March 12, 2006
Prince "3121" Album, Track-By-Track
1. 3121 - Now this is exactly the kind of Prince track I love, that he never does anymore. None of that lite-funk or pop-funk or psuedo-rap-funk, this is that straight-up weird shit. The Weird Prince Funk, that's what made me a fan. Nothing mind-blowing here, it's a lesser work within his Weird Funk oeuvre, but a treat to hear him pulling it off at all.. I almost thought he'd forgotten how.
2. Lolita - Catchy but too pop-syrupy. The lyrics, especially, make my teeth hurt. I don't hate it, but no way this is the hit single people are predicting.
3. Te Amo Corazon - His touch as a producer makes it listenable, but I'm still not sold on this one. Did he decide to record this after Enrique Iglesias turned it down?
4. Black Sweat - Gotta love this beat. Sounds like he tried to make a Neptunes beat and tricked himself into recapturing his classic sound. The rest of the song doesn't live up to the first 30 seconds, but I don't want to be too picky.. he's working his way back to the Weird Funk, let's not discourage him!
5. Incense and Candles - Heaven help us, he's rapping again. Why, why, why is he rapping again? This can't end soon enough.
6. Love - This does nothing for me either.
7. Satisfied - Gospel-inflected slow jam, and a nice one. 15 or even 10 years ago, I feel like he would've brought it harder on this type of track. Good stuff though.
8. Fury - As already posted by many fans, the live version on SNL was indeed way better. This is aiite though. I wish he wouldn't shy away from rocking out, by pushing up the keyboards instead of the guitars. It's the same thing he did with Endorphin Machine, and by pushing the flutes in front of the guitars on Gett Off (compare the origial 10-minute promo with the album version, if you can find it).
9. The Word - If you're gonna spend a whole song preaching to me about "getting saved," it'd be nice if the music wasn't deathly dull on top of that.
10. Beautiful Loved and Blessed - More pop syrup but I kinda got into it despite myself. Uh oh Tamar is rapping now.. no further comment.
11. The Dance - Was boring me until the piano started in around 2:15, but gets interesting from there as the arrangements and harmonies keep twisting and building till the end.
12. Get On the Boat - Latin-tinged funk jam. I like the percussion breakdowns and some of the solos, but the horns are a weak point.. he needs to get Eric Leeds back for his horn arrangements. Not bad, but missing that edge, that bite I expect from the Prince funk. Basically this is the lite-funk I was referring to earlier.
Kind of a mixed bag. Some signs that Prince can still make the album I want to hear, but this album is not that album.