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When Giants Walked the Earth: A Biography Of Led Zeppelin Paperback – 28 May 2009


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When Giants Walked the Earth: A Biography Of Led Zeppelin + Pigs Might Fly: The Inside Story of Pink Floyd
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Product details

  • Paperback: 496 pages
  • Publisher: Orion (28 May 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1409103714
  • ISBN-13: 978-1409103714
  • Product Dimensions: 15 x 3.5 x 23.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (60 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,082,915 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

'So this is the big one: a fat, juicy biography of the biggest band ever...Mick Wall, the veteran rock journalist, lays it all bare in a book that can only be described as definitive.' (DAILY TELEGRAPH)

'As well as being the most complete account yet of a great British rock band, When Giants Walked the Earth is, as its name implies, a document of a bygone age....Wall has done his subject proud.' (SUNDAY TIMES)

'It deftly strikes the balance between lofty authority and finding a way to get inside the heads of its subjects' (GUARDIAN)

'This fantastic account of Led Zeppelin's wild and decadent heyday is as detailed and definitive as music biographies get.' (LONDON LITE)

'The definitive account of rock legends Led Zeppelin' (DAILY RECORD)

'A fascinating and diligently reseached account of rock'n'roll excess.' (YORKSHIRE EVENING POST)

'The definitive book about Led Zeppelin... Mick Wall has done a fine job here and certainly knows his stuff.' (BIRMINGHAM POST)

'That Wall can add so much fresh details to the Led Zep story is in itself an extraordinary achievements. That he manages to humanise these planet-striding giants while doing so puts this book into the "definitive" category.' (CLASSIC ROCK MAGAZINE)

'We've read about the booze, drugs, devil worship and deviant sex... Mick Wall delves a loot deeper into the dark stuff' (IRISH TIMES) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Book Description

The final word on the world's greatest rock band, Led Zeppelin.

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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Simon F. on 19 Mar 2010
Format: Paperback
Out of the three Zeppelin biographies that I have read, this is by far the best. Diligently researched, and well written it keeps you wanting to return to the albums (always a sign of a good music book) with each record being examined in great detail, which led to me purchasing Moby Grape's "Grape Jam" (1967) ...Read more ›
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Maximilian Karasinski on 12 Feb 2009
Format: Hardcover
This book is just fantastic. It really does tell the whole story of the behemoth that was Led Zeppelin. The reviews aren't kidding when they say that this is THE definitive Zep biography. I haven't read any of the other bio's, like Hammer of the Gods, but after reading When Giants Walked the Earth I don't want to.
My only criticism is that at some points the italic "in the mind of" sections can be a bit confusing because you don't instantly know who Wall is impersonating.

Overall, this is a must-read. I think I'll be rereading it in a year or two.
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Linda Ruby on 29 Nov 2008
Format: Hardcover
I only started reading this because I bought it for my husband for Xmas but once I started I couldn't put it down. I used to read music books when I was younger but stopped when I realised they were nearly always fan books. This isn't like that. It's obvious Mick Wall knows his stuff and has spoken to everyone including the band but he doesn't pull any punches. I don't know if the band will like it but they should because it's not only a great book about them but just a great book anyway. Utterly brilliant.
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful By M. S. Smith on 28 May 2009
Format: Hardcover
Led Zeppelin's latest author Mick Wall he has previously written books on Black Sabbath and Marillion as well as hastily assembled book on John Peel. I've no interest in Sabbath but have read his Marillion and Peel books and of course know his writing well from many high street rock magazines.

First of, despite some misgivings over Mr. Wall's writing style, I was really looking forward to this book. It isn't an authorised account, but Mick has had plenty of access to the band members in his time covering their solo careers for both Kerrang and Classic Rock. I was tempted to even think this could be the DEFINITIVE account of Led Zep.

It's certainly well researched - I noticed very few errors (although the idea that Genesis recorded at Headley Grange before Zeppelin was one that stood out a mile) and covers their formation in 1968 and those very early tours in excellent detail.

However there are 3 significant areas where the book is very disappointing.

The first is Chapter 9 which is entirely devoted to speculation on Jimmy Page's interest in the Occult. This might have been better included as an appendix rather than given a whole chapter in between the Third and Fourth albums. Aleister Crowley may well be someone that Jimmy Page has taken a lot from - he was an avid collector of his writings, and other memorabilia - he even bought his house on the shores of Loch Ness, but Page has resolutely refused to confirm in any detail precisely what his motives were in this and so far as Mick Wall's insight is concerned, he simply adds to the speculation that has been banded around for years that this interest somehow brought about the many disastrous and tragic events that plagued the group from 1975 onwards.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful By andy phillips on 21 Nov 2008
Format: Hardcover
this is an essential read for any fan of led zeppelin. very well researched and beautifully written.
by far the definitive biography on the band so far and very hard to beat i'd say.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Mr. R. Williams on 10 Dec 2008
Format: Hardcover
This is probably the definitive "History of Led Zeppelin" book and certainly knocks all of the others into a cocked hat. It gives a good history of the dying days of the Yardbirds when Page decided it was time to get a few headlines of his own, having lived as a well respected session-player for years, only really known by people in the business.

The book gives a balanced view of the band and the music without becoming a mere fan-tribute, and avoiding focussing only on the negatives. (I think most other books about Zeppelin have lacked balance one way or the other.) The author covers the less-than-admirable matter of song-writing credits, but, with the help of people involved at the time, gives some interesting psychological theories about why this happened, rather than just saying it was a money thing.

Started off doing this as a four-star purely because of the very odd suggestion that Richard Neville went on to edit Private Eye after Oz, but I've come round to five stars overall. Good read for anyone who was around at the time, and for those who came along later
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