From The Star Tribune (Minneapolis):
Prince marches to his own time. Weve known that for years.
His guy called late Saturday night while I was reviewing the Bruno Mars concert at Xcel Energy Center: Prince wants to play you his new album tonight.
When you arrive at Paisley Park, you switch to Prince time. After nearly an hours wait, I was ushered into Studio B about 1 a.m. All three members of 3rdEyeGirl were there, as well as two of their spouses, who work for Prince, plus Princes road manager and a reporter from Fox 9. But no Prince.
This is a new Prince album, not to be confused with the one he made with 3rdEyeGirl, Plectrum Electrum, which hasnt been released. The ever-prolific Rock Hall of Famer hasnt issued an album in the United States since 2009.
My next two hours at Paisley Park would be filled with funk, frustration and funny lines all courtesy of Prince.
Engineer/producer Joshua Welton, husband of 3rdEyeGirl drummer Hannah Ford Welton, sat at the Studio B console, pushing the buttons. The long, opening tune, The Gold Standard, was percolating electro-funk, an update of classic Prince with a lyric that referenced the notions of wild and rude from his previous days. The second selection was a complex electronic discourse that was hard to grasp first time around.
Suddenly, the phone rang. It was Prince. Via speaker phone, we chatted. He said he believed in albums, not singles: Ive finally got something that is a cohesive statement.
He didnt mention the albums title or release date. But he did discuss the difficulties of getting in contact with top executives at Warner his old label, with which he signed a new deal this spring and complained about how slowly wheels turn in the record business.
Every No. 1 song, every Top 10 song, every song in the Top 40 is at least six months old, he said. We should be able to make music and put it out now.
He also carped about radio, wondering if program directors really direct their programs. I dont need to be on the radio, he said. Ive been on the radio all my life. But he wants to hear new, young artists on the radio.
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