Picks and Pans Review: Dreamland
Robert Plant's diaphragm has been worked over to a point that would wear out most trampolines, but those stadium-rattling yawps of many a Led Zeppelin anthem haven't affected his voice, except for a slight elder's rasp. On this artful collection of (mostly) covers steeped in '60s psychedelia, though, Plant plays it low-key; he caresses "One More Cup of Coffee," a 1975 Bob Dylan song originally delivered with fire and brimstone. Plant transforms it with a sensual, swirling kaleidoscope of keyboards and a subtle flamenco guitar. It's the highlight of the disc, together with an epic treatment of the Youngbloods' 1969 anti-hymn "Darkness, Darkness." An update of Jimi Hendrix's "Hey Joe," though, with a guitar line borrowed from U2's "Bullet the Blue Sky," seems unnecessary. Other songs take up bayou blues and one or two even hint at the later, artier Zeppelin. Nine years after his last solo CD, this Plant is still growing.
Bottom Line: Ramble on, Robert