For those who dont know Led Zeppelin, (and I cant imagine anyone who doesn't) their 6th album, would be a great place to start. From side 1, song 1, Custard Pie to side 4, song 5, Sick Again you will find a veritable musical history of this great band. Given the luxury of a double album format, Physical Graffiti mirrors every facet of the Zeppelin repertoire.
Although the album was released in February of 1975, many of the songs were recorded and written much earlier. Many of the songs that just missed the cut on earlier albums were gathered for a tour de force album.
Personally for me, it was released in my senior year of high school and while I listened to their earlier albums, this one hooked me and reeled me in and never let me go. It cut a smoke-filled swath through many a joy ride in the country. I still listen to the entire album on a regular basis.
I have seen too many cover bands to mention, aspiring to the bands greatness, but I am going to include a special video now of a cover band (don't know their name) who do a great version of Custard Pie.
From the hard-driving beat of the last song to this one harkening back to their Led Zeppelin III album.
It was also a unique album package with the cover of a building tenement in New York City. The insert slid in and spelled out the name of the album through the windows. The inner covers depict various objects and people including Robert Plant in drag. This was also their first album released on their own Swan Song Records.
The album soon reached number 1 on the Billboard charts and was the first album ever to go platinum on advance orders. After its release, all of their previous albums re-entered the top 2oo album chart. Arguably the most desired song from this album is the following, with its far eastern roots and its Bonham and Jones driven back-beat.
While I agree the earlier Zeppelin albums call to their roots and influence, this album rushes over you at their most creative and expressive ever! To close this post I can not go without including my favorite song. I believe this one represents all of what they were and how they played off of each other so well.