"If you were going to shoot a mime, would you use a silencer?"
by Philip Mason
Prince and the New Power Generation - July 31st 1993, Wembley
By the time we got to Wembley, the cold that my parents had so
kindly donated had gone, albeit briefly and the clouds that had
been threatening rain all morning had gone, leaving a gorgeous
For the most part, however, this afternoon was spent, firstly
sitting on the road outside of the stadium in a queue that by the
time the gates opened at 4:30pm could have been a mile long and
second, standing within the stadium (all the time, as not to lose
our places) for three and a half hours waiting for the band to
However, having gotten there so early we more or less got at the
front, about fifty yards from the stage and slightly to the left,
where we could just about see everything and get an especially
good view of the giant video screens put there so those at the
back of the 80,000 capacity stadium could at least see something.
By the time the support band came on at about 6:30pm I was in no
mood to suffer any new music and this band, I'd never heard of: D
Influence were introduced as "local", a word that could strike
fear into the heart of even the most ardent music lover. They
were, in fact what I'd feared, a typical Prince support band,
which means faceless soul or metal with adequate musicianship but
The N.P.G. came on at about 8:30pm and in spectacular fashion;
they began with "My Name is Prince", which of course may or may
not be the case; behind a huge black curtain, emblazoned with a
gold boy/girl symbol, and as this fell we saw Prince lowered from
the lighting rig, complete with infamous chain-mail face mask, on
a swing, as flash bombs exploded below and bathed the whole stage
in red. Kicking his legs up like a Cossack and pointing at us with
a large cane. Hopping off of the swing and on to a big purple
grand piano, dancing for a while, leaping off and I think, that's
Only it isn't.
At first I imagined that Prince was being especially pervy that
evening as he took off his jacket to reveal, er...a pink bra, then
his trousers, likewise a pair of bikini bottoms but it's only when
he takes the mask off that we realised he'd been joking at our
expense. It is in fact Mayte the latest of his female sidekicks.
He really did appear at the conclusion of the song and although I
can't speak for the rest of the audience, we at the front were
He then lead us into "Sexy MF" and didn't sing the chorus, which,
if you don't know the song forced the audience to sing, as one,
"you sexy motherf@cker" and I couldn't help but laugh. After that,
the song list becomes rather a blur as Prince often performs the
main bulk of his concerts in medley form, but from what I can
remember, he whizzed through the songs I've already mentioned and
did nothing more from the "Symbol" album for about an hour. In the
mean time, we heard snatches of "Kiss", "Let's Go Crazy", "1999"
(and a few others) and full length versions of "Purple Rain",
which was inevitable really, and a surprise "Sometimes It Snows In
April" off of "Parade", which he did alone with just an acoustic
guitar, finishing off the first portion of the concert with "7",
easily the best song on the last album, and proof, if proof be
needed, that Prince is utterly out of his mind.
Since I'm writing this roughly four months after the event, I
can't rightly recall whether he did two encores or just the one,
but my feet remember that they kept us waiting for quite a while
,finally rewarding our patience first, with the 1993 version of
"It's Gonna be a Beautiful Night", the brilliant ten minute
instrumental from "Sign of the Times" that seems to change with
each tour, Prince shouting instructions to the band at every
opportunity and then an intimate chat to us about why he's decided
to retire, 90% of which, from what I remember, was a load of semi-
mystic, cod-poetic old toss, doing his best to bear his soul to
80,000 people, none of whom were able to understand what the hell
he was on about.
After that he led the band into three brand new songs; "Peach",
which sounded great live but is one of the most embarrassing
things he's ever recorded, "Come", which you can probably work out
for yourself and the glorious "Endorfin Machine" (which sounded
like "Dolphin Machine" at the time and the best song that The
Chilli Peppers never recorded). And that was just about it, a
strange way to send people home (I would have preferred to hear an
old favourite, like "Alphabet St." for instance),the music having
finished, Mayte leading him off by the hand, leaving the audience
chanting something I refuse to repeat in print.
As we all slowly filed out I could feel that cold returning and
an extreme hunger starting to overtake me, and only the memory as
consolation. Funky as, as one Melody Maker writer put it, a bucket
of prawns that's been left out in the sun.
I (Michael Noyce) have no idea what that last bit means, probably
no one else does either. I guess Philip meant it was a rather good
concert and he enjoyed himself somewhat (sound of Philip
complaining because I've added this bit. Sorry Philip, but it
just had to be done!).
The text of the articles is identical to the originals like they appeared in old ST NEWS issues. Please take into consideration that the author(s) was (were) a lot younger and less responsible back then. So bad jokes, bad English, youthful arrogance, insults, bravura, over-crediting and tastelessness should be taken with at least a grain of salt. Any contact and/or payment information, as well as deadlines/release dates of any kind should be regarded as outdated. Due to the fact that these pages are not actually contained in an Atari executable here, references to scroll texts, featured demo screens and hidden articles may also be irrelevant.