Robert Plant / Sept. 12, 2005 / Montreal

The Trews, hailing from Nova Scotia opened the night of music and brought with them their own brand of hard rocking blues. However, the 6,300 plus fans at The Bell Center were really looking forward to the arrival of Robert Plant and his new band.

When Plant and The Strange Sensation, hit the stage and kicked right into "No Quarter" fans young and old erupted with thunderous applauds. I'm not sure how well known Robert Plant is among today's youth, but surrounding me were plenty of moms and dads with their teenagers; obviously parents trying to share with their kids the music that they grew up listening to.

Plant has decided not to rely solely on the music that made him famous. He is touring in support of his new CD, The Mighty Rearranger. Half of the 95 minute concert was devoted to songs from this interesting and hard rocking album. Standouts for me were "Freedom Fries" (referring to the change made in the U.S. from French Fries to Freedom Fries) and "Tin Pan Valley". The other half of the concert consisted of Led Zeppelin hits including the night's encore, "Whole Lotta Love." What's interesting is that Plant has reworked all of his Zeppelin classics. He has infused them with a slightly new style, perhaps showcasing the talents of his current band rather than trying to make them sound like Jimmy Page, John Paul Jones, or John Bonham. Another interesting reworking was a cover of the classic "Hey Joe" (Jimi Hendrix). Instead of the more soulful version that we are all used to hearing, Plant had instilled the tune with a much rougher, almost bleeding version that helped showcase a different side of his vocal range.

All in all, it was good to see Plant not resting on past successes as he continues to look for new inspiration and fresh sounds. I also have to mention that his voice still sounds amazing, and he is still easily one of rock's greatest vocalists. He definitely hasn't lost his touch. I highly recommend getting a pair of tickets and seeing this rock icon strut his stuff the next time he comes to your town.

Robert Plant's Set list:
No Quarter
Shine It All Around
Black Dog
Freedom Fries
Down To The Sea
That's The Way
Hey Joe
Four Sticks
Takamba
Tin Pan Valley
Gallows Pole
Babe I'm Gonna Leave You

Encore:
The Enchanter
Whole Lotta Love

The Strange Sensations:
Robert Plant (Vocals, percussion); Skin Tyson (acoustic guitar, electric guitar); Justin Adams (electric guitar, mandolin, bendir); John Baggott (keyboards, Moog synthesizer, electronics, percussion); Billy Fuller (bass guitar); Clive Deamer (drums, percussion).

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