Personnel: Jimi Hendrix (vocals, electric guitar); Gers (harmonica); Buzzy Linhart (vibraphone); Billy Cox, Noel Redding (electric bass); Mitch Mitchell, Buddy Miles (drums); Steve Winwood, Chris Wood, The Ghetto Fighters, Emeretta Marks (background vocals). Producers: Jimi Hendrix, Eddie Kramer, Mitch Mitchell. Recorded at Electric Lady Studios, New York, New York. THE CRY OF LOVE includes Hendrix's final recordings. The rough tracks, recorded at Hendrix's own recording studio, Electric Lady in New York's Greenwich Village, remained unfinished when Hendrix died in September 1970. Mitch Mitchell and Eddie Kramer pieced together some mixes, and the album was given a posthumous release in early 1971. Seven of the album's 10 tracks are now available on VOODOO SOUP (MCA 11236). In spite of the extraordinary circumstances surrounding its release, THE CRY OF LOVE is not only perfectly representative of the new directions Hendrix was pursuing, but is also among the finest, most underappreciated recordings in his catalog. The beautifully orchestrated "Drifting" ranks among his finest ballads, and points to the type of ethereal "sky church music" Hendrix wanted to create. Among the rockers, there's the stinging "Ezy Rider," the funkified "Freedom," the driving "In From The Storm" and the sensual "Night Bird Flying," with its lush tapestry of multi-tracked guitar harmonies. In many ways, these arrangements anticipate the jazz-rock breaktrhoughs of John McLaughlin & the Mahavishnu Orchestra in 1972. Oddly enough, the most poignant tracks are two simple blues--"My Friend" and "Belly Button Window." The former is a Chicago-blues collage of crowd noises and bar talk with overtones of Bob Dylan, the latter a skeletal three-track arrangement, little more than a demo, with one electric guitar comping at acoustic-guitar volume levels while a vocalized wah-wah track offers sardonic blues asides to Hendrix's plaintive vocal. "Belly Button Window," with its eerie anticipation of Hendrix's imminent demise, is an oddly fitting epilogue to the brief career of this innovative artist.