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Led Zeppelin: The Origin of the Species 


This enticing documentary focuses on Led Zeppelin's roots. Formed from the Yardbirds (Jimmy Page) and Band of Joy (Robert Plant and John Bonham), the band aimed at becoming a supergroup that would include Who members Keith Moon and John Entwistle, as well as Page and Plant. This plan fell apart, but not before Entwistle (rather than Moon, as is often stated) gave the band its new name.

After introductory sections about each band member, Origin dives into Zeppelin's first two albums, released 10 months apart in '69. Called "one of the great debut albums of all time," Led Zeppelin is traced from lead track "Good Times, Bad Times" ("the most powerful opening statement of any rock album") to closer "How Many More Times."

Most of the Zeppelin footage is drawn from Superhype Tapes 2003. More rare are TV tapes of the Yardbirds and of a 14-year-old Page playing with JP's Skiffle Group in '58. Though short on critique and long on hyperbole, Origin is nevertheless a compelling and well-produced overview of this much-mythologized band.

More by Steve Bloom


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