Exposé Online banner

The Jimi Hendrix Experience — Electric Ladyland
(Reprise 2RS 6307, 1968, 2LP)

by Mike McLatchey, Published 2017-11-16

Electric Ladyland Cover art

Are You Experienced? and Axis: Bold as Love provided the lion's share of Hendrix's songbook while he was alive, although there was certainly material on both albums that went well beyond the blues rock and pop he was so gifted in creating, but it wasn't until the landmark double album Electric Ladyland that Jimi began to stretch out and really show how innovative he could be in the long form. This is really one of the foundations (alongside Cream) of so much music to come, especially the guitar / bass / drums, post-blues, psychedelic rock bands that would start popping up all over Britain, the USA, and continental Europe in its wake. There is so much territory covered on this classic that you almost have to talk about the entire album, but I'll stick to some of my favorites, like the brilliant 15 minute “Voodoo Child” with Stevie Winwood that has to be one of the most cosmic pieces of music ever put on an album and it immediately follows on another of his many hits, the funky "Crosstown Traffic." There's of course the progressive side 3 anchored by the long “1983,” a suite that turns down many avenues in its moods and shading, a true journey of consciousness that none of the previous albums could have hinted at. There's also his seminal version of Bob Dylan's “All Along the Watchtower,” perhaps one of the few covers that surpasses the original. And it all ends with a distillation of the earlier jam with the monumental “Voodoo Child (Slight Return)” perhaps one of the greatest vehicles for the blues guitar solo ever written (I was too young to see Jimi do it, but did get to witness Stevie Ray Vaughan crushing it in 1987). After this album we got to see a lot more promise in what seems like an endless series of reels documenting where he might have gone next, but this was the last of his fully realized studio albums and it's one for the ages.


Filed under: New releases, 1968 releases

Related artist(s): Jimi Hendrix

Latest news

2020-03-24
Bill Rieflin RIP – The sad news reaches us today of Bill Rieflin's death. Rieflin was best known as a drummer in bands ranging from post-punk to industrial to indie-rock to progressive rock, including work with The Blackouts, Ministry, Nine Inch Nails, Swans, Land, and King Crimson. Rieflin had been battling cancer for several years, and succumbed to it on March 24. He was 59. » Read more

2020-03-17
Cruise to the Edge and Seaprog 2020 Festivals Postponed – The worldwide outbreak of the novel coronavirus has started to produce casualties in the music world, and festivals are not immune. We've had word that both the Cruise to the Edge (originally slated for March 27 - April 1) and Seaprog (originally June 5-7) have been postponed to later dates, with those dates to be announced. » Read more

2020-03-06
McCoy Typer RIP – Word reaches us today of the passing of one of the most influential pianists in the history of jazz, McCoy Tyner. His tenure with John Coltrane in the early 60s includes some of the most treasured recordings of the era, including My Favorite Things and A Love Supreme. After leaving Coltrane's group, he had a long and successful solo career. He was 81. » Read more

2020-02-18
Jon Christensen RIP – Word reaches us today of the passing of Norwegian drummer Jon Christensen, a musician whose sensitive playing did much to help define the atmospheric sound of ECM jazz recordings. His work with Jan Garbarek, Bobo Stenson, Terje Rypdal, and many more was sensitive and varied, adapting to a wide variety of styles while maintaining a distinct identity of its own. Christensen was 76. » Read more

2020-01-21
Gong Announces UK Tour for 2020 – Having spent the last few years touring the world, including dates in Japan with psych legend Steve Hillage, multiple headline European tours and festivals, America’s Cruise to the Edge festival, a South America headline tour, and a headline performance at Tomorrow Festival in China, the band have won the hearts of both traditional and modern Gong fanbases. During this live journey, Gong has delved further into the truly psychedelic, exploratory, and mind-expanding side of the music. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Carsick Cars & Snapline - Two Debut Albums – These two closely related bands represent Beijing's current underground rock scene quite nicely. Both are trios, and they share two musicians: Li Weisi (bass) and Li Qing (drums in Carsick Cars,...  (2008) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues