This album goes a long way to confirm that when bands choose not release material when they record it, there’s usually a good reason. That’s not to say this is a bad album – it’s nowhere as near as bad as the atrocious In Through The Out Door – but for a Led Zeppelin album, it’s pretty poor.
Released two years after the death of John Bonham, this is Page’s way to get out of a contractual agreement (they owed Atlantic Records a fifth album from when they started the Swan Song label to release their own work). The songs are mostly left-over pieces that didn’t quite make the albums they were originally recorded for, together with a couple of live tracks (where they’ve removed any audience noise, to make them sound like they were recorded in a studio).
The real issue is that the album is very disjointed, which you would expect from an album that collects songs from across their entire career, from 1969 through to 1978. There are also a few notable omissions – Baby Come On Home and Travelling Riverside Blues, which would eventually surface on Boxed Set in 1990 and Boxed Set 2 in 1993, and are better than anything included here.
Hit: We’re Gonna Groove
Hidden Gem: Bonzo’s Montreaux