Jimi Hendrix – People, Hell and Angels
Experience Hendrix LLC/Legacy Recordings
Even hardcore skeptics of Jimi Hendrix’ posthumous catalog will have to admit: People, Hell and Angels
contains some damn fine music. Scanning the track list won’t do it: there are a number of these tunes that have appeared on past releases (official and otherwise) but the versions offered here are about as pure Jimi as you’re going to get. With Hendrix’ original studio compadre Eddie Kramer behind the board, People, Hell and Angels
offers up the original versions of tunes such as “Crash Landing” (rather than the notorious 1975 project shamefully overdubbed by studio musicians after Jimi’s death). There isn’t a lot of studio whiz-bangery on these tracks: Kramer has worked with what Hendrix laid down to make his presentations. If Jimi pumped his Strat through a Leslie speaker (“Inside Out”) back in 1968, cool – that’s here. But there are no rainbow-colored envelopes on manipulated sound folding in on themselves; no layer-upon-layers of backwards-and-forwards riffs and rhythms churning and chuffing against each other. The worst you could say about some of the cuts offered up on People, Hell and Angels
is that they sound stripped-to-the-bone.
But it’s Jimi Hendrix, people. Two hands and six strings without a lot of gadgetry between them and the amp (and between the amp and the tape) still produced sounds that generations of pickers have struggled to replicate. “Stripped-to-the-bone” simply makes for an uncluttered view of a master at work.
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