The fourth album released by the British blues/rock band Led Zeppelin is
variously referred to as Led Zeppelin IV, Four Symbols, Runes, Sticks, Zoso
(after the first character or symbol used in the title), Four, or even Untitled.
Indeed, it has no official title that can be either pronounced or printed with
ordinary text characters. After the fairly negative critical reaction Led
Zeppelin III had received in fall 1970, Jimmy Page decided that the next album
would not have a proper title in order to see if the music could sell itself.
The original pressing did not have a readable title or the name Led Zeppelin
anywhere on the outside, instead featuring four hand-drawn symbols (each one
designed by the band member it represents) on the inner sleeve and record label.
These symbols are the official title of the album, and Atlantic Records
initially distributed graphics of the symbols in many sizes to the press for
inclusion in charts and articles. The album was the first to be produced without
conventional identification, and this communicated an anti-commercial stance
that was controversial at the time (especially among certain executives at
The album remains a perennial favorite on classic rock radio and features "Stairway to Heaven", one of the most popular rock songs ever recorded. While reaching #2 in the US—and lasting an incredible 259 weeks on that chart—it was also the band's third consecutive UK chart topper.