Princess are a three-piece Dublin act who deliver their charming pop songs swathed in several layers of distortion. The five-track EP ‘Black Cat’ is the debut release from the band.
The songs all follow the same basic template; slow, deliberate basslines give them a sense of structure, allowing the lead guitar to squeal and hiss malignantly in the background. This is evident in opener I Look Around, where the guitar sits dormant in the background, before leaping into action during the chorus. The vocals are wonderfully expressive, with the resigned tone on the line “oh, you don’t know” masterfully conveying a feeling of disappointment. Fall Slow is the album highlight, with the guitar line being more tangible on this track than on the others. The chorus is immediately catchy, with plenty of the howling feedback the band are so fond of featuring in the verse, and in the vicious, discordant solo.
The rest of the tracks are filled with wild energy and enthusiasm, but lack the immediate catchiness of the two aforementioned tracks. Come and Go and Excuse the Voice still hold great appeal though; Come and Go is a more relaxed mellow track, while the nine minute epic that is Excuse The Voice, builds up slowly and calmly, before losing all control in a crazy breakdown section.
The dark, brooding tracks that make up this EP are harrowing and alluring, and the swirling guitars create a musical vortex that sucks the listener in. Although it could be argued that the band overindulge in the noise-rock element of their sound a bit too much, the ‘Black Cat’ EP is an impressive release.