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How The West Was Won

still.ill

Member
Messages
3,240
Why does the guitar tone sound so much better on this live album? To me its one of the definitive Les Paul tones, but the tones they got in the studio just don't really do it for me.

Black Dog and Rock N Roll--- especially sounds so much better live.
 

edgie

Member
Messages
1,915
IIRC, this is around the time that Pagey ditched the Tonebenders and started plugging straight into Marshall amps. Not sure what amp is that but I'm sure other Led Zep fans here can fill you in on that.
 

jammybastard

"I'm losing my edge, but I was there..."
Gold Supporting Member
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6,396
HTWWW is a compilation and heavily produced. There are soundboard bootlegs from those shows and his guitar tone is different.

Read this for details:
http://www.thegardentapes.co.uk/htwww.html

My point is that don't judge Page's guitar tone on a "live" album that's had lot of surgery done to it. Listen to the bootlegs for the accurate sound.
 

dunara

Member
Messages
1,900
My point is that don't judge Page's guitar tone on a "live" album that's had lot of surgery done to it. Listen to the bootlegs for the accurate sound.
Very true. Page is a notorious 'live album' tinkerer.....
 

monty

Member
Messages
23,393
HTWWW is a compilation and heavily produced. There are soundboard bootlegs from those shows and his guitar tone is different.

Read this for details:
http://www.thegardentapes.co.uk/htwww.html

My point is that don't judge Page's guitar tone on a "live" album that's had lot of surgery done to it. Listen to the bootlegs for the accurate sound.
Very true but like the OP I like his "live" sound better. That said, he does have some great tones on tape.
 

2HBStrat

Senior Member
Messages
41,223
Didn't Page use a Fender Telecaster and a Supro Thunderbolt amp in the studio? I had read that he started using a Gibson Les Paul and Marshall amps for live shows because the pickups didn't hum, and he needed the extra power from the Marshall amps because of the inadequately powered sound systems in those days.
 

JackStraw12

Member
Messages
4,760
Very true. Page is a notorious 'live album' tinkerer.....

Agreed, although I wish the HTWWW overall tone and clarity would be adapted to say, TSRTS soundtrack. I have the original as well as the newer remaster but I still think there's something to be desired from an audiophile POV. I think HTWWW will be like At Fillmore East level in a few years if not already as one of those definitive live recordings. Really captures LZ at a magical moment in time.
 

tiktok

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
23,343
All recordings are lies.

Some lies are more pleasing than others.
 

DWB1960

Senior Member
Messages
21,964
Everyone knows that pretty much all live albums are messed with to clean them up and/or improve the performances. Hell, both Humble Pie and the Allman Brothers Fillmore LPs are not 100% accurate. Frampton Comes Alive has a bunch of audience noise added (Frampton wasn't yet a star when that show was recorded) and Kiss Alive has a boatload of studio overdubs added.

Pretty common practice.

If you listen to HTWWW's Long Beach tracks you'll notice the tempos are all a bit faster than normal. The band was playing quickly in order to shorten the show so they could get back to LA and party before all of the bars closed.
 
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rccCrawler

Member
Messages
117
Agree that all live albums are touched up - I hope so, if I'm paying money I want good product.

And if you want to hear what the true tone was..... .I'm not sure a bootleg is the best place to get that. Most bootlegs have terrible sound quality from what I have heard, including most sound board recordings, due to not being optimized for that purpose. So personally it only makes sense to me that some doctoring would be required in order to re-purpose the original recordings.

But that's just me. Album ROCKS as far as I am concerned.
 

msteeln

Member
Messages
1,530
HTWWW is a compilation and heavily produced. There are soundboard bootlegs from those shows and his guitar tone is different. Read this for details:
http://www.thegardentapes.co.uk/htwww.html
Led Zeppelin's How The West Was Won is made up of material from two 1972 California concerts, 25th June at the Forum in Los Angeles and 27th June at Long Beach Arena.
I was at the Long Beach show and while I can't say how much it differed from the CD it was certainly the typically classic Jimmy Page live on his Les Paul sound. Maybe there were glitchy spots that needed patching rather than the whole being tweaked.
I'll be looking for a boot of that show (yet again..) to relive it and see what you mean. At one point someone set off a red skyrocket from the back of the arena that sailed over the crowd and stage which impacted the large American flag on the arena wall. Plant was not pleased.
I found this mention of the recording interesting in particular, as Plant gave us a Perry Coma version of his historic screams at the beginning of IS and I've always figured that song came from LA or wherever, which is doubly odd because he truly excelled on everything else that night;
Immigrant Song
This is essentially from Long Beach, but Pagey has worked his magic on the vocals. The bootlegs reveal that Robert couldn't quite reach the western shore that night, but on the official release he gets there with no problems at all! What Jimmy has done is to take some sections of the vocal track from the LA recording and transplant them into the Long Beach mix. For example, Robert hits the high E on "western shore" on the first LA chorus, but not on the second LA chorus or either of the Long Beach choruses. So, those words from the first LA chorus have been used in both choruses on the official release.
 
Messages
422
The guitar on HTWWW was reamped by Kevin Shirley, which is why it sounds so much thicker. I'd recommend seeking out "How the West Was Redone". Much easier on the ears. :aok

Didn't Page use a Fender Telecaster and a Supro Thunderbolt amp in the studio? I had read that he started using a Gibson Les Paul and Marshall amps for live shows because the pickups didn't hum, and he needed the extra power from the Marshall amps because of the inadequately powered sound systems in those days.
Page didn't use a Thunderbolt. The main reason for switching to Marshalls, according to Page, was reliability as there were occasionally issues with his Hiwatts overheating. Although he was using was using Marshalls as early as March '69, they didn't become his main stage amps until '72.
 

zep41

Member
Messages
3,054
Well, Celebration Day was heavily massaged also.
Not sure what you mean by heavily massaged -- but I was at the show, have a ton of different bootlegs from different sources -- and I was actually very surprised how true to the real thing Celebration Day was.

About 85-90% of the "warts" of the entire set were left in Celebration Day. I was amazed Page didn't edit certain things.

Not sure about what Page did with EQ, balancing, etc on Celebration Day as I am sure it was well tinkered with, but I am being downright honest that the way you hear it on album is exactly the way I heard it live at the show. Extremely true to form, which in my opinion makes Celebration Day that much more special.
 






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