Had the same problem with the WOTC adventures- Keep etc., my players are moving real slow XP wise, although exactly as I planned. We play once/week- 5 hour session, some weeks there are lots of fights, others it's a mix- as I've gone through the core modules I've changed more and more- Thunderspire encompassed all the add-ons plus plenty of other stuff from other sources.
My players seem to be enjoying it, I've also remodelled and dropped in the Sellswords Campaign from Goodman Games- all with the same overarching plot line, Orcus has been very bad.
Level up every 4-5 sessions or so, we're 35 sessions in and one of the characters, Cathal- Warrior of Kord, has just hit 8th level, although Eruan, Eladrin Wizard, is only level 6 (mainly due to a late start).
I find the 4e encounters system much too easy, I threw a level 9 encounter at them when they we're only just level 3- they broke the back of it, just- made for some epic play. It warms the cockles of my heart to see the players cowering in a lonely room in the midst of some terrible dungeon preying no more of the bad guys are going to find them. That's another good point- none of my dungeons are static, trip the door guard and wander away and the inhabitants will come looking for you.
I wrote up the start of the action but have switched over to a more report style, with pictures, we play using Maptools and Skype, I'm in the UK- the PC's are in the UK (2), USA (1) and Serbia (2). We have to fight the technology every now and then but it seems to work.
In some ways 4e seems to be a return to hack and slash days, the encounter designs in WOTC products do leave me exasperated, I just read through E1- terrible in places. However I mix it up, forget it's 4e and go back to my previous edition ways, let them fight three kobolds and get a milestone for it, I want the story to go on, me and the players are less bothered by the XP rush (I don't even tell them how many XP they need to go up a level- obviously I do XP very differently- good rolepley, making the whole crew laugh, ingenious ideas, solving riddles, working out where the plots going and whose next on their list, I think that's all of it... oh and fighting).
What I'm saying is 4e seems to be broke if you do it how WOTC say, if you just ignore that and go with what you now- version x of D&D that works for you, well- no problems so far.
The write up of our adventures, The Friday Knights, can be found in a number of places- I'll keep updating every saturday in the new format, why not have a look here at ENWorld-http://www.enworld.o... ... crest.html
Oh and Hal, see the above, I stopped listening to the 4e podcasts just before the group stopped playing- sorry, but don't do it, either go Goodman Games style, or rip them apart. The WOTC core adventures mostly suck, too much paper spent on spelling out meaningless encounters- they don't even join properly- weak.
That said I enjoyed some of the podcasts, and have been listening here for I think three years now- keep up the superb work- huzzah.