Led Zeppelin - Physical Graffiti

NME.COM feature on Led Zeppelin - Physical Graffiti album including album review, artwork, tracks, listen now, tour dates, discography and more.

Release date: 04 October 2005

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Led Zeppelin - Physical Graffiti: Wikipedia Album Entry

Physical Graffiti is the sixth album by the English rock band Led Zeppelin. It is a double album which was released on 24 February 1975. Recording sessions for the album were initially disrupted when John Paul Jones considered leaving the band. After reuniting at Headley Grange, the band wrote and recorded eight songs, the combined length of which stretched the album beyond the typical length of an LP. This prompted the band to make Physical Graffiti a double album by including previously unreleased tracks from earlier recording sessions.

Physical Graffiti was commercially and critically successful; the album is 16 times platinum (though this only signifies sales of 8 million copies, as it is a double album) in the United States alone, and has come to be regarded as one of Led Zeppelin's defining works. In 2003, the album was ranked number 70 on Rolling Stone magazine's list of the 500 greatest albums of all time.

The album was released on 24 February 1975, at a time when Led Zeppelin was undertaking its tenth concert tour of North America. Delays in the production of the album's sleeve design prevented its release prior to the commencement of the tour.

Physical Graffiti was the band's first release on their own Swan Song Records label, which had been launched in May 1974. Until this point, all of Led Zeppelin's albums had been released on Atlantic Records. The album was a commercial and critical success, having built up a huge advance order, and when eventually released it reached #1 on Billboard's Pop Albums chart. It has since proven to be one of the most popular releases by the group, selling 8 million copies in the United States alone (which has made it 16 times platinum as it is a double album). Physical Graffiti was the first album to go platinum on advance orders alone. Shortly after its release, all previous Led Zeppelin albums simultaneously re-entered the top-200 album chart.

Billboard magazine's 5 star review of the album stated: "[Physical Graffiti] is a tour de force through a number of musical styles, from straight rock to blues to folky acoustic to orchestral sounds." In 1998 Q magazine readers voted Physical Graffiti the 28th greatest album of all time; in 2000 Q placed it at number 32 in its list of the 100 Greatest British Albums Ever; and in 2001 the same magazine named it as one of the 50 Heaviest Albums Of All Time. In 2003 the TV network VH1 named it the 71st greatest album ever. In 2003, the album was ranked number 70 on Rolling Stone magazine's list of the 500 greatest albums of all time. The album is also listed in Robert Dimery and Stevie Chick's 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die (2005).

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