Lotusflower (album)

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Lotusflow3r
Studio album by Prince
Released March 24, 2009 (digital)
March 29, 2009 (US physical)
September 7, 2009 (France)
Recorded 2006–2009
Genre Pop, soul, rock, R&B, funk
Length 139:03
Label NPG
Producer Prince
Prince chronology
Planet Earth
(2007)
Lotusflow3r / MPLSound
(2009)
20Ten
(2010)

Lotusflower (stylized as LOtUSFLOW3R) is the thirtieth and thirty-first studio album by American recording artist Prince. It was released on March 24, 2009 by NPG Records.[1][2] A triple album set, it contains two Prince albums, his 22nd solo studio album LOtUSFLOW3R and his 23rd solo studio album MPLSºUND, as well as Elixer, the debut studio album by Prince protegée Bria Valente.[3][4] The three albums are sold exclusively in the United States at Target as a 3-disc set,[5] and in Europe from more online music stores.

The album debuted at #2 on the US Billboard 200 chart, selling 168,000 copies in its first week.[6] Along with the set's other albums, Lotusflow3r received generally mixed to positive reviews from music critics.

Release and promotion[edit]

In December 2008, four songs were premiered on Los Angeles radio station Indie 103: a cover of "Crimson and Clover", "4ever", "Colonized Mind" and "Wall of Berlin".[7][8] A month later in a Los Angeles Times article, further song titles were mentioned, namely "Hey Valentina" (written for Salma Hayek's daughter),[9] "Better with Time" (an ode to Under the Cherry Moon co-star Kristin Scott Thomas), "Love Like Jazz", "$" (about "the most popular girl in the whole wide world"), and "77 Beverly Place".[10]

To generate excitement, Prince launched mplsound.com in December 2008 offering an instrumental of "(There'll Never B) Another Like Me", later replaced by the finished track. A month later, the site was shut down and replaced with an announcement of a new interactive website (lotusflow3r.com), proclaiming it will allow fans to "listen, watch and buy" music and videos featuring Prince and guest artists. The site, possibly acknowledging early reviews that the new music hearkens back to his Purple Rain days (and the fact that 2009 marks its 25th anniversary), featured a thrown-down television set on a cliff with a frame from the movie. The site had three songs for listening: "Crimson and Clover", "Here Eye Come", and "(There'll Never B) Another Like Me". A couple of weeks later, it was updated again with more interactive content. The songs were changed contained 60 second samples of three songs: "Chocolate Box", "Colonized Mind", "All This Love". On January 31, more changes were set with a new instrumental available for listen, as well as a "teaser" video. The site also had three full songs for listening: "Colonized Mind", "Discojellyfish" (an instrumental non album track based on "Chocolate Box"), and "Another Boy", which is sung by Valente.

The album contains a few songs previously known by fans. "Feel Good, Feel Better, Feel Wonderful" was posted on Prince's now-defunct NPG Music Club website as a one minute demo in 2006, "U're Gonna C Me" is a remake of a track from Prince's 2002 album One Nite Alone... and "Kept Woman" is a track from Prince's unreleased 2006 project with Támar called Milk and Honey. Originally intended to be released together with Prince's 3121 album, the project was eventually leaked onto the internet by Támar on her website. "Here I Come" had been posted on Prince's now-defunct 3121.com site in 2007. An excerpt of the song "Home" was posted on drfunkenberry.com in 2008 and the track "Another Boy" was debuted on radio and iTunes in 2008.

On March 11, 2009, it was announced on Billboard.com that Prince would perform on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno three nights in a row, March 25–27. He performed "Ol' Skool Company", "Dreamer" and "Feel Better, Feel Good, Feel Wonderful". Prince also performed "Crimson and Clover" on The Ellen DeGeneres Show and along with Bria Valente gave a two-part interview on the Tavis Smiley show in which he revealed he was born epileptic. During a fourth The Tonight Show appearance on May 28, in celebration of the end of Leno's first run as host of the show, Prince also performed "Somewhere Here on Earth" from his 2007 Planet Earth album.

On March 23, a demo of the song "Chocolate Box" (without Q-Tip) was leaked onto the internet. On March 24, at 7:07 pm PST, lotusflow3r.com opened officially. Members who joined early and paid the $77/year fee got to view streaming video (including the cover of Radiohead's "Creep" performed at the 2008 Coachella festival) and music videos for the tracks "Chocolate Box", "Crimson and Clover" and "Everytime",[11] download all three albums (detailed below), were sent a "founding member" t-shirt, and were able to buy tickets to future concerts Prince would be doing in the LA area, including The Tonight Show performances. Later in 2009, Prince performed two shows in Montreux during the Montreux Jazz Festival, and released a rerecorded version of the 1986 outtake "In a Large Room with No Light" to promote the concerts. Later Prince, also performed three shows in Monaco. On October 14 Prince performed on French emission "Le Grand Journal" on Canal + to promote Lotusflow3r after playing three concerts in Paris. He performed the songs "Dance 4 Me", "No More Candy 4 U", "1999" and "Controversy", helping the album reach #1 on the French iTunes Albums Chart.

The album was released as a physical release a few days later as a Target exclusive for the price of US$11.98. Even though the album was only released in the US, many copies were exported for sale in Europe. Warner Music released the album in France on September 7, as a single CD ("MPLSound") and a limited 3 CD. "Dance 4 Me" was digitally released on August 31 as a single, reaching #38 on the French digital singles chart and currently no.1 on the British Dance Chart. Three remixes ("Icon Remix", "Tribal Drum Remix" and "Dominatrix Remix") of the song remain as yet unreleased. The "Icon Remix" was leaked onto the internet and a "making of" for the remix was posted on YouTube. The song "Crimson and Clover" was replaced by the 2006 outtake "The Morning After" on the digital version of the album.

Reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 3/5 stars[12]
Entertainment Weekly C-[13]
Los Angeles Times 2.5/4 stars[14]
New York Times (favorable)[15]
Pitchfork Media (4.9/10)[16]
PopMatters (7/10)[17]
Rolling Stone 3/5 stars[18]
Slant 2.5/5 stars[19]
USA Today 3/4 stars[20]
Washington Post (favorable)[21]

The album debuted at #2 on the US Billboard 200, selling 168,000 copies in its first week and becoming Prince's fourth consecutive Top 3 album in the United States.[6] The album narrowly missed the #1 spot, selling 3000 copies less than Keith Urban's Defying Gravity.[6] The album however topped some other charts leading Prince to suspect the charts were tampered with which he specifically stated on the Tavis Smiley interview. As of February 1, 2012, the album has sold 543,700 units, according to Soundscan.

Upon their release, Lotusflow3r and MPLSound received generally mixed to positive reviews from most music critics, based on aggregate scores of 61 and 62/100 from Metacritic.[22][23] However, Bria Valente's Elixer received generally mixed or average reviews from most music critics, receiving an aggregate score of 49/100 from Metacritic.[24]

Track listings[edit]

Lotusflow3r
Studio album by Prince
Genre Psychedelic rock, rock, soul, funk, acid rock, pop
Length 48:40 (physical)
46:54 (digital)
MPLSound
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
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[edit]

All songs written by Prince; except "Crimson and Clover", written by Tommy James and Peter Lucia, Jr., and including an interpolation of Chip Taylor's "Wild 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[edit]

3. "The Morning After" – 2:06[25]

MPLSound[edit]

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[edit]

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

Chart history[edit]

Chart (2009) Peak
position
Belgian Albums Chart (Flanders)[26] 44
Belgian Albums Chart (Wallonia)[26] 78
Dutch Albums Chart[26] 23
French Albums Chart[26] 14
US Billboard 200[27] 2
US R&B Albums[27] 1
US Top Independent Albums[27] 1

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Lotusflow3r". Prince Vault. August 22, 2011. Retrieved September 17, 2011. 
  2. ^ "MPLSound". Prince Vault. August 23, 2011. Retrieved September 17, 2011. 
  3. ^ "Elixer". Prince Vault. August 27, 2011. Retrieved September 17, 2011. 
  4. ^ Powers, Ann (December 31, 2008). "Five things I learned from visiting with Prince: From album plans to thoughts on Prop. 8". latimesblogs.latimes.com. Retrieved 17 September 2011. 
  5. ^ "Prince Teams With Target to Release Three New Albums as $11.99 Bundle". Rolling Stone (Wenner Media). March 3, 2009. ISSN 0035-791X. [dead link]
  6. ^ a b c Caulfield, Keith (April 8, 2009). "Keith Urban Soars to No. 1 on Billboard 200". Billboard (Prometheus Global Media). ISSN 0006-2510. Archived from the original on April 11, 2009. 
  7. ^ "Prince Premieres Four New Songs On L.A.’s Indie 103; New Album On the Way". Rolling Stone (Wenner Media). December 18, 2008. ISSN 0035-791X. [dead link]
  8. ^ Kandell, Steve (December 19, 2008). "Review: Prince's 5 New Songs". Spin. ISSN 0886-3032. Retrieved 17 September 2011. 
  9. ^ "Prince writes song about crush on Salma Hayek". NME (IPC Media). April 9, 2009. ISSN 0028-6362. Retrieved 17 September 2011. 
  10. ^ Powers, Ann (January 8, 2009). "One night with Prince". latimesblogs.latimes.com. Retrieved 17 September 2011. 
  11. ^ "Bau-Da / P.R. Brown". Bauda.com. Retrieved 2011-11-22. 
  12. ^ Erlewine, Stephen Thomas. "Prince: LotusFlow3r > Review" at AllMusic. Retrieved November 29, 2009.
  13. ^ Greenblatt, Leah (14 April 2009). "Elixer, LOtUSFLOW3R, MPLSoUND (2009): Prince". Entertainment Weekly (Time) (#1043). ISSN 1049-0434. Retrieved November 29, 2009. 
  14. ^ Wappler, Margaret (March 23, 2009). "Prince's 'LotusFlow3r' and 'MPLSound,' and Bria Valente's 'Elixer'". Los Angeles Times (Tribune Company). ISSN 0458-3035. OCLC 3638237. Retrieved November 29, 2009. 
  15. ^ Chinen, Nate (March 29, 2009). "Prince: "LotusFlow3r"". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. OCLC 1645522. Retrieved November 29, 2009. 
  16. ^ Harvell, Jess (April 13, 2009). "Lotusflow3r". Pitchfork Media. Retrieved November 29, 2009. 
  17. ^ Huff, Quentin B (April 9, 2009). "More Candy 4 Us: Prince Is Back with 3 Albums". PopMatters. Retrieved November 29, 2009. 
  18. ^ Edwards, Gavin (March 31, 2009). "Prince: LOtUSFLOW3R". Rolling Stone (Wenner Media). ISSN 0035-791X. Retrieved November 29, 2009. 
  19. ^ Henderson, Eric (March 31, 2009). "Prince: LOtUSFLOW3R/MPLSoUND". Slant Magazine. Retrieved November 29, 2009. 
  20. ^ Jones, Steve (March 24, 2009). "Prince turns a brilliant sonic triple play: 3 albums in 1 day". USA Today (Gannett). ISSN 0734-7456. Retrieved November 29, 2009. 
  21. ^ du Lac, J. Freedom (28 March 2009). "Prince's New 3-CD Set". The Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved November 29, 2009. 
  22. ^ "LotusFlow3r - Prince". Metacritic. Retrieved April 7, 2009. 
  23. ^ "MPLSound - Prince". Metacritic. Retrieved November 29, 2009. 
  24. ^ "Elixer - Bria Valente". Metacritic. Retrieved November 29, 2009. 
  25. ^ "Review: Lotusflow3r By Prince". drfunkenberry.com. Retrieved 17 September 2011. 
  26. ^ a b c d "Prince - Lotusflow3r / MPLSound / Elixer'" (in Dutch). dutchcharts.nl. Retrieved August 7, 2011. 
  27. ^ a b c "LotusFlow3r > Charts & Awards > Billboard Albums" at AllMusic. Retrieved 17 September 2011.

External links[edit]