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Old 07-17-2007, 10:28 AM   #1
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Prince - Planet Earth

No thread for this yet? Well, the torrents are out, so it's yours for the taking if you look for it.

As a rabid Prince fan, and one who thought his last release, 3121, was his best in ages, I was really looking forward to this one. While it lacks some of the old school "weird" Prince that came out of retirement on 3121, it's perhaps a little more consistent. The last album opened with the title track, a big party jam that featured a Camille-esque distorted vocal and racy lyrics, but this one opens with a much more somber affair.

"Planet Earth" leads with some delicate piano work, and is heavy on the ecological/biblical content, but manages to rescue itself by slowly building to an amazing close with some searing guitar work from the best axe-wielder in the business. That feeds right into lead single "Guitar", which also features a lot of the title instrument. This is a nice complement to 3121's "Fury", reminding you of how much Prince used to ROCK. It will cook live.

Unfortunately there's not too much more rocking on the rest of the album, but what it lacks in funk and fireworks it makes up for in some eclectic choices that keep one's interest over the whole length (unlike 3121, which dropped a couple too many generic r&b tracks by the end of the album). "Somewhere Here on Earth" starts with some old vinyl-poppin' static, and features a beautiful falsetto lyric over piano and trumpet. "The 1 U Wanna C" gets the party started again, and can only be described as classic prince but still fresh, fat bass line, handclaps and all.

"Future Baby Mama" isn't as funny as the name might suggest, but it's a decent slow jam with another falsetto vocal. "Mr. Goodnight" continues in a similar vein, but a little more sexual & playful, with Prince name dropping himself and adopting the nickname of the song's title in the vocal's plain-spoken rap style.

"All the Midnights of the World" sounds like the type of movie musical, ambitious stuff that Prince was often found to record in the mid 80's, and wouldn't sound out of place on something like Parade. It's light but upbeat, and after a few listens emerges as one of the stronger compositions. Unfortunately, it's less than 2.5 minutes long! Oh well.

"Chelsea Rodgers" is an old-school rave-up, with a featured female vocal from someone who is likely Prince's latest ingenue discovery. This one's a lot of fun though, and infuses some needed energy into the bottom of the album.

"Lion of Judah" signals some more religious imagery, but the song doesn't get bogged down in it. The guitar at the beginning sounds just like Purple Rain, but it actually shifts into a mostly uptempo shuffle. The album closes with "Resolution", which serves as a bookend to the title track, talking state of the world and what you gonna do about it and all that inspirational social conscience stuff that Prince never gets enough credit for.

The whole album is pretty mainstream accessible, and might be the real breakthrough that 3121 and Musicology teased at. I'd argue that it doesn't reach the higher peaks of either, but again, and probably because of its shorter length, more consistent, reminding one of the 80's gems that Prince used to crank out every year.

DL and discuss.

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Old 07-17-2007, 11:44 AM   #2
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Re: Prince - Planet Earth

Originally posted by lazarus
DL and discuss.
No thanks. But I will get it for free next month!

As for the lead single, I'm a bit disappointed in Guitar. It's a bit too derivative for me. In the EYKIW forum there's already a whole discussion about Guitar and I Will Follow. I also had to think of that track immediately when I heard it for the first time yesterday. I Will Follow and INXS' Heaven Sent. And Prince's own Peach. So not too much originality there. In that sense I think it's a bit disappointing, as he's capable of so much more.

But I hope/expect his live show to be amazing!

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Old 07-17-2007, 01:24 PM   #3
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I've had it 4 a couple of weeks, finally got a decent quality copy over the weekend. I'll post my review soon. I'm loving it. The title track is among the best arrangements he's ever done. That guitar solo....
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Old 07-17-2007, 03:53 PM   #4
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Got it free in the newspaper, it's a pretty solid album well for free anyway
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Old 07-19-2007, 02:47 PM   #5
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Well who else reads the Daily Mail and can send me the copy
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Old 08-07-2007, 09:14 AM   #6
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A friend of mine gave me the cd from the paper.

I'm listening now out of interest. I only have one Prince song which is Purple Rain.
So it's the first time I've heard a full album of his.

So far its really, really good.
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Old 08-07-2007, 08:42 PM   #7
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Yes it is. Overall, I can listen 2 the album start 2 finish without wanting 2 skip a track. At first, I didn't like "All The Midnights in The World"... but now I look 4ward 2 it.

The guitar solo at the end of the title track is just

"Resolution" is another track that stands out 2 me.
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Old 08-09-2007, 08:01 PM   #8
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I was disappointed. I actually liked 3121 better.
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Old 08-09-2007, 11:38 PM   #9
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3121 is a fun, party album, with several takes that r some of his best work in a while, but Planet Earth, IMO, has that "it" from beginning 2 end, the production is STELLAR, unlike some of the problems that plagued 3121.

Compare the SNL Version of "FURY" 2 the horribly-produced album version. 2 me, on P.E., the album just flows incredibly well, despite being so diverse in styles.

But I'm taking nothing away from 3121. Good album in its own right.

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