Electric LadylandAlbum |
Wondering what all the fuss is about? Start here.
Jimi Hendrix's first two albums were hampered by label interference and rushed studio sessions, making the double-LP Electric Ladyland the only album released during his lifetime that the guitarist had full artistic control over. Recorded as Hendrix was breaking with both manager/producer Chas Chandler and the other two-thirds of the Experience, Electric Ladyland consists of roughly equal parts of concise pop songs (the punky "Crosstown Traffic" and a corrosive cover of Dylan's "All Along the Watchtower" are among Hendrix's finest singles; the latter, improbably, was his only US Top 40 hit), lengthy blues explorations, and psychedelic experiments culminating in the side-long "Rainy Day, Dream Away" / "1983 (A Merman I Should Turn To Be)" suite, which would prove as influential to the development of space rock as Pink Floyd's contemporaneous excursions into the heart of the sun. Like the rest of Hendrix's catalogue, Electric Ladyland has been massively overhyped over the decades -- even if there is such a thing as rock's greatest guitarist, it probably wasn't him -- but those wondering what all the fuss is about should start here.