Robert Plant and the Sensational Space Shifters review, Royal Albert Hall, London: Exceptional

Led Zeppelin frontman delights with folk and traditional tunes and rock classics, and there was a surprise appearance from Chrissie Hynde

Jane Hall
Monday 11 December 2017 14:05
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The veteran rocker was in fine voice
The veteran rocker was in fine voice

The majestic setting of the Royal Albert Hall, packed to the rafters, saw an exceptional performance by Robert Plant in fine voice.

Band members Liam Tyson (formerly of Cast) and Justin Adams were both capable of delivering the required virtuoso guitar, and support act Seth Lakeman also provides fiddle for the headliner.

Incense filled the air as Plant opened gently with tracks from new album Carry Fire with its Moroccan Joujouka tribal sound.

They led on folk and traditional tunes such as Richard Thompson’s “House of Cards”, “Gallows Pole” and Joan Baez’s “Babe, I’m Gonna Leave You”, with energy rising through ”Little Maggie”, “Freewheelin’ In My Mind (I’m Fixin’ To Die)”, then culminating with Led Zeppelin’s “Misty Mountain Hop”.

Fans were ecstatic to hear Zep’s “What Is And What Should Never Be” loud and heavy fused with teasing strains of “Whole Lotta Love” – complete with psychedelic light show .

Surprise guest Chrissie Hynde duetted on ”Bluebirds Over the Mountain”, and she went on to perform the Pretenders’ Christmas song “2,000 Miles” for a very seasonal finish to a most memorable evening.

Finally “Whole Lotta Love” exploded in a wall of sound proving Robert Plant can still deliver. Big time.

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