Catalog # 4DF 046
Release Year 2007
2CD Length 59:50
Date/Venue Prom Center, St Paul 6/7/1985
Source Audience Recording
Already circulating on the 'Birthday
85' release, this is a very nice effort and an improvement on a show which
deserved a little treatment. According to the liner notes included on the
release this is not sourced from the 'Birthday 85' release, however it should be
noted it is the same source recording - albeit improved.
The complete lack of audience noise on this recording works in it's favour and the only time they are audible is when Prince invites them to sing into the mic (during both 'Irresistible Bitch' and 'The Bird'), otherwise they are practically inaudible. There are a couple of naughty moments during the opening 'A Love Bizarre', but other than these I can find very little to fault regarding any serious flaws. The main problem (if one can class it as a problem on a 20+ year old recording), as with the previous release, is the recording is very "heavy" and is slightly unclear. It's very hard for me to pinpoint it and describe it accurately, but it is lacking sharpness and definition. That said, it's vastly improved over the previous release, but I still have a slight reservation grading it as VG+ . Other opinions may differ, but I feel a VG+ would be misleading - as good as this is.
Content-wise, it's a unique show and deserves a special place in anyone's collection. The show starts with a fairly straightforward version of 'A Love Bizarre' before members of The Family take to the stage for 'Mutiny' which lasts around 14 minutes including the extended outro prior to Sheila E's drum solo. Prince calls back various Revolution members for the live debut of 'Sometimes It Snows In April' almost 11 months before it's release on Parade, however only the opening few lines and the chorus (repeated 3 times) is sung, with the remainder being instrumental. The Purple Rain tour duo of 'Irresistible Bitch' and 'Possessed' follow, with the latter containing a few added lines from 'Cloreen Bacon Skin'. 'The Bird' is followed by a one-off performance of a humorous track seemingly titled 'Drawers Burnin' before the tempo is kicked up a notch for the closing 'Holly Rock' and the recording ends. Overall the content is really what makes this release so special. Out with the extended wailing from both St. Paul and Susannah during 'Mutiny', there really is no "low point" to the show.
The quality of the recording is certainly no match for many other releases from 4DaFunk, however they have yet again made a much-loved show sound even better, and for that reason alone I am happy.