File this under “Rumors,” but anytime the Led Zeppelin camp does anything that could even remotely be construed as maybe-just-maybe-possibly-potentially getting back together, it is newsworthy. So when earlier today Led Zeppelin (a band that got pretty famous in the ’70s) used Facebook of all things to stir the pot by posting a photo of the number ‘five’ (yesterday they updated with a simple ‘Hello’ -- the group’s first Facebook message in about six months), the floodgates of speculation understandably opened wide.
Fans old and lucky enough to have seen the band tend more towards lamenting the thought of such a reunion, that would, almost without question, give Roger Water’s neverending Wall Tour a run for its money as the highest grossing tour of all-time. Younger fans like yours truly, regardless of the caliber of music that the new shows could produce (personally, I think there’s still a few good years left for the three surviving members), would saw off valuable appendages if need be to witness Zepp’s return. Since ’07’s 02 London one-off got everyone all worked up, there have been sporadic wishful chatterings about a full tour and album. More recently, there was the rumor of a Foo Fighters / Led Zeppelin tour. Also, there’s the mysterious (likely fake) song “χυμεία3” just kinda floating out there. On the flip side, lead singer Robert Plant’s comments to Rolling Stone in 2011 don’t exactly merit getting one’s hopes up:
I’ve gone so far somewhere else that I almost can’t relate to it…It’s a bit of a pain in the pisser to be honest. Who cares? I know people care, but think about it from my angle -- soon, I’m going to need help crossing the street.
At any rate, maybe Plant spending a good bit of time earlier this year in my extremely heady, mellow, life-affirming hometown of St. Simons Island, GA (reportedly buying a house there) changed his perspective on everything. Moreover, maybe the Golden God has seen one-to-many #YOLO posts by his Facebook friends (aside: almost zero chance he’s on Facebook, at least I hope not) and recently decided that he, despite being seemingly immortal, could actually only live once and just maybe, ponder that perhaps that the time has come to go for the gold, get the Led out once again, and put together the world’s first ever:
BILLION DOLLAR TOUR
Smart money is on this cryptic message just being a smart marketing ploy to sell some monster Led Zeppelin holiday season package/box set. It’s quite likely that ‘five’ could relate to the fifth anniversary of the O2 Arena gig, which has never been released on DVD / Blu-Ray / CD / Cassette Tape or Vinyl. With the holiday season and looming apocalypse a mere three months away, it makes a great deal of sense that perhaps an O2 + some unreleased footage, B-sides super box set is what this ‘five’ stands for. To add a flip side to the already flipped side of this developing story, do you really think Led Zeppelin would follow early studio recordings titled I through IV with live concert release bestowed with a V (or would it be called five)? Wouldn’t it make more sense that this means that 1971’s five-star-across-the-board IV LP is about to get a 21st Century follow-up? After all, Robert Plant is in the midst of a prolific career renaissance with his sterling solo release and Grammy-winning work with Alison Krauss. Either way, one can dream of seeing Zeppelin at Red Rocks, seeing Zeppelin at Yankee Stadium, seeing Zeppelin at the Rose Bowl or seeing Zeppelin in Grant Park. What do YOU think?
9/9/12 UPDATE: It appears Led Zeppelin is counting down to something, having posted the number ‘four’ on their facebook page today.
For good measure, here’s the setlist from the 02 gig on 12/10/07, courtesy of Stereogum:
01 “Good Times Bad Times”
02 “Ramble On”
03 “Black Dog”
04 “In My Time Of Dying”
05 “For Your Life” (live debut)
06 “Trampled Under Foot”
07 “Nobody’s Fault But Mine”
08 “No Quarter”
09 “Since I’ve Been Loving You”
10 “Dazed And Confused”
11 “Stairway To Heaven”
12 “The Song Remains The Same”
13 “Misty Mountain Hop”
15 “Whole Lotta Love”
16 “Rock And Roll”
…and for good measure, here’s the track listing for IV, how is an album that good even possible?
1. “Black Dog” 4:54
2. “Rock and Roll” 3:40
3. “The Battle of Evermore” 5:51
4. “Stairway to Heaven” 8:02
5. “Misty Mountain Hop” 4:38
6. “Four Sticks” 4:44
7. “Going to California” 3:31
8. “When the Levee Breaks” 7:07