Review Summary: His best album. Why? Because he doesn't solo for a half hour on each track.
[Announcer:] Good evening, ladies and gentlemen. Welcome to radio station EXP. Tonight we are featuring an interview with a very peculiar looking gentleman who goes by the name of Mr. Paul Corusoe on the dodgy subject of are there or are there not flying saucers or UFOs? Please Mr. Corusoe, please could you give us your regarded opinion on this nonsense about spaceships and even space people?
[Mr. Corusoe:] Thank you as you well know you just can't believe everything you see and hear, can you? Now, if you'll excuse me, I must be on my way.
[Announcer:] Bu...But, but...gulp...I, I, don't believe it!
[Mr. Corusoe:] Pffffttt!!...Pop!!...Bang!!...
Of course reading what is being said on the first track, EXP, cannot provide the odd effect it does when listening as the announcers’ voice goes higher and as Mr. Corusoe’s goes lower, then the loud feedback fading in and out, in and out. It really is a strange way to open an album.
Jimi, himself, really only liked 2 songs off of this album which is kind of surprising to me as I view this as his best work out of the three releases made when he was still living. Why do I think it’s so much better, well a large problem with a lot of Jimi’s material is that his solos are much too long and uninteresting and I am happy to report that there isn’t one song on here with such a flaw. The solos are much more tasteful and for the most part short and sweet. They’re the perfect length and it really brings up the quality of the album as you don’t find yourself sitting there thinking: Jesus! Is he almost finished of the solo? When listening to this I think: Over already? Not that they don’t last long enough, as I said above he really made them great lengths.
As with his other albums the instrumentation is top notch on this. Very creative and it showcases the talent they had. Jimi really shines on the emotional track Little Wing. His lines are really superb on it and you can tell he was very emotional while writing this and rightfully so as it’s about his deceased mother. Sadly, on this track the guitar is the only instrument that stands out as the drums only have a few simple fills and the bass is hardly noticeable. But, this is a guitar track and the other instruments are meant to backup Jimi and they do it wonderfully. There are also some nice little bells that really add a nice soft tone to an already very soft song. But, just because the guitar is the only standout instrument on that doesn’t mean the bass and drums don’t have their moments. Castles made of Sand is a great track for all the instruments. A very catchy bass riff drives the song during the verses with a jazzy rock type drum beat providing the back bone. Also the guitar gives a very strange backing riff during the verse which sounds like it’s being played in reverse.
What really surprised me about this album was the song Up From The Skies. It’s extremely simple, and when I say that I mean it. It’s basically just two chords and then a little bit of a change during the bridge. Despite it’s simplicity it still manages to be a very interesting track as the wah on the few chords really make it sound weird and give it that Jimi Hendrix touch. There’s also a simple solo at the end to take us away.
This album is chockfull of catchy and infectious tunes. You Got Me Floatin’ comes to mind. Although not the best track on the album it provides some great backing vocals during the chorus from Noel and Mitch and riffs that stick in your head and make you want to go back and listen. This is a quality most of the songs on this album posses. Some random riffs from songs get stuck in your head and they make you really want to go back and listen to this, especially the faster songs like If 6 Was 9, Ain’t No Telling, and She’s So Fine. They all have infectiously simple riffs that really stay with you after they've finished. A really catchy track with a really bluesy feel is Bold As Love. Its guitar is a lot less catchy as it’s a blues one that rarely repeats itself. What really makes it catchy is the bass work done by Noel. Then when the solo comes in you just can’t help but think: Man, that’s beautiful, not awesome, and not ***ing cool. It’s beautiful.
This is an excellent album and has some of their best songs. Its bluesy feel combined with the poppy catchy sound really creates a great listen. It keeps the listeners attention without showing off which Jimi tended to do. As with the other albums, Jimi’s voice is average and falters at some points but somehow doesn’t make any difference, at all.
The solos aren’t too long
The catchy bass and drum work
The mixture of pop and blues and how well it comes out
Sometimes the catchy songs can be a little sickening
Spanish Castle Magic
If 6 Was 9
Bold As Love