Prince & 3RDEYEGIRL
Prince & 3RDEYEGIRL
120 min • Roundhouse, London • June 5, 2014
David Robson reviews
“Please do not use your phones during the show. What you’re about to see is gonna blow your mind and you don’t wanna miss one second of it by looking at your phones,” was the opening plea from Prince’s all female, all glamour backing band 3RDEYEGIRL – and how right they were. With little more than 24 hours’ notice Prince has managed to send hysteria through the capital on the second leg of his Hit and Run tour, selling out two shows, in the same venue and on the same night, in 4 minutes.
His Purple Highness strutted onto the stage in a blaze of thunderous applause launching into a rockier version of 1985 classic ‘Let’s Go Crazy’ and the hits kept on coming. ‘Take Me With U’, ‘Raspberry Beret’ and ‘U Got The Look’ followed in a seamless medley that had the crowd singing along in joyous unison. It soon became very clear that Prince had come back to the Roundhouse to party – like it’s 1999.
Leaving the guitar offstage he headed over to the keyboards reminding us that not only is he one of the greatest guitar players pop has ever known, he is a multi-skilled musician who throughout the gig plays the bass, keyboards and shows off some rather energetic dance moves that I can only hope to display when I’m 55.
“30 years ago, this happened,” he proudly states as the introduction to ‘When Doves Cry’ fills this intimate surrounding in celebration. ‘I Would Die 4U’, ‘Sign of The Times’ and ‘Controversy’ keep the crowd singing along in a state of sheer admiration and unapologetic glee.
“Have I got any more hits?” he asks before sliding into a funky rendition of ‘Kiss’. 70 minutes in and yes Prince, you still have a LOT to get through, should you choose.
But as we slow things down for a stunning rendition of ‘Nothin’ Compares 2u’ it’s becoming clear that the show is coming to a close. Which I suppose you can forgive him for (given that he has another show in over an hour). No sooner than he leaves the stage, not before the deafening demand for more, he returns to deliver one of the night’s highlight – a cover of Joni Mitchell’s ‘A Case of You’ performed with a gospel piano that made this entire experience almost religious.
As the indigo light covers the stage, it’s time to send us off singing into the night with a show-stealing performance of the timeless classic ‘Purple Rain’, which has every member of the audience holding hands and singing along like a faithful choir. “I never tire of this song, London.” Neither do we Prince, neither do we.