168: Rainbow Children

The Rainbow Children (2001)
Prince’s new found faith isn’t just found in The Rainbow Children’s lyrics and spoken monologues. The whole album is born of it. It’s in the music, the artwork, the concept, the whole damn package. This puts many people off but it caused a focused Prince to write his most cohesive lp in years. Opening track Rainbow Children (note the missing definite article) is the album in miniature. It starts with some smouldering jazz, a groove which toys with gospel and a guitar workout before ramping up towards a hard funk climax, followed by a smooth Fender Rhodes vamp. The album’s whole suite of characters are in attendance with Prince in various guises telling us his version of Genesis or whatever. He could be reciting Finnegans Wake for all I can make out, or indeed care but the words aren’t important. The atmosphere is king. His beliefs built this amazing world and I’m privileged to be allowed to visit.