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Electric Ladyland is the third and final album from The Jimi Hendrix Experience. This wacky little rock album is not only one of the most far out albums in our time but one of the best rock albums to ever exist.
Thinking back to 1968, I can only imagine what was going through peoples minds when Electric Ladyland hit the shelves. Up until this point there had been nothing like this out there (that wasn't other Hendrix albums). Yes, there was some impressive players and bands playing some cracking tunes. But nothing that quite lives up to this grand scale. Nearly fifty years after the records initial release, this album is still being used as an example of intense emotional guitar playing and is still widely regarded as one of the finest listening experiences in modern music. That is quite an impressive achievement when you think about it.
Normally I do not shy away from criticising otherwise legendary albums. However this is one of those rare moments when I have nothing to mouth off about. Electric Ladyland holds some of the finest music of its time in the likes of the fifteen minute epic blues Voodoo Chile, Gypsy Eyes, Still Raining, Still Dreaming and of course the incredible Bob Dylan cover All Along The Watchtower. These songs are full of some of the most memorable musical passages in rock. Listening to the likes of Voodoo Chile (Slight Return) you can't help but just sit in awe at the immense sound coming from the guitar. The credit does not solely go to Hendrix either. As I mentioned in a previous review, the rhythm section featuring Noel Redding and Mitch Mitchell are absolutely stunning. They smash their way through every song with fierce precision, jazzy fills and so much bluesy soul. That sound, it is just beautiful.
If you are lucky enough to get your paws on the stereo version of the album, you are in for a trip. The bands instruments do not stay in the same spot through out the album. Instead you will find each instrument spinning round an audible circle. Listening to this album through head phones is a fairly out of this world experience as you hear the guitar play circles round your head only to be follow by the drums. This is some pretty spectacular studio skills and (in my opinion) it is vastly superior to the mono version I own on vinyl.
I could spend hours of my life praising an album like Electric Ladyland. This record is a timeless piece of history that I feel every rock, blues and heavy metal musician should own. You can hear so many influences on modern music on this album alone. This impressive piece of music is sadly the last we heard of Jimi Hendrix as he died not long after. I think you owe it to yourself to have this in your collection, there is no reason not to.
An excellent recording, well remastered and not overly compressed. Very transparent and clear.
I have not set out to write reviews of the music content as “beauty is in the ears of the listener”. These reviews are about the quality (or not) of the recorded sound. To read about how the reviews are done please see my profile.
• Clarity – very good, clear transparent • Channel separation – very good distinct use of 2 channels • Channel balance – very good but of its time, experimental and playing with the channel mix i.e. instruments “float” between channels, sometimes in a rather disconcerting way • Sound Stage – good but slightly artificial, this was however very common for recordings of this period which assumed that most listeners would be stoned or spaced out • Distortion – non audible • Compression – superb highs and lows for a recording of this age. No frequency limitation audible • Atmosphere – of its age, a slightly “spaced out” atmosphere which can almost verge on that of a live recording on some tracks. Not intimate, more front row at a festival • Bass – low frequencies – bass guitar is very good, drums are excellent and have not disappeared in the mix. They are not soft and have an excellent ring • Treble – high frequencies – excellent guitar, clear and precise. Organ is warm and mellow • Vocals – very good
As a general rule of thumb recordings from the 1960’s, 70’s and 80’s are nearly always better on the original vinyl. Remasters often fail to please as it’s just not possible to make a silk purse from a sows ear, i.e. the original recording lacks the necessary detail to be processed digitally and show an audible improvement. Indeed such processing can make the sound worse.
Modern recordings which have been processed digitally from start to finish can be as good as vinyl. CD’s are often unfairly criticised for being poor quality. This is not the case, it is the original recording or the process which is to blame. Modern “remasters” can both enhance and degrade a recording. The statement GIGO (Garbage In Garbage Out) is the limiting factor. Ignore this at your cost.
The 3rd and final album from 'the Jimi Hendrx Experience' is thumping. One of the great albums, from a great era. 'Electric Ladyland' is also Jimi' s last studio album. It starts to get going with 15 minute long 'Voodoo Chile', from chilled to frenetic, it's frequently brilliant. The albums final two tracks are the top picks from a glorious harvest. 'All Along the Watchtower', a Bob Dylan cover so good, it changed how Dylan himself played the song. And 'Vooddoo Chile (Slight Return)' with it's pioneering wah-wah effect. He plays guitar like a demon.
I bought this on a music cassette when the album first came out. I thought that cassettes, being new (then) technology would be superior to vinyl. How wrong can one be? This album needs to be heard LOUD, preferably with a sub-woofer as the rhythm section is quite hypnotic at times. I know that there is no logic in the perception that vinyl sounds better, but to my ears it just does.
Doesnt have the cover with all those naked ladies on the front any more. But the record inside is the same only it's now heavy duty vinyl, and this music is surely designed to be played on vinyl players. Part of the late sixties time capsule
In my opinion probably the best hendrix lp he made.soundwise way ahead of its time. Double lp used to have original version with nude ladies on the cover. Good variety of material well recorded and played by hendrix mitch michel and noel redding.
I have the original UK CD release from Polydor which mirrored the vinyl that I once had. Then the CDs wouldn't play so had to replace them. The original cover art on this issue has gone (too sexist) and so has the UK running order. This is the LP as issued in the US by Reprise back in '69 but minus the original US cover art (contact shots of Hendrix at Electric Ladyland). Classic Hendrix. Unbeatable.