Princess Chelsea - The Loneliest Girl

by Ljubinko Zivkovic Rating:8 Release Date:2018-09-07
Princess Chelsea - The Loneliest Girl
Princess Chelsea - The Loneliest Girl

If you haven’t had a chance to get acquainted with New Zealand’s Princess Chelsea (aka Chelsea Nikkel), before Loneliest Girl, her fourth album (I haven’t) and relied only on the description of her previous work, you definitely might get fooled. It seems that so far she has mostly dabbled in 80s synth-pop territory but they say it was good dabbling though.

The Loneliest Girl is certainly a different kind of 80s fettle. You could probably recognize the signs when you check out the cover or look at some of the song titles  - “The Deer With The Golden Lights”, “The Pretty Ones”, “I Love My Boyfriend”… It all spells innocence, romanticism with a dose of mysticism to boot.

The moment you turn on the music, your first impressions get completely confirmed - an almost girlish voice, some intricate orchestral arrangements, glockenspiels, combined with reverb guitars and synths serving only as fillers here and there. Think 80s ‘specials’ like Virginia Astley (her From The Gardens Where We Feel Secure is certainly a classic) and Adrian Sherwood-produced one album wonder Judy Nylon, or if you want a more current reference a more poppy version of Juliana Barwick.

Sounds tricky? Not really. Chelsea, who is one of those wonders who record everything mostly by themselves, moves with ease between layered orchestral sounds to the touches of The Cramps and Velvet Underground to (“I Love My Boyfriend”, “Wasting Time”) to late 80s dance pop (title track) and then touches on Lana Del Rey territory as on “I Miss My Man” (with less reverb on the vocals). Along the way, Princess Chelsea doesn’t make a single misstep, making some seemingly incongruous musical elements sound as if they were always meant to fit together.

Her lyrics are also something that can play tricks on you. Keeping everything as if it has been seen by somebody in the early teens, Chelsea obviously has quite a hefty sense of humour that makes you listen a bit more carefully to everything she has to say, which in turn makes you listen to all the musical details she has combined her words with (“It’s Nothing”).

Ok, so its time to check those previous three albums in detail…

 

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