Thursday, August 11, 2016

RE-UP: Prince "The Jewel Box volume 2" - 3CD - outtakes

Prince

Databank Info:

Title: Jewel Box II
Label: Bernadette's Disques
Catalog: #BD 4219-4220-4221
Disc Length: 75:04 / 75:11 / 74:48
Source: Studio Outtakes / Live (Peach)
Sound Quality: VG+ / EX-
Year of Release: 1993

NOTE:  The four tracks from The Black Album included in Jewel Box II (tracks 7, 8, 9 & 10 on Disc 2) have not been included.

From The Databank:

Disc 1

1. SHE'S JUST A BABY   2. TURN IT UP   3. IRRESISTIBLE BITCH   4. CLIMAX (Listed as INSTRUMENTAL)   5. SEX SHOOTER   6. THE BIRD   7. HEAVEN   8. COMPUTER BLUE   9. AROUND THE WORLD IN A DAY   10. HIGH FASHION   11. MUTINY   12. DESIRE   13. JERK OUT

Disc 2

1. 100 MPH   2. LITTLE GIRL WENDY'S PARADE   3. CAN'T STOP THIS FEELING I GOT   4. EUPHORIA HIGHWAY   5. LOVE OR $   6. HOUSEQUAKE (RAZORMAID)   7. ROCKHARD IN A FUNKY PLACE   8. LE GRIND   9. CINDY C   10. DEAD ON IT   11. BIG TALL WALL   12. ALPHABET ST. (THIS IS NOT MUSIC, THIS IS A TRIP)   13. GIRL POWER   14. THE DOPAMINE RUSH SUITE

Disc 3

1. PINK CASHMERE   2. THE VOICE INSIDE   3. ELECTRIC CHAIR   4. MIND BELLS   5. BLISS   6. LOVE MACHINE   7. 9 LIVES   8. CORPORATE WORLD   9. ROUND & ROUND   10. MELODY COOL   11. THE QUESTION OF U   12. SOUL PSYCHODELICIDE   13. OPEN BOOK   14. I WONDER   15. 5 WOMEN

Live : 1993 (Not Listed On Sleeve)

16. PEACH



COMMENT

Dating from 1993 this collection of (mainly) outtakes is very typical of a set from this era. The sound quality is very unreliable, and the quality of the tracks ranges from excellent to awful. Thankfully there are only a small number of tracks which are appallingly bad and the majority of material on here would certainly get a VG+ rating. Disc 1 is very erratic in terms of track choices and quality and a number of songs are edits of the complete versions (which I can only presume were uncirculating at the time of this release). Prime examples of this are 'Turn It Up' which fades out prematurely and 'Irresistible Bitch' which is missing the opening portion of 'Feel U Up' (as the were recorded in sequence). The pitch of a number of tracks on this particular disc is also very questionable with 'Irresistible Bitch' and 'Climax' running too fast. The award for most ridiculous speed goes to 'Around The World In A Day' which runs almost double speed and is laughably fast. The majority of tracks on Disc 1 are of decent quality, however mention must go to the appalling quality of both 'Sex Shooter' and 'The Bird' which are awful and very painful to listen to - 'Sex Shooter' would certainly attain a sound rating of 'Poor' if I were grading individual tracks. Disc 2 suffers the same fate as Disc 1, however the sound quality is slightly more level and enjoyable throughout. The opening '100 MPH' is Prince's version of the track and whilst it isn't the clearest version circulating it certainly ain't bad for it's time. The quality of 'Euphoria Highway' is slightly questionable and the volume fluctuates greatly towards the end of the track. 'Love Or S' is certainly one of the two highlights of the disc and the quality is impressive and would certainly stand up against the versions circulating now in 2006. The Black Album tracks on here are no different to the officially released versions, however in defence of their inclusion they were still unavailable in 1993 - although admittedly everyone had them. 'Big Tall Wall ' is this particular discs low point - it fades in nearly halfway through the song, and the running speed is terribly slowed down. The inclusion of the alternate remix version of 'Alphabet St.' is a nice choice and whilst the quality is lacking slightly, the track still wasn't circulating on many releases in 1993. Disc 3 concentrates on the 1988 - 1990/1991 period and is probably the most consistent in terms of quality. 'Electric Chair' is rather gritty, but there's nothing particularly horrendous about anything on this disc. 'The Question Of U' is listed as one track, however it is actually both circulating instrumental versions of the track. '5 Women' is again pitched incorrectly and runs at a peculiarly slow speed. The closing live version of 'Peach' is not listed on the tracklisting nor the accompanying artwork and is an audience recording (albeit a very impressive one) from the New York 25th March 1993 Act I concert. Overall this isn't a terribly impressive release, and hasn't stood the test of time very well. Everything is freely circulating nowadays in much better quality on far better outtake sets which make this particular release something of a dinosaur.

Download this bootleg here
                             

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