Live At Monterey - Jimi Hendrix

Live At Monterey - Jimi Hendrix

Perhaps the most famous of Hendrix's releases, he was at his PRIME when they recorded this version of Purple Haze. "When Jimi Hendrix walked onto the stage at Monterey he was relatively unknown in the United States. When he walked off the stage, popular music had been completely transformed. The American debut of the Jimi Hendrix Experience at Monterey isn't just the most exciting live rock concert ever recorded; it's also one of the most significant moments in the history of modern American music. Hendrix took the music world completely by storm and turned it on its head. His influence today is greater than ever, 41 years after the fact. Days after the mind-boggling "set the guitar on fire" stunt, Hendrix was a household word. The set kicks off fast and hard with Killing Floor, one wonders how Mitch Mitchell (drums) could keep up without injuring himself. Next up, Foxey Lady, soon to be a standard. The treatment of Bob Dylan's beautiful ballad, Like A Rolling Stone, is compelling and soulful. Rock Me Baby is simply beyond belief; it throws off heat like a jet engine. A hard-edged version of Hey Joe comes next; it's blues all right, but psychedelic blues. By the time Hendrix gets to Can You See Me? it's clear that he and his cronies are all settled down and solidly in the groove, this one speeds past like a bullet. The Wind Cries Mary is handled gently and carefully, it's a great song and provides a welcome break from the mayhem. Purple Haze has never sounded ruder, more demented, and incoherent - it is riveting. If you have any imagination at all, think about what this music must have sounded like to people who'd been nursed on The Platters, The Four Freshmen, and The Beach Boys. We are now completely accustomed to the influence Hendrix has had and it's easy to forget that when this was recorded what Hendrix was doing wasn't merely new, it was earth shattering. As to the closer, Wild Thing, I remember the Troggs version, sort of a frat house crowd pleaser. Hendrix takes it into the stratosphere; in many ways it's the highlight of the performance. Burning the guitar was theatrical genius, really, after you've just invaded the greatest nation on earth and conquered it in one night, what else is there to do?" Review by El Lagarto Courtesy of Amazon.com