Prince has been one of the most prolific artists of the last 30 years with an incredible total of 27 studio albums in 34 years. He has recorded a wide range of styles from Funk, R&B, rock, pop, New Wave, Minneapolis sound & synthpop. He has a reputation for eccentricities and hardly ever does Interviews but one thing is undoubted, That is his influence in Music over the past few decades. He's one of the more underrated guitarists around and is an excellent multi instrumentalist. He has had some weird moments over the years but when he gets it right he makes some exceptional music.
This was the sixth studio album from Prince and is perhaps his best known work. It was released in 1984 and was the soundtrack of the film of the same name. The album was hugely well received by critics and fans and has sold more than 20 million copies worldwide. The albums musical style mixes R&B, pop, rock & New Wave. This is one of his more diverse albums and undoubtedly his most successful.
1.) Let's Go Crazy
The track opens with a Funeral like Organ part which leads into the catchy drum machine beat with electric guitars in the background. This is a very catchy track which is about living for the moment and living a good life. It is a real toe tapper and features some excellent Musicianship from Prince and his band "The Revolution". It gets the album off to a decent start and hints at more to come. The track ends with some excellent guitar work from Prince which showcases his ability.
2.) Take Me With U
This track slows things with a more mellow feel, The track features vocals from Apollonia Kotero who is backed by Alison Coleman who was part of Prince's backing band The Revolution. The track is about being with someone you love and not wanting to leave them. The Music runs along well in the background with a soothing nature. The female vocals combine well with Prince's vocals particularly when he sings in falsetto. Good stuff.
3.) The Beautiful Ones
This is one of my favourites on the album, It was later covered by Mariah Carey ft Dru Hill. This is a lovely slice of 80s soul/r&b and features some punchy drum beats and lovely piano tones. Prince's vocals are excellent here. The track is about emotional longing and unrequited love. This is a lovely ballad which builds wonderfully until the fabulous musical part brings things to a intense moment which then slows back down and fades wonderfully. This is a Beautiful track which showcases a great falsetto from Prince and some excellent backing from the band. The Musical and vocal eruption is certainly worth listening to.
4.) Computer Blue
This track features Wendy & Lisa who were part of The Revolution. This is one of the raunchy tracks on the album with suggestions of a dominatrix-type relationship between the two. This is one of the more musically vibrant tracks on the album with some great riffs and hooks. The guitar from Prince is excellent and the musical changes blend well with each other. There are some great elements of Rock & Funk on this track that combine well to create an excellent and unique sound. One of the more experimental tracks on the album.
5.) Darling Nikki
Another raunchy moment here when Prince sings about a night in a hotel room viewing a Porn Magazine with a photograph in there of a woman called Nikki. The suggestive lyrics led to a campaign to have parental advisory stickers on albums with explicit content. The campaign was led by Tipper Gore, Al Gore's Wife. The actual song is a Rock Opus which features several musical changes and directions. The track has a Live feel and is one of the more musically aggressive tracks on the album but it still has the more gentle moments which build up to that.
6.) When Doves Cry
This is another up tempo track from the album. It's an excellent slice of Pop rock, funk, synthpop. This was the last track recorded from the album. There's no actual bass guitar line so the beat is the bass part. There's some excellent guitar work and the drum machine works well throughout the track. The musical part of the track showcases the musicianship of Prince and The Revolution. It has become one of his most well known tracks and is an excellent Live track.
7.) I Would Die 4 U
This track is of a dance/Synth pop/Funk nature and the track has some excellent Music moments and in some parts Prince sounds like Michael Jackson with some oohs and ahhs. There's actually a 12 minute version of this song which is a studio jam which continues the song from it's normal length of just under three minutes.
8.) Baby I'm a Star
This is a vibrant, up tempo track which has elements of Funk rock & New Wave. The song features some catchy drum machine sequences and rapidly played synthesizers. The song also contains an unusual backmasking at the beginning and end of the song which says forwards
"Like what the fuck do they know? All their taste is in their mouth Really, what the fuck do they know?
Come on, baby Let's go crazy".
9.) Purple Rain
Now here we have the closer of the album and what a closer it is. This epic ballad features lovely emotive vocals from Prince and a fabulous build up which are two parts of making this the incredible song it is. There's also the incredible guitar solo which just completes the song so well. I love everything about this song, The vocals, the music, the subject and of course the wonderful build up to that incredible guitar playing which just tops off the song. This is undoubtedly one of my favourite songs of all time and is rightly in many greatest songs of all time lists. Awesome track which is the perfect ending to the album. Superbly Outstanding.
This is one of the greatest albums of all time, It has everything about it, beauty, grace, power and progression. The two best tracks on the album are "The Beautiful Ones" & the utterly brilliant "Purple Rain" but there's not one bad track on the album. All the others have something great about them and that is why I hold this album in such high esteem. Through all the mad eccentricities Prince will always be remembered for his Musical Genius and that is a great example of that Genius. So finally I'll end with this Purple Rain what a great album.
"Purple Rain" is the 6th studio album released in 1984 on Warner Bros. Records by American pop/rock artist, Prince. Joining Prince on the album were Brown Mark, Lisa Coleman, Wendy Melvoin, Dr. Fink, Bobby Z, Apollonia Kotero, David Coleman, Suzie Katayama and Novi Novog.
"Purple Rain" is the first Prince album recorded with, and credit given to, his backing group The Revolution. The result is a richer sound, due to the layering of synthesisers, drums, guitars and other instruments used. There is also a touch of a psychedelic rock feel to the album.
"Let's Go Crazy" begins with an intro of funeral type organ being played, and Prince giving a eulogy for 'Life'. This is followed by a drum machine before going into a harder, rock sound provided by guitar, bass and synthesisers. The lyrics of the song are interesting, fun and, at times, thought provoking.
"The Beautiful Ones" is a haunting song, and you feel the depth of the despair caused by unrequited love. The intro of piano and organ sounds provided by synthesiser begin to build in intensity and volume to screaming desperation to be understood and to have the woman know just how much he loves and needs her. Once this emotion is spent, the song fades into a quiet close of drums and keyboard, in a feeling of acceptance of the situation for what it is.
In an amazing blend of rock, orchestra, gospel and pop, title song ''Purple Rain'' opens with a lone guitar that is joined by drums and organ. After the final chorus, there is a guitar solo that is replaced with a piano solo and strings. The overall effect of the song is astounding because there are so many things going on, yet they all fall into place and blend to perfection.
Easily one of my favourite albums of all time, "Purple Rain" has interesting lyrics that only Prince could dream up and a creative musical style that is all his own. If you are looking for something new and exciting, or something to dance to, this is the perfect album.
1. Let's Go Crazy
2. Take Me With U
3. The Beautiful Ones
4. Computer Blue
5. Darling Nikki
6. When Doves Cry
7. I Would Die 4 U
8. Baby I'm a Star
9. Purple Rain
My rating: 9/10
Well I am a huge Prince fan as it is, I went to see him at London's o2 arena back in 2007 and he was brilliant. I remember my mum listening to quite a few of his songs when I was younger and I loved them then too. Anyway, I have quite a few of his albums and this one is definitely my favourite!
It is the soundtrack from the film Purple Rain starring Prince and I found the soundtrack to be the best part of the film to be honest, it is absolutely fantastic. The title track is my favourite one and is a very dramatic rock type ballad with Prince playing the guitar perfectly to compliment his wonderful voice.
There are also some other great songs on there, my favourites are 'I Would Die for You', a quite upbeat nice song, 'Darling Nikki', a more sensual rocky track and 'The Beautiful Ones' which is a slow subtle track with great lyrics.
This album isn't a very long one, there are only 9 tracks on it but every single one is quality, classic Prince at his peak in my opinion.
I love every single one of his songs and albums but this one is by far the one I love most. I should mention, I'm not even a rock fan and even though this is quite a rocky album I love it so don't be put off if you don't think the type of music is your cup of tea, Prince is just fabulous and whichever genre he picks he makes it his own unique style anyway.
You should be able to pick it up for between £5-£8 in HMV or anywhere else as it's an old album and I think I only paid about a fiver for it and it is worth every penny a million times over. Buy it, you won't be disappointed!
Prince & the Revolution - Purple Rain (1984)
Producer: Prince and the Revolution
Let's Go Crazy
Take Me with U
The Beautiful Ones
When Doves Cry
I Would Die 4 U
Baby I'm a Star
Released in 1984, Purple Rain is the sixth studio album by the musician Prince, and his first album with backing band The Revolution. Let's get right down to business because, for me, the words Purple Rain are as relevant today as they were back in 1984 - the year that Prince unveiled what would ultimately become one of the most highly revered soundtrack albums of all time.
Everyone knew he was working on something brilliant. The three albums that came before the purple downpour - Dirty Mind, Controversy and 1999 - were classic examples of Prince's talent in the studio, with an attention to pop hooks and undiluted musicality rarely seen in the genres that Prince pursued. Was it rock and roll? Was it disco? Was it funk? Was it soul? His distinctive sound was all of those things and more. It was something new, it was fundamentally Prince music. And do not allow yourself to be fooled by the inclusion of a backing band in the shape of The Revolution - Prince still plays, arranges and composes much of the music himself.
Add to this the unprecedented two years he was away between albums and it doesn't take a genius to tell you that the firecracker from Minneapolis was going to do something very special indeed (two years between records might not sound like a big deal these days but this was before artists rested on their laurels, toured an album for six billion years and released every song from an album as a single - excluding Michael Jackson, who was an early adopter of the 'Make the Fans Buy Every Song Twice' theory).*
Truth be told, time has been extremely kind to the soundtrack of Purple Rain, a semi-biopic based upon the upbringing and early years of Prince (even if it's been less kind to the unfortunate piece of cinema itself). The story is simple and goes a little like this: a down on his luck youngster from the ghetto - The Kid - struggles to make it in the music industry but he stays true to his unique and inimitable sound despite strong opposition from both friends and business partners, and finally gets his big break and the recognition he deserves, along with the girl (but not before making her strip naked, jump in a lake, and then ride off on his big Purple motorcycle. Yes, Prince leaves all the girls wet). The music is as a convincing monument to Prince's genius as it ever was.
But it is at this point I want to make it clear that the film and accompanying music should never be uttered together in the same sentence, not unless you enjoy awkward silences and want to cause friction between yourself and every sensible person in the immediate vicinity. There is no doubt that Prince disappeared up his own backside around the time of filming Purple Rain and the mad footage caught on film only confirms this. That said, it is this crazed sense of enthusiasm and self-importance that fuels the music to the soundtrack and lends itself well to the nine flawless pop songs within.
"Dearly beloved, we are gathered here today to get through this thing called life," it is with those few words that Purple Rain begins, besides a deathly organ solo. But this isn't a sad eulogy - this is a party, people. Therefore Let's Go Crazy wastes no time in developing into a psychedelic dance number, all neon-lights and sparklers, protest banners and more. "Let's go crazy! Let's go nuts!" The production is a product of its era but the goods still manage to shine through.
I'm going to talk about Darling Nikki, next, because, well, Prince needs to reclaim some of the controversy that he lost in what are best referred to as his twilight years. The song has an unsophisticated sound, thanks largely to the misshapen guitar riffs and underhanded keyboard work. It's a devious piece of music that stands out from the more lavishly produced numbers on Purple Rain. But it's the lyrics that will always be Darling Nikki's claim to fame. "I knew a girl called Nikki, I guess you could say she was a sex fiend. I met her in a hotel lobby, masturbating with a magazine." Prince, you absolute shocker, you! And you are also the reason the 'Parental Advisory' sticker was born. True story, Google it (Daniel Kemp does not endorse one search engine other another).**
When Doves Cry was Prince's first number one single in America and I couldn't think of a more worthy release, either. In structure it reflects Prince's earlier, sparser arrangements, so it comes as no surprise to find that he plays all of the instruments on When Doves Cry. The electric guitar introduction is entirely irrelevant to the following six minutes of music but it throws your auditory compass off course for a moment and once you've recovered you have the unforgettable piano refrains battering you into submission. When Doves Cry is an impossibly simple musical concept but its execution is magnificently grand.
Even the album's shortest song, I Would Die 4 U, is grandiose and characteristic of the flamboyancy one has come to expect from Prince. "You're just a sinner I am told, (I'll) be your fire when you're cold, make you happy when you're sad, make you good when you are bad." I Would Die 4 U is a strangely euphoric revelation - it makes its mark and is then gone in a flash.
It's by no mistake that the epic title-track closes Purple Rain. If you are still to be convinced, then this edgy, towering finale to the record will no doubt do the trick. For what is essentially insincere musical theatre (is not all theatre insincere?), Prince ensures that every last verse is oozing with unexpected emotion and candour. Yes, the aggrieved cries that Prince unleashes during the final act of the song even evoke a personal sense of loss.
It's no surprise, then, that Purple Rain comes highly recommended from me. It's not his best album - I'd give that accolade to either Controversy or the seminal Sign 'O' the Times - but please note that Prince released so many top records during his 'peak' period, that topping that list was always going to be difficult. As it stands, Purple Rain is simply one of the best albums of the 1980s and possibly the greatest soundtrack album... ever
I could quite happily stay here all day and rave about the delights of each track but the only real way to appreciate Purple Rain is to listen to it for yourself, multiple times, dressed up as grape and wearing high-heels. Oh, and make sure you have a cravat on too. And sunglasses.
* I do realise five singles were released from Purple Rain but it's nothing compared to some artists' records. And Michael, no offence son, you were good back in the day too, when you were of a darker persuasion... or alive for that matter.
** Google is clearly the best search engine. Bing, you suck.
This album is so good and the pop songs it contains are so on the money it allows you to get through the film of the same title without wanting to smash your TV to pieces.
The film is poor, but its soundtrack is pop perfection.
From the opening sermon of Let's Go Crazy to the final bars of the title track, every tune is a winner.
Standouts apart from the aforementioned two, are a haunting number called 'The Beautiful Ones', 'Take Me With You' and the brilliant 'When Doves Cry'. Only Prince would dream of recording a dance track which does not contain a bass line at all.
This was Prince at his peak but it would be unfair to not mention his group 'The Revolution' whose contributions to the record help make this a good a record as it is.
One of the best albums of the 1980's and would be a clear winner of the best album of that year if it wasn't for Springsteen's 'Born In The USA'.
Like that album this represents an artist hitting his commercial peak.
Pure pop perfection (with a welcome dark edge to some songs).
This is my favourite album from my favourite artist all of all time. Prince is a true musical genius and has survived the music business for over 30 years now.
Purple Rain was the 1st time that his star truly started to shine, coming from the motion picture of the same name.
This album is a fusion of pop,soul,electro,rock,funk and rnb. Each song full of personal lyrics and heart felt vocals
Such classics as When doves cry, Darlin Nikki and lets go crazy all feature on this soundtrack. And of course the best song of all time in my opinion "Purple Rain" This album is worth getting for this track alone in its entirety
Even after all this time Purple Rain the album and the song still sound as fresh as it did way back in the 80s
So if you dont have this classic Oscar winning album in your collection you are highly missing out on some amazing work. There is something on this CD for everyone!
On a sunny day in June, 1958, Minneapolis saw the birth of just another black kid amongst a struggling community. Prince Rogers Nelson , in adult life, became a singer, songwriter, producer, record label owner, multi talented instrumentalist and a studio owner, not to mention one of the most exuberant, exciting and outstanding performers of the twentieth century.
His first UK release came in the form of a single called I wanna be your lover. It entered the charts in January 1980 and failed to even make the top 40. This didnt deter the young singer and dreamt of greater heights. In all honesty, this didnt come along for another 4 years. Not until July 1984.
Purple Rain, a film written as a semi autobiographical account of a young, talented boy growing up in a tough and poor neighbourhood failed to attract any form of positive recognition. The critics jumped all over it calling it pretentious and a waste of money. The soundtrack, on the other hand had earned Prince World fame. His first real taste of British acclaim came with the single, Little Red Corvette, in April 1983. Prince had needed to maintain is pride by keeping on the same high cloud. Purple Rain arguably became the greatest achievement of his career. A moment in his time, that the artist hasnt really topped since. Even though Parade - the soundtrack from Under The Cherry Moon (1986) actually reached a higher position in the album chart , (Parade claimed number 4 where as Purple Rain only claimed number 7) it is Purple Rain that stands alone in the corridor of excellence.
His royal purpleness, encaged by an ever growing entourage of purpalies had created an atmosphere of total stardom. Of his own making, he had now reached the summit of God dom and hasnt been able to come down from it since.
His recent performance at the Brits was received with the same exuberance and excitement as if he had donned a Louis XIV wig, purple frills, straddling a purple motorbike and rode it as his entrance on stage. We could forget for one moment that it has been over two years since any releases from him. Hard to believe he is soon to be 48.
Dearly beloved, we are gathered here today to get through this thing called life . like a James Brown sermon in The Blues Brothers, we open this album with Prince the Preacher dictating to us his understanding of life and the after world. He is about to give us his greatest lesson like Sammy Davis Jr telling us to take a dive and swim to Daddy our eyes are opened as well as our ears. We get ready for a lesson in throwing away care, kicking troubles in the groin and tweaking the nose hairs of strife, yes, its Prince giving us a taste of the album complete with ecstatic keyboards and low guitar riffs. We hear the artists adaptation of rock, pop and anything gloriously arrogant.
Lets Go Crazy should speak for itself. A mad rush of energy pours out of our speakers and into our brains. We will emerge from this experience fully cleansed and enlightened. I believe that any sudden burst of frighteningly fast drum machines and hysterical guitars good for the soul. It would not be Prince without some yells and screams. This might be the only album where listening is just as good as the visual. We dont need to see Prince having it off with a microphone stand or running his tongue up and down a fret board (ouch), we can experience the whole live thing straight through our speakers. One thing is for sure, this album aims to please, excite, and begs for applause. Prince wormed his way into our hearts and our record collections with this enchanting piece of theatrical performance. There is not much left out of this irrational piece of basically going wild with no sense of direction. One will either love it or hate and skip the rest of the album.. If you keep going with it, listen with an open mind.
Take Me With You seems to be a bit of a come down after all the excitement of this first track. A duet with unknown female artist, Apollonia. Prince has always been famed for using good female backing singers with good , strong voices and bringing them to the fore. There are one or two names from the past who owe the start of their careers to Prince. One tends to get the feeling that Prince is very pro women in the industry. As well as constructing his own talent, he sought after creating the same from others. An introduction with hap hazard drums we find ourselves in amongst tambourines and cymbals and enjoying a pretty song thats catchy, inoffensive and perhaps a little childish in its form. Prince went through a stage of using violins to enhance a record. Raspberry Beret was a classic example of using this method. They give femininity to a song and allow the track a fair chunk of jollity and optimism. One to skip along holding hands to .if your twelve .
There then come a further three tracks that I dont fully understand. Experimental is probably the name of the game here. The first of these three is The Beautiful Ones. A ballad of sorts, Prince has the most diverse vocal range. With the power to adapt to low, tension filled drama within the lines of When Doves Cry, to the trill, untuneful, feminine to the extreme weirdness of The Beautiful Ones. Using keyboards practically playing a different tune, we experience, probably, the epitome of a naff eighties ballad. There were greats such as Broken Wings by Mister Mister, then you had off the planet, space themed, wheres Blake 7 numbers such as this from Prince. A rock theme drifts in towards the end and Prince does what he does the best, screams like a banshee with a few electric guitar riffs thrown in for good measure. By the end, and Prince loves his extended to the hilt endings, the listener has had enough.
Wendy? Yes Lisa? Is the water warm enough? Yes Lisa? Shall we begin? Yes Lisa
Computer Blue voices, Wendy and Lisa who had a few unofficial hits of their own back in the early eighties that didnt really amount to much, they had been Princes two main backing singers. We hear them here reciting some lines in which they sound thoroughly bored. Stranger than strange, this was actually Princes attempt at a country themed song. Probably the one song that couldnt be any further away from country if it tried. Listenable to its length, it seems to me, like Miami Vice incidental music, probably used in a car chase, with its funkiness and ostentatious ness, it takes a peculiar slant mid way into something so slow that it cries out for the record player to receive a good kick. A raw bass and riff takes hold where Computer Blue left off.
What we are now hearing is Darling Nikki. Known for its explicit lyrics, I met her in a hotel lobby, masturbating with a magazine. A story about a one night fling. It has a disturbing energy and a riff that Hendrix would be proud of. It appears too metal for Prince and his voice must have been in tatters at the end of recording. He wails and screams as if in terrible pain. A tremendous performance but all too short lived as the very end of this track is something played backwards. A kind of accapella verse. Thankfully, due to age and a previously local Woolworths, I have this on vinyl. After several attempts to play it backwards, which certainly didnt do my record player any good what so ever, I believe that the lyrics are, hello, how are you and then something about something coming up .if there is anyone out there with this on vinyl, please help as there is someone here who will not sleep til I find out what that says! Princes little teaser. Well, we always thought he was a teaser any way ..
The Laurence Llewellyn Bowen of pop dom teases us with the second half of this circus piece from the purple big top ..
When The Doves Cry was number one in the U.S and number four in the U.K when it was released in June 1984. The first track from this album it cuts to the chase with its hard hitting lyrics with equally cold blooded drum machine. Starting with a riff that would sound at home on a Jimi Hendrix track, the track consists at first of just a voice lowered to sound hard and cold hearted and a steady drum machine. A powerful track, it is simple and very entrancing. The mix of his voice used in the backing track gives the feel of a continuous thought in the singers head repeating ever word. It is not short of the odd yelp and cry which has always suited Prince far better than Michael Jackson. It is an atmospheric track that enlists the help of a strangled guitar riff as the break. A record ahead of its time, listening to it now, over twenty years on, it is hard to think that its actually been that long since its release. A monumental piece in rock history. It feels just as much apt today for young kids as it was then for the film.
I Would Die For You is another creative piece of writing using a drum machine in a different form yet unheard by listeners. The drum machine seems to flicker uncontrollably in the backing track. The lyrics are almost mumbled, as if not to take away the limelight focused upon the unusual usage of the machine. A short number, it allows a simple handful of repeated notes to flow gracefully over the backing track. An inspired piece, again, unheard of until this album.
Straight, and almost without knowing and taking the listener by surprise, we hear the electrifying and glitzy performance of Baby Im A Star, This track couldnt have had a better title. It full of pretentious arrogance. So much so, that its uplifting for the listeners as one cannot help but feel as if the lyrics could be directed to them. It cries out to be strutted to, wrapped up in sparkly gift wrap with a dirty great bow on the top screaming look at me!!! It has a fantastic fast drum beat throughout, a true stadium piece of work. Some clever backing tracks using keyboards and singers giving it their all. It pours over Prince like it was meant to be his personal theme. Even hints at an audience in the dying seconds to give it that real live theme.
The lights fade, the glitter cast aside and the arms above our heads start to sway hypnotically. Purple Rain is not just a track for the ears but an epic for the soul. One of the finest, still most used ballads, it gives a quality that Meatloaf, Im afraid just hasnt come close to. It yearns out to us in desperation., that I feel it should be renamed Purple Pain. Prince must have been on the floor in the studio after creating this masterpiece of a broken heart. At a staggering 8 minutes, 45 seconds long, he increasingly becomes more and more distraught towards the end. Unlike James Brown when his guards would come on and throw the cloak over him to drag him off stage, this piece, perhaps too long, equals the complete showmanship of anything ever done by such an artist of this calibre. We are literally crying buckets, it pulls at the strings and has you reaching for the kitchen blades. With incredible clashing of cymbals and strained riffs, and whining violins creeping up the scales, it hardly feels that the track is going to end, we almost feel exhausted when it finally does.
Putting cryptic aside, the downfall of The Revolution is a rather sad tale. Prince disburse his fantastic looking army of beautiful people shining blue lights under their chins to make them even more gorgeous after a tour in 1986. His explicit lyrics and over all performance were sensational products of his making yet Prince wanted to reach out to more fans. Knowing that the act had to be cleaned up somewhat, he re emerged the following year with hair cut, more conservative clothes and a not so startling entourage who competed to out show him.
I personally was devoted to the purple, glitzy ear when it was all about super stardom. That I feel, was the best of the eighties. This type of class act, we just dont get anymore. As much as we are two minds over Michael Jackson, we fail to remember that it was twenty years ago when he wowed us with his incredible, precisely choreographed dance routines. Madonna still wasnt a household name and still laughed at to a point, wondering how long she was going to last, when Prince with his gaiety and stupendous cabaret of a travelling circus delighted us and enchanted us where we liked it or not. A professional at his craft, he produced his masterpiece with this album. The very one that we will eventually remember him by.
At The Brits this year, attending the after show party. He sat down with his now non purple brigade of guards and babes around him like a human fence. He ordered a DVD player and sat and watched films and didnt flutter an eye lash at the surrounding scene of hundreds of drunken, rowdy stars once.
Now, thats Rock and Roll.
Take a bow, your Purpleness.
Album was bought on vinyl in a charity shop, Brighton for 99p. Less than a fiver on CD in a high street record shop.
Also appears on Ciao 24/2/06
Your most likely wondering why I choose to write an opinion about an album relesaed 17 years ago, well theres one easy answer to that... Its undoubtedley one of my most favourite albums of all time, containing some of Prince's most classic hits that propelled him into stardom at a phenomenal rate. Almost unheard of in the U.K. until the release of this album Prince had been busy producing, writing, and even playing all the instruments on the albums previous to this one, so obvious there was a huge talent waiting to be released upon the world. Then in 1984 he teamed up with 'The revolution' consisting of all his band and backing vocals: Lisa Coleman - Keyboards and backing vocals Wendy - Guitar and backing vocals Bobby Z - Percussion Brown Mark - Bass and vocals Matt Fink - keyboards and vocals The film 'Purple Rain' was almost a true to live version of events in Princes life, down to the details of his parents divorce and his fathers attempted suicide, a good film with this album soundtrack adding to the atmosphere. So whats the album like? Its got 9 tracks in total, kicking off with 'Lets go crazy' Dearly beloved , we are gathered here today to get through this thing called life.....electric word life , that means forever, and thats a mighty long time.....but i'm here to tell you....theres something else.... A few more lines of this preaching and the song kicks off big style, with loud guitars and plenty of Prince singing his little heart out!! Track 2 - Take me with u - this song is the first on the album to feature Wendy and Lisa singing in the chorus on thier own (incidentaly they went on to be artists in thier own right later). This song also features 'Apollonia' , this was the woman Prince fell in love with in the movie Track 3 - The Beautiful ones - This is a slow tra
ck, with lots of 'modern' technical sounds sampled into it, you just have to listen to the lyrics to realise that Prince was unhappy with his love life at the time he wrote this track " Paint a perfect picture, bring to life the visions in ones mind, the beautiful ones always smash the picture, always every time " Track 4 - Computer Blue - Nothing to do with internet pornography I can happily tell you! A short track that features probably some of Prince's finest guitar music ever , as there is a massive guitar solo towards the end that just gets me reaching out for my old air guitar and leaves me exhausted! Track 5 - Darling Nikki - This ones a bit rude, very descriptive song about Prince's experience with a one night stand, she took him back to her 'castle' and basically used him then left! "She took me to her castle and I just couldnt believe my eyes, she had so many devices, everything that money could buy, she said sign your name on the dotted line, the lights went out and Nikki started to grind" Track 6 - When Doves cry - My favourite track, this song became a huge hit all over the world, a very basic song with hardly any musical content except for a drum machine and the hypnotic voice of Prince. " How can u just leave me standing, alone in a world thats so cold? Maybe I'm just too demanding, maybe I'm just like my father too bold. maybe youre just like my mother, she's never satisfied, why do we scream at each other? This is what it sounds like when doves cry" Track 7 - I would die 4 u - Another song in which Prince expressess his love for someone in great detail and with loads of passion, its a song you really have to listen carefully to as the words are very strong and sang with a lot of emotion. Track 8 - Baby I'm a star - well there is blowing your own trumpet for you!! This song featured in the Mov
ie when he was eventually accepted onto the stage shortly after his father had shot himself in the head, a very lively track and very catchy tune to tap your feet to! Track 9 - This is the ultimate track on the album - PURPLE RAIN - there cant be anyone alive that was about in the 80's that never heard this song. Its a very slow song, never intended to be a dance hit or anything like that, in fact it fits into no other category that i know apart from 'Prince'... "I never meant 2 cause u any sorrow" "I never meant 2 cause u any pain" "I only wanted 2 one time see u laughing" "I only want to see u laughing in the Purple rain" An absolute classic. No matter what you may think of the little man with the high voice, I'm sure that if you listened to this album and some of the lyrics then there is something for everyone. A definate classic from the early Prince, set aside and very much in front of the other music in the charts at that time.
For my money, this is probably the second best album ever, after the incredible double album "Sign O The Times", coincidentally (not!) also by Prince, although I find it very hard to split them! After breaking the black market with his first 3 albums, Prince achieved massive crossover success with Purple Rain, the soundtrack to the semi-autobiographical film of the same name. And what an album this is. Every single tracks has been crafted to perfection; Prince wrote a vast number of songs for the project and only the very very best made the final album, and they were polished till they shone as bright as Prince’s own outfits. The album starts with “Let’s Go Crazy”, a fast funk track that really gets the blood flowing, and is probably one of Prince’s finest moments (although choosing those could be a pretty tall order!). This is followed by “Take Me With U”, a cute little love song, supposedly a duet with the film’s love interest, Apollonia. Next comes “The Beautiful Ones”, a strange little number which works wonderfully as a precursor to the even stranger “Computer Blue”. Next comes the controversial Darling Nikki, who’s reference to Nikki “in a hotel lobby / masturbating with a magazine” so upset Al Gore’s (idiot) wife Tipper that “Parental Guidance” stickers were introduced. “Darling Nikki” is amongst many Prince fans’ favourite songs, and is a great little song with a wonderful melody. After that comes the track that helped bring Prince to mainstream attention, the massive smash “When Doves Cry”. Most of the people close to Prince, including members of his then band “The Revolution” with whom he worked so closely on this album, told him he was mad to release “a black song with no bass”. Yet the omission of the bass line (there was one written), is what makes “When Doves
Cry” so interesting; it lets the drums really get inside your mind, and is one of the reasons it has such lasting appeal. Closing the album are the 3 songs “I Would Die 4 U”, “Baby I’m A Star” and “Purple Rain”, the 3 songs that also close the film. “I Would Die For You” lifts the tempo again, and “Baby I’m A Star” takes it even higher. This is contrasted by the slow, delicious title track, with the brilliant emotive vocals, the amazing guitar work and the atmosphere building crowd involvement. Purple Rain is one of those albums that, despite having 9 brilliant songs on it, is so much more that the sum of it’s parts. The album tells a story, leads you on a roller coaster of emotions and tempos, and leaves you exhilarated by the end of it. A true classic album in every sense of the work, and just shows what Prince can do when he really takes his time (not forgetting the input of the rest of the band, in particular Wendy and Lisa). If you’ve never heard it, go out and borrow a copy. If you don’t own a copy, go and buy one. If you do own a copy, go and put it on again now.
Disc #1 Tracklisting
1 Let's Go Crazy
2 Take Me With U
3 Beautiful Ones
4 Computer Blue
5 Darling Nikki
6 When Doves Cry
7 I Would Die 4 U
8 Baby I'm A Star
9 Purple Rain