LOtUSFLOW3R / MPLSound / Elixer 2009

The 3 CD set LOtUSFLOW3R / MPLSound / Elixer released in 2009 contains 3 very distinct and differing CD’s. The Main “Prince” CD’s are what will be reviewed here. To begin with Elixer is a Bria Valente CD and has some Prince songs on it, but it’s not really a Prince album so wont get reviewed.

Lotusflow3R (or Lotusflower) is the more “rock” oriented CD, and it’s been a few years since a “rock” album came out. The NPG output being very dance oriented. MPLSound is Prince using old 80’s analog CD’s and the classic LINN drum machine famous on the early 80’s albums, like 1999 and Purple Rain. The two albums are intriguing and have mixed resulst in their output.

Lotusflow3R

For me, Lotusflow3R  is the strongest of the two CD’s. The rock inspired album is a collection of almost psycadelic rock tunes. Starting with “From the Lotus.. ” and “Boom”  you already get that sonic rock feeling. “Boom” in particular is pretty trippy. Depending on which version of the CD you got “Crimson and Clover” is probably one of Prince’s best covers. Recreating that trippy 60’s vibe. On the download version, its replaced by “The morning after”, not as good, sounding like a “Planet Earth” left over. “4Ever” is roaring JW inspired song, about eternity, and that morphs nicely into “Colonized Mind”, a song about brainwashing – but a pretty good song – in fact an instant classic.  So the first 5 songs are pretty strong/consistent – not since Chaos and Disorder has one side of a CD been so consistent. The next song “Feel Good, Feel Better, Feel Wonderful” might be about Prince detractors or Prince acknowledging his age!  Whatever, its a pretty wholesome, funky song. “Love Like Jazz” and “77 Beverly Park” are album tracks, Jazz lite. Usually get skipped through. “Wall of Berlin” is a strange song (strange in that the Wall went down 20 years earlier, so what’s the point of bringing it up??). But it’s a pretty good rock song, not outstanding, but good.

The album ends in the two strongest songs – “$” (aka “Money”) is reminiscent of the “Camille” period, so fluid and catchy at the same time, smart lyrics and a super confident performance from Prince. And “Dreamer” is the OPUS, a Hendrix inspired LOUD and NASTY rock tune. Interesting to see if Hendrix’ estate could have sued Prince as there were no song writing credits, but the riff IS Jimmy. But, as you know Prince can do Jimmy H and James B perfectly.

Last song, “Back to the Lotus…” an aptly eerie ending to an unusual but really interesting, creative album.

MPLSound

Unfortunately MPLSound is great, but does not live up to Lotusflow3r at all. The “DANCE” CD, this is the first problem. As a 50 something, Prince just cant make dance anymore. Rock – he can breath and sleep. “Chocolate Box”, “No More Candy 4 U”, “(There’ll Never B) Another Like Me” are just cheesy. “Dance 4 Me” is a little better, and “Old Skool Company” is OK. The best songs, ironically are the ballads – “”Better with Time” is a beautiful song and “Here” is a sweet ditty.

The main interest in the MPLSound project is the use of original synths and drum machines, but that cannot compensate for poor song writing. It seems Prince writes better songs with a guitar in his hand.

Overall, however, I consider MPLSound to be a bit of a mess and probably better off not released at all. Prince could have just released Lotusflow3R, which is brilliant and promoted that.

LOTUS – 4 out of 5

MPLS – 2 out of 5

Elixer – 0 out of 5

Track listings[edit]

Lotusflow3r
PrinceLotusFlow3r.jpg
Studio album by Prince
Genre Psychedelic rock, rock, soul, funk, acid rock, pop
Length 48:40 (physical)
46:54 (digital)
MPLSound
Prince mplsound cd.png
Studio album by Prince
Genre Funk, R&B, electronica, soul, new wave, hip hop, pop
Length 47:44
Singles from MPLSound
  1. “Better with Time”
    Released: August 24, 2009 (radio play)[citation needed]
  2. “Dance 4 Me”
    Released: September 29, 2009
  3. “U’re Gonna C Me”
    Released: October, 2009
Elixer
Elixer.jpg
Studio album by Bria Valente
Genre Pop, R&B, electronica, soul, smooth jazz
Length 44:25
Singles from Elixer
  1. “Another Boy”
    Released: September 30, 2008

Lotusflow3r

All songs written by Prince; except “Crimson and Clover”, written by Tommy James and Peter Lucia, Jr., and including an interpolation of Chip Taylor’sWild Thing.”

  1. “From the Lotus…” – 2:46
  2. “Boom” – 3:19
  3. Crimson and Clover” – 3:52
  4. “4ever” – 3:47
  5. “Colonized Mind” – 4:47
  6. “Feel Good, Feel Better, Feel Wonderful” – 3:52
  7. “Love Like Jazz” – 3:49
  8. “77 Beverly Park” – 3:04
  9. “Wall of Berlin” – 4:16
  10. “$” – 3:58
  11. “Dreamer” – 5:30
  12. “…Back 2 the Lotus” – 5:34

Lotusflow3r.com edition

3. “The Morning After” – 2:06[25]

MPLSound

All songs written by Prince.

  1. “(There’ll Never B) Another Like Me” – 6:01
  2. “Chocolate Box” (featuring Q-Tip) – 6:14
  3. “Dance 4 Me” – 4:58
  4. “U’re Gonna C Me” – 4:36
  5. “Here” – 5:15
  6. “Valentina” – 3:59
  7. “Better with Time” – 4:54
  8. “Ol’ Skool Company” – 7:30
  9. “No More Candy 4 U” – 4:14

Elixer

All songs written by Prince and Bria Valente. Sung by Bria Valente.

  1. “Here Eye Come” – 4:28
  2. “All This Love” – 4:39
  3. “Home” – 4:26
  4. “Something U Already Know” – 5:44
  5. “Everytime” – 3:50
  6. “2nite” – 5:02
  7. “Another Boy” – 3:56
  8. “Kept Woman” – 4:15
  9. “Immersion” – 4:02
  10. “Elixer” (with Prince) – 4:00

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