Review: Dread Zeppelin

Dread Zeppelin
““Greatest & Latest Hits””

Admittedly, I was only familiar with this band by their reputation which precedes them with due warrant.  Common knowledge is that Dread Zeppelin are a high concept cover band that features an Elvis like singer who sings over reggae and Jamaican infused interpretations of Led Zeppelin songs.  With a live show of equal bizarre entertaining quality, most have heard of Dread Zeppelin.  Now, how many of you have heard Dread Zeppelin?  What started out as a listen out of pure curiosity soon gave way to an appreciation of the high level of musicianship and creativity that pours forth from this band.  The concept is high art humor.  The execution is remarkable complete re-workings of Led Zeppelin songs, which retain just the faintest hints of their original form.  Mostly filtered through a reggae mentality, there is much that would put Dread Zeppelin in a progressive contemporary form of the genre due to there free usage of beat machines and samples (although both are used very sparingly).  “Whole Lotta Love” gets a cut-n-paste dub chop and big bass boost face-lift.  “Rock and Roll” (a Zeppelin classic) wears a smooth beat driven and keyboard buttered R&B taste that lets the bass drive the tempo (and no guitars except for some jazzy solos).  What some purists might be quick to dismiss as bastardizing one of the greatest rock bands ever, I have to respect because for all the humor, the music is so purely created and intelligently and caringly put together, one can tell the band does this because of some deep appreciation for the band.  Or maybe not, but their musicianship is top notch and it takes some serious drive to have the range of interpretation yet stay affixed to this twisted idea of having to utilize Led Zeppelin songs exclusively for songs core ideas.  This is still bizarre, but the delivery is impressive.