Greta Van Fleet’s Sam Kiszka Explains The Worst Thing About Led Zeppelin Comparisons

Greta Van Fleet bass guitarist Sam Kiszka spoke in a recent interview with Spin and talked about the worst thing about compared with Led Zeppelin.

After Greta Van Fleet released their debut album, Anthem of the Peaceful Army, and started touring, there were lots of news and thoughts about how they are sound-alike with legendary rock band Led Zeppelin.

In the conversation, Sam mentioned that the worst thing about being compared with Led Zeppelin all the time last year was questioning themselves, even though they were not copying them.

Furthermore, Sam said that this is one of the main reasons why they wanted to release a new record, which could show everyone that they are making their own music. In January 2021, they managed to do that by releasing the second album, The Battle At Garden’s Gate.

Interviewer asked:

“There were seeds of this more cinematic style on Anthem, particularly songs like “Age of Man” and “Brave New World.” Back then, did you feel like you had to hold back? Would you have made an album like Garden’s Gate if you felt the audience wanted it?”

Sam Kiszka replied:

“That’s a very good question. I think you kinda nailed it. The reason we didn’t is because we this double-EP — some rock and roll songs and kind of a sweeter, folky country thing. That was all the dynamics that we had.

Anthem was a good stepping stone to show our different interests and musical stylings: bringing in different things, having a power ballad, a sweet ballad at the end. That’s a very natural growth.”

Interviewer said:

“A nice byproduct of this bigger scope is that people can’t focus so much on the Led Zeppelin comparisons that dominated the last press cycle.”

Sam Kiszka replied:

“People have been saying, ‘Was it tough with the pressure of releasing your second full-length?’ No, it wasn’t. This is exactly what we wanted to do, and we had a shitload of fun.

The worst thing about the Led Zeppelin comparisons is that, deep down, you think, ‘Are we that?’ It’s nothing someone should ever feel, but it was definitely back there: ‘Is this what we are?’

Then we make this record, and it’s very liberating because we have something to prove to ourselves: ‘This is what we’re capable of. This is what we do. This is very new, and it’s relevant.’ We’re very proud of it. We all pushed ourselves to the limit.”

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