Sunday, January 28, 2007
Stoned Soul Picnic
recorded live in San Francisco & Los Angeles in 1998
Prism PLATCD 723
I picked this up for a pound in FOPP with no great hopes of it amounting to much. You probably already know that I'm not generally a fan of live albums, but I'm surprised and pleased to announce this could just be one of the all-time great live recordings.
Noel Redding spent part of his prime backing perhaps the greatest musical innovator of the 20th Century so he has little if anything to prove. He's also spent the best part of 30 years in the wilderness having to cope with the aftermath of the fame and adulation gained in those few short years at the end of the sixties - the man's been through the mill and I'm sure he wouldn't be out to create a carbon copy of the former Experiences.
This album is totally unpretentious. It's simply a good time old fashioned psychedelic blues jam like they used to be - with the addition of one great ingredient which is only available after all this tume - that is MATURITY.
Noel and the band don't even try to stun us with new tricks - they just get on with the business of entertaining us with a spectrum of old favourites from across the board as it was in those days - the Beatles' 'Rain,' Dylan's 'She Belongs to Me,' Bo Diddley's 'Not Fade Away' and of course a selection of Hendrix tunes. They are all executed in a thoroughly professional manner, not even pretending to be anything more than a nostalgic trip down Memory Lane. Much of the credit has to be given to the excellent backing by 3.05AM especially the horn section, but Redding is also very amiable and relaxed in his terse communication with the sympathetic audience to the extent that the CD-listener almost feels present at the event.
There is no clever stuff in the production - it's more than adequately clear but has those fuzzy edges which add extra feeling to the whole laid-back atmosphere generated by the record. It's a great buy.
Real Cool, Man.