Photo by G.
As a life-long Jimi Hendrix fan, you can imagine my excitement when a review copy of Jimi Hendrix’ “Valleys of Neptune” arrived in my mailbox today. The album is set to be released by Sony Music Entertainment’s Legacy Recordings on March 9, 2010 and on that day, I advise you all to snatch up this album as soon as you can. It’s so awesome!
“Valleys of Neptune” consists of 60 mouth-watering minutes of previously unreleased studio recordings from the period of October 1968 to 1970. These sessions were being recorded for the follow up to “Electric Ladyland,” but have sat in the vaults until now. The booklet features rare photos and a comprehensive track by track description as well as recording dates and band personnel.
The sound quality on every track is so fresh, you’ll have a hard time believing that these tracks are 40 years old. The set features completely different versions of the classic Hendrix songs “Stone Free,” “Fire” and “Red House” plus long sought after studio versions of Elmore James’ “Bleeding Heart,” and Cream’s “Sunshine of Your Love.” While bits of the demo version of the title track have seen the light of day on various releases, you can hear the entire four minute track in all of its glory only on this release. ”Lullaby for the Summer,” a previously unreleased instrumental shows once again why Hendrix is regarded as the best guitarist of all time. ”Crying Blue Rain,” another previously unreleased instrumental, starts of as a slow bluesy number and then picks up the pace for a funky romp that is guaranteed to put a smile on your face and a groove in your heart.
This album has it all, blues, rock, scorching guitar and of course, Jimi Hendrix’ heavenly vocals. If you are a long-time fan of Jimi Hendrix, “Valleys of Neptune” will not disappoint and if you are new to the fold, get ready to go on a Jimi Hendrix album buying spree. There’s also good news for the new fans as well because Legacy Recordings will also be releasing deluxe CD/DVD editions of Jimi’s classic albums “Are You Experienced?” “Axis: Bold As Love,” “Electric Ladyland” and “First Rays of the New Rising Sun” on March 9, 2010 with new documentaries that feature interviews with band members Noel Redding, Mitch Mitchell, Billy Cox, producer Chas Chandler and engineer Eddie Kramer. PLUS, “Smash Hits,” the long out of print hits collection is being reissued and “Live at Woodstock” will be coming out on Blu-Ray. This is going to be a great month for Hendrix fans old and new.