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Mighty ReArranger

Mighty ReArranger
[Click above for album images]



Re-energized by Dreamland - and by the critical acclaim that greeted it - Robert Plant cemented his relationship with his backing band (now minus guitarist Porl Thompson and bassist Charlie Jones) by bestowing the name the Strange Sensation on them. He then dragged them off to his farm in South Snowdonia. "The environment just seemed like the right thing to do," he said. "A place where we'd be together 24 hours a day, five days a week, so that people could go off in different little factions."

On the blastingly powerful Mighty ReArranger, Plant used the Strange Sensation to effect a new fusion of Zeppelin-esque rock and North African rhythm: a mighty rearrangement indeed. Though he had long been fascinated with the exotically discordant scales of eastern and African music, the immediate inspiration was his recent appearance at Mali's Festival in the Desert. "We were exposed to some of the most vibrant music and delivery I've ever experienced," Plant said of the festival near Timbuktu. "We've taken quite a few of the rhythms from there and superimposed them onto rock and roll structure." Key to effecting this was chief accomplice and multi-string-instrumentalist Justin Adams, who would go on to work with the acclaimed Malian troupe Tinariwen.

The album's songs were pitted with outbursts at military idiocy (Another Tribe), American jingoism (Freedom Fries) and classic-rock complacency (Tin Pan Valley), while still finding room for All the King's Horses, one of the loveliest acoustic ballads Plant's ever recorded.

The pulsing Another Tribe came complete with eddying Asiatic strings that recalled John Paul Jones' Mellotron interludes on Kashmir. John Bonham's primordial stomp came more to mind on the more thrusting Shine It All Around, which wasn't so far from the widescreen Britrock of Oasis and their ilk. The early highlight, though, was the thrilling Tin Pan Valley, lurching violently from ominous ambient softness to metallic Moroccan frenzy as explosively as Zeppelin ever did.

Takamba started out like Tinariwen itself before again blasting off into rock rage. Dancing in Heaven moved Plant back up to the Welsh mountains, with lap steel and Byrdsy 12-string acoustic fashioning a more folk-rock feel; Let the Four Winds Blow tapped Plant's infatuation with 1960s West Coast rock. Somebody Knocking returned us to the Malian desert, all hypnotic gourd grooves and monochordal blues dread, and the title-track could have been Tinariwen covering the Stones' Hip Shake Thing, complete with tinkling Ian Stewart-style piano. Piano it was, too, that faded into the closing Brother Ray, a brief homage to the late Mr. Charles that could have been recorded out in Plant's cowshed.

Mighty ReArranger stands up handsomely as some of the most energised and eclectic music Robert Plant has ever made.

From: Barney Hoskyns for BBC Music
Statistics

Released:
May 10, 2005 (US)
May 9, 2005 (UK)
Mar. 20, 1007 (Remastered)

Chart Position:
#22 (US) #4 (UK)

Certified:


Tracks

1. Another Tribe
2. Shine It All Around
3. Freedom Fries
4. Tin Pan Valley
5. All The King's Horses
6. The Enchanter
7. Takamba
8. Dancing In Heaven
9. Somebody Knocking
10. Let The Four Winds Blow
11. Mighty Rearranger
12. Brother Ray (inc. hidden track Shine It All Around [Girls Remix])


REMASTERED VERSION BONUS TRACKS
13. Red, White and Blue
14. All the Money in the World
15. Shine It All Around (Girls Remix)
16. Tin Pan Alley (Girls Remix)
17. The Enchanter (UNKLE Reconstruction)


Special Tour Edition bonus disc
18. Shine It All Around
19. Black Dog
20. Freedom Fries
21. When The Levee Breaks
22. All The King's Horses
23. Takamba
24. Tin Pan Valley
25. Gallows Pole
26. The Enchanter
27. Mighty ReArranger
28. Whole Lotta Love


Best Buy Special Edition disc
A Conversation With Robert Plant
Quick Fact

Mighty ReArranger was nominated for two Grammy Awards: Best Solo Rock Vocal Performance for Shine It All Around and Best Hard Rock Performance for Tin Pan Valley.
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This Month in
Led Zeppelin History

February 7, 1962 - Deborah Bonham, sister to John, was born in Redditch, Worcestershire, England
February 23, 1966 - Warren Grant, son of Peter, was born.
February xx, 1969 - Led Zeppelin enters the Billboard Top 40
February 16, 1969 - Led Zeppelin wrap up their first American tour in Baltimore, MD.
February 07, 1970 - Edinburgh gig cancelled after Plant receives facial injuries in a car accident
February 28, 1970 - The band performs as "The Nobs" in Copenhagen after threat of legal action from Countess Von Zeppelin
February xx, 1971 - John Paul Jones involved in legal issues regarding a musician who shares the same name
February xx, 1971 - Overdubs for the fourth album are recorded at Island Studios
February 14, 1972 - The band is refused admission into Singapore due to their long hair
February 16, 1972 - The Australian tour begins in Perth
February 21, 1972 - Led Zeppelin: Rock and Roll b/w Four Sticks (Atlantic 45-2865) 45 single is released in the US.
February xx, 1973 - The band makes final preparations for the European tour
February 16, 1973 - The release date for Houses Of The Holy is pushed back due to some sleeve problems
February xx, 1974 - Sessions for Physical Graffiti continue
February 14, 1974 - Page, Plant and Bonham attend a Roy Harper concert
February 04, 1975 - Zeppelin perform a last minute show at Nassau Coliseum to accomodate fans after being banned in Boston
February 24, 1975 - Physical Graffiti finally issued worldwide to phenomenal sales
February xx, 1976 - Media reports that Zeppelin are due to release an album entitled Obelisk
February xx, 1977 - Robert contracts a bout of tonsillitis postponing the American tour
February xx, 1978 - Robert Plant helps produce a record for punk band Dansette Damage
February 16, 1978 - The cases against Bonham, Cole & Grant stemming from the Oakland incident are heard and all receive suspended prison sentences and fines
February xx, 1979 - Although absent from the US stage or market, Led Zeppelin rank best in many music magazine categories
February xx, 1979 - Mixing sessions for In Through The Out Door take place at Polar Studios. Rumors fly of a European tour
February 03, 1980 - Robert joins Dave Edmund’s Rockpile at the Birmingham Top Rank
February 13, 2005 - Led Zeppelin receives a Grammy for Lifetime Achievment.
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