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4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
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on 5 December 2000
1984 had seen prince become one of america's hottest stars with the motion picture and soundtrack "purple rain." the critics wanted purple rain 2, but prince gave them "around the world in a day"! a truly wonderful album that if listened to with an open mind,will give listeners a trip through one of prince's most imaginative and enjoyable works. the title track kicks off the album, and delivers a sound full of eastern promise. next is "paisley park" which sounds a little too psychedelic and caused critics to compare prince to the beatles. one of prince's strengths is his ability to perform slower songs. a perfect example of this is "condition of the heart" which must rank as one of his greatest ballads. if ballads aren't your bag, then try "america" or "temptation", both of which feature excellent guitar work from prince, and also show how tight his band the revolution were. the outstanding track on the album is "raspberry beret" a classic pop song, written by a classic songwriter. this album may not be one of prince's most well known, but it is certainly one of his more unusual offerings, and hopefully will not remain an undiscoverd gem.
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on 11 April 2017
Top album and although it didn't live up to the hype of his previous album Purple Rain this is still a solid Prince classic
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The 80s wouldn't have been the 80s without Prince. Around the World in a Day was his follow-up album to the immensely popular Purple Rain. While this album is certainly not as momentous as its predecessor, it most certainly does have its good points. First of all, and I think this was a wise decision on Prince's part, Around the World in a Day has a different feel and sound to it than Purple Rain, a new mood which the cover of the album ably reflects. There are psychedelic touches to this music, as well as a plethora of Indian and perhaps oriental sounds, that give the album a somewhat upbeat, rather mystical atmosphere. The opening track Around the World in a Day sets the record straight from the very beginning, giving ample warning that this album is not going to be a Purple Rain knockoff by an artist content to coast his way down from the top of the mountain of superstardom. Raspberry Beret was naturally a huge hit, and it has something of a light, energetic quality to it that makes it fun to listen to even now. Pop Life is another pop-oriented song that got ample play on the radio, and its airy yet serious style is quite in contrast to the song and released single America. America has a dose of serious guitar of a slightly heavy variety, making me think of (yet not actually reminding me of) Jimi Hendrix, except Jimi never screamed the way Prince does on this track. Paisley Park is a wonderful song, boasting some of Prince's best and most emotionally touching lyrics. It is followed by the equally impressive yet very different song Condition of the Heart; this love song starts with some impressive tickling of the ivories before eventually leading into Prince's high-key and perfectly mournful lyrics. The final two tracks offer another contrast in styles. After The Ladder, a serious, even philosophical track with something of a gospel sound to it, Prince immediately shifts gears to the wild, uninhibited, scream-heavy Temptation. I can't say what kind of reaction die-hard Prince fans had to this album when it was released, but I admit having initially found it a little disappointing compared to Purple Rain. Now, it is easy to look back and see how well most of this music holds up. Prince always did his own thing yet remained highly successful, and this album is a case in point. I could do with a few less of those vintage Prince screams, but overall I have a lot of respect for the new direction Prince followed on the heels of Purple Rain.
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on 30 September 2016
Personally one of my favourite Prince albums. Vibrant, deep and funky. A classic.
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on 7 October 2009
When I was 12 and only just beginning to explore chart music (this was when the top 40 countdown on Sunday was an almost religious experience), I remember being very taken with both "Paisley Park" and then (even more so) with follow up single, "Raspberry Beret" when they came on the radio. They were duly recorded to cassette and the mixtape in question was played in steady rotation with Scritti Politti's Cupid & Psyche 85 and Madonna's Like a Virgin during a family holiday in the south of France that summer (1985).

Anyway, unlike the two aforementioned albums, despite liking the two (fairly modest - surpisingly in the case of "Raspberry Beret" as that is now considered something of a classic but it reached only #18 UK Top 40 at the time!) hit singles, I only got around to purchasing the parent album once I'd invested in Lovesexy,Parade: Original Soundtrack - Under the Cherry Moon and Sign 'O' the Times (all essential purchases, by the way!). When I did get around to "Around The World In A Day", singles aside, it struck me as a very strange collection and I wasn't sure if I liked it.

In fact, I actively disliked certain tracks such as the very strange semi-Hendrixian blues grind of album-closer, "Temptation" which concludes with Prince getting a good ticking off from God for being a naughty boy!

However, although the somewhat contrived cod psychedelia of the album remains less than convincing and you get the impression that after the huge commercial success of the relatively straightforward R&B/Rock crossover of Purple Rain, Prince decided to be deliberately weird realising that he couldn't do a Purple Rain Part 2* (or maybe he was attempting his own Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band - who knows?), time has been kind to "Around The World In A Day" and it is now one of my favourites and has much to recommend it.

It contains one of Prince's most beautiful ballads in the form of "Condition Of The Heart" (I admit the performance and production is totally OTT but the intro is simply gorgeous and it is a totally great, spine tinglingly good song!) and one of his very best pop songs in the form of "Rasberry Beret". Other highlights for me are the brilliant funky "Pop Life" (props to Sheila E for the drums!), the storming hard funk of "America" (track down the 12" because that contains a brilliant 21 minute - yes 21 minute! - version) and "The Ladder" which is similar to "Purple Rain" in that its quasi-gospel but for me is even better!

In conclusion, although this is probably not the place to start if you are only just beginning an exploration of Prince's work, "Around The World In A Day" has a certain loopy charm plus it contains some absolute gems and no self-respecting admirer of Prince's music should be without it!
* It is interesting to note that the b-sides from this period are in some ways, more straightforward and commercial sounding than the cuts that made the album - case in point being "She's Always In My Hair", the 12" version of which can be found on Ultimate. You can find 7" versions "She's Always In My Hair", "Hello" and "Girl" on the triple disc The Hits/The B-Sides. If you really want to go deeper, it is worth tracking down the vastly superior 12" version of "Hello" - it is available as a download bundled with "Raspberry Beret" (it was originally the UK b-side) from most digital music vendors.
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on 19 September 2000
When Around the World in a Day was released Prince was the New hot pop star. Purple Rain had sold millons and he had become a house hold name. Prince was nevr to achieve sales anywhere near thise of Purple Rain, but what he did do was release album after album of pure genius. Around the world in a day was to isolate alot of people who had enjoyed Purple Rain. That was Princes intentention. I fyou listened to his albums from 1980's Dirty Mind Through to 1988's Lovesexy you can hear Prince progressing. Each record has elements of the one before but also adds some new. Around the world in a day is seen as Princes Psychadelic album. It uses many world music instruments and strange effects. The music is colurful and at times introspective. such as on the beautiful Condition of the Heart. The funk touches are still there for example when the title track when amongst the sitars and flutes comes Princes keyboard Horns and the bared boned funk of tambourine. This album is chock a block full with great melodies such as Pop Life and Raspberry beret. To sum it up it is a wonderfully weird beautiful album that is one of his most over looked albums.
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on 18 September 2002
If you like purple rain and are looking for more of the same, you won't find it; least of all with this album. If theres one thing you can always expect from Prince, its his unpredictability. Many so called fans shunned Prince after this records release, expecting a purple rain re-hash. This album is nothing like purple rain but why would you want it to be. Theres only one purple rain and thats what makes it so great. With this album I feel Prince wanted to experiment musically; and it certainly paid off. Its a classic. Fans of commercial Prince will love it for tracks like Raspberry Beret and Pop Life, while die hard fans will love it for beautifully written and experimental tracks like Condition Of The Heart and Tamborine. Personally I think theyre all brilliant and would definatley reccomend this record to anyone.
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on 8 April 2003
The follow up to Purple Rain, an admittedly on a frist listen it's impossible not to be a little dissapointed. After you've given the album a few goes, you may find you actually prefer it to Purple Rain- it's a very different album.
the opener, and title track is very hippy-dippy, middle eastern, with some good bass beats, but it's nothing particularly special. 'Paisley Park' has a good glam rock groove, and a nagging hook that goes around your head for a while. Like Purple Rain, the third track in is a vastly over the top ballad- akin to 'The Beautiful Ones'; called 'Condition of the heart' after a bery long (too long) build up, there lies a very dramtic, original song. The most commercial moment pops up afterwards as a relief, the excellnet 'raspberry beret'- which is string laden and jaunty.
'Tambourine' dissapoints, and shreiks 'Filler' everytime- use the skip for this one. 'AMerica' is brilliant though- a real catchy one, as its the brilliant 'Pop Life', which has a great groove, and good chorus. 'The Ladder; is a little bit too slow, but has a nice bit of soul. 'Temptation', unfortunately is another filler- akin to the track 'Do Me Baby' on Controversy- it's SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO long, and rather exhausting.
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on 2 January 2016
Another 80s classic album by Prince. He constantly improved and developed his own sound up until 1984 when "Purple Rain" exploded worldwide. What did he do next? A complete about-turn with "Around the world in a day". Not many are that bold or confident to turn away from a global mega-success - it informed the world that here's an artist who wants to challenge, explore and if you love music - demands your attention. Although this album is not his best, it was the start of a mini-period of his 'kaleidoscopic' reign taking left and right turns - nobody knew where he was going next, bursting with ideas, sonic colours and textures - moving onto "Parade" to "Sign of the Timess" to "Lovesexy" - he was truly the most exciting musical artist of the time. It's worth getting this album for "Condition of the Heart" alone.
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on 5 August 2001
A lot of bandwagon "fans" of Prince's sixth album "Purple Rain" immediately jumped ship on hearing this. Maybe commercially speaking he should have waited longer for the Purple Rain hype to die down but this was a different set of sounds and messages to that monumental classic and was never equipped to come close to it's predecessor's mainstream appeal.
Prince I am sure realised this himself, but being the artist he is, rushed it's release through, as always thriving on experimentation and spontaneity. I feel he was right to stay real to himself as although not a record label's dream follow up it is still an artistically rewarding work for the listener. While looking back now however we should understand the reaction at the time would be relative to different set of issues, not least "Purple Rain Mania". :)
This album was as mentioned above not very commercial in it's overall sound apart from two singles. "Raspeberry Beret" is a well known Prince standard and its summertime sway and wandering strings add to make a Beatle-esque Pop classic. "Pop Life" was a simple commentary on the music industry that Prince was now central to and he is harshly critical towards cocaine users within the lyrics. It is also a very accomplished song.
Other highlights include the Eastern influenced title track, another Beatles-psychadelic (The Beatles seem a big influence on this album right upto the cover art) type song speaking of a Utopia "Paisley Park" (The name of Prince's newly established label and recording studio at the time) and the tender ballad "Condition Of The Heart" which although beautiful never quite reaches it's awesome potential in my opinion. Also be sure to check out the album-worthy B-side "Shes Always In My Hair".
Perhaps understandably, this album will be favoured by the more hardcore Prince fan due to the lack of his more trademark "popular" music. However anyone with a love of good experimental music should not be discouraged from exploring this deeply textured journey "Around The World In A Day".
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