Friday 18 September 2020

Killer Opening Songs (Led Zeppelin’s Whole Lotta Love) “Phallic rock” at its best


By the time Led Zeppelin came off stage at the Chatenay Malabry (Piston 70) in Paris on the 6th December 1969, The Rolling Stones’ free concert in Altamont had yet to start and its sad ‘end of the sixties’ label yet to be coined. In the meantime, the Boeing 747 jumbo jet had already made its debut and the first draft lottery in the US since World War II had also taken place. It is in these circumstances that one of the better Killer Opening Songs of all times must be analysed.

Following their well-received debut album, ‘Led Zeppelin’, released in January 1969, the British band embarked on a series of concerts during the same year promoting material for their sophomore record. From the US to Sweden, from Denmark to Canada, Zep’s bluesy, raw sound seduced thousands of youngsters and enticed a whole generation.

The chemistry between Jimmy Page, Robert Plant, John Paul Jones and John Bonham played a major role in the band’s ascension to the pinnacle of rock’n’roll. Although, to be fair, it was the group’s ‘fifth’ member, manager Peter Grant, who made the impossible possible: Led Zeppelin remains one of the few bands (K.O.S. cannot think of any other) that never released singles in its entire musical career in the UK, only albums.

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Thursday 3 September 2020

Being John Malkovich


The world doesn’t need more ego-driven individualism, the consequence of which is uncertainty, both economic and political. The world needs more consistency. The world needs more John Malkovichs (or should that be Malkoviches?).

Consistency has been key to Malkovich’s output. This does not always translate as quality, but the actor is renowned for going where few of his peers dare to.

In a success-focused, happiness-chasing society where we are taught from an early age to try for the summit, it is useful to know that some people are just as content with soul-enriching projects, even if they are less financially remunerative. In Malkovich’s case, this scenario has played out in films where the process of building a character and exploring the depth of it has been more important than the amount of zeroes on the cheque.

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