Everyone has a favourite Prince album. Sign O' the Times, lovesexy, Purple Rain... or in my case, the Batman Soundtrack. And any fan is always hoping he'll come up with another that's as good as the one they love the most.
Prince has, without a shadow of doubt, the sexiest voice in pop, and that's without sounding like a gerbil choking on someone else's nuts (yes, I'm talking about you, Kylie). He's yummy.
He's also able to get away with unadulterated cuteness and narcissism - calling his album "Musicology" just for a start. Drawing heavily, cheekily on of the cover design of The Roots' Phrenology. Spelling "eye" as a picture of an eye in the lyrics, to as "2", your as "Ur" - like a squeaky teenager writing an SMS. Self indulgent? Ah, gloriously so! But this is Prince, the inventor of Prince. He can indulge himself as much as it pleases him.
Of course everyone also will admit that Prince (by whatever name) has also produced many shoddy albums. When you experiment and innovate, you're bound to make the odd expensive mistake.
This is not one of them. The changes to his sound are pretty subtle, and positive. He's added more body and intricacy to his arrangements, taking advantage of state of the art production as always. But essentially the core is the same as the classic prince stuff. Expect the same funky, rocky pop sounds and the same silky, sustained ballads brimming with tension. He seems to have returned to his core musical identity and I'm very glad to have him back.
So, could Musicology turn out to be a favourite? I haven't been able to stop listening to it, purely for love of sounds he makes. While I'm not sure it's really got one of those stand-out singles that makes listening to the top ten worthwhile, there's not a single track I'd skip, either.- Jean Barker
WHAT OTHER REVIEWERS SAID:
"...despite a few good moments, I'm missing Prince now more than ever."- Dominique Leone on pitchforkmedia.com
"Musicology has more expression in the first note than I've heard from some artists in their entire careers."- Jim Simmons for bbc.co.uk
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