This music in review was a long time coming. It’s my favourite song, of all time, ever since I was thirteen, and that’s a long time now. Led Zeppelin was my first love but they had at least one song I thought rivalled Stairway, and that song was “In the Light.”
Like a lot of songs that really got me through hard times there are both positive and negative emotions associated with them, and way back in September 2008 I reviewed Rush – “Working Man,” and I was unhappy with what I had done, I went off on some angry tangent and didn’t focus on what was really important, the music. It is probably my only regret thus far in the music in review. So I’m not going to make the mistake again.
Led Zeppelin – “In the Light,” is the first track on the second disc of the two disc album “Physical Graffiti,” an album that shares the honour of my favourite album of all time, tied with Pink Floyd – “The Wall.” Whenever asked the deserted island question those are the only two albums I ever say with confidence.
For the longest time I knew the opening sentence I would use to introduce “In the Light,” it went something like this; “there is something about “In the Light,” that I can’t explain, it means something more to me then words,” but that is bullshit. When someone says things like “it can’t be explained,” usually means the person explaining it is too stupid to explain things, or in my case it means I don’t think you’re smart understand what I’m saying, well I don’t think either is true, so here we go.
Robert Plant stated the three songs he felt were his best performances ever were “Babe I’m Gonna Leave You,” “All My Love,” and “In the Light.” Once Page and Jones had the instrumental written up for “In the Light,” Plant heard the song and within moments had the lyrics done, it just came out of him like these words were something he had been dying to sing his entire career.
“In the Light,” came to me at the perfect time, it was Zeppelin who I worshiped, I was young and just discovering them, and here was this almost lost gem that only die hard Zeppelin fans really seemed to talk about. It was songs like “Stairway to Heaven,” and “In the Light,” that defined what I considered to be brilliant song writing, it is more than a song, it’s a story, and any good story starts slow introducing to you the characters and setting, it lets you get comfortable, and then excitement increases, intelligently and methodically, and you experience a powerful serge of emotion from the tales of these characters, and it moves you in a way you didn’t think possible. “In the Light,” in one listen did this for me, my thirteen year old self was struck and the feelings associated with this song has never changed, only strengthened with time. As I grow older I start to appreciate what Robert Plant is saying in this song more and more, it’s like I always knew but as I live through the lyrics I understand all the more.
This is one of those songs you should give a listen to by yourself, and let yourself absorb every sound, and every word. The message of believing in yourself, but also there is a slight sense of spite, which very much agrees with me, like saying to a lover “hey, did you believe I could leave you?” yet still a romantic and touching song “As you would for me, I will share your load.” So sad yet so promising and optimistic, “When love is pain, it can devour you, but you are never alone, I would share your load.”
It says a lot to me, I stand strong and alone in life, and when I reflect on every past attempts of reaching out to a potentially lover, it’s always the same, for me, “I would share your load, baby let me.” I think you can see why this song only gains meaning for me with the passing of time. It’s the greatest song ever, I think so anyway.
Until next month, keep on rocking in the free world.
- Colin Kelly