379: Get On the Boat

3121 (2006)
An end-of-times revelry, completely unlike songs such as 1999 and 3121 in that it’s still an invitation from Prince to party like the apocalypse may arrive tonight, but this time it’s on a boat! Totally different! If I dwell too long on the Watchtower-inspired lyrics it can begin to sound like the kind of religious recruiting literature handed outside train stations but I do like the idea that this vessel currently has, going by the JW’s heavenly quota, 143,900 partying souls aboard. Room for a hundred more though. The music is straight-up funk. A Latin-double-dipped rumpshaker performed by an all-star band, immaculate in its execution with Shelia E on timbales and Maceo Parker and Candy Dulfer on horns, but slightly lacking that disruptive piece of grit to grow a true pearl. Although it survives the taxidermied ordeal of being pressed flat into CD form, its natural habitat is live and on stage, not trapped in recorded amber. The song ends with the party ark sailing off without the incredulous conga player, leaving him on the dock, locked into a groove desperately trying to ward off the darkening night.