This Prince article was written by Zoe Anderson, a GIGsoup contributor. Edited by Josh Hummserston
He’s an artist that needs no introduction; Prince is a legend, and for good reason.
In his forty-year career he’s crafted thirty-eight studio albums. In the last two years alone, has released two more studio albums, and an EP with three-piece rock band 3rdEyedGirl. With critical acclaim in spades, Prince doesn’t really need to graft anymore; he’s already so cemented in music history that he can pretty much do whatever he wants now. Because of this, there is always a sense that Prince is experimenting simply because he fancies it, rather than to sell records. Interestingly in ‘HITNRUN’, ‘The-Man-Formally-Known-As-The-Symbol-Formally-Known-As-Prince’ has opted for a more EDM sound in many of his tracks, maybe signalling a move towards a more mainstream, almost clubby vibe. However, his signature electric guitar groove is always present, as well as the classic slap-bass rumble which supplies a poignant atmosphere of funk throughout.
‘HITNRUN’ is a prime example of Prince’s ability to adapt to different genres, and it features a bassier, more artificial, sound than his more vintage efforts. All of Prince’s recent releases have been quite varied; his work with 3rdEyedGirl has a more soft rock sound, whilst his solo work always sways more geared towards a funk/ hip-hop groove. ‘HITNRUN’ may be a sign of Prince engaging more with a mainstream audience, and even features a guest appearance from Rita Ora in ‘Aint About To Stop’. Prince is no stranger to using female vocalists on his tracks and it’s nice to see fresh talent featuring here.
There is certainly more of a dance floor sound in ‘HITNRUN’, supplied by a heavy hip-hop beat in many of the tracks. Indeed, the opening track ‘Million $ Show’ is a springy, clubby number featuring an affectionate nod to the legendary ‘When Doves Cry’. It’s rare that Prince ever looks back into his past musical career; he’s never made much of an effort to advertise or promote any of his albums. ‘HITNRUN’ is very much in line with this; it can only be accessed on Tidal, Jay Z’s subscriber only music service, which kind of acts like a fancy Spotify Premium.
Prince is a busy man, but manages to juggle a mind-boggling range of projects so seamlessly. It goes without saying that he earned his legendary status long ago, and ‘HITNRUN’ is another prime example of his longevity. Prince’s willingness to experiment and evolve in this album is testament to this, and it’s refreshing to hear a more processed and often volatile sound being weaved through his signature guitar and bass funk.
‘HITNRUN’ is out now on NPG Records