Jimmy Page released the final three re-mastered albums from Led Zeppelin on July and fans received one final look into the band’s recording sessions.
On Presence, the band displayed their live prowess as they powered through recording seven songs in just eighteen days. Their most straightforward rock and roll release, the album featured no keyboards and only one rhythm acoustic guitar on “Candy Store Rock”. Due to the limited schedule, the companion disc does not offer as many nuggets as the previous re-masters, but it does include an early look at the next album with the piano track “10 Ribs & All/Carrot Pod Pod (Pod)” and dirty vocals on “Royal Orleans”.
In Through The Out Door was the final album from the band before John Bonham’s sudden death in 1980. It marked a very different direction as the album was filled with more processed sound and keyboards than any record before it. It still kicked off with the band’s standard explosive start on “In The Evening”. From there, they went into mellow tracks not guided by acoustic guitars like the early days. Instead, John Paul Jones led them into the upcoming decade with keyboards. Robert Plant’s voice shined through literally and figuratively as he headed the creative direction of “Fool In The Rain” and “All My Love”.
The final Led Zeppelin album came about from their record contract, which required them to record one more album even though Bonham had passed away. Jimmy looked through the band’s outtakes from their 11 year run and found enough to make a new album released in 1982 called Coda. For the re-masters, Jimmy may have chosen the best demo and rare cuts of any release. On the first companion disc, he included a few demos of tracks from Coda along with most of the other songs the band released as b-sides, including “Hey Hey What Can I Do?” The second disc starts off with an indian orchestra performing two Zeppelin songs. Robert and Jimmy sat out on “Four Sticks” but accompanied the orchestra on “Friends”. The rest of the disc includes a new instrumental jam “St. Tristan’s Sword” and a shorter, bluesier version of “Bring It On Home”.
The final re-masters leave the impression that the last three albums left originally: what would become of Led Zeppelin in the 1980. We never found out as Robert, Jimmy, and John Paul Jones went their separate ways. We can still dream though, can’t we?