Today Led Zeppelin continued their reissue series with dropping deluxe, remastered editions of their 1971 albums Led Zeppelin IV and the 1973 follow-up, Houses of the Holy via Atlantic/Swan Song, report’s the U.K.’s The Telegraph. On Oct. 16, the band’s archives opened up and shared a new music video for the song “Rock And Roll” to coincide with album’s release. Rare versions of “The Rain Song” and “Black Dog” hit the internet at that time as well.
Each reissued album includes a second disc which features almost another album’s worth of alternative mixes, as well as in-progress variations of songs. Led Zeppelin IV contains a different version of each track on the original album. A standout among the alternate takes is the album’s second song, “Rock and Roll”, which you can watch and listen to in the above video.
In the alternate mix, which was completed in January of 1971, and is similar to the familiar final mix, in engineer Andy Johns’ version, the drums and guitar receive a different emphasis in some places. Jimmy Page recalls:
“’Rock and Roll’ is something that came more or less out of thin air. John Bonham played the drum introduction, and we were doing something else at the time, and I came in with the riff and stopped what we were doing and did it. It was spontaneous. You can tell everyone is having a real good time. The piano is by Ian Stewart (longtime sideman with the Rolling Stones). This version is a different mix, a different perspective on the song.”
Both Led Zeppelin IV and Houses of the Holy are available for purchase at LedZeppelin.com. Each will be offered on CD or vinyl and come in regular or deluxe versions. The deluxe edition comes with a box set, containing a coffee table book and a print of the cover art.
“‘Rock and Roll’ has just got that cheeky energy about it,” said Page when speaking with Rolling Stone about the new release. “It’s a party. It’s been a long time since I rock and rolled. It says it all, really.” John Paul Jones added, “As a song, it was actually kind of punky. Pre-punk. It was really fast too, onstage anyway. It just got really quick, a lot of energy. It’s a lot of fun to play. The crowd loved it. We loved it.”
Led Zeppelin IV has been certified platinum 23 times by the RIAA and is the third best-selling album in U.S. history. “Whole Lotta Love” was voted as having the Greatest Guitar Riff Of All Time by BBC Radio 2 listeners on Aug. 25. Competing riffs in the top ten included Guns N’ Roses’ “Sweet Child O’ Mine” and “Back In Black” by AC/DC. When learning of the win, guitarist Jimmy Page said he was surprised by its success. Saying, “I’m knocked out by this, because I didn’t expect that to happen.”