Robert Plant and the Sensational Space Shifters: Lullaby and the Ceaseless Roar (Warners)

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Robert Plant: Embrace Another Fall
Robert Plant and the Sensational Space Shifters: Lullaby and the Ceaseless Roar (Warners)

Although singing a generous number of highly reconfigured Led Zeppelin songs at his 2013 Vector show with this band, Plant continues to distance himself from Zepp's hard rock-cum-folk catalogue, leaving former bandmate Jimmy Page to mine the past while he moves further sideways through world music, American country, rebooted blues and even simple pop.

With the Space Shifters discreetly pulling in African percussion and instruments alongside tape loops, banjo and drum programmes, Plant dials back the vocal melodrama for co-written originals which have a woozy, dreamlike quality (Rainbow, Up on the Hollow Hill), beguiling exotica (the fiddle sound of riti on the drone-like Pocketful of Golden) or work a blend of prog-rock and North African trance (Embrace Another Fall with an explosive guitar section and unexpected Celtic vocals by Julie Murphy).

The centrepieces are a mysteriously lovely piano ballad (A Stolen Kiss) and a simple country-pop piece Somebody There before we're back on a journey (the banjo plunking Poor Howard based on a Lead Belly blues), guitar jangle pop (House of Love) and beyond.

Plant's destination is “Further” and here takes his most open-minded followers on a passport-stamping trip going there.

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