In my mind, both albums have potentials to lead my list of favorite albums. But it really really boils down to the kind of mood I’m in and basically the kind of music I’m looking 4.
PR boils down to every aspect of his “emotional core,” each song comes from a different part of that. Whether he’s getting us to have fun with him (Let’s Go Crazy, I Would Die 4 U/Baby I’m a Star), trying to teach us the ways of his heart (Take me with U, The Beautiful Ones), teaching us the way his mind works (Computer Blue, Darling Nikki) and an important lesson in life (Purple Rain). When Doves Cry kinda falls from grace here cuz I can’t quite figure out where it fits, but it’s a good album centerpiece, showing his talents musically & vocally.
But 1999 seems to have one little thing about it in certain tracks that PR lacks completely. It’s his power of HYPNOSIS. On more than one occasion, the back-2-back playing of “Let’s Pretend We’re Married” & “Automatic” does just that. The whole keyboard scheme in the first of the two just mesmerizes me, but I’m probably thinking back 2 the video with all the smoke & mirrors. “Automatic,” I’d say is the best combined effort that The Revolution has done on this album or perhaps ever. Everyone played their part 2 perfection and the whole thing is mesmerizing.
Free, I think, is close 2 Purple Rain… like the whole message that it has. It’s one of those spiritual ballad-y type songs. Free-Purple Rain-The Ladder all have the same kind of thing going on. For some reason, Free stood out from the other tracks this time around… I can’t quite put my finger on it.
Lady Cab Driver, I actually got into quite a bit. The Revolution did a great job with the different instruments and the whole unique sound he has going on. Then when he starts ranting to the “lady cab driver,” and gets 2 the line “this is 4 the women, so beautifully complex”… I started melting. I swear, it made me melt. Drive me absolutely crazy.
I left out DMSR completely… cuz I guess I can’t get into it all that much. “All the Critics” got back onto the tracklist on lyrics alone. Then “International Lover” is like another “Do me baby” but a whole lot cheesier. I can’t get over the cheesy lyrics & metaphors he uses.
The first 3 songs are all pretty much from the same sound and Let’s Pretend We’re Married starts to branch away from that.
In both albums, there’s an inner struggle followed by redemptation. That storyline takes over more time in 1999, but I think “When Doves Cry” has another purpose, more than just resolving & mulling issues pointed out in the 2 tracks b4 it.
Man, I wish I was taking a class where all this info would be USEFUL. haha…
I gave a few of the tracks extra listens because I didn’t completely listen to them the first time… or I just wanted to hear them again. “Let’s Pretend We’re Married” is very hypnotic… I actually got the video & song in-synch with one another and that made it so much more fun. Then I was fair to DMSR and gave it a listen with the lyrics in front of me… I had a feeling he did mention his alter-ego “Jamie Starr”… but I didnt know he mentioned “Vanity 6”, haha. The whole theme of the song goes back to the title track.
Then I went to Delirious and Little Red Corvette. That’ll definitely b my album favorite. It’s a fun song, but it has a little bit of heart 2. He says it all in the 2nd verse. “I guess I should’ve closed my eyes when u drove me 2 the place where ur horses run free. I felt a little ill when I saw all the pictures of the jockeys that were there b4 me.” Not just what he says, but how he says it that just hits a certain place in me. The same way his dance solo does in the middle of its video… shows me how truly amazing he is.
Conclusion: 1999 is a huge selection of brilliant music that dips a little into each area of his mind, but it doesn’t linger for too long. As a whole though, it’s more or less a party album, but with brilliance.
Tomorrow: Purple Rain [actually, scratch that. I’m still explaining 1999 further]