares”? Obviously, you, looking up this post (on a Saturday night).

    You didn’t mention giving Aphrodite’s Child, Bloodrock or the Groundhogs a spin.

    Silence is golden.

  • http://freemusicfair.info/artist/filter/P/ geoff again

    actually since I read ur thing, I downloaded some blood rock and some aphrodites child. I like it. It is good. I like zeppelin better but thanks for recommending some good bands. I haven’t downloaded any of the groundhogs yet though but I plan to.

    Blood rock sounds to me like CCR mixed with Judas Priest.

    Can you tell me what some of these bands better songs are??

    p.s thanks for reminding me that I am a loser by pointing out i have nowhere to go on a saturday night.

  • http://101strings.blogspot.com/ Barry Stoller

    Aphrodite’s Child: Side one of 666 LP, especially “Four Horsemen.”

    Bloodrock: “Gotta Find A Way,” “Breach of Lease.”

    Groundhogs: “Strange Town,” “Earth Shanty.”

    Now, excuse me, I’m off to listen to some more 101 Strings.

  • http://www.artfv.com/music/styles/classical/ geoff(last time)

    Zeppelin is still better than those bands, but thanks for recommending them.

    I think music is pretty subjective given that I have never met two people with the exact same taste in it.

  • Del

    QUOTE…At least a full ONE-FOURTH of their output was either kitsch or filler

    Stoller – take your [Edited] out of your [Edited], you sad pathetic [Edited]!!

  • http://- =D

    wow, its sad how these guys argue over something when they have probably never even met

  • zingzing

    wow! i fuckin hate led zepplin! wankers! jesus christ, i have never felt so much pure hatred running through me… it’s like being washed by fire… i feel like blood could come shooting out of my eye-sockets at any moment… fuck… led… zepp…

  • zingzing

    ..lin…

  • Lord J

    After having given Bloodrock a listen, I must say that it may well be the worst “music” I have ever had the misfortune to encounter. They were compared with Grand Funk in the day? That is only an enormous insult to Grand Funk. Bloodrock sounds like a junior high garage band coupled with the simplicity of a group of five year olds. Anyone can have a quick listen of course by going to Amazon. The siren in the song D.O.A. (how original, Barry.) is, well, the whole “song” is quite horrible. No accounting for taste, that’s for sure.

  • spiderjazz

    Checked out Bloodrock. Childish drivel comes to mind. The obvious reason Bloodrock is listened to by you Stoller, and no one else is because it is just plain bad. I don’t think it’s a coporate conspiracy against the band. It’s not very good, that is the problem. The garbage on radio is bad enough, spare us barely passable musicianship and amateur effort as well.

  • Guppusmaximus

    *WTF* Puhleeze!!! Led Zeppelin, Heavy Metal?? LOL, That’s funny… Can you tell me some more jokes?

  • Scott Barkley

    and the beat goes on…..
    I will agree that Zep’s later work ie ITTOD and Coda, which I don’t count really since much of that probably never would have made it to market had Bonzo not passed, do contain a degree of filler as does Presence to an extent, but their early seminal work, including the rip offs of uncredited Blues artists, grabbed a generation like few others of the time and still does today with those just discovering rock and roll outside of the BS playing on the pop stations today. My 15 year old digs Zeppelin. How many other bands from the era still have that kind of power. VERY few.
    Bet ya hate the Dead too Barry.
    But it’s cool to agree to disagree. Deified by the mainstream media, perhaps. But there are thousands of artists today who credit Zeppelin, and the individuals who made up the band for inspiring them to make music and in my opinion, that is one of the top measures of greatness whether you are a writer, a painter, a sculptor, or a musician or anyone else in the popular culture of your day. On top of that, they were innovators of their day. Bohnam was the first to line his drums to give them the cannon sound and Page…well nobody played that technically or freely in the mainstream before him and few can match him since. Yes, he would get a bit toasted and/or egocentric on stage at times, and yes some of those moments stretched too long and caused errors, but that happens in a band. The difference is that it happened on wax occasionally and just like a poorly written paragraph in an oterwise classic novel, one must forgive the occassional wart when the body is otherwise beautiful. Plant was a bit over the top at times, but that was a sign of the era. Most live bands of the late Sixties and early Seventies experimented with stretching their sound on stage and Plant attempted to use his voice as an instrument on stage, for good or ill. John Paul Jones is a genius, which is why he is still in demand today for movie scores and producing.
    BTW…as it happens I have been listening to them this afternoon and enjoying them as much today as I did the first time I heard them in 1973 at age 11. They segued me from my childhood Jackson 5 and Osmonds to my preteen Elvis and then Beatles into an arena of Rock and Roll that has brought me great joy for over 30 years. So, I appreciate your right to your opinion and on some of your points I can almost agree, but I will always consider them one of the bands that created Rock as we know it today and I will continue to enjoy them, warts and all, in my extensive rotation of the classics and the current.

    Long Live Rock…I need it every day

  • Lord J

    Please folks, we know where Zeppelin stands in the grand scheme of rock and roll. Now, seriously, go have a listen to the Flinstones house band, Bloodrock. Stoller must be having a go with us all because it is laughable at best. Let’s not critique until we give all the garbage a proper listen. Check out the “song” D.O.A. ( yes, I know, quite an original “song” title ). It’s supposedly some of their “best”. Let’s be fair!

  • DayTripper

    Actually, this whole thread proves the obvious: LED ZEPPELIN IS BORING!

    Now, shaddup!

  • spiderjazz

    Led Zep is boring? One who is incapable of typing out “shut up” certainly qualifies as illiterate. Someone who considers Led Zep “heavy metal” on the other hand…..that is the same as refering to the Beatles as merely “pop” music; in other words, a short cut to actually thinking for one’s self. And the dinosaur reference is clearly plaigarism of long gone, irrelevant Rolling Stone critiques. Who exactly is a slave to the “Stalinist power of corporate radio and media”? You, Stoller, that’s who. Free market censorship? No one listens to the crap you have sited because it’s crap!

    Now let us begin a list of artists that can actually claim to be musicians, yet who are truly “overrated”.

    1). U2 ( The band that wants to be The Clash if it ever grows up and stops writing cute commercial jingles for Ipod)

    2). Aerosmith ( I believe Mr. Olsen once stated that if Aerosmith disappeared from the musical landscape, nothing much would change. Excellent point! U2 qualifies for that distinction as well)

    3). Deep Purple ( Is it any wonder Blackmore always seemed bored?)

    Please friends, feel free to add whoever you wish to trash for a while. ( I know we can all come up with at least ten.)

  • Lord J

    Touching upon plaigarism accusations, does anyone here feel that Bob Dylan is guilty? He did have the gall to record a version of “In My Time of Dying” on his debut and credits himself as writer, as opposed to crediting the song as a Negro spiritual, author unknown. How about Mr. George Harrison? And before some half-wit asks “what is my point”, my point would be: are either of these exceptional musicians now rendered worthless thieves? I think not. Need more examples? There are plenty to be found if you look hard enough beyond Jimmy Page. Would any of you really know who all of those great bluesman were if not for the British musicians who revered them, instead of the majority of Americans in the fifties and sixties who reviled them, and dismissed their wonderful contributions to rock and roll ( a blues euphemism for fucking ) as simply “n****r” music? Led Zep and the rest did us all a huge favor, being as the blues are America’s greatest cultural export.

  • Brian Lord

    Zep is the best rock of all time

  • salvatore

    Zep is the greatest band ever!!!! Moby dick is not a filler. John bonham is one of the best rock drummers ever! neil pert has a longer solo then that and theres no one that will say he is overrated .

  • salvatore

    misty mountin hop. greatest song ever .dos this post person have some kind of musical deficiency?????

  • http://www.uuweb.led-zeppelin.us fred zepp

    zep was ok but jimmy page was no roy clark.

  • peter graminiano

    led zeppelin number 1, lucifers friend number 1, rolling stones ha phooey

  • Holy Diver

    Led Zeppelin is trash. Real metal is Black Sabbath, Dio, Rainbow, etc. Peter G, you can’t compare the Beatles and Led Trash, because the Beatles are actually good. Jimmy Trash is overrated as #9 on the Greatest guitarists list on Rolling Stone.

  • Pres82

    Clearly this article wasn’t written by a musician. James Page is overrated? Too bad his ‘overrated’ ass is more influential than you’ll ever be writing a hack blog.

    Go pick up a six-string, pick up ‘How the West Was Won’ and ‘BBC Sessions.’ Let’s see if you can do a better job.

  • JGGott_87

    Musically, they are, without doubt, the most overrated band of all time.
    In terms of overall greatness, though, which goes beyond music quality (considering also importance, influence, impact, commercial and chart success, as well as longevity and popularity), they are not that overrated.
    But yeah, as far as their music goes…unbelievably overrated, because people who usually don’t know a lot about music tend to think it’s cool or it makes them look as if they’re into serious music by liking Led Zeppelin.

  • JG Gott

    I personally don’t think Led Zeppelin have more than 15 songs that are worth listening too, if not less…