Jimi Hendrix's "Axis: Bold as Love" has been banned in Malaysia, 47 years after it was initially released. As the Malay Mail (via HenneMusic) is reporting, the reason for the ban is reportedly because the cover displays Hendrix and his bandmates as various forms of Lord Vishnu. An unidentified spokes person from the Home Ministry's Publication Control and Quranic Text unit said compact discs with the 1967 album cover art featuring the Hindu deity would be prohibited from entering the country and they would seize such CDs found in Malaysia:
"We don't care if Jimi Hendrix albums without cover art featuring Lord Vishnu come in, but if it uses Lord Vishnu's image, then of course we won't allow it," said the official. "We'll definitely take action against anything that violates religious sensitivities, whether it's Christianity, Buddhism, Hinduism or Islam. We must respect each other."
Hendrix himself was reportedly unhappy with the record sleeve, stating at the time of its release that "the three of us [the Jimi Hendrix Experience members] have nothing to do with what's on the Axis cover." The guitarist had initially wanted a cover that had an Indian motif - albeit a Native American Indian one - reflecting his own Native American heritage (his maternal grandmother was a cherokee). Rumor has it that the record company misunderstood Hendrix's instruction, hence the Hindu theme.