Prince – reviews of 80s funk star's 'magical' UK arena tour

Prince and 3rd Eye Girl

The triumphant return of one of pop's great showmen to UK stadiums has critics cheering

LAST UPDATED AT 07:50 ON Tue 20 May 2014

What you need to know 
American funk-pop star Prince is touring the UK. The UK arena tour, the first by Prince in almost two decades, follows a series of surprise gigs in smaller UK venues in February.

Prince is best known for his bestselling 1980s albums including 1999, Purple Rain and Around the World in a Day. On his current tour he appears with backing trio 3rd Eye Girl, performing classic 80s hits including Sign O' The Times and Little Red Corvette along with new tracks from his forthcoming album Plectrum Electrum. Touring UK venues until 23 May. 

What the critics like 
Prince is "back to his Eighties best", says Lisa Verrico in The Times. His moves are magnificent, his biggest hits sensationally sung and effortlessly played, in a magical show supported by the fabulous 3rd Eye Girl.

Prince's return to arenas "provides a stage worthy of one of pop's great showmen", says Dave Simpson in The Guardian. A barrage of hits and magisterial showmanship make the Purple One's return to large-scale gigging a triumph.

With ridiculously effortless virtuosity Prince offers "a reminder of what a phenomenal back catalogue he has", combined with his continued ability to turn any song inside out, says Bernadette McNulty in the Daily Telegraph. The show is a generous portion of a talent still in its prime.

What they don't like 
"Gone are the intimate venues and frugal ticket prices" from Prince's February gigs, says Daniel Dylan Wray in The Independent. The arena show is now behind a security-staffed barrier and starts frustratingly late, but when it gets going it's as riveting as it is intoxicating.  · 

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