Robert Plant to play Pardubice

The former Led Zeppelin frontman will be Eastern Bohemia in July

Former Led Zeppelin frontman Robert Plant and his current band the Sensational Space Shifters are coming to Tipsport Arena in Pardubice on July 31. Tickets go on sale Jan. 19 at 9 am on Ticketpro and Ticketportal networks.

Plant, backed by his new band, released the album Carry Fire in October 2017. Worldwide, the album scored best in the record charts in the Czech Republic, reaching the No. 2 spot. It was at No. 3 in the UK and Scottish charts, and in the top 10 in New Zealand, Switzerland, Norway, Poland, Finland, and Germany.

The album, his second with the Space Shifters, had good reviews. “It’s an imaginative tapestry of sounds and stories, where regional music from America, Europe, and Africa blends together into something seamless and intuitive,” reviewer Josh Hurst said in Slant magazine.

Writing for the UK newspaper The Independent, Andy Gill praised “Plant’s ability to blend a sort of ageless rusticity with pop-rock warmth.”

Plant, of course, has a huge catalog of other work to choose from, and he does still delve into Led Zeppelin songs but with new arrangements for his new band. He has not so far been playing “Stairway to Heaven” live, though.

Recently on shows in the Carry Fire tour, he has been playing “That's the Way,” “Gallows Pole,” “Babe, I'm Gonna Leave You,” “Misty Mountain Hop,” “What Is and What Should Never Be,” and “Whole Lotta Love.” He likes to mix things up, so by the time he does the summer tour, the songs might not remain the same.

When he announced the North American part of his tour, he said: “I respect and relish my past works but each time I feel the trawl and incentive to create new work. I must mix old with new. Consequently, the whole impetus of the band has moved on its axis somewhat, the new sound and different space giving way to exciting and dramatic landscapes of mood, melody, and instrumentation.”

Or put shortly, he would rather explore new sounds with his new band than do a reunion tour with his old one.

Talking last year to US public broadcaster show NewsHour, he talked about his musical journey that got him to where he is today. “[The influences] just come from a fortunate life traveling and keeping good very company. I was always gathering more and more fuel. I was buying cassettes in the marketplaces and listening to variations on themes, and just such an amazing encyclopedia of music I developed slowly,” he said.

Talking about the success of Led Zeppelin, he said it took the band by surprise. “We didn’t know what on earth we were doing. We were just doing gigs, and the gigs got bigger, and the crowds got bigger, and we had more fun. To be the guy up at the sharp end, what I call it, as a singer, was a bit of a labor, was a bit of a toil,” he told NewsHour.

Plant was the headliner of Colours of Ostrava in 2014, appearing in the country with his new band for the first time. He was in Brno in 2015 and Plzeň in 2016.

His last appearance in Prague was in 2005 on the Mighty Re-Arranger tour. Before that, he appeared in twice in 1998 with Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page. His first Prague show was in 1993 on the Fate of Nations tour.

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