Lil’ Golden Book is a delicious concoction of child-like sweetness and adult irony that sparkles from start to finish.
Coming from Lil’ Chief records, the label who brought you The Brunettes and The Gladeyes amongst others, it is not a surprise that Princess Chelsea’s debut album is not your typical pop record. Employing an array of old-fashioned instruments and percussion equipment as well as electronic sounds, Princess Chelsea presents a collection of eleven songs to counter the annoying sameness of the American pop factory.
Although often set to simple and warmly charming melodies recalling children’s music, the content of these songs is anything but childish, with instant classic The Cigarette Duet (sung with Jonathan Bree of The Brunettes) debating whether or not to smoke a cigarette that you know is bad for you over xylophones and its companion piece Too Fast To Live warning against the effects of excessive alcohol consumption on one’s organs.
The absolute standout on the album is the beautiful and haunting Ice Reign combining dark allusions to Alice in Wonderland with a playful, enticing melody. The piano-driven Monkey Eats Bananas is also a delightful piece of pop mania.
On Overseas, living in New Zealand is described as “pleasant enough” but “not enough”. The song details the migration of youth to other bigger countries where they find that they are not in fact happier. Princess Chelsea will undoubtedly find success overseas (music this unique and intriguing cannot fail to find an audience) but here’s hoping that she will return often to her homeland and be welcomed as the national treasure that she is.