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Prince, Hit N Run: Phase 1

So, when it was announced that the Purple Yoda would be releasing a new experimental album for die-hard Prince Fans, the fan base screamed with fear and delight. Prince has created some of the most influential albums of a generation (Dirty Mind, 1999, Purple Rain, Sign O’the Times, Lovesexy &The Gold Experience) and with each new release, expectations are high.

Also however, as with any new Prince album, controversy also follows and this latest album, Hit N Run: Phase I, has proven the same. This album was to be released through Jay-z’s online music service called Tidal, as opposed to the traditional outlets. This is odd to me since Prince claimed, as far back as 2010, “the Internet is completely over”. If you should ask yourself, why the change of heart perhaps it may have to do with Prince’s 25 year old producer / protégé Joshua Walton. Not to forget about the musical guests on the album like Judith Hill, Rita Ora, Curly Fryz & 3RDEYEGIRL probably helping him embrace the digital age.

In any case, the album itself is an experimental album that merges rock, funk, rnb and edm (electric dance music). For the most part, it’s a decent release. It melds Prince’s old school sensibilities with modern day recording styles, cool. There are a few throw away tracks though, as an example, the album opener, Million Dollar Show. The song uses samples of 1999 and Let’s Go Crazy, such great Prince staple songs. So with such a strong and bold beginning one would assume the rest of the song should be better. It just doesn’t hold up and falls flat. Both tracks, This Could Be Us and Mr. Nelson are unnecessary remixes from off the 2014 Art Official Age album.

Hit N Run will surely divide the fan base. Old school fans will claim it doesn’t sound like Prince and those fans that see him as an ever evolving artist, will embrace the “here and now” and surely find some enjoyable moments.

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