Jimi Hendrix’s Valleys of Neptune (2010) – NO, NO, NO
Jimi Hendrix’s “Valleys of Neptune” (2010)
(March 9, 2010)
What do you get when you combine an over-hyped title track, a boring instrumental cover of a Cream classic, three very pedestrian alternate takes of Jimi Hendrix Experience classics, and an assortment of other forgettable tracks? (Answer: One whopping cluster-cuss of a posthumous release.)
Top Two Tracks:
Listen to First Rays of the New Rising Sun (1997) instead! (Maybe “Hear My Train A Comin’ ” – or, maybe not.)
Sounding like the best parts of Jack Johnson and Gavin DeGraw rolled into one – with a Dylan-esque vocal flair here and there – Brett Dennen’s Hope for the Hopeless is the great album of 2008 that I missed; I love Johnson and Jakob Dylan, but this acoustic rock album blows Sleep Through the Static and Seeing Things away! (…a conclusion supported by the fact that the always frustrating Rolling Stone reviewers barely acknowledged this great release with three stars and a lukewarm paragraph of backhanded compliments.)
It is difficult to imagine a time when Bob Dylan was not revered as a songwriter, but here is one of the true documents of that time; it is an album that exemplifies young Dylan’s early sound, as he experimented with his influences on some of his first cover song recordings and presented the first two originals he committed to an album (the early, touching gem “Song to Woody” and the raw, poetically humorous “Talkin’ New York”).