It’s been a while since I have really put any effort into listening to contemporary releases, so this is a bit of a boon as it is a new release (sort of) of an artist who has been dead for 40+ years.
Old and new Jimi Hendrix needs no introduction (and if you don’t know of him or his importance you really have no place reading this blog), so I will simply say that it is about time his legions of fans got to hear his unfinished business.
“Valleys of Neptune” was a great addition to the canon of psychedelic electric blues that Jimi left behind and “People, Hell and Angels” sits comfortably beside it. Twelve new (sort of) songs are included here, including the single “Somewhere”. The songs are all under seven minutes long, so don’t expect any extended jams (curious considering Hendrix was recording a lot of jam sessions with a variety of musicians during the Electric Ladyland sessions until his death in 1970).
“Hear My Train A Comin'” is excellent, even if this is the third release of this blues classic to come out over the years. “Izabella” can also be found on “Cry of Love” and “First Rays Of the New Rising Sun,” so not all of the tracks are new and unreleased (Vilanova Junction Blues can be heard/seen on Hendrix’s Woodstock album/DVD, live).
While none of the songs are going to be hailed as classics, they are a testimony to one of the most innovative musicians and artists of the 20th century (of all time, really), and will be a welcome addition to any music lover’s collection.
By: Tyrone Blackman