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A companion record to the solo effort Art Official Age, PlectrumElectrum finds Prince backed by 3rdEyeGirl, the all-female power trio that is a band for the 2010s. If Art Official Age veered toward revamped soul, PlectrumElectrum, as its convoluted title suggests, celebrates guitar freakouts: it's heavy on fuzz tones and pummeling backbeats, taking digressions into spacious jazz fusion and clean funk. Prince doesn't take the lead all that often -- he steps to the mike for the hardest rockers, the exception being "Anotherlove" -- letting Donna Grantis or Ida Nielsen front the softer, quirkier numbers. The carousel of lead vocalists suits the carnivalesque tone of PlectrumElectrum, which feels casually virtuosic as it slides from thick rockers into slow jams before jolting itself to life with a shot of distortion. There are distinct differences from Art Official Age -- there's an elasticity to the rhythms that contrasts with the precision of the beats, 3rdEyeGirl seize any opportunity to blast away the confines of the song so they can simply jam -- but take away the reliance on guitar rock and this album draws from a similar source of slow smooth soul, pop, and hammy rap that feels deliberately divorced from hip-hop. Perhaps you could call this celebration of traditional musicianship old-school, but more than anything PlectrumElectrum feels like it belongs to its own little universe, a place that not only celebrates all of Prince's favorite sounds but his own kinks and eccentricities. If those eccentricities don't feel as strange or startling as they once did, blame that on the curse of being a veteran: he's not exploring new territory but building upon the ground he's already claimed for himself. And if the songs on PlectrumElectrum don't stick the way those on Art Official Age do, it's nevertheless a quiet thrill to hear Prince spar with worthy partners, as he does throughout this record.