Rolling Stone - 8/23/904.5 Stars (out of 5)
- "...reclaims Prince's rare stature as a pop Picasso, an experimentalist with enough mass appeal to make his experiments matter....the first four songs [alone] cover more musical waterfront than some bands do in an entire career.."
Ranked as the #6 Album of 1990.
"...very likely a masterpiece..." - Rating: A+
Q4 Stars (out of 5)
- Ranked as the #8 Album of 1990.
Down Beat - 1/913 Stars (out of 5)
- "..Prince has mastered a brand of explosive intimacy, sketching out on the themes of lust and spiritual inquest.."
Personnel: Prince (vocals, guitar, keyboards, programming); Morris Day (vocals, drums); Rosie Gaines, Elisa, Mavis Staples, Tevin Campbell, George Clinton (vocals); Candy Dulfer, Eric Leeds (saxophone); Atlanta Bliss (trumpet); Joseph Fiddler, Boni Boyer (keyboards, background vocals); Levi Seacer, Jr. (bass, background vocals); Sheila E. (drums, background vocals); The Steeles, The New Power Generation, Garry Shider, Steve Boyd, William Payne, Belita Woods, Tracey Lewis, Mike Harris, Pat Lewis, Sandra Dance, Jerome Benton, Jana Anderson (background vocals); T.C. Ellis, Robin Power, The Time.
Engineers include: Eddie Garcia, Mark Platl, Coke Johnson.
Recorded at Paisley Park, Minnesota and Mad Hatters, Los Angeles, California.
Personnel: Prince (vocals, guitar, keyboards, drums, background vocals); Morris Day (vocals, drums); New Power Generation (chant); Eric Leeds, Candy Dulfer (saxophone); Atlanta Bliss (trumpet); Amp Fiddler (keyboards, background vocals); Sheila E. (drums, background vocals); Bonnie Boyer, William Payne, The Steeles , Sandra Dance, Garry Shider, Mike Harris , Steve Boyd, Jana Anderson, Jerome Benton, Levi Seacer, Jr., Pat Lewis, Rosie Gaines, Tom Garneau, Tracey Lewis, Belita Woods (background vocals).
Recording information: 1983-1990.
Unknown Contributor Roles: Mavis Staples; Robin Power; T.C. Ellis; Tevin Campbell.
It's easy to dismiss this album as an unfocused mess--and many have. On GRAFFITI BRIDGE, Prince writes songs for colleagues to play; nine of the 17 cuts feature other artists such as The Time, Mavis Staples, Tevin Campbell and George Clinton. And it is indeed messy. But the record's merits must be acknowledged too. At the top of this list is the song "Joy in Repetition," a slight narrative idea clung to, wrapped in dreamy bluesiness, and beautifully delivered. Also notable is "We Can Funk." Many have tried to reclaim George Clinton's P-Funk contributions to butt-shaking music, but few have managed it without losing their own identity. Prince pulls it off.
Even some of Prince's missteps can be classified as brilliant mistakes, beautiful failures. The overtly Christian "Elephants and Flowers" is as preposterously rich and frothy as its title. "Thieves in the Temple's" sonic frou-frou has earned it fans, despite its greasy aftertaste. GRAFFITI BRIDGE is a funk experiment from a man who never rests on his laurels.