Ten brilliant live albums from the 1970s

Was the 1970s the best ever decade for live music albums? Here are ten that make a strong case for that accolade.
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Led Zeppelin - The Song Remains The Same

This started as a film of three nights of Led Zeppelin concerts at Madison Square Gardens, New York in July 1973. The film though was a mishmash of behind-the-scenes, on-stage songs, and some fantasy scenes. Both the film and this soundtrack double album were released three years later in 1976.

Ultimately this is a great live album and deserves listing as such. There are some critical reviews, but they are largely based on the production and sound which isn’t at its best. Jimmy Page is one of those critics who isn’t happy with the way the live show sounds. But perhaps that's about seeking perfection, many fans rate the album highly and no wonder - It’s full of brilliant Led Zeppelin songs. 

Over time the album has had the opportunity for reissues with a different production focus and remastering. There are versions from 2007 and 2018 with some extra songs and different edits as alternatives to the original. Are they better? It depends on who you ask, each version has its band of fans and critics. Maybe it’s significant that Page has a production credit for the 2018 version, but not the prior two.

As a snapshot of Led Zeppelin in their early seventies prime, The Song Remains The Same is a must-have. Sampling all four members in top form on stage together with many of their best songs is a delight. It's still an album of one of the best rock and roll bands ever playing live for you. That's got to be good.