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Now and Zen (Remastered)

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Editors’ Notes

Now and Zen is the most conspicuously '80s-sounding album of all of Robert Plant’s solo works. (For one, the moody, atmospheric ballad “Ship of Fools” was the soundtrack for Crockett and Tubbs’ last speedboat ride on the finale of TV's Miami Vice in 1988.) On the other hand, it's also the solo album most closely tied to Led Zeppelin's legacy, as Jimmy Page appears on “Heaven Knows” and “Tall Cool One,” the latter of which incorporates samples of “Whole Lotta Love,” “The Ocean,” “Black Dog," and “Custard Pie.” Both songs were No. 1 hits in the U.S., and Plant found himself suddenly relevant again at a time when INXS and Guns ‘N Roses ruled the airwaves. Though the layered, synthesizer-heavy production may seem dated, it works exceedingly well on catchy tunes like “The Way I Feel,” “Helen of Troy," and “Why,” any one of which might have been a hit single had they been recorded by anyone but the former lead singer of Led Zeppelin. Among the bonus tracks is a steamy, extended concert recording of “Ship of Fools” that lives up to Zeppelin’s legendary live jams.

Customer Reviews

Pardon me, but a little more apt review here...

Well, no casting of aspersions meant for the previous reviewers here, but: A. This was not a great album of the late '90s; I believe it was released in '88. Plant's sound should have given that away. Sorry that you missed an entire 10 years of enjoying this one... B. Robert Plant is not one of the greatest guitar players of our time; if the reviewer truly was thinking of Led Zep at all, that moniker may apply to one Mr. Jimmy Page, but not Mr. Plant who is quite obviously a singer. I may well be preaching to the choir with these tidbits of info, but I thought that perhaps for those not yet indoctrinated into the 'Zep fold, some clarification was in order. However, one of the above comments was very much spot-on; whatever this album may be, this is NOT Led Zeppelin. Lovers of Plant's reedy vocals will no doubt not care a whit, regardless. There's some great work here, though most of it may be much more "pop-ish" than all but Zeppelin's final album. It was certainly well-received, having had several entries getting regular air play on the country's finest FM stations. "Ship of Fools" is a stand-out favourite of mine, while "Why" languishes at the opposite end of the spectrum, often sounding more like something George Michael might have released. I know times were different in 1988, but really, Robert??? The dynamic quality of "Helen the Troy" and the closer-to-Zep sounds of "Walking Towards Paradise" and "The Way I feel" also contribute to making this album a must-have for Plant fans, along with the obvious popular releases "Heaven Knows", "Dance On My Own", and "Tall Cool One", no doubt the signature tune of this project. The addition of three live recordings just adds to the fun...enjoy!

A nice find for Plant/Zep fans...

Overall a solid effort from Mr. Plant. Arguably his best solo effort to date with "Tall Cool One", "The Way I Feel", Ship Of Fools" and "Why" being the standout tracks with the arrangments on "Ship..." and "Why" being the strongest. Jimmy Page guests on "Heaven Knows" and Tall Cool One" for you Page fans out there. Popular back in the day this album has aged fairly well and is worth a closer look for both rock and pop fans alike.

Now and Zen

This was one of my favorite albumns of the late 90's. I just found it again and am putting it on the iPod. I loved every song and played it to death.


Born: August 20, 1948 in Birmingham, England

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

In 1968, a naïve young singer from the Black Country hills in England named Robert Plant was discovered wailing the blues by veteran session guitarist Jimmy Page and bassist/keyboardist John Paul Jones. When Plant recommended his friend John Bonham as the drummer, one of the most successful bands in rock history was born: Led Zeppelin. But the group that started with such force also ended in flames after 12 years, as Bonham's death from alcohol poisoning in 1980 split the band after nine albums....
Full Bio
Now and Zen (Remastered), Robert Plant
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  • $9.99
  • Genres: Rock, Music, Arena Rock, Hard Rock
  • Released: Feb 29, 1988

Customer Ratings