I own everything Prince has ever released, from For You to 21 Nights, (including a lot of "other" stuff). Unfortunately, I am still a sucker for everything this man records, and rush out to buy his new music, hoping new inspiration has found the once and future king.
And while ordinarily I find it hilarious that hundreds of people rush to review a new record in the first day of its release, as if they can really absorb new music that fast, in some ways, I consider this a rehash of the past, (again due to "other" stuff).
Where to begin? Well since I primarily bought this for the music, let me start there. The recording itself is magnificent. The band is super tight, and jamming as always.
But the song selection leaves SO MUCH to be desired, I just don't understand who Prince is trying to please with this release. And while I know the other hard core fans will rush to his defense, slam this review and say that this is for the TRUE FANS, I'm here to tell you, I fit the mold of a true fan, and unfortunately this just doesn't hit the mark. Many of the jams sound great on their own, but packaged together for 77 minutes, they just wander aimlessly.
And another thing, I love that Prince tries to support other artists, but official live Prince CDs are not exactly rolling off the shelves these days. That being the case, did we really need TWO Shelby songs, a Beverly Knight song, a useless souless salsa song called Indigo Nights, and a hiliarously misguided sermon talking about how everyone wants to take his picture. He actually says it's to the point that he can't leave his house anymore. Prince, your sermon came as part of a PICTURE BOOK!!!!!!
Speaking of the picture book, there are a number of beautiful shots. But at least half of the 256 pages are useless. Shots of empty streets, shots of hotel room doors, shots of maids cleaning up, etc... Where are the shots of Prince and band playing live? Isn't this a celebration of 21 nights in London? Back to my title, I'm not sure I understand the point of this release.
I know I will get slammed by the "true" Prince fans who believe the man can do no wrong. And that's O.K. if you feel the need to stick up for your hero, go right ahead. Just know that Prince is one of my musical heroes too. But with 5 of his last 6 albums now being filled with material that is almost laughably bad, I've finally felt the need to write a review.
Prince is an absolute musical genius, and one of the most important musicians to ever grace this planet. But right now I truly believe he is his own worst enemy. Spending all that time filing law suits, taking down web sites, not communicating with the fans, and worst of all, releasing sub par material.
Prince, this sucker will continue to buy everything you release because you've earned that respect from me. I just hope you will return the respect by making your music magical once again some time soon.