Few bands have had an impact on music like Les Zeppelin. The genre-defining band started their career with Led Zeppelin, building a sound out of old blues rock and adding some edge to it. Then, in Led Zeppelin II, they refined the sound and added some more drive to it. With Led Zeppelin III, they began playing around with their sound and trying some different things out. On the final chapter of their self-titled run, Led Zeppelin made their music timeless with Led Zeppelin IV.
Led Zeppelin IV celebrated its 46 year anniversary just yesterday (November 8), and it truly has stood the test of time. It opens with the ambitious 'Black Dog,' the badass hollering that introduces the record on an unforgettable note. It's big and demanding, wrapping you in for the rocking ride that's about to come. 'Rock and Roll' promptly follows up with a big and punchy atmosphere, adding to the album's rambunctious and wild sound. It's a change of pace for the band, given that the end of III was quite experimental and slow. IV jumps straight into the fray with wild ambitions and crazy riffs to back it.
Some of Led Zeppelin's defining moments are captured on Led Zeppelin IV; namely 'Stairway To Heaven.' It's a song so brilliant that it still stands as one of the uncontested songs that define rock music. The progressive, eight minute piece rolls smoothly and powerfully through, it's soothing first half leading into a grand second half commanded by electrifying guitar solos. On the other spectrum is 'Going To California,' a fantastically orchestrated song with mind-bending acoustic guitar layers that comes together so perfectly yet with such a raw sound it feels timeless. Led Zeppelin's genius truly took a new shape on this record.
Led Zeppelin made their music timeless with Led Zeppelin IV, delivering not only some of the most defining moments in their career, but for all of rock as well. There are few bands that stand the test of time like them, and from listening to just their first four albums its easy to see why. Their legacy is one that'll always be holding up the pillars of the temple of rock and they will never falter.
Favorite Tracks: Stairway To Heaven, Black Dog
Least Favorite Track: When The Levees Break
Rating: 80 / 100
Stream or buy Led Zeppelin IV on Apple Music: