3 of 3 thought this review was well written
The second full-length released in 1968 by the Experience was and is a classic. It is recognized as one of the best and most influentual double albums in history, and contains Hendrix's fiery, passionate fretwork that has inspired countless guitarists ever since. Equally good are Mitchell and Redding, who help keep the groove and truly make the songs what they are. Electric Ladyland
stands tall as the last and strongest in a trio of full-lengths put out by a band who seemed to be gone with "the wink of an eye".
1. ...And the Gods Made Love
The album begins with a big "boom" and some more electronic effects that sound pretty advanced for their time. Not quite a song, but I have nothing against it, and it serves as a nice intro to the album. 5/5
2. Have You Ever Been (To Electric Ladyland)?
A nice smooth, soulful track. Jimi's vocals stand out more than ever as he soothes the listener into a dreamlike state with tales of love and fantasy. Has a really nice effects-drenched guitar solo that just makes the song even better. This song is very colorful to me, like other Hendrix songs, I can just see bright reds and purples and all sorts of colors. It's hard to explain. But this song always leaves me feeling great. 5/5
3. Crosstown Traffic
Draws you in pretty quick once you hear it start to fade in. This is a nice song because it doesn't need a solo or anything, just the melody is enough. Mitchell and Redding provide a nice slice of rhythm that gives the song it's unique quality. Jimi's lyrics are as usual full of metaphors. All in all, a nice little rockin' song. 5/5
4. Voodoo Chile
At 15 minutes, this slow blues song may seem like a "wankfest" to some people. To me, however, it is a perfect song to showcase Hendrix's spontaneously emotional guitar work. He was such a brilliant songwriter- just listen to the first words he sings on this song. His guitar sings with him. Besides the guitar fills and solos, there is also some great complimentary organ playing going on. And of course Jimi's lyrics are the ultimate best. They're not just plain-old "I've got the blues", they're full of an imaginative world of creativity and fantasy and pure emotion. You can really tell what an imagination this guy had. 5/5
5. Little Miss Strange
I don't really care for this song. It's just a little out of place and Noel Redding's vocals sound like a bad Beatles. Jimi's solos save the song, though.... kind of....
6. Long Hot Summer Night
A more R&B-oriented track. I'd have to say it's the weakest on the album. Just doesn't have many memorable moments. 3/5
7. Come On (Let the Good Times Roll)
A nice song that is normal blues at first, they kicks into a full-adrenaline wah-fueled solo. One of Jimi's best ever, and it just proves how talented this guy was. He could show so much emotion, you can just feel it when you hear the song. One of the best on the album. 5/5
8. Gypsy Eyes
I don't dislike this song but I don't love it. It always sticks in my head, which can be kind of annoying. There isn't really a big noticable melody or anything, which drags the song down a fair amount. I just think it's not anything amazing, but still manages to grab onto my ears and climb in for a while. 3.5/5
9. Burning of the Midnight Lamp
One of Hendrix's more trippy songs, this one has a cool intro and good imagery, but doesn't stand as a huge highlight on the album. 3.5/5
10. Rainy Day, Dream Away
Starts out with some horns, then we hear a seemingly stoned Jimi talking about it raining outside. Well, it makes sense, he was born in Seattle! This is a really nice song with a great melody and altogether 'feel'. And it is a good song to "lay back and groove" to on a rainy day. 5/5
11. 1983 (A Merman I Should Turn to Be)
12. Moon, Turn the Tides...
The spaciest song by the Experience. Starts out with a great riff, and builds into a very textured, dreamy song. Jimi again has some great imaginative lyrics. Then there is a quiet breakdown in the middle of the song. Jimi plays some pleasant licks, then a big drum solo comes in. I don't love drum solo but this one definately works. Then soon enough the whole bands playing, with Jimi wailing away at his instrument with enough energy to power a jet engine. The long (but not overly long) song ends with some spacey effects and transitions into Moon, Turn the Tides, which I think of as the same song. Overall a huge accomplishment for the band and a terrific work of art. 5/5
13. Still Raining, Still Dreaming
A great continuation of the Rainy Day song. This time, it's more geetar and less singing. Not much to say except it is a truly exhilerating song that builds to a fantastic climax and closes with a bang! What more could you want? 5/5
14. House Burning Down
Pleasant and honest song that combines fantasy with reality and proves that Jimi was a varied songwriter. Just another perfect track from a perfect album. 5/5
15. All Along the Watchtower
Very popular, and for a good reason. Hendrix took the Bob Dylan song and changed it in a million ways, leaving his eternal mark on it. Not only does he deliver 3 equally breathtaking guitar solos, but Jimi also gives a great vocal performance, as he says the words with utmost passion and truthfulness. Everything just gets better. The song ends leaving me speechless.
16. Voodoo Chile (Slight Return)
Another very famous song. Full of attitude, it is hard to ignore. Hendrix gives a powerful verse and chorus with the unforgettable line, "If I don't meet you no more in this world, I'll see you in the next one, and don't be late!" He also gives the goods with two amazing solos that will have you on the floor. It doesn't matter about technicality and accuracy, Hendrix plays the solos with such conviction that nothing really matters. One of the most magical moments in music and a great, though kind of sad, ending to a landmark final album. 5/5
Though it is quite lengthy, I love this album, and it gives off a mood like no other does. The weaker tracks don't manage to bring it down, because the great ones drown them out. It is truly an album of great power.
Overall Rating: 5/5