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PopEntertainment.com > Reviews > Box Set Reviews > Prince

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Prince

The Hits/The B-Sides (Paisley Park/Warner Brothers 9 45440-2) 1993

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Copyright 1999 PopEntertainment.com.  All rights reserved.

Description:
Prince was simply the most influential musician of the 1980s.  In 1993, just in time to re-educate the people who thought he was turning into a crank (an impression that he hasn't done enough to disprove in the years since...), His Royal Badness released a three-disc refresher course on his career.
What's Good About It?
The Hits are loosely broken up into clean and dirty sides.  It chronicles not only Prince's career but the progression of soul and rock music of a decade.  It covers brilliant early singles like the funky in-your-face "Controversy" and the almost fusion "When You Were Mine."  The gravy years are represented in force with the party classic "1999,"the confessional "When Doves Cry" and the love-man funk of "Kiss."  Singles that were then newer, like "Sexy M.F." and "Gett Off" may not quite hit the classic status, but it's still better than most of the stuff you hear on radio. 
What's Bad About It?
The only minor problem with this set is The B-Sides.  Prince has made a habit of putting non-album b-sides on all his singles.  A few, like "Erotic City" and "Irresistible Bitch" even became hits themselves.  Still, while interesting, these extra tracks take up room that could have been better used to focus on the rest of his career.  The guy was a singles machine.
What's Missing?
There could even be a third disc of Hits, Prince was that prolific and that good.
PopEntertainment.com final grade: A+ 
As a rule, some boxed sets are over-padded tributes.  The Hits/The B-Sides is one of the few that only scratches the surface of a brilliant career.  This is essential listening.

Jay S. Jacobs

Copyright 1999 PopEntertainment.com.  All rights reserved.

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