Sunday, 4 April 2010

This might sound mad but I am going to compare Spizz with Robert Plant

Dear Reader, you might think it preposterous but I am going to try and compare the
punk legend Spizz with the rock legend Robert Plant. They are both iconic figures brought up in the West Midlands area (does Worecestershire count?) and they both support local football teams. However, Spizz has had the good fortune to start supporting Aston Villa, which is the premier side in Birmingham and surrounding areas, while Plant
backs Wolverhampton Wanderers. This club is famous for its old gold shirts and where Mick McCarthy is making a pretty determined effort to keep them in the
Premier League.

Although there are major differences such as Spizz is not as tall as Plant and their
remuneration from the rock'n'roll business have been different ends of the scale,
I bet you they could each belt out a great version of "Tutti Frutti" if you asked
them to.

Could you compare "Where's Captain Kirk" with "Rock n' Roll" or "Kashmir"? Perhaps not and especially not with Plant's later stuff such as on the "Mighty Rearranger", which is brilliant. However, having been lucky enough to see Spizzenergi and Led Zeppelin, their lead vocalists both have the amazing talent of somehow taking you back in time but still sounding relevant. Spizz can still convince you that he is a punk star despite being a bit podgy. I remember Plant singing a verse from
"Are you going to San Francisco" in the middle of "Dazed and Confused" and thinking golly he was there.
Well, Spizzenergi is going to play at the Scala in London's Kings Cross on April 9th
and tickets can be obtained from outlets such as

Unfortunately, the next bit of the blog is crass commercialism and a crude attempt to
crank up the hits. This is my unofficial review of half of the unofficial recording of "Bonzo's Birthday Party". When I heard it I thought the Led Zep gig in question was the Alexandra Palace concerts in North London, which took place in December 1972.
Now, through the Internet, I know the gig was held on May 31st, 1973 at the Inglewood Forum in southern California, United States.

I just borrowed the half, which included C and D sides, from a mate, whose brother and a friend had bought the unofficial recording at university. They decided to split up the two vinyl records. I just had "Heartbreaker, Whole Lotta Love" followed by "No Quarter",
an advert for Californian Prunes, and an encore of "The Ocean", where Plant refers back to Jimmy playing with his hand in a bowl of water to keep the swelling down
in that part of Heartbreaker. This song misses out the Jethro Tull bit and segues
into "Whole Lotta Love" after some particular loud drumming by Bonham.
The unofficial recording is taken in the crowd and the US punters don't really get the Monty Python references of Plant in his stage patter. However, the music is amazing. Even the "Crunge" works during "Whole Lotta Love" and "Boogie Mama" is great.
Even the advert for Californian Prunes is great "Still there was something about which I liked and our hearts began to sing Prunes from California!!!"

Therefore, I had great expectations when I went to see Led Zep at London's Earls Court in May 1975. Somehow, I had seen Deep Purple in Paris just before the Led Zeppelin gig
with David Coverdale singing really well. Deep Purple were a band, who could really whip up a storm.

Led Zep played for three hours and twenty minutes and there were some pretty long solos (don't like to say this, but pretty boring) with "No Quarter" and John Paul Jones, with "Moby Dick" and John Henry Bonham and with "Dazed and Confused" and Jimmy Page. Yet, I can still vividly remember every minute of the concert while Bepop Deluxe, who I saw in the Wolverhampton Civic, were brilliant but I can hardly remember the concert in detail
at all.

Led Zep came on early so loads of fans missed "Rock'n'Roll" and then we heard more of
"Houses of Holy" rather than "Physical Grafitti" than I would have liked. The fans all knew that "Kashmir" was a really great song but to last so long and for it to be
used so often on the telly is quite ironic given that Led Zeppelin did not want to be
be a "pop band". We also did not realise that Earls Court would be the last London concerts until the O2 gig. That night nearly 35 years ago stays especially in the memory for me the incredible encores of "Whole Lotta Love" (shortened version) and "Black Dog".

Was Led Zeppelin, Earls Court, May 1975 the best concert I ever saw? Maybe that is a question for another post!!

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