Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Houses Of The Holy (new improved version)

I am a big Led Zeppelin fan, I was an even bigger fan back in the 1970s.

This album is almost perfect, fantastic cover art, great songs, but - and it is a huge but - there are two tracks I really don't like.

They are The Crunge and D'yer Mak'er both of which I tend to avoid playing if at all possible.

Anyway, when Zeppelin were recording Physical Graffiti, they decided to put it out as a double album because the new stuff they had recorded was too long for a single vinyl album.

To do this they took songs that had been recorded for previous albums and used them to bulk the album out. There were three songs that had been recorded for Houses Of The Holy but rejected at that time.

Those songs were The Rover, Black Country Woman and Houses Of The Holy itself.

So, now that we are not limited by vinyl and tape I put together a better, in my opinion, version of the Houses Of The Holy album, using songs that were rejected initially.

I played around with the options and this is my final track listing;

1. "The Song Remains the Same"
2. "The Rain Song"
3. "Over the Hills and Far Away"
4. "Houses of the Holy"
5. "Dancing Days"
6. "The Rover"
7. "No Quarter"
8. "The Ocean"

I tried moving the track listing around in all sorts of ways but in the end just felt that a straight replacement was the most effective option because the dynamic of the album stays mostly the same except that tracks 4, 5 and 6 have a similar feel and make a nice solid block of riffery in the middle.

I think that it really works and it ROCKS, to go a bit Tommy Vance.

If you are a Zep fan and you have these tracks, give it a go and let me know what you think.


Blimpy said...

I'm not 100% sure but i think Houses Of The Holy is about a selfish lawyer who gets given community service after crashing his car into a church wall, and ends up having to coach a really bad kids ice hockey team. the kids come good, and the lawyer learns a lot about himself.

gordonimmel said...

Errrrm, yeeessss, Blimpy.

@Carole, interesting idea. I've never had much time for 'The Crunge' myself although I've no problem with 'D'yer Mak'er' even if it is the epitome of white boy reggae and uses one of the oldest jokes in the book as it's title.
I always wondered why 'Houses of the Holy' was apparently on the wrong album and now I know. Thanks.
The only problem which now arises is that 'The Rover' and 'Houses..' are two of my favourite songs on Physical Graffiti so that album would be even more 'a-single-album-struggling-to-get-out-of-a-double album' than it is already.
The next logical step then is how would we cut Physical Graffiti down to a single? With 'The Rover' and 'Houses..' already gone I would simply knock off the last four songs (The Wanton Song, Boogie With Stu, Black Country Woman and Sick Again), which have always managed to allow my attention to waver when listening to the album as a whole.

AliMunday said...

Carole, I like it. But you could put "No Quarter" on twice for me, I love it.

Tim (Kalyr) said...

I've heard Bonham's drumming on "D'ya Maker" as resembling "a drunken stegosaurus".

As for "No Quarter", Panic Room did a great live version on the last tour. Not recorded it, but there are bootleg-quality recordings on Yootoob.

DarceysDad said...

Sorry I'm late to this thread, Carole, but the Social CDs have just been too tempting and have taken priority. Can't put music on now, I'm at work.

I like your theory, and may well try scheduling those tracks to play in that order, but must register that ...

(a) I don't have a problem with D'Yer Maker, unless I think Zep were seriously trying to lift an entire genre and claim as their own. Given how much they DID do that with songwriting claims on old blues tunes, I may be letting them off lightly.

(b) You're ripping some of the heart out of Physical Graffiti, which is actually my favourite Zep album.

(c) Though I still have every vinyl LP, including Coda, all of my Zep playing for years now has been the Remasters CDs. Because I got the four-disc version of the first release, I have all the LPs' songs across those 6 CDs. Thus, original album running orders are a thing of the past anyway.

CaroleBristol said...

b) is a valid point, DsD.

Maybe I shall have to experiment with putting together a killer single album Physical Graffiti too?

First thoughts would have;

Custard Pie
In The Light
In My Time Of Dying
Trampled Underfoot
Ten Years Gone

I know what you mean though, because I really like Physical Graffiti myself, it is probably my second favourite after the fourth one.

gordonimmel said...

Erm, that's what I said.


Can you hear me?

CaroleBristol said...

Sorry, gordonimmel, I didn't mean to ignore your post.

Yes, you are quite right and all I have done is steal your idea.

Apologies. What would be your preferred track order?

tincanman said...

This is an awesome concept CB. Good RR project for a rainy day, coming up with album tweeks like this.

gordonimmel said...

Thanks carole, I wasn't being stroppy. Honest.
Having said which ones I'd strike off I suppose I should come up with an alternative track listing. Thing is, I'd have to listen to Physical Graffiti a few times more to come up with that but I'm busy listening to all the Dropbox music tonight so it may have to wait a couple of days but keep your eyes on this 'ere thread.

Oh, and I'll go along with AliMunday's view that you can't here 'No Quarter' too many times.

DarceysDad said...

Hey Gordon, I think you and tinny have got each other's here/hear s !!!

sane language expert yeah! said...

stop it with the here hears and just use bloody DOND ok.

too cool for school DsD?

joke okay nope then (insert smiley ;)

DarceysDad said...

Just watch it, Shane, unless you want some of what Shoey's getti...

No, it's no good, I'm crap at aggression; I can't even pretend it!

Proudfoot said...

Really this is excellent. No D'yer 'saurus or the Cringe. I had a cassette version with 'Hey Hey'(Samplers rool!) on the end instead of that confounded bridge song. I do love Black Country Woman but it's too loose for this LP. Personally I'd have put it on Exile On Main St.

Proudfoot said...

Oh, BTW, working on a Never Mind the Bollocks Tweak. Well overdue.