Jimi Hendrix – The Cry of Love / Rainbow Bridge

cryoflove

Title: The Cry of Love

Artist: Jimi Hendrix

Label: Experience Hendrix/Legacy

Formats: CD, LP, MP3

Release date: September 16, 2014

 

rainbowbridge

Title: Rainbow Bridge

Artist: Jimi Hendrix

Label: Experience Hendrix/Legacy

Formats: CD, LP, MP3

Release date: September 16, 2014

 

It’s been a big month for Jimi Hendrix fans, with the release of the biopic Jimi Hendrix: All Is By My Side, which focuses on the year Hendrix (played by Outkast’s André Benjamin) released his first album. Now CD reissues of his first and second posthumous studio releases are also available via Experience Hendrix, LLC in conjunction with Legacy Recordings.

Though neither album contains previously un-heard songs, they do contain major hits of Hendrix. The Cry of Love was a major success when it was originally released in 1971, reaching number three in the United States and number two in the U.K. It includes hits such as “Angel,” “Freedom,” and “Ezy Ryder.” The album also includes appearances from quite a few guest musicians, including Steve Winwood and Buzzy Linhart.

Rainbow Bridge is an original motion picture soundtrack, though Hendrix himself had no role in creating the film. Also released in 1971, this album is fairly short, about 40 minutes, but is full of Hendrix’s typical rock energy and electric guitar skill. One of the most unique tracks is Hendrix’s version of “The Star Spangled Banner,” a pure instrumental, jamming rock ‘n’ roll version.

After Hendrix’s death in September 1970, his manager, Michael Jeffrey, decided to shelve the planned double studio album titled First Rays of the New Rising Sun*, instead using partially completed tracks in the compilation of these two posthumous albums. Both have been remastered by audio engineer Bernie Grundman from the original analog masters. Though the quality of the recordings is not particularly impressive, there is no denying the historical value of these albums by rock legend Jimi Hendrix. He is known as one of the greatest rock guitarists of all time, and through these recent releases both on screen and CD, he will live on through a new generation.

[*NOTE: The tracks on these CDs have been “reassembled,” reissued and remastered on several occasions, including Legacy’s 2010 CD/DVD set, First Rays of the New Rising Sun. However, this is the first time Rainbow Bridge has been released on CD, and The Cry of Love was last released on CD since 1992.]

Reviewed by Anna Polovick