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4.4 out of 5 stars294
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on 6 December 2007
There are some critical reviews here and I question the comments made? I suggest some are sour grapes from people who have not actually heard this CD, but don't want to spend the money to buy what in their view 'is just another re-mastered collection and the record company cashing in'. Well if you feel that way, don't whinge about it, just don't buy it! For those that want to hear the best of Zeppelin as you have never heard them before, then buy it. It's reasonably priced and the work that has gone into producing it is exceptional. I won't labour on, as there are some fantastic comments already about the technical presentation of this set. Suffice to say if you like Zeppelin, you won't be disappointed with this very good value double CD. The songs sound fresh and new and I have never heard Zeppelin sound so fine. I do have their complete catalogue, including the re-masters double CD, so have something to measure this against - trust me, it's astonishing how good this sounds compared to the original studio CD's. The clarity and seperation of the instruments is remarkable, I have not done a Pepsi challange as to me the sound is so much better, I don't need to compare - I can hear it clearly. The first CD benefits most and the reworked 'Stairway to Heaven' is worth the purchase price alone.

A great collection of the best from Zeppelin's catalogue and a VERY worthwhile addition to any serious rock fans music collection. Do yourself a favour and see how good one of the best rock bands of all time can sound...........

A solid 5 stars is earned, if I could award more I would.

(If you disagree after hearing it, them I will buy you a beer!).
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OK, unlike some of the other reviews here this one is written after hearing the album.

Firstly, the music here all sounds better than I ever heard it before. I did direct A-B comparisons and would defy anyone to say they cannot hear an improvement. This improvement might not be significant for some, but to me it really lets each instrument and musician really stand on their own. Pages guitar army really glows and buckles in a way that reinforces his genius. No-one else in rock, or jazz for matter, has had such a wide palette of sounds and to hear it so clearly is an unalloyed pleasure. Overdubs, stereo placement, space around each instrument, cymbal decay and all of the other anorak details that I love are all here. This is not just a quick re-eq with a bit extra top end thrown in to compensate for hearing loss with age and a general lowering of the standard of stereo gear these days but a real reworking of the digital master tapes. Good Times Bad Times sounds like it was recorded earlier today by a band with enough energy to light up London.

Secondly, which tracks do you leave out when picking Zeps best? I can think of a handful that were on In Through The Out Door and they have been left out. After that???? The tracks here are all stoaters, fine examples of a band that took risks, stretching the envelope, taking the listener on a journey through several worlds, middle , middle eastern, far eastern, the under and the over.

I have bought every Zep album on vinyl, and cd, so there is nothing here that is new. I can however recommend this to anyone who is curious about Zep, anyone with a love for great sound quality and production and lovers of damn fine rock music. Enjoy!
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VINE VOICEon 19 November 2007
It's easy to be cynical about yet another greatest hits package from Led Zeppelin. It's true that this collection differs little in terms of track listing from the decade-old Remasters compilation, and you don't have to be a genius to work out that it's intended to capitalise on interest reawakened by the forthcoming reunion show.

Diehards who complain that there's nothing new here for them are absolutely right. Although the songs have been remastered once again, this time by John Davis of Alchemy, it's unlikely that anyone who already owns the entire oeuvre would buy Mothership for that reason alone. They'd be more likely to cherrypick, now that the entire back catalogue has been made available for legal digital download.

Where this collection scores high is as an initial introduction to the work of probably the greatest rock band ever to have existed. Unlike many of their contemporaries, Led Zeppelin have never really ceased to be cool - and that means that a succession of new generations are ripe for the sheer exhilaration of discovering this music. Rather than allowing it to gather dust in the digital archives, it's right to remarket it every few years - in the same way as new productions of classic plays reintroduce Shakespeare to a new generation, or CGI-fest trilogies from New Zealand reawaken interest in Tolkien.

So how good a primer is this? Any sixteen-year-old getting this 2-CD collection for Christmas has instant access to most of the band's best work without the need for a costly trawl through musical history. There are some wonderfully informative sleeve notes from Rolling Stone veteran journalist David Fricke. And tracks have been chosen by the three surviving members of the band, so what you're getting here is Led Zeppelin's idea of what made Led Zeppelin great - and that's got to be a pretty good place to start.

Nevertheless, everyone will have their own ideas about the wisdom of the choices made here. For me, The Battle of Evermore, In My Time Of Dying and Ten Years Gone could have replaced D'Yer Maker, In the Evening and keyboard-infested horror All My Love - but there you go. All eight studio albums are represented, though it's odd to see four tracks from the relatively lacklustre Houses of The Holy as opposed to just three from classic double album Physical Graffiti.

The four tracks from the band's debut are a joy, though - their audio imperfections newly smoothed out, the restored tracks enchant even this old-timer who bought the album on vinyl when she was still in white knee-socks. Dazed and Confused has a pristine clarity that does nothing to upset its sinister atmosphere and the lovely Babe I'm Gonna Leave You makes Page's crystalline, Spanish-inflected guitar sound like it was recorded yesterday. This early on, Robert Plant had yet to acquire the mannered tics and flourishes that sometimes marred his later grandstanding performances and his vocals here are yearning, soulful, even subtle.

Mothership is available in multiple formats, with or without an accompanying DVD offering live highlights from the 2003 boxed collection. And those who whinge about profiteering are missing the point. If you've yet to discover Led Zeppelin, trust me - this is a very good place to start. If you know it all of old, buy this for your son, your daughter, your grandchildren, and share what you were lucky enough to witness first-hand.

Mothership is available in multiple formats, with or without an accompanying DVD offering live highlights from the 2003 boxed collection. And those who whinge about profiteering are missing the point. If you've yet to discover Led Zeppelin, trust me - this is a very good place to start. If you know it all of old, buy this for your son, your daughter, your grandchildren, and share what you were lucky enough to witness first-hand.
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I had heard of Led Zeppelin but apart from 'Stairway to Heaven' did not know their music. I must admit, I always found the song I knew to be rather boring. I am first and foremost a country music fan who also likes Springsteen, Young, Seger, Dire Straits etc. I say all this because this is not a review from a Led Zeppelin fan as such, just a music fan. Why did I buy this?! I was given Plant and Krauss's superb album and was impressed by Plant's voice. I went to see Uncle Earl whose last album was produced by John Paul Jones and he performed at the show. I also read the praise the group and this collection was getting so I thought I would give it a go. I am pleased I did. It is a thoroughly entertaining 2 CD set of rock hard and soft with numerous outstanding performances. I was particularly impressed with Whole Lotta Love, Immigrant Song, Black Dog, When the levee breaks and Trampled Under Foot. I was even impressed with Stairway to Heaven. Great singing, great musicianship, great songs and rock music at its best. A great introduction to a group that appears to deserve its legendary status. I can see me buying more of their albums. Recommended.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 15 June 2011
I agree with other reviewers who point to the absence of classic tracks such as 'The Battle of Evermore', and the inclusion of lumpen tracks like 'D'Yer Maker', but having got that moan out of the way, I can say that this re-mastered collection is a great introduction to this Colossus of a band. The sound mastering brings the tracks up gleaming fresh, and the complexity and depth of songs like 'Kashmir', 'Stairway to Heaven' and 'The Song Remains the Same' appear even richer in their new clothes. Simply sit back and marvel at some of the guitar work, and how tight and integrated the band are, across a range of approaches and styles. A very impressive 'Best of' at a very attractive price. An inexpensive collection of 'favourites' under one roof, or if you're new to this monster band, I truly envy your journey of discovery...
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on 27 December 2007
It seem to either love or hate Led Zeppelin. Whilst there is no denying they were egotistical and self indulgent the magic of their music still hold sway today and they remain essential listening to people who weren't old enought to remember them the first time round.

All Zeps classics are here: Dazed And Confused, No Quarter, Whole Lotta Love, Black Dog, Stairway, Kashmir and other gems too long to list.

My only quibbles:- Tangerine from the vastly underrated Led Zeppelin 3 should have been included. This is a beautiful song and never seems to get played. D'yer Mak'er (From Houses Of The Holy) is nothing more than a filler and should have been replaced with The Rain Song.

That aside, first class. Enjoy.
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on 20 November 2007
I'm new to Led Zeppelin and after listening to this compilation I urge you all out there to get this double CD fast. The tracks are fantastic especially on disc one. From Goodtimes to Badtimes right through to Stairway to Heaven Led Zeppelin deliver. Plants singing is fantastic and how he competes with the guitar is wonderous. The whole band gel together as one breathing music machine which will deliver delight and energy driving you on in having a good day. So don't just sit there tap the 'Buy It Now key' and get yourself an album you won't regret!
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There seems to be some confusion over "Mothership" especially with regard to the 'sound'. While it's not exactly the 'Motherlode' in terms of track content – soundwise it's streets ahead of what's been offered before and at times just BREATHTAKING in its clarity.

As you'll see from the track list below - all eight official 'studio' albums from 1969 through to 1979 are represented on this newly remastered compilation. The awful live double that is "The Song Remains The Same" from 1976 is wisely not featured at all on "Mothership" – neither is the 8-song odds and sods compilation "Coda" from 1982 which contained studio out-takes and live tracks recorded between 1969 and 1978.

There are three 2007 versions of "Mothership" – the standard 2CD issue (minus DVD) is on Swan Song/Atlantic 8122 79961 5 (use Barcode 081227996154 in Amazon to locate it) and a 4LP Vinyl Box Set Edition on Swan Song/Atlantic/Rhino R1 344700 (use the Barcode 081227995133 to locate that). This review deals with what's been called the 'Deluxe Edition' issue that offers 2CDs and 1DVD. Here are the heavy details...

UK released November 2007 – the 2CD and 1DVD version of the "Mothership" compilation by LED ZEPPELIN on Swan Song/Atlantic 8122 79961 3 (Barcode 081227996130) has all tracks newly remastered by JOHN DAVIS at Alchemy Mastering in London and plays out as follows:

Disc 1 (66:18 minutes):
1. Good Times Bad Times
2. Communication Breakdown
3. Dazed And Confused
4. Babe I’m Gonna Leave You
Tracks 1 to 4 are from their debut vinyl album "Led Zeppelin" - originally issued 12 January 1969 in the USA on Atlantic SD-8216 and 31 March 1969 in the UK on Atlantic 588 171

5. Whole Lotta Love
6. Ramble On
7. Heartbreaker
Tracks 5 to 7 are from their "Led Zeppelin II" LP - originally released 22 October 1969 in the USA on Atlantic SD-8236 and Atlantic 588 198 in the UK

8. Immigrant Song
9. Since I've Been Loving You
Tracks 8 and 9 are from their "Led Zeppelin III" LP - originally released 5 October 1970 in the USA on Atlantic SD-7291 and Atlantic 2401 002 in the UK

10. Rock And Roll
11. Black Dog
12. When The Levee Breaks
13. Stairway To Heaven
Tracks 10 to 13 are from their "Untitled" LP – released 8 November 1971 in the USA on Atlantic SD 7208 and Atlantic 2401012 in the UK. Officially their 4th album was 'untitled' but of course is often referred to as "Led Zeppelin IV", "Four Symbols", "Runes" and "ZoSo" (the ZoSo title derives from the four symbols that appear at the top of the Atlantic Records label on the November 1971 LP - Zodiac letters for each member of the band – ZoSo being Jimmy Page).

Disc 2 (69:21 minutes):
1. The Song Remains The Same
2. Over The Hills And Far Away
3. D’Yer Maker
4. No Quarter
Tracks 1 to 4 are from the "Houses Of The Holy" LP – released 23 March 1973 in the USA on Atlantic SD 7255 and in the UK on Atlantic K 50014

5. Trampled Under Foot
6. Houses Of The Holy
7. Kashmir
Tracks 5 to 7 are from "Physical Graffiti" – a 2LP set released 24 February 1975 in the UK on Swan Song SSK 89400 and Swan Song SS 2-200 in the USA. It went to Number 1 in both countries and shipped over 8 million copies in the USA alone.

8. Nobody’s Fault But Mine
9. Achilles Last Stand
Tracks 8 and 9 are from the single album "Presence" – released 31 March 1976 in the USA on Swan Song SS 8416 and in the UK on Swan Song SSK 59402

10. In The Evening
11. All My Love
Tracks 10 and 11 are from their 8th and final studio album "In Through The Out Door" – released 15 August 1979 in the USA on Swan Song SS 16002 and in the UK on Swan Song SSK 59410

DVD (2003 Remasters, Excerpts from the "Led Zeppelin" 2DVD set, Digital DTS Surround, Playback All Regions)
1. We're Gonna Groove
2. I Can't Quit You Babe
3. Dazed And Confused
4. White Summer
5. What Is And What Should Never Be
6. Moby Dick
7. Whole Lotta Love
8. Communication Breakdown
9. Bring it On Home
10. Immigrant Song
11. Black Dog
12. Misty Mountain Hop
13. The Ocean
14. Going To California
15. In My Time Of Dying
16. Stairway To Heaven
17. Rock And Roll
18. Nobody's Fault But Mine
19. Kashmir
20. Whole Lotta Love

As you can see - "Zeppelin II" sees only 3 tracks on Disc 1, while the debut gets 4. This misses out on gems from "II" like "Moby Dick", "Livin' Lovin' Maid (She's Just A Woman)" and "What Is And What Should Never Be" - odd omissions for an album that is constantly cited in magazine polls by the public as their "favorite rock album ever". Worse however is "III", often referred to by fans as their 'acoustic' album. By only representing it with "Immigrant Song" and "Since I've Been Loving You", you get the 'feeling' that the album is like its two predecessors - 'hard rock' - when it actually contains some of their most beautiful and underrated softer tracks, especially the gorgeous acoustic workout "That's The Way". Four songs from the iconic and brilliant "IV" are only right and proper - and some would argue the entire album should be on here (the lyrics to "Black Dog" title this review).

Downside: as you can see from the playing time, a full 13 minutes on Disc 1 could have been used up - and isn't. Extending the acoustic theme to "IV", the equally wonderful "The Battle Of Evermore" (Sandy Denny on backing vocals) is missing too when there was room. Coupled with "That's The Way" - both would have made for huge bonuses and more importantly made the disc more representative of the band. The 'acoustic' element of Zeppelin (which was featured in most of their live sets) is oddly absent here - a mistake I think. Their diversity as a band - away from just hard rock - is one of the reasons for their enduring appeal and why fans love them so. "Hey Hey (What Can I Do Now)" the brilliant non-album B-side to the US 45 of "Immigrant Song" would have been a tasty choice too - but again - a no show. It's well cool to see key album cuts like "In My Time Of Dying", "What Is And What Should Never Be", "Bring It On Home" and "The Ocean" featured on the truncated DVD – a single 'excerpts' disc culled from 2003's "Led Zeppelin" 2DVD release – widely praised for its excellence. It also includes rarities like "We're Gonna Groove" and "White Summer"...

Upside: Disc 1 has very clever sequencing on it and listening to the song selection straight through is a superb and impressive experience. The space around the opening guitars of "Baby I'm Gonna Leave You" is ethereal and beautiful. The fabulous guitar-work in the left speaker on "Ramble On" from "II" catches your ear too - and Plant's double vocals - great. I could hear the band count One Two Three on the fade in to "Immigrant Song". Genius choice however, goes to the stunning blues workout of "Since I've Been Loving You" from "III". Sounding just fantastic, the squeaking of Bonham's drum pedals can be heard just a few milliseconds before Page launches into that blistering guitar riff (lyrics above). And finally - at long last - the remastering has brought out the full ferocity of Bonham's drumming and Plant's harmonica playing in the simply awesome "When The Levee Breaks" - cleverly placed before "Stairway" and not after it - rounding off Disc 1 very nicely.

The sound quality on Disc 1 in particular is BREATHTAKING. Page transferred the original master tapes carefully to digital in 1991 for "The Complete Studio Recordings" and John Davis of Alchemy Mastering in London has used these for the 2007 Remasters. They are better and in some cases unbelievably so.

It's clear the band feel that "Houses" is a bit under appreciated as an album so no less than 4 tracks are featured including the clever placing of the reggae "D'yer Maker" with Bonham and Jones both playing a rhythm section storm. But to leave off the melodic winner that is "The Rain Song" is a huge omission. Three from the mighty "Physical Graffiti" - but again the wonderful "Ten Years Gone" and the rocking "Custard Pie" are not here. For me album number six "Presence" was a tedious listen in 1976 and still is now - despite people trying to reappraise it. I really don't need to hear the 10 minutes of "Achilles Last Stand" ever again when the blues finisher "Tea For One" would have been a braver choice. And last up is "In Through The Out Door" which is featured here by "In The Evening" - the album's great opener. But the truly awful "All My Love" finishes Disc 2 when the funkier "For Your Love" would have been better. Also - as with Disc 1 - with only 69 minutes used - there was enough room for a more varied musical picture. And even though its brilliant stuff - why ask fans to pay for a 2003 DVD of material they will already own - when a live disc should have been Disc 3 - representing the band in what 'they' feel is their best arena?

The 24-page booklet is both tasteful yet ever so slightly (and strangely) disappointing. None of the eight gorgeous and often elaborate album covers are pictured (where the hell is the artwork that was such an integral to their releases?) and there are mentions of US 7" single releases in the track by track details but no pictures of any - nor any fan-pleasing rare 7" picture sleeves from around the world either. There’s no sense of Led Zeppelin's global effect on Rock - not even a UK or US discography with catalogue numbers. But DAVID FRICKE's essay using a November 1968 Atlantic Records publicity announcement as its title ("Hot, New English Group Led Zeppelin") is very good – offering up a brief but highly informative history of this colossal rock band and its output across 12 pages. And at least the wholesale nicking of blues tunes is finally acknowledged in the writer's credits for "Whole Lotta Love" (a Willie Dixon song made famous by Muddy Waters), Anne Bredon for "Baby I'm Gonna Leave You" and Memphis Minnie for "When The Levee Breaks".

Some have said this compilation is 'money for old rope' - I don't see it that way. Without doubt, the 1991 Remasters by Jimmy Page were way better than the crappy 80s issues when issued but these 2007 upgrades have been long overdue and sounding as good as they do - they're to be welcomed. If ever a band deserved lavish attention spent on their catalogue - it's Zeppelin. The set it flawed for sure - but the audio is great - and if you don’t already own the 2DVD set “Led Zeppelin” – then that 90-minute bonus visual disc is going to a serious treat for newcomers.

2014 and 2015 would eventually see their catalogue get a Jimmy Page makeover with double and triple-disc 'Deluxe Editions' of all albums including a 3CD "Coda". There are even Vinyl variants. 2015 has seen a 2CD reissue of "Mothership” which I believe uses those 2014/2015 Page Remasters.

What a band and what a compilation "Mothership" is. In any of its forms – Zeppelin's "Mothership" tramples (under foot) all pretenders and shows why this best of British Rock groups is so beloved and revered and nearly fifty years after the event - one of the most collectable bands on the planet.

“Hey! Hey! Mama” indeed...
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on 31 October 2007
Let's face it. A true Zeppelin fan has all of the albums already. A moderate Zeppelin fan probably has II, IV, Physically Graffitti, and probably some previous compilations. But this is a perfect set for a beginner who does not have anything. It touches on all the popular favorites (although with Zeppelin....and much like The Dead or Zappa, favorites are depending upon the person), and is a good starting point.
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VINE VOICEon 2 November 2007
Let's get this much straight - I won't buy this. I own a complete set of the japanese mini cd albums (replicas of the vinyl package) and the remasters boxed sets. However, the compilers have done a top job of picking a representative collection for the vaguely interested and the younger listener curious to know what all the fuss is about.

You cannot quibble with the chronological run through of the greatest rock groups high points. The willfully obscure will no doubt argue the track listing. I for one would recommend this to anyone not possessing the collection - either this or the "Remasters" double which has sadly been deleted.

Let's face it this is not for us devotees and the reviews bemoaning this are somewhat churlish and miss the point. The Rolled Gold analogy is a good one - a great collection for the newcomer.

And its a more attractive package than the shameless Early Days/Latter Days sets of a few years back.

Aw hell I did get it for the car. Damn you Atlantic/Swansong whoever!

The latest remaster is absolutely excellent, the sound is very clear, amply demonstrated on quiet to loud songs like Babe I'm Gonna Leave which sounds terrific throughout, it is not quiet and then deafening and distorted as often happens on those kind of tracks.

The sound is very well balanced throughout the collection and is a worthy replacement for the late, great Remasters double set. I also like the way JPJ's basslines sound full and meaty.

And finally, a note about the DVD - it is just extracts from the peerless "DVD" collection, if you already have this save a couple of quid by buying the cd only package. On the other hand if you don't - get it with the DVD - it is excellent value
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