Written by GE 138.
Disclaimer: I am a HUGE Jimi Hendrix fanatic. My Father worshiped the ground this man walked on, and I probably know more about the man and his Music than any self respecting Punk curmudgeon should, especially considering I don't even play guitar. I would spend countless hours with my Dad listening to Jimi Hendrix bootlegs, enjoying and immersing ourselves in the Genius of the Man, and that's where the Love and respect I have for Jimi Hendrix comes from. So yeah, I know about everything to do with him, and yeah, I know about Alan Douglas. I know about the evil that he inflicted upon the Hendrix legacy, and I believe this is a effort to correct that. It's not a good effort, but it's an effort nonetheless. Official Hendrix biographer John McDermott, who has access to everything Jimi Hendrix ever recorded, in his book labelled most of these recordings as non-cohesive, disjointed, loose and uninspired, with several songs suffering from tunings and tempo issues, but now, apparently with a whiff of cash sweetening his memory, all these recordings are now fit for fan consumption. I know a lot of this stuff has been unofficially released for years, and some of has been previously released, despite the what the hype about this album is telling you, but all that aside, the versions on here, and the mix, the way it sounds, the way it feels, all that make this release far superior to anything that has ever come before it in trying to recreate the album Hendrix was working on before he died. As a glimpse into what musical direction he was heading into, it's utterly fascinating. Songs like Somewhere and Earth Blues capture the essence and spirit of of all his earlier work, without being condescending or derivative of it. The guitar work on these tracks are stunning, with the playing on Hear My Train A Comin', Bleeding Heart, and Hey Gypsy Boy just making the hairs on the back of my neck rise in terror. Fucking brilliant. I love listening to Hendrix play the Blues. It flows soooo easily from him. Natural like breathing and done without thinking. The majority of the tracks on here are played by the Band of Gypsies line up, the mighty Buddy Miles on drums and Billy Cox on bass, but in true Hendrix fashion, everything is pretty much a jam, and a song like Baby Let Me Move You, a very R & B sounding track, captures that vibe very well. Everything else on here is pretty much an alternate take kind of thing, which I guess is a good thing if you haven't heard previous versions of Izabella, Ezy Ryder or Crash Landing before. Why is closing track Villanova Junction only 2 minutes long?? The version on the album Burning Desire is 5 minutes plus. Odd. And to address the white elephant in the room about this release, yes, we could of done without it being marketed as 'New material' and 'previously unheard' material because, again, a lot of this stuff was already released before - some just a few years ago on the Valleys Of Neptune release. Perhaps it should of been pushed as an 'Alternate Takes, Demos and Rehearsal tapes' kind of thing, because believe me, there is a ton of true unheard and unreleased stuff just rotting away in the vaults, like the Black Gold tapes, with just Jimi on acoustic guitar alone all by himself singing into a microphone, would be a huge hit with the Beard Core set, but as it is, People, Hell and Angels, the latest release from Jimi Hendrix, is an absolute essential listen, for both the Collector and the Casual listener. This is an amazing album for a guy who's been dead for years now... heh heh. Available everywhere and anywhere crass commercialism is perpetrated, like Wal-Mart, Best Buy, or Target, and brought to you by Sony Legacy Records.
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