Prince Album #9: Sign o’ the Times [Disc II]

Disclaimer: this is the final piece of a post that was over 13,000 words… so I thought I’d split it “equally” into three different parts… this is the finale.

DISC II

yeah, I’m finally onto the final 7 songs of this double album. And it came with some interesting results.
[I won’t go into all the songs immediately- just the ones where the “interesting results” happened]

U Got the Look- looking at the princevault entry, he performed it at his last concert appearance… something to think about.

If eye was your girlfriend- [also the part of that April 14 2016 show] I’d heard it a couple times already as part of the Camille album. but this is the first time I’d really been able to listen to it and was always alone while doing so.
Prince recorded the vocal alone in the studio. I know that for a fact. I also know that Susan Rodgers make an error with one of the settings on the controls when he was recording the backing vocals that distorted them. She was horrified when she heard the playback, but he didn’t seem to mind and kept them. What that must’ve been like…
For me, this is one of those songs that, even for Prince, felt like it was another level.
This is such a beautiful vocal performance. Makes me wonder what it would’ve sounded like without the Camille treatment :cloud9:
Prince was really good with playing both sides of the gender coin and this is a prime example. Love the lyrics. And I feel like I get the most out of it when no one else is around, but maybe that’s because it’s so beautiful it sometimes make me wanna cry.

“I Could Never Take the Place of Your Man”… this is a Prince classic loved by many, but today was one of the few times, maybe the only time, where I liked it or it affected me in any way.
Don’t know why, but singing along with some lyrics, I had to fight not to cry. Something in the lyrics just hit home, but I don’t know what.
Then there’s the whole “it’s a sad song set to upbeat music” thing. And it was kinda hard to go with the beat when you really listen to it.
Then I thought about one lyric and found it odd… the girl in the song at a bar, but her man “left her with a baby and another one on the way”… if that’s true, she shouldn’t be at a bar or drinking. Unless that was the whole point of coming there.
The one criticism I always had about it… it’s nothing but instrumental after the first two minutes. I never really understood the point of that. And it’s such a well-written song that it feels like it needs another verse and chorus to finish it up.
I also find it interesting to find it’s another one-man band effort. Even the back-up vocals… the ones on the main hook… I don’t like them. Even less when Boni Boyer sang them in the live version. It reminds me of a baby for whatever reason- that kinda takes me out of being fully on board.

The Cross- the last time he performed it was 7/7/07 [and under that new name that caused controversy among the fan base… I don’t want to read into that too much… cuz I’m not there yet]
When I think about it, I think about the clip in the “Prince of Paisley Park” documentary where he’s performing it live at the Lovesexy tour.
Another song I don’t often invest in, at least not fully.
This time, I was halfway in it, really getting the message and taking it to heart.
Then when the song started to repeat itself, I lost interest.
I’m also not a fan of the sitar when it comes in- it just takes the song to a weird place.
Prince always has to do something that’s unconventional.

It’s Gonna Be a Beautiful Night- this was the biggest surprise of the 7. I’d always dismissed this as an odd live track that really had no place here.
But I just swept up in the whole spirit of it as if I was at a Prince concert. Something in the beat just got me going and I felt completely uninhibited. Of course I had to make sure to keep driving nice and straight. Did it still run long? Yeah… a bit… it could been cut down by a couple minutes.

Adore- it’s a beloved Prince ballad, but I don’t often feel the love with it. Not quite sure why. It’s hard to explain. Maybe it was the delivery of it that just felt over the top and I don’t get anything genuine from it. But I get a little out of it every time.
And I think the last time I did get emotional with the last few moments of it- just like I did this time. Maybe because it was the end of the album. But also because that lyric “for all time I am with you, you are with me”… holding onto that because his body is no longer here, but his spirit is with me whenever I listen to him.
I thought for a second- what if he recorded this after he and Susannah broke up? That’d give it a little more meaning and a sad one at that.
But he recorded this before they had that last “Play in the Sunshine” recording session… one day before. So it’s still possible.

I also thought that there was a possibility for cohesion to happen.
The fact this disc starts with three Camille tracks and four Prince tracks… there’s a bit of a rift there in my mind that’s hard to overcome.
The first three are kinda like relationship tracks- where you first meet the person, you want to be everything for them, and it’s a strange relationship.
…maybe that’s meant to continue the train of thought from “Forever in my life”… or these are just flashbacks that come before it chronologically and “Adore” is where it all ends.
He also has other things going on with those other tracks- showing a bit of humility (“I can never take the place of your man” is unique in that sense… there aren’t many tracks like that in his catalogue), finding salvation and spirituality.
Then things had gotten so serious that he just wants to let loose and party on with “it’s gonna be a beautiful night”… that’s the one thing about the song I liked today… just freeing me from things in the world that’ve been stressing me out [to be more to the point, the way people have been overreacting to things going on in the world… I feel like nobody’s on my side about anything– where I can’t say anything online or otherwise without someone twisting it around to make it sound like I’m a bad person…that’s why I don’t engage in politics on social media if at all possible… listening to Prince is usually the one thing that can take me away from all that and make me feel better].

I guess that’s good for now… I’ll give these tracks another listen and add more notes tomorrow. Maybe I’ll be a little more lenient than I was with Disc I…

I need to hear “U Got the Look” when I’m not concerned about driving safely because it’s hard to fully invest… it’s one of those great beats almost guaranteed to get me moving and smiling. There’s not much to it as far as the story it tells, but it’s super catchy. Don’t know why it didn’t do better as a single.
Sheena Easton said she did the vocals without knowing she’d be singing opposite Prince, which explains why she’s all over the track. But it just works. I didn’t know that until recently and always thought she fit perfectly on it. Sheila E’s drums are easy to detect, but she’s also in the video. (If she wasn’t on the track, but in the video, I’d cry fowl).
One of Prince’s best videos- so iconic down to how everyone is dressed. So 80’s. I hope I’ll be able to find it.

I don’t know what my problem was yesterday with the “almost crying” moments during certain songs because I was fine today 😛
But I had a crazy out-of-body experience (yeah, while I was driving, but the road ahead of me was clear) during the last part of “If eye was your girlfriend”… like when Prince goes crazy at the very end, talking really fast… like his spirit took over my body for a few short minutes.

“Strange Relationship” is so fun just to sing along to. And I always kinda ad-lib during the main hook. As if making up for the fact Wendy and Lisa’s vocals were erased from this track when Prince made it Camille’s. Just as a song in general, it’s one of my favorites to listen to. Maybe not super special when compared to the 100’s of songs Prince has written, but it’s good enough for me.

I found throughout listening to the disc that each time I listen, different details jump out and make an impact. And sometimes, that’s the way it goes and I don’t mind it.
It makes the material sound fresh each time.

with “I could never take the place of your man”- I timed it, at 3:49, the instrumental break begins and it lasts for about 2 minutes before it starts back up.
I don’t really get why that’s there… unless it helps set up for the next song, which is thinking about the big picture and people who have problems in their lives.

“The Cross” was the song where a lot of those hot and cold moments happened. Some moments I locked into and others I didn’t… maybe it’s good that the verses repeat, to not only drive the point home, but if you didn’t catch it the first time, maybe the next time you’ll feel something.
The drumming in the second half is a definite highlight- the Peach and Black guys always give Prince props when they hear him drumming on a track. It has a lot more emotion than one would think. Not to be underestimated.

“It’s gonna be a beautiful night” didn’t hit me like it did the other day… but that was because I kinda had a lot of negativity bringing me down… that lyric about not having time for politics cuz no one wants to fight… that got my attention and kept it.
I’ll tell you how freed I felt the other day- I got through that part, hearing the lyrics, high on euphoria… at that moment, I just remembered there was an iconic Prince scream in there and I just freaking did it and nailed it.
Today, my throat closed up. I’d compare it to do a jump on a horse, but you stop short of jumping the gate. But that’s ok. Made that other day feel more special.

“Adore’- I think could do without some of the extra voices. There’s just a little too much for my tastes. But I heard a few instances that made me think of others songs. That’s why diehard fans say it set the template for future Prince ballads.
“Insatiable” is the easy way to go- starting with the vocal before the first lyrics… it reminds me of the start of that song as well. Then one point made me think of “Friend, Lover, Sister Mother/Wife”… the music when he says “nothing could compare to your lovely face”

it’s June 7th, Prince’s birthday. In the back in my mind, I’m always going to know what age he’d be, but in the front… I’m thinking of him as a vampire and he just keeps celebrating his 57th birthday today.
So what I wound up doing… the plan was always to listen to Peach and Black on the way home, but the rest I made up on the fly.
I turned on the album, starting from disc 1, song 1 and doing a little in the morning and a little in the afternoon… that way I can stretch the podcast over three days.
So I got to “Play in the sunshine” and enjoyed more than I had ever… and I gave a good old Prince scream and that was for him 😉 it just came so easily so I just went with it.

At work, I was a little more creative… maybe a little cheesy and lame.
I decided I’d play a Prince song every hour on a minute divisible by 7… and I’d play whatever I was inspired to play. Funny thing was… maybe it was because I wasn’t playing the actual album tracks… I wound up doing almost all Camille tracks. Ain’t nothin’ wrong with that. It was a good relaxing day at work…
8:07- If eye was your girlfriend
9:14- Strange Relationship (that was the one exception because it was the original cut… it reminded me a lot of the Parade material with it having this dreamy quality to it… no bass that I could hear)
10:28- Shockadelica (this song seriously feels like it’s from another world… so trippy)
11:35- Feel U Up (I’m getting to like that song a little more than I should… such a sick beat)
12:49- La La La Hee Hee Hee (I hadn’t heard this one in ages and remember not liking it too much… but long jams are growing on me more when I’m not really in the hurry to get anywhere… although I still like the first half more than the second)
1:07- Rockhard in a Funky Place (I was oddly hearing this song in my head and suddenly was in the mood to listen to it… the lyrics make it a little too awkward, but I was really grooving with the music)
1:57 (I threw the rules out the window at this point)- U Got the Look (long look)… the music sounded so good on this, much more alive than the CD, but that might also be the magic of the headphones/earbuds.

I remember really enjoying that song when I was in college and The Very Best of… was the one of the few Prince discs I had. That was one I always looked forward to. And certainly after the title track of the album, the energy woke me up… kinda like the lyric.

So… with the podcast, I only got through two songs so far… “U Got the look” was liked, but not loved. And MC spent a good part of this portion bashing the CD and saying how the bottom end is missing and vinyl is better, etc… kinda makes me wish for a remaster of this album so I can get what I have been missing.

Then “If eye was your girlfriend” got lots of love… from everyone but Captain. What a surprise, right? off the top of my head, I don’t know…I think the only song he really loved so far that was also a fan favorite was “When you were mine”
Maybe if he listened to lyrics more…
for me, the song was about the lyrics and the theme and idea of it before the music. But everything else slowly fell into place. I think it’s one of my personal favorites as well- the fact I don’t want to overdo listening to it because I’m afraid the magic will wear off, that’s very telling 😉

I was also going to say [but didn’t remember until now]… I thought while listening to that song– only Prince will be able to sing it and have it be authentic. Any other guy who’d try this would sound kinda creepy… but he can get away with it because he’s a little feminine, but also very masculine.
[I think about his sex appeal and for whatever reason, I have the 3121/Planet Earth version of him in my head… but that’s the time I was starting to get to know him and those first few appearances really stuck with me]

Picking it up today, Player pretty nailed it- saying “Strange Relationship” gets forgotten about because of its placement on the album and he felt bad for it.
Lots of love for this. Toejam was talking about how it had 3 great hooks and anyone would kill to have one. Then MC did an epic movie voiceover bit saying ‘and he’s got 3… IN ONE SONG”… yeah, very epic.
I like both versions that I have for different reasons. The Wendy & Lisa one felt like it was right out of the ATWIAD album… but where the heck would I put it? 😛

Anyway- moving on- the others got a lot of love… yeah, it does get a little boring. I felt that way the first time I heard this podcast. But I like hearing about all the good points in these songs.

The Cross got some interesting chatter. Toejam said you can take it however you want- which is definitely true. That’s how those gospel songs are meant to be.
I’d heard rumblings about the change in lyrics- calling it “The Christ” after the JW conversion and it caused… wait for it… Contro-versy [wow, that feels like ages ago… at least 2 months, I think] among fans. I won’t read too much into all that- but the way Prince put it “someone lied about how somebody died”… it makes it sound like the JW faith doesn’t believe Jesus is the Lord and Saviour. But I’ll go more into all that… possibly… during my Rainbow Children post. And that’ll be even further away.
Captain said it was one of his favorites and didn’t mind the lyric change.
MC said how you could hear grunge elements in there. The guitar solo when the song just opens up, I can hear that for sure. The clip they previewed the song with, I heard something else in it, like it reminded me of some other artist. Don’t know why The Rolling Stones came to mind cuz that might be completely off. I don’t know their work that well.
And he said how the last time he had listened to it- he had an incredible experience that helped fuel a gushing review. With any song, really, that’s a nice moment to have.

Then he and Toejam had an interesting discussion I just HAD to remember to write down.
Prince never full-out covers a genre, it’s always mixed with elements of others. And they asked aloud if he does that on purpose or he simply can’t help himself.
I’m willing to bet that it’s 50/50.

Holy crap- I found the freaking movie! It’s online somewhere… I’m going to have to save it for tomorrow and add a little about that. [probably the shortest entry of the three, LOL… never thought it was possible to do a short post about Prince, but I guess I just did]
Seriously, if I really enjoy it, I’ll go stake out Amazon and buy myself a copy. So I won’t have to do it this way again. [Just because Prince isn’t here anymore doesn’t mean the WebSheriff isn’t… that’s what people at .org called the people who took Prince videos off YouTube and sent them and Housequake cease and desist letters- which precipitated “Pfunk”… that’ll be a trip going back to after all these years. I think I’ve only heard it twice ever]
…I’m still undecided whether I want to buy it. I’ll figure that out much later after I get a little distance from this era.

And I’m starting to debate if I should also split this post into a couple posts… this one is already massive as it is. By adding Disc II PLUS the movie… it might be too much.
[It was and I did, clearly if you’re reading this now after going through the other two]

Anyway- getting to the rest of the podcast (and the album)…
“It’s Gonna Be a Beautiful Night” was the biggest surprise of these two weeks with the album. I never liked it nearly as much as I do now. It’s not going to make my top songs of all time, but it’s just been a great fun time.
And I really should look at the lyrics…
that rap is freaking insane… I wonder how much time Sheila E had to practice before Prince recorded her doing it.
“Adore” got a lot of love- even from Captain, who doesn’t like ballads in general.
But I’m gonna be pulling one of his lines: [paraphrasing] “I can admit it’s a good song, even if I don’t like it myself”
Prior to listening to this album the first time, I got to know so many great Prince ballads: The Beautiful Ones, Shh, A Million Days, Te Amo Corazon (the Brits live version), Somewhere here on Earth… maybe Insatiable, but I don’t think I was super in love with it like I am now… I’ve heard this song hyped up so much, but when I finally get around to it… I just don’t get that same feel or make that connection. Probably the most I’d ever felt from it was since Prince’s death- and I take other meaning from it in some lyrics, but not the thing as a whole.

…that makes it sound like there’s something wrong with me, doesn’t it?
I’m not 100% sold on fan favorites like “I could never take the place of your man” and “housequake” had to grow on me a bit from this album.
I’m kinda hoping that watching the movie version can convert me.

[Side-note: looking at the recording dates of various songs, all in 1986, I checked to see if he created anything good on my birthday… the only cool thing listed was the release of The Time’s first album, but that’s 5 years too early… no songs, concerts or anything in 1986 on that day… Prince, what the heck were you doing that day? …2 days before, “Adonis and Bathesheba” was recorded… 4 days after, he gave a concert at Madison Square Garden… I guess he was busy rehearsing cuz there’s no way he was relaxing at this particular time in his career… anyway… I’m kinda depressed about the fact I don’t have any Prince song as a birthday twin… he was at the Garden for another night and the next recording was 9 days later- Forever in my Life]

So I finished the Peach and Black podcast on the album. I tend to talk back out whether I agree or disagree with something and I think I weirded out my sister cuz she went inside when I started listening 😛

There was a lot of “who does that?” kind of talk going on. Then I felt like a loser because there’s no way I’m giving this album 10/10 like MC and Captain. It’s not Captain’s favorite, he said, but it deserves the perfect rating. For MC, I’ll have to ask him about it on Twitter if he decided between it and The Gold Experience, which his favorite is. It seems like Gold is the sentimental favorite for him since it’s his first real album (not counting when he rented Emancipation from the library or owning The Hits collection because that’s a compilation) and this one may be the best overall album in his opinion.
Player and Toejam saved me from loser-dom and just feeling like the Prince community is going to disown me because this whole album isn’t getting a perfect score from me.
It’ll be extremely lucky to get a 9, let’s put it that way.

Player gave it 9.5 because of the movie and how certain versions of the songs are the definitive versions. And there are a couple others he rates higher.
Then Toejam gave it a solid 9. It’s really a grower and even 10 years owning the album, he still feels like a novice to it and finds something new and exciting every time.

I can definitely agree with that sentiment.
My definitive opinion is that this album has gotten so much hype from everyone who knows of it… I’m expecting to feel that same excitement and I just don’t.
With certain songs, I absolutely get it, but not with the project as a whole.
I think it might also be because I think I need a year or two without it before I come back to it.

Then there was the comment about trying to find filler in this album…
I want to say there are a couple songs I really don’t like and could do without, but I just can’t bring myself to hit the skip button. The product as a whole feels like it would be missing a piece if I took a song out. Even “It’s Gonna be a Beautiful Night”- if I disliked that song so much, I still would feel awkward going from “The Cross” to “Adore.”
I could imagine finishing the album without “Adore”… but considering my reaction to the movie without it, even that seems impossible.

So…. before I delay or add anymore, I’ll give these last 7 songs one final spin and I’ll rate them, this disc as a whole, then the album as a whole.
I predict that with some help from Disc II, I can give the whole album 8.4 out of 10.
And I think Disc II will get either 7.8 or a solid 8.

so interesting things on my last turn-through…
I don’t know if it’s all Prince music or this album in particular, but a lot is so beat-driven, it’s hard to sit still.
Sign o’ the Times as a whole has so many great rhythm tracks and this Disc has at least three (U Got the Look, Strange Relationship, It’s gonna be a beautiful night”).
If eye was your girlfriend- I was admiring the backing vocals so much that I tuning the lead vocal out. [But have to say- never mind the Camille vocal- Prince’s performance in the Sott movie isn’t nearly as exciting. He used a lot of the same ad-libs. Here, it’s different every time]. And I can actually hear those Motown bits I picked up in the movie version a little more.
Strange Relationship had that “Hot Thing” going on- the beat is so catchy and great, I could go for another couple minutes of it.
I could never take the place of your man- I feel like it’s his homage to a song he grew up with, but I have no clue which one. There’s something very old-school about it.
The Cross- musically, it is very sparse, but it grabs your attention.

Admittedly, the last two songs… I wish I didn’t have to wait until 11pm to do this because I was nodding off and not fully engaged.

Okay, time to do this thing again… time to crunch the numbers:

U GOT THE LOOK
A cool duet between Camille and Sheena Easton with an interesting backdrop [boy vs. girl world series of love… West Side Story style] set to a catchy pop song.
Technical merit- 4.5 (it hits all the points on the key elements, a well-structured pop song, but while it has that Prince flavor to it with that charisma and attitude, it’s not particularly unique in his catalogue)
Components score- 3.5 (I like this song a bit, but I don’t love it like some of the others on this album… I almost gave it a 4, but I don’t like it nearly as much as I used to)
Total score- 8

IF EYE WAS YOUR GIRLFRIEND
…oh brother… should I even bother breaking this one down?
This is one of those particular special Prince songs almost universally loved within his fan community and you kinda need to be in it in order to understand it [suddenly I’m thinking of that Automatic where he says “no one else can understand you, you’re too complex, they say nothing’s perfect, but they don’t know you”… not quite, but you get my point]. It’s one of his most intimate and vulnerable vocal performances. Technically, one of his best ever.
If I could have been in the studio to see Prince record anything, it’d be this song, just so I can hear what the original vocal sounded like before Camille. That would have been so amazing to watch. [I’d have to be a fly on the wall or a ghost so he wouldn’t know I was there cuz him being alone in the studio allowed him to bring out this vocal].
Have I said enough yet?
Total score- 10

STRANGE RELATIONSHIP
Perhaps one of Prince’s greatest beats and hooks of his career. Wendy and Lisa had their contributions dropped lower into the mix, but Lisa’s flute remains and that’s one of my favorite parts. The flute really is underestimated in his music- so many great flute tracks. Prince is a master of contradictions and this song is a prime example of it.
Technical score- 5 (I just can’t take anything away from it and I don’t want to)
Components score- 4 (Yeah, I like this one a lot, but this puts it on par with my favorites on the first disc… the previous track is just so exceptional that it beats everything out)
Total score- 9

I COULD NEVER TAKE THE PLACE OF YOUR MAN
…if any trouble starts, it’s going to begin with this one.
I have come around a bit on this track. I like more than I expected to at the beginning. Another well-composed song. Prince does the classic thing where he puts something upbeat to kinda sad lyrics. A master of contradiction like I said. But this song puts him in an interesting place- one he had really tapped into before. Where a girl is interested in him and he turns her down because he acknowledges he isn’t the person who can fill the void [no pun intended] left behind by her lost lover. He knows she’ll want more than a one-night stand and he isn’t able to provide that and would rather break her heart now rather than later. In that respect, this is a special one. But then there are my personal feelings to consider.
Technical merit- 4 (deduct half a point for those backing vocals I still find annoying and distracting… and it’s such a good poppy song that it could have benefited from another verse and chorus to really drive it home instead of an instrumental breakdown where the most prominent instrument is a cymbal constantly tapping in one speaker- I wish the guitar was louder in the mix and the cymbal was softer)
Components score- 3.5 (I like it enough, but it’s not one I go out of my way to listen to)
Total score- 7.5

oh boy… starting to back-slide a little bit..

THE CROSS
For Prince’s first stab at a spiritual/gospel track, it’s pretty damn good. The music is the perfect backdrop to the lyrics that paint a picture worth 1000 words that anyone could find their own interpretation in. A strong vocal with a lot of emotion. Maybe a tad repetitive, but perhaps it’s intended that way to give you a second chance to find meaning in certain lyrics.
Technical score- 5 (I think the above paragraph summed it up nicely)
Components score- 3.5 (Typically, I give 3’s to songs I’m neutral on… I’m a little past neural on this one. It also isn’t one that I’d had that personal connection with. Not yet, but it could happen. The potential is definitely there)
Total score- 8.5

IT’S GONNA BE A BEAUTIFUL NIGHT
The first “live track with overdubs” Prince put on an album since the Purple Rain era. But here, it feels a little out of place, especially since it was from a Revolution concert and he dubbed over much of their contributions. A party track in the vein of 1999 with a lot more going on. 9 minutes is a long time for one song and a couple others could have taken its place, but if the mood is just right, that time passes so fast.
Technical merit- 4.5 (deducted half a point because the vocals on the first two verses could have been a lot cleaner so they’d be easier to understand)
Components score- 3.5 (again, I like it, but I don’t like it all the time and wouldn’t put in on the same tier as my other favorites on this album)
Total score- 8 (whoa, that’s kinda surprising… I had a lower opinion of this song before I started and I thought it would be one of the ones that would doom this album in the numbers game)

ADORE
…yeah, if the fan community revokes my membership, my thoughts on this song are going to do it.
This is one of the most beloved Prince ballads ever. I’d known of its reputation before I heard it. And after I did… I feel bad, but I just don’t feel it.
Technical score- 4 (I can’t detract anything from the music, the lyrics are brilliant and this is definitely unique as a Prince ballad- it was the one that led to many of his other greats. The vocal is a strong performance, but there are a few moments, some involving backing vocals where I could erase one or two extra voices and one “you don’t know what you mean to me” hits this note that’s… I hate to say it… grates like nails on a chalk board. It breaks the spell a bit if one develops. And structurally, it does meander a little bit and takes a while to refocus)
Components score- 3 (I have no disdain for this song at all- I just haven’t found that connection with it that returns every time I listen to. Some moments I like and other times I’m wondering if the song’s going to be over soon)
Total score- 7

Okay… moment of truth…

Combined total is 58- divide by points possible (70)… 8.3
Wow! despite my nitpicks on certain well-loved Prince tracks, it still fared very well.
That’s 5 tenths higher Disc I. Alone, it beats 1999. That’s kind of a big deal.

I’ll look at the averages for the technical and components scores for another comparison.
Technically, it beats it by a lot. And this average- it’s the same as Purple Rain’s technical merit… that’s huge.
Components score- this disc is my favorite of the two by one hundredth.

Now for the combined total…
phew… 128 is a big number, but there are 16 tracks to consider too.
Divide by 160… I guess I should’ve known… average these two albums together… and that ties it with 1999 with a solid 8.0 out of 10.

And thinking about it, it makes a lot of sense. Both albums have a mix of material on them. Both have huge highlights and other songs I generally feel average or don’t care too much about.
I wonder if all those eclectic/varied albums are going to end up like this…

Now, I’ll end by listing the tracks in order from favorite to least favorite:

If eye was your girlfriend- 10
The Ballad of Dorothy Parker- 9
Strange Relationship- 9
Hot Thing- 9
Starfish & Coffee- 9
Housequake- 8.5
Forever in my life- 8.5
The Cross- 8.5
U Got the Look- 8
It’s Gonna be a beautiful night- 8
I could never take the place of your man- 7.5
Play in the Sunshine- 7
Adore- 7
Sign o’ the times- 6.5
Slow Love- 6.5
IT- 6

Wow… that’s a lot of material. And I’m glad to find “IT” at the bottom… at least that makes sense in the grand scheme of things.
Now if I wanted to put together a bunch of these songs for someone to get to know all of Prince’s genius… I’d pick those first 8 (ah, I wanted it to be 7, but The Cross is worthy including in that).
The others… I want to say you won’t miss out on too much without them, but “Adore” did lead to those future great ballads he did.

So going forward to my top 100 Prince songs… I’m taking a bunch since I have one perfect 10 and 4 very solid 9’s.

If eye was your girlfriend
The Ballad of Dorothy Parker
Strange Relationship
Hot Thing
Starfish & Coffee

And that’s it… I’m finally done with this monster of an album… now I can sleep tonight… it’s past 1am now.

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