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6 Degrees Entertainment

Title - 'The Cry Of Love: Remastered' (Experience Hendrix)
Artist - Jimi Hendrix

Released in 1971, The Cry Of Love revealed the new music Hendrix had been preparing for First Rays Of The New Rising Sun, the ambitious double album the guitarist was working on at the time of his death. The album was compiled and mixed by Hendrix's longtime engineer Eddie Kramer and drummer Mitch Mitchell (with assistance on the other just-released Rainbow Bridge from fellow Electric Lady Studios engineer John Jansen).

Although his mainstream career spanned only four years, Hendrix is still widely regarded as one of the most influential electric guitarists in the history of popular music; and one of the most celebrated musicians of the 20th century. The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame describes him as "arguably the greatest instrumentalist in the history of rock music".

And so on the CD, a just released for the very first time CD at that, fans can finally own, The Cry Of Love. Remastered by Bernie Grundman from the original analog masters, the reason I say it like that is because I am actually reviewing the VINYL release of the album. Also just released, this time on 200 gram, remastered vinyl in a gatefold sleeve, it contains exactly the same amount of tracks, but I'm old school and love the sound of vinyl. Especially "new" vinyl of old material like this, so do yourselves a favor and check this version out!

Anyway, as for the album itself, complete with an original album cover illustration by Nancy Reiner, the pairing it with his other aforementioned album, Rainbow Bridge lovingly comprises the bulk of the most complete tracks that Hendrix was intending to next release before his passing. Funnily enough, and as much as it has always been mentioned - even here, above - as being titled, First Rays of the New Rising Sun, there has always been rumor that it could also have been called Strate Ahead! For that was the title atop the last documented track list found in Hendrix's notes!

For my money, this is an overlooked gem. Tracks like, 'My Friend,' 'Straight Ahead' and 'Drifting' are simply beautiful; musically stunning in fact. Perhaps another side of Hendrix that people aren't accustomed to hearing, 'Angel' is also a beautiful piece of music. A little prophetic, sure, but then the last track on the album 'Belly Button Window' is a social commentary about abortion from the baby's point of view!

In short, and on remastered vinyl or on CD, The Cry Of Love is one of Hendrix's most insightful and musical albums; and a MUST HAVE for any Hendrix fan.