Is it as good as 1999? Hell, no.
An extensive, though not exhaustive, tour through Prince’s most fecund songwriting period reveals new depths to his greatest album.
A welcome opportunity to revisit what’s widely seen as a fallow period for the Purple One, and to remind ourselves what he was capable of onstage.
The finest release to yet come from the Prince estate.
Of all the double albums you could possibly resequence to eliminate filler or sharpen thematic focus, none is at first blush less ripe for pruning and rearrangement than Sign 'O' the Times.
Prince's supposed test tracks paint an alternate universe in which his own takes on the material became chart smashers.
No amount of critical reappraisal can make Rave Un2 the Joy Fantastic a great album.
When considering the career of an artist as prolific as Prince, it can be easy to overlook a full decade, let alone a couple of albums.
Quality control was never at the core of Prince’s genius, but his unbridled, try-it-all freedom is as frustrating as it is inspiring.
It’s remarkable that a home cassette recording shows so much forethought.