Entertainment & Arts

Prince's band 3rdEyeGirl confirm new album for 2015

3rdEyeGirl and Prince
Image caption Prince put 3rdEyeGirl together in December 2012

Rock star Prince has finished a new album, his band 3rdEyeGirl have revealed to the BBC.

"It's phenomenal, there are so many hits on this album. It's super experimental," they told 6 Music.

Prince's 38th studio record, it will be called HITNRUN, a reference to his "pop-up" concert tours, where gigs are announced on the day.

The band - Donna Grantis, Ida Nielsen and Hannah Ford Welton - added that the album would be out "soon".

It was written with Hannah's husband, Joshua Welton, who co-produced Prince's 2014 release Art Official Age.

In an exclusive interview with 6 Music's Matt Everitt, 3rdEyeGirl confirmed that new song Hardrocklover - which Prince posted online on 1 July - was the album's first single.

"Super hardcore Prince fans that know every song he's ever recorded - we refer to them as 'The Purple Collective' or 'The Purple Army' - this album is absolutely for them, because it's super funky.

"It's weird, there's a lot of experimental sound. It's just hit after hit and definitely caters to those fans who just love to hear what Prince has to say, rather than wanting to always hear that classic Purple Rain Prince sound."

Image caption 3rdEyeGirl are guitarist Donna Grantis, drummer Hannah Ford Welton and bassist Ida Nielsen

The band said the first they heard of the record when Joshua Welton was DJing at the aftershow party for Prince's White House concert in Washington DC in June.

"We had a big party, it was awesome, Stevie Wonder was there. We were all just dancing and Joshua was DJing and he just started playing all these super funky songs and one of those was Hardrocklover," said guitarist Grantis.

"He's throwing out joint after joint and they're all funky, like each new one is funkier than the last.

"It was all new music and everybody was having a good time, digging it. Little did we know that we were just jamming to a completely new album that was just finished that Joshua and Prince had done."

HITNRUN will also feature a version of 1,000 Hugs and Kisses - a previously unreleased track which dates back to the Diamonds and Pearls era - and a new version of This Could Be Us from Art Official Age.

"This Could Be Us is such a classic tune that's so beautiful and the lyrics are amazing, the production is phenomenal," said the band.

"But then when you hear this new version on the Hit & Run CD, it is totally different - super cool, really industrial sounding."

Image caption Prince released two albums - Art Official Age and Plectrumelectrum - last September

"Joshua and Prince just totally flipped it and turned it into something completely new.

"Also there's a song called 1,000 Hugs and Kisses that is just a super slow jam, to dance with your husband or your wife on the dance floor, it's a really dope, feel-good love song."

The new album may come as a surprise to fans as Prince released two albums, Plectrumelectrum and Art Official Age, in September last year.

"Everything happens really fast here," the band said. "When an idea comes... it's translated to the musicians or whoever's working on it and then recorded and laid down relatively quick and then it's put out.

"Every day there's something new. It could be one song, it could be a group of songs, you never know."

3rd Eye Girl said fans would get to hear the album "hopefully soon", but details of the release were still being worked out.

"It's definitely something we're thinking is going to be released right away, it's just not been nailed down yet.

"I can't wait for everybody to get this album, it's going to be amazing.

"It's definitely in discussion, so as soon as we get those details I'm sure we'll announce it and get it out to everybody immediately."

Prince's last two albums, ArtOfficialAge and PlectrumElectrum, were released through Warner Bros, the label with which he had the much-publicised "slave" dispute in the 1990s.

It is not clear whether their deal with the enigmatic musician would also cover the new record.

An earlier version of this story gave the album title as The Hit & Run Album. Prince's publicists have since confirmed the title to be HITNRUN.

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