Baker's Dozen

Artists discuss the 13 records that shaped their lives

7. Led ZeppelinLed Zeppelin II

Nathan Means: When I first heard Led Zeppelin II, I was scared of it. Mainly because the vocals were much more aggressive than other classic rock that I had been listening to. But a friend of mine convinced me that it was actually pretty good. Then I got really into it. My bass teacher also loved Zeppelin. I met with him every Saturday in a tiny room in the back of Bethesda Music. He was usually eating a sausage and egg biscuit. His room would smell really strongly of his breakfast and he seemed to be getting oil all over his strings which I thought was poor form. Anyway, he taught me some of the bass lines and what a pentatonic scale was. Then I loved it even more.

But eventually I realised that most of the music was ripped off in one form or another from black dudes. Cause it was, you know, blues. Then I had doubts about the album. Also, I was more into Zep III‘s folk direction and the epic scope of songs on Houses Of The Holy and the strange coked-up funk grooves of their later albums. I even sort of made peace with Zep IV. So the first two albums kind of sat on the shelf. Recently – like in the past five-ten years – I checked out the brown bomber again. It’s way better than almost any other electric blues from the 1960s or 1970s. And, from what I can tell, there were about six billion blues bands in London in 1968.

Selected in other Baker’s Dozens: Mick Hucknall, Judas Priest
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