After much delay… the O(+> Album

Crazy as it sounds, I was delayed from getting to this album for so many different reasons its not even funny. So here it is the list of delays in a nutshell.

Saturday night: Purple Rain was on VH1 @ 11pm, I can’t say no to Prince, I watched the movie and enjoyed my 22nd time through. Contrary to my belief, it didn’t make me stray from the path I was on.
Sunday night: Too much time in the chatroom, had to settle for a couple of versions of “Gett off” and “Horny Pony” for my daily “fix” due to time constraints
Monday & Tuesday: Got a crazy idea (that I still might do), been passing around a link for something I wrote, and getting some interesting conversations in. My “fix” involved watching the video for “Somewhere here on Earth”… gorgeous video, just like always.

I’m still in a crazy enough state of mind to do what I’ve been planning to do the past couple of days. If there’s one thing I’ve realized, its getting more and more obvious that I should have taken the offer from my dad to get the PT cruiser so I’d at least have a car on campus. Christopher Tracy was right, “It’s no fun depending on other people for rides.”

Now, onto the album.

I’ve been thinking about the different songs all day, trying to focus more so on the NPG tracks with more of their influence. It turns out that those were the ones I ended up enjoying the least.
“My Name is Prince” came off a little too polished, maybe a little too arrogant, and Tony’s rap was a road to nowhere.
“Sexy MF” feels like it was in the same vein with “Gett off” because Prince uses that same vocal. Again something about this track made me cringe a bit, I can’t quite explain what it was.
“Love 2 the 9’s” was where things took off for me. I didn’t even like this song that much to begin with. It was among the songs I was thinking about earlier. The only thing I had against it is probably the name. I’ve got no idea what that means! It’s going to drive me crazy for years. His vocals here are just so beautiful that its impossible not to love.
“The Morning Paper” continued the beautiful motif, but here is where he makes a guitar sound so beautiful as if he’s making it sing the notes that his voice can’t conjure.

I was starting to get onto something at this point. The first two tracks are where Prince is somewhat putting on an act. How he acts with his buddies and such. It’s more of him being on the outside, looking in. Then when we get to the third track, he’s starting to distance himself away from the NPG and gets more personal with his love interest.
“The Morning Paper” more or less says that Mayte is the girl next door that he wants to get to know and its almost like he’s talking about a childhood crush, when it’s really more than that. [The bass reminds me of “Dolphin”]

“The Max” remains one of the fun tracks to sing along with and it makes you want to get up and dance. His vocals here are among my favorite type of vocals where I recognize his voice right off and sometimes it reaches different tones that can make you melt.

I half forgot about the little segue with Vanessa Bartholomew. When I got there, I gave the same reaction that I always do. “Don’t tell Prince you’re recording!” Of all the segues he’s done, the ones on this album are among the most humorous

“Blue Light” is very laid-back reggae, almost like something Bob Marley would come up with. Correct me if I’m wrong because I’m sure I am. Did Bob Marley do reggae? It felt a little like that. The lyrics are a little too simple, but it’s nice to have a song like this every now and then.
“Eye wanna melt with u” I somehow knew was coming. I could hear it in the back of my mind mere seconds before it started. The vocals here are cool and of course, there is “melting” involved, especially when he starts whispering about his backbone and lips and his hips… something about the way he mentions “hips”… that’s gotta be his favorite body part to sing about. I’m not quite sure, but I think while listening, I was losing interest. [Feels like its connected to “Come”]
“Sweet Baby” seems to suggest that his love interest had gotten off a bad relationship and he’s trying to give her reasons to keep her chin up about the future. Or maybe it’s not even a love interest, maybe just a friend. What really comes to mind here, is that this is the song that I think so many girls wish Prince had written for them. I certainly would agree with that.

“Continental” suddenly brought so much back to mind. It was almost like a flood… sheesh, talking about melting, I’ve been doing so much of it that I’ve got a flood going now. Sorry, couldn’t resist.
Anyway, I was listening and just enjoying it like nothing else. I don’t think there’s a song quite like this that has made me smile and make me wanna get up and dance. More importantly, this is the kind of song I would have loved to see him do live. I can just imagine the spectacle it could have been. Could it be that he created this song to bring the thrill of his stage show into something portable? I don’t see too  much of its relevance in the “3 chain o’ gold” storyline because it features vocals from Carmen Electra and its more or less about a phone sex call.
Then I remembered something else: this is one of those songs that I get stuck in my head all the time. Once I start listening to it, there’s no getting away from it. I think there were a couple of sleepless nights because this song. Of course I was thinking about the record scratches and the unique one he uses here that he also used in “Race”. [Music in the earlier portions of the song= “Pheromone”]

“Damn U” seemed to open up a different world, back to the romantic side of Prince. Something deep, passionately romantic and has probably his best range of any of the songs he’s done. For beautiful vocals, this song beats “Love 2 the 9’s” because he uses beautiful vocals all the way through. Smooth as silk and gorgeous as sunlight.

I was contemplating listening to some of the songs I usually skip, but I can always do that later on in my time with the album. I could feel like so many thoughts were coming to mind that I’ll have plenty of time to explore them. Right now, I should just figure out where I want to go as far as figuring things out.

“7” came up and somehow, I wasn’t too crazy with the vocals he uses in the chorus. It just drags on for a little too long for my liking, I guess. He does the same thing with “Thunder” but I guess now, that idea is kinda worn out its welcome. So many biblical references here, but I think I was trying to figure out how it would fit into the whole storyline. The “we speak not of love, only blasphemy” line leads me to believe that the 7 guards were using that as a reason for the two of them to not be together.

I skipped ahead and almost started playing “3 chains o’ gold”. I quickly changed back, having forgotten about “God Created Woman.” There’s a lot of beauty in this song that’s its hard to pinpoint its biggest point. I can always explore that further. While I was listening, I was thinking about the first song, where he’s talking about what happened on the 7th day. This song goes back to that Bible reference, but this time, he does it right. And also goes into what it means to be a soul mate. The only thing that brings it down is an instrumental break that is a precursor to “3 chains o’ gold” and that’s a song I’d rather forget about. Ugh. Some of the sounds remind me of “Money don’t matter 2night” but the backing vocals on the last verse recalls that as well.

I skipped ahead to the last segue with Vanessa Bartholomew. It got me thinking about Mayte and how she was only 16 and Prince was… let’s see… 34. Was there really a lot of talk about him being involved with her?

I knew that I was looking forward to the last song most of all. As for how it fits into the storyline, I have no idea. I used to have an interpretation of this song, but I can’t remember it anymore. I’ll have to ask that again. It brings back the group aspect of the NPG into a form that’s so much fun to listen to and sing along with. I think I was also catching onto some of the lyrics, which made it even more fun.

The overall experience, although it took until the 3rd song, was just incredible. What an amazing showcase of music, but that’ll mean a lot of things that I need to check into and figure out. I’ll also have to get more of an understanding of this album before I start reading up on it.

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