Saturday, December 19, 2015

Jimi Hendrix - 1969 "The Last Experience"

On February 24th, 1969, Jimi Hendrix performed at Royal Albert Hall. The concert was recorded and filmed for a planned documentary/concert movie entitled Experience. The movie was never formally released; however, it does exist and the audio masters were packaged and repackaged into many different products, including the 1987 title The Last Experience Concert: His Final Performance. This particular title is extremely misleading, as Hendrix went on to perform many times after this concert. There are several titles that feature the identical Royal Albert Hall performance, so collectors of Hendrix concert discs should be careful to check song lists and running times so as not to duplicate a prior purchase of this performance. Fans convinced they do not yet own a recording of this concert are encouraged to pick one up. The sound quality is decent, if a little inconsistent, and the performances are powerful. Highlights include Hendrix's version of Cream's "Sunshine of Your Love" and the guitarist's own masterpieces like "Voodoo Chile." There are some extended versions on this particular release that appear in edited form on other offerings, which could make this a more attractive purchase to some.

THE LAST EXPERIENCE, Hendrix's final recorded live concert before his fatal drug overdose at the age of 27, is so impeccable in its sonic quality that it was picked as the soundtrack to the feature length motion picture Experience. This vital document features many of the standard Hendrix chestnuts augmented with extended guitar solos and live jams, as well as more obscure treasures like "Smashing of the Amps." This number is an apocalyptic medley of Jimi favorites, including his typically perverse reading of "The Star Spangled Banner," an extensive and drama-building tuning-up session and onstage dialogue in which the guitar hero thanks his fans in his signature mixture of humility and rock star cool: "Y'all are really out of sight."

The whole recording finds Hendrix in particularly fine voice. While some songs are tastefully edited in length, extended versions of "Bleeding Heart" and "Room Full of Mirrors" are included for the six-string connoisseur along with the standard arrangements. High points include a chaotic, blistering rendition of "Wild Thing." This exceptional album conveys both the immediacy and complexity of a groundbreaking artist.

Jimi is in Rare form at the Royal Albert Hall. His performance of "Little Ivey" (aka "Little Wing of Desire") contains bits of jazz, blues & folk all rapped into one! Bassist Noel Reddings establishes first rate rhythms-which drummer Mitch Mitchells-constantly feeds off of. They inter-weave intricate patterns-taking guitar master Jimi ever higher.
The track-"Smashing of Amps" is probably the embryonic form of jazz-rock fusion-which Hendrix later diplayed on his postumously released LP "Nine to the Universal". Later, on this incredible LP, Dave Masons and Chris Wood (from Traffic Jam) join Jimi for an imprompt version of "Room Full of Mirrors". Rocki (formerly of Carlos Santana) helps out w/Afro-centrific tinged congas. Probably the most unique song is "Foxy Lady"-which twists & turns before Jimi brings it to a creshendoe of pure guitar magic and screeching power. The sound quality of this gem is superb-ranking perhaps even w/Jimi's "Isle of Wright" concert. 

Track listing: 

1     Little Wing (Little Ivey) 3:19    
2     Voodoo Child (Slight Return) 7:16    
3     Room Full of Mirrors 2:54    
4     Fire 3:43    
5     Purple Haze 3:03    
6     Wild Thing 1:20    
7     Bleeding Heart 5:28    
8     The Sunshine of Your Love 6:47    
9     Room Full of Mirrors 8:14    
10     Bleeding Heart 8:36    
11     Smashing of the Amps 6:24    
12     C# Blues (People, People, People) 8:32


    Jimi Hendrix – guitar, vocals
    Mitch Mitchell – drums
    Noel Redding – bass guitar

On "Room Full of Mirrors" they are joined by Chris Wood (flute) and Dave Mason (guitar). Note the support band that evening was Mason, Capaldi, Wood & Frog.  



  2. Chiquilicuatre y ZappaDecember 26, 2015 at 3:36 AM

    many thanks for the album with members of Traffic and the genius Hendrix