Lez Zeppelin at The Garage
Tribute bands can go either way: an embarrassingly misguided attempt to recall the glories of your heroes, or a brilliant reminder of what you’ve been missing. Lez Zeppelin, through their solid musicianship and vibrant energy, fall into the latter camp. The all-female outfit from New York have been performing material by the English rockers since 2004, and have recorded two eponymously titled albums of covers thus far.
They come on stage to Howlin’ Wolf’s Back Door Man, undoubtedly the most knowingly inappropriate entrance track since an Irish neighbour chose The Eagles’ Lyin’ Eyes for her wedding dance. It’s then straight into Rock and Roll and Black Dog. They immediately have the audience behind them, propelled by the pounding drums of Leesa Harrington-Squyres and the blazing guitar riffs of Steph Paynes. Bassist Megan Thomas looks bored throughout, but is more than compensated for by the force of nature that is vocalist Shannon Conley. She struts, leaps, kicks, poses and covers the stage with a frenetic energy that, combined with powerhouse vocals, has the predominantly male audience slavering over her every move.
An atmospheric Dazed and Confused finishes with Paynes playing the guitar with a violin bow for three minutes. It’s what Jimmy Page did, and is therefore authentic, but it drags on in the same way as the self-indulgence of the originals all too often did. There are many longueurs throughout the set, but there are also rousing versions of Kashmir and Whole Lotta Love. They’ve won over the hardcore Zep fans here tonight, and their idols would be proud.
Photos: Lucia Hrdá
For further information and future events visit Lez Zeppelin’s website here.
Watch the live video for Since I’ve Been Loving You here: