401: 9 to 5 People

Unreleased (1988?)
Technically this Vault item shouldn’t be on this list. It was leaked after Prince’s death which was my original cut-off point and it even sounds like it may be a live recording, a sub-category too Byzantine to consider. But it’s just too good to ignore and as no info exists at the time of writing I’ll give it the benefit of the doubt. The music is dark and menacing, evoking breached chain-link fences, searching spotlights and air-raid siren guitars alerting that someone has broken into, or out of, the compound. The drum, described as “pumping blood to your brain”, has a war-like beat and on every alternate bar there’s an amplified wind noise on the 3 and 4 that sounds like either your own exhausted panting or the guard dogs breathing down your neck. Ominously it slows down towards the end, telling you you’re cornered, options narrowing, but when it starts up again for the last thirty seconds you know that somehow you’ve Steve McQueened it.