DO Watch Prince Perform a New Song; DON’T Ask Prince What to Do About Your Dying Relationship
Prince, his new band and his old band, and a great many dancers stormed The Arsenio Hall Show on Wednesday night. The Purple One chatted with Arsenio and the crowd, but that was beside the point: the performances, man. The damn songs. I’ve got a walking-out-of-an-insane-concert high and I’m just sitting in an uncomfortable chair writing a blog post.
Kicking off the show, Prince and his year-old band, 3rdEyeGirl, premiered a new song from the forthcoming Plectrum Electrum, “Funknroll.” (The title’s significant: Prince has been calling his new band’s style funk ’n’ roll for a while. Arsenio, meanwhile, introduced ’em as an “astral-travelin’ explosion of awesome.”) Prince appeared out of nowhere like a magician, guitarless, and started having all the fun someone can have. Within 20 seconds, I would’ve paid at least $800 just to be remotely near the vibes he was emanating. The New Power Generation, Prince’s band through the ’90s and the aughts, made a surprise appearance for the third period, brassing the hell out of everything.
The interview portion was a quick reminder how otherworldly Prince’s existence is. The man only knows how to — and only needs to know how to — cook a single thing, an omelet. He doesn’t know what an infomercial is. And, back on planet Earth, he actually has a dead-sensible pet peeve: “Strangers touching my hair,” he deadpanned, going on to pantomime punching the next person who does it.
Then he played executioner for a troubled couple.
Prince wound up picking up the ax for “She’s Always in My Hair,” and closed the night with the New Power Generation and “Mutiny,” off 1985’s The Family. Again: Maaaaaan.