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Thread started 06/01/16 9:59am

GottaLetitgo

How would you rank the Power 6 (1999-Lovesexy)?

This is not an original question, may have been done many times before and if there is one current up now let me know and I will delete. As I continue to think about Prince's legacy, the period between "1999" and "Lovesexy" still amazes me, the creativity in that 6 year stretch is nothing short of phonemenal. Considering that this is the period that got his Hall of Fame ticket punched, how do you rank the albums from best to worst (worst being a relative term, the worst of this group is likely on par with the best of many other artists). Here is mine:

  1. Sign O The Times: Prince at the absolute peak of his powers. Songwriting, musically, thematically this album is virtually flawless. The fact that it can go from the commercial (U Got the Look) to the unusual (Dorothy Parker) to the simple (Starfish and Coffee) to the most complex (Girlfriend). It is not music, it is a trip for me. I listened to this CD so many times during my teen years and then as a young adult and now as a middle aged man and can relate to it on so many different levels. To me this album defines Prince even more than Purple Rain, it shows more sides.
  2. Purple Rain: It feels like a copout to select this so high. But commercially it put Prince into the stratosphere, gave him his defining theme song and there is not a single wasted track. It's hard to hear Appolonia sing on TMWU but that is virtually the only criticism I have of this album. Too many iconic songs not to rank near the top but Sign O the Times moved me more as a whole.
  3. 1999: Another copout. But this is another CD that there are just too many vital Prince songs to not put it near the top, almost as a co number 2 with PR. Just such a bold and otherworldly album and dang he was what 23 or 24 when it came out. Almost unreal to think about.
  4. Around the World in a Day: Here is where it starts to get more challenging. ATWIAD is a hard album to peg. It has great songs but also shows some of the shell shock that Prince had after PR. I still don't know exactly what Temptation is. The usual suspects like Raspeberry Beret, Pop Life and America are great songs of the era. Thematically was Prince trying to do the Beatles one better, every album doesn't have to be a statement album but if you do make a statement album the statement needs to be clear. Or at least clearer than the sentence I just wrote.
  5. Parade: Is your list upside down of mine? I know many of you have Parade higher. I love Mountains. I love Kiss. I love Anotherloverholenyohead. The song sequencing of the first three songs is sick, who does that? Sometimes it Snows in April was sad enough without tying it into Prince's death, now it's just get the Kleenex box every time you hear it. All this and yet as an album it doesn't tie as well together as the albums above. I respect it more than I love it. But it's brilliant.
  6. Lovesexy: Once again, I know this is higher on a lot of your lists. I want to love "Lovesexy" more. I have always been jealous of those fans who seemed so moved by the album. But I think it helps to buy the concept , to buy the whole thing as a collective hole, and I still wish that he would not have made the decision not to track it. When I want to hear Glam Slam, I don't want to have fast forward through other songs to get there, even if one of those songs is the great Alphabet St. Of the 6, this is probably the CD I have listened to the least (20,000 times instead of 25,000 times) so maybe I need to revisit. I think if anyone tried to do anything close to this today, in 2016, they would fail miserably, it's that hard to pull off. But of the Power 6, it moves me the least.
All good things they say never last...
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Reply #1 posted 06/01/16 10:17am

injuredpinky

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1. Purple Rain - For me everything clicks on this album, but what stands out for me is the power and raw emotion in Prince's voice. I don't think he made an album since where he is so vocally powerful from track to track.

2. Sign O The Times - Probably the most imaginative and consistent set of songs.

3. 1999 - Not a weak song. For me, hist first truly great album. Kinda like the Beatles and Rubber Soul.

4. Parade - By this time he was flexing his musical muscle and venturing into new sounds with ease. The opening 3 songs for me are among his best.

5. Around the World in a Day - I had a hard time with this when it first came out. For me, it resumed some of the vocal power and emotion from PR, but it was also like Prince was saying "Ok now you have to meet me on my terms if you want to be my fan." This is the only album from the Power 6 where I skip some songs.

6. Lovesexy - I like this album all the way through, especially the title track and I Wish U Heaven. But it's missing "something", and I can't put my finger on what it is.

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Reply #2 posted 06/01/16 10:52am

TrivialPursuit

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To rule out Controversy is a crime on this case. It's superior to Lovesexy. You could easily, and would be better, to shift those power 6 to be Controversy, 1999, Purple Rain, Around The World In A Day, Parade, & Sign O The Times.

So if I'm rating those...

  1. Sign O The Times
  2. Controversy
  3. 1999
  4. Purple Rain
  5. Parade
  6. ATWIAD
This experience will cover courtship, sex, commitment, fetishes, loneliness, vindication, love, and hate.
http://bit.ly/1D3FG2U
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Reply #3 posted 06/01/16 10:57am

GottaLetitgo

TrivialPursuit said:

To rule out Controversy is a crime on this case. It's superior to Lovesexy. You could easily, and would be better, to shift those power 6 to be Controversy, 1999, Purple Rain, Around The World In A Day, Parade, & Sign O The Times.

So if I'm rating those...

  1. Sign O The Times
  2. Controversy
  3. 1999
  4. Purple Rain
  5. Parade
  6. ATWIAD

Valid argument, I'm looking more at the commercial zeitgeist that started with 1999 but one could probably pick 6 of any of albums before Batman and make a reasonable argument.

All good things they say never last...
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Reply #4 posted 06/01/16 11:57am

TrivialPursuit

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GottaLetitgo said:

Valid argument, I'm looking more at the commercial zeitgeist that started with 1999 but one could probably pick 6 of any of albums before Batman and make a reasonable argument.


Well, for the original 6 you noted:

  1. Sign O The Times
  2. 1999
  3. Purple Rain
  4. Parade
  5. Lovesexy
  6. ATWIAD
This experience will cover courtship, sex, commitment, fetishes, loneliness, vindication, love, and hate.
http://bit.ly/1D3FG2U
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Reply #5 posted 06/01/16 1:44pm

GottaLetitgo

Does the Power 6 sound like a new lottery game? An elite force of super heroes? Maybe it's not the best way to refer to these albums? The Purple 6?

All good things they say never last...
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Reply #6 posted 06/01/16 1:51pm

all7even

1.Sign O' the Times
2.1999
3.Purple Rain
4.Lovesexy
5.ATWIAD
6.Parade
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Reply #7 posted 06/01/16 2:25pm

Camille2016

1. Sign O' the Times
2. 1999
3. Purple Rain
4. Lovesexy
5. Parade
6. Around The World in a Day

As I type that I'm surprised how low down Parade is in my list, but man, it's almost like I should my 1-5 a joint top-1 placing with ATWIAD a distant 6th. Never an album I could get my head around. Something about the songs and the production just irritates me. That said, one of my ALL TIME favourite Prince tracks is on here: Condition of the Heart. And I have warm-fuzzy memories of Prince performing 'America' at Wembley Stadium in 1993. I'd only just discovered the album months before the show and totally fell in love with 'America'.

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Reply #8 posted 06/01/16 3:08pm

SPYZFAN1

1) Parade...2) S.O.T.T....3) 1999...4) Lovesexy....5) Purple Rain...6) ATWIAD

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Reply #9 posted 06/01/16 3:14pm

RenaRF

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Wow. That's difficult. Or at least, 2-6 is difficult for me.

1. Sign 'O' The Times (hands down)

2. Around the World in Day (really underrated imo)

3. Lovesexy

4. Purple Rain

5. Parade

6. 1999

"Everything that's in your heart, come what may
Even though his might get broken" RIP Prince
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Reply #10 posted 06/01/16 3:42pm

Moonbeam

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1999
Lovesexy
Sign o' the Times
Parade
Purple Rain
Around the World in a Day
Feel free to join in the Prince Album Poll 2018! Let'a celebrate his legacy by counting down the most beloved Prince albums, as decided by you!
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Reply #11 posted 06/01/16 4:00pm

MattyJam

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1. Lovesexy
2. Around The World In A Day
3. Parade
4. Purple Rain
5. Sign O The Times
6. 1999

I couldn't help but notice that my list is quite different to the others in this thread. I'm quite surprised that Lovesexy doesn't rank higher in most people's list (to me, it's his very best work). It's just such a dense record, everytime I hear it, I discover a new layer or some hidden nuance. I also feel that Lovesexy is his most personal piece of work.

I think that ATWIAD is criminally underrated when compared to the albums that preceded it/came after. But I will say, as someone who became a Prince fan in the mid-nineties, it took me the longest time go "get" ATWIAD as an album. But when it clicked it fast became a favourite.

But then I genuinely love all these albums and my rankings can be changeable depending on my mood (except for Lovesexy which always comes out on top for me).
[Edited 6/1/16 16:09pm]
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Reply #12 posted 06/01/16 4:30pm

gandorb

In terms of sheer enjoyment

1. Parade - Evokes so many emotions by great songs that were completely unique. Always loved it!

2. ATWIAD - Prince waves his freak flag all over the place, much to my delight.

3. Purple Rain

4. Sign O' times

5. Lovesexy

6.1999

In terms of how great I percieve it to be musicallty:

1. Sign O' Times - for its incredible variety of musical styles

2.Purple Rain - for having a consistent and coherent yet brilliant musical style

3. Parade

4. ATWIAD

5. Lovesexy

6. 1999

Aw hell, they are all great in their own way!

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Reply #13 posted 06/01/16 4:34pm

derrick31

This should really be the Power 8. It all really started with Dirty Mind and ended with Lovesexy.

1. 1999
2. Sign of the Times
3. Parade
4. Around The World in A Day
5. Purple Rain
6. Dirty Mind
7. Lovesexy
8. Controversy
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Reply #14 posted 06/01/16 7:30pm

luvsexy4all

1980-1988 1st golden age

1992-1996 2nd golden age

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Reply #15 posted 06/01/16 7:47pm

214

aND DIRTY MINDp?

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Reply #16 posted 06/01/16 7:53pm

Aerogram

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Power 6?

You should get your Prince card revoked, no way Dirty Mind and Controversy can be excluded.
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Reply #17 posted 06/01/16 10:16pm

CrabalockerFis
hwife

1. Around the World in a Day
2. 1999
3. Parade
4. Purple Rain
5. Sign O the Times
6. Lovesexy

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Reply #18 posted 06/01/16 10:23pm

farnorth

1. Purple Rain

2. Sign O' the Times

3. 1999

4. Parade

5. Lovesexy

6. Around the World in a Day

[Edited 6/1/16 22:23pm]

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Reply #19 posted 06/01/16 10:26pm

CalhounSq

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Aerogram said:

Power 6? You should get your Prince card revoked, no way Dirty Mind and Controversy can be excluded.

falloff bow

heart prince I never met you, but I LOVE you & I will forever!! Thank you for being YOU - my little Princey, the best to EVER do it prince heart
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Reply #20 posted 06/01/16 10:35pm

mltijchr

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my list of these albums :

.

1 PARADE

this album would be my all-time favorite by Prince

had he not already made the seminal DIRTY MIND

.

2 1999

Prince rising. Prince hitting on all cylinders. Prince continuing to push the envelope musically.

.

3 SIGN "O" THE TIMES

Prince still at the top of his game.. but about to start the gradual downturn..

.

4 PURPLE RAIN

obviously a great album & could easily be in any position above this

.

5 AROUND THE WORLD IN A DAY

also (still) a great album.. mainly because it separated the just-jumped-on-the-purple-rain-bandwagon Prince fans from those who had already been fans &/or those who would stick around.

.

6 LOVESEXY

understanding that it was either (officially) this or "the black album".. eh..

this album had some good tracks - Alphabet St, Anna Stesia, when 2 r in love - but overall was less.. focused (for lack of a better word)

in my opinion, this was officially the start of the downturn for Prince - in terms of overall music quality as well as how all the previous 9 albums were basically very solid from beginning to end

I'll see you tonight..
in ALL MY DREAMS..
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Reply #21 posted 06/02/16 12:37am

jaypotton

For me it is almost impossible to be completely objective when compiling a list like this. The albums are generally watermarks for key moments during my teens and are forever tied into those moments and the memories they evoke. I literally grew up with those six albums.

I was too young to be aware of Prince before the juggernaut of Purple Rain but once that awakened me I very quickly purchased his back catalogue in reverse chronological order (1999, Controversy, Dirty Mind, Prince, For You).

1. Sign Of The Times - awesome, sublime and the ONLY album I listen to without skipping a song or changing the song list (these days). Still sounds fresh and timeless. Covers so many genres that it shouldn't work as a cohesive album and yet it just does!

2. Purple Rain - started my journey. Strong coherent album but I have never liked IWD4U (works perfectly in the film but as a song meh)

3. Parade - once again Prince totally surprised me with the change in sound. It is hard looking back with hindsight and knowledge of his entire catalogue to understand or appreciate the sonic impact at the time of release. Nowadays I prefer to include Sexual Suicide and In A Large Room With No Light.

4. ATWIAD - the first Prince album I purchased on the day of release (a tradition I kept to ever since). I was outside the record shop before it opened and they had to get the box of LPs from the stock room as not on display yet. I remember my awe over the gatefold sleeve with the the perforated extra fold and how the boy with the balloon was only on a see through sticker on the shrink wrap. As others have said THIS was Prince announcing that being a fan was to expect the unexpected and take a musical trip as a fan. Took me a while to accept this album at first as I was expecting PR2 (hey I was 15). Much as I wanted to though I still am not that fond of Tamborine and replace it with She's Always In My Hair.

5. Lovesexy - inextricably linked to the mystery and excitement of the Black Album and the beginning of my bootleg journey. My first album as an adult (18 turning 19) and now living away from parents. Yet another musical departure that to this day sounds like nobody and nothing else. The live shows were simply amazing and the best I have ever seen to this day. Only let down (for me) by Eye No and IWUH (yes other people love these tracks but they never gelled with me). For years I have always listened to this album as an amalgamation with some tracks from Black (resembling the live shows in a way).

6. 1999 - at the time (post PR but pre ATWIAD for me) this never left my turntable. I was blown away by these long jams but especially loved Lady Cab Driver (as a 14 year old hearing that sex scene was, well a bit exciting and naughty...headphones necessary so my parents didn't hear). I think this album has aged less well than the others above. Also never liked Something In The Water and All The Critics.
[Edited 6/2/16 0:42am]
[Edited 6/2/16 0:44am]
'I loved him then, I love him now and will love him eternally. He's with our son now.' Mayte 21st April 2016 = the saddest quote I have ever read! RIP Prince and thanks for everything.
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Reply #22 posted 06/02/16 1:04am

novabrkr

SOTT

Purple Rain

1999

Parade

Lovesexy

ATWIAD

I used to place "Parade" higher in the past, but my appreciation for the original MPLS sound has just grown over the years.

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Reply #23 posted 06/02/16 1:09am

feeluupp

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PURPLE RAIN

SIGN O' THE TIMES

1999

PARADE

LOVESEXY

AROUND THE WORLD IN A DAY

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Reply #24 posted 06/02/16 1:15am

thedance

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imho.. all 6 deserves maximum 10/10. worship


01. Purple Rain (10)
02. Sign "☮" The Times (10)
03. 1999 (10)
04. Lovesexy (10)
05. Parade (10)
06. Around The World In A Day (10)

Prince 4Ever. heart
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Reply #25 posted 06/02/16 1:23am

Nasalhair

1 - "Parade" - Wonderfully weird in its arrangements, stylstic shifts, and sounds like nothing else.

2 - "Sign O The Times" - Spoiled for me only by two tracks (I won't name them). A real showcase of the man's talent.

3 - "Purple Rain" - Where I came in. I don't play it very often, possibly because I played it so much back in the day, but whenever I do listen to it I'm reminded of just how good it is, and where I was at the time.

4 - "Around The World In A Day" - Probably the best move he made, releasing something almost completely different after the previous album. Some of the tracks on here are still among my favourites.

5 - "Lovesexy" - I know some people love it, but it never really worked for me. The first half is pretty great, but I don't like the second half ("Dance On" onwards) at all. I think "The Black Album" is far, far better than "Lovesexy" and for me, this album was the start of his creative downturn.

6 - "1999" - Never liked it at all. The first two tracks and "Something In The Water" are great, but the rest leaves me cold. All of the tracks go on way too long for my liking, and I find the whole album quite boring. One of my least favourites of his actually.

If you threw in "Dirty Mind", "Controversy" and "Black", my list would probably be "Parade", "SOTT", "Black", "Purple Rain", "ATWIAD", "Dirty Mind", "Lovesexy", "Controversy", "1999", although the placement of "PR" & "Black" is switchable dependent on my mood.

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Reply #26 posted 06/02/16 1:55am

MattyJam

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Nasalhair said:


2 - "Sign O The Times" - Spoiled for me only by two tracks (I won't name them).



Oh, go on... name and shame.

[Edited 6/2/16 1:56am]

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Reply #27 posted 06/02/16 2:33am

Nasalhair

MattyJam said:

Nasalhair said:


2 - "Sign O The Times" - Spoiled for me only by two tracks (I won't name them).



Oh, go on... name and shame.

[Edited 6/2/16 1:56am]

Nope - find the whole routine of someone naming a track & being greeted by a wave of scorn and "that's the best song ever!" type comments utterly tiresome.

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Reply #28 posted 06/02/16 3:04am

MattyJam

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Nasalhair said:

MattyJam said:



Oh, go on... name and shame.

[Edited 6/2/16 1:56am]

Nope - find the whole routine of someone naming a track & being greeted by a wave of scorn and "that's the best song ever!" type comments utterly tiresome.


Well, the only reason I ask is because I too feel that there are two songs on SOTT which are filler and was curious if they were the same as my picks. I personally don't rate Hot Thing or It.

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Reply #29 posted 06/02/16 3:17am

Nasalhair

MattyJam said:

Nasalhair said:

Nope - find the whole routine of someone naming a track & being greeted by a wave of scorn and "that's the best song ever!" type comments utterly tiresome.


Well, the only reason I ask is because I too feel that there are two songs on SOTT which are filler and was curious if they were the same as my picks. I personally don't rate Hot Thing or It.

Not those ones. I like both of them.

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