Princess Chelsea – Forever Is A Charm: New Song

Princess Chelsea graces us with a brand new single, Forever Is A Charm. And a new video to go with it!

Looks like Chelsea’s been to the Civic! Check out that video. And here’s the blurb:

September 9, 2022: Princess Chelsea is the musical project of Chelsea Nikkel (she/her), a musician and songwriter based in Tāmaki Makaurau (Auckland).

Princess ChelseaToday Princess Chelsea shares her latest spellbinding single “Forever is a Charm” and an accompanying music video. The New-Zealand-based artist exhibits her ethereal instincts as a producer and arranger with refined synth arrangements and glockenspiel countermelodies on this track. Minimal groove-based guitar and bass arrangements, contributed by Jonathan Bree (The Brunettes), evoke the new wave melodies of The Motels or The Cars.

Forever is a Charm is taken from Princess Chelsea’s forthcoming album, Everything is Going to be Alright, due October 7th via Lil Chief Records.

It’s accompanied by a music video shot in the iconic Civic Theatre. Chelsea, along with the turrets, spires and chandeliers were expertly captured by esteemed director Stuart Page (who has made music videos for Snapper, Skeptics and Headless Chickens) with Fred Renata (one of New Zealand’s most distinguished cinematographers) working as the Director of Photography.

Chelsea crafts an enchanting composition, balancing dreamy synths and sparkling chimes with a thumping beat. She repeats the hypnotic incantation, “Forever is a charm and it’s never getting better, it’s nothing like the words that you wrote in your letter.” With each echoing repetition, it seems as if she’s willing herself to believe the sentiment. She injects the dreamy atmosphere with the slightly Breeders-inspired chorus of “When you’re with me, I feel like I could die / Die / Die / Die!” While the track could be mistaken for a love song, the easy lilt of Chelsea’s vocals indicate her true intentions of bemoaning “boring fake people.”

Forever is a Charm comes with the release of an equally entrancing music video. Chelsea wanders the vacated halls of a gilded theatre as if she is bound to haunt the theatre “forever” with her own stories left untold. Chelsea’s creative vision comes alive in every aspect of production and is sure to enthrall on her upcoming album.

Princess Chelsea

Happening throughout December, Princess Chelsea’s Everything Is Going To Be Alright tour promises to be one of the biggest and best of her career. The shows will be a sensory explosion full of elaborately stage dressings, live visuals and at least five synthesisers and three glockenspiels.

Catch Princess Chelsea performing in Wellington at Meow on December 9, in Auckland at the Powerstation on December 10, in Dunedin at Dive on December 17, and in Christchurch at 12 Bar on December 18.

Joining Princess Chelsea on all four dates is Ōtautahi’s Mousey, who released her critically acclaimed indie rock album My Friends earlier in the year. Described by Undertheradar as “glorious, explosive jangly power-pop,” and the NZ Listener as “immensely catchy, memorable pop-rock” you’ll want to be at the show as soon as doors open. Tickets are on sale now – get ’em before they’re gone!


Princess Chelsea

The name Princess Chelsea started off as loving teasing almost 15 years ago. Her bandmates from Auckland’s Teen Wolf “were being sarcastic, because when we were on tour I was often looking really dishevelled, and they would joke that I was a princess.” Chelsea took on the princess title, and complicated it playfully. Hers is a partial yet whole-hearted embrace of femininity which emphasises the aesthetic labour of beauty, and unsettles it. In Teen Wolf she began working her classical training as a pianist into New Zealand’s underground music scene. Subsequently she lent this talent to indie pop outfit The Brunettes.

In 2011 Princess Chelsea’s full-length bedroom recorded debut, Lil’ Golden Book, was released by local label Lil’ Chief. A “musical fairy tale,” its songs follow her youth and coming of age in Aotearoa New Zealand. Baroque arrangements of nostalgic synthesisers and chamber pop instruments sometimes explode into psychedelia, layered over with innocent vocal melodies and lyrics. Chelsea’s debut defined her knowing poise and ornate synth-pop atmospherics and with its original release, Chelsea made a series of DIY videos which became YouTube hits. ‘The Cigarette Duet’ video featured Chelsea in a pink wig and heart shaped sunglasses beside Jonathan Bree (The Brunettes) in a hot tub. Its viral popularity cemented her cult status and garnered attention in mainstream press. The Guardian named her “The new band of the day.” The video has made a resurgence on TikTok, pushing views over 75 million. But Princess Chelsea is more than an internet sensation. She has a steadily growing, loyal fan base spread around the world, to which she connects through touring and social media.

Lil’ Golden Book was reissued for its 10th anniversary as a limited edition package in 2021. A golden vinyl was accompanied by a collectible A1 poster, reversible cover art, gatefold artwork with lyrics and a foiled golden spine. It is a love-letter from Chelsea to her dedicated fans. For some this will be nostalgic, for others a new chance to own the album.

Lil’ Golden Book was followed by The Great Cybernetic Depression in 2015. In these ten tracks, layers and layers of synths set the scene for an epic sci-fi opera. In its fantastical near (and retro) future, the world is immobilised in depression brought on by technology. With unconventional song structures, and a baroque flair, the songs are more like compositions than one might expect from synth pop – glittering with Chelsea’s classical background.

In 2016 Chelsea released Aftertouch, a collection of covers recorded between 2010 and 2016. The selection, chosen by their ability to “move me emotionally” gives insight to Chelsea’s musical palette and development. Songs by Nirvana, The Beatles, Interpol, Lucinda Williams and Marianne Faithfull are given the Princess Chelsea treatment. The title track was written by fellow kiwi synth musician Disasteradio. It is an ode to their shared medium, referring to sustained pressure on keys.

In 2018 came The Loneliest Girl, with Chelsea returning to songwriting. The album foreshadows Nikkel’s breakdown, examining the loneliness of a strong work ethic and the pull of artistic satisfaction. Here, adult issues and social commentary are presented in a light and sometimes childlike manner. In closing track ‘All I Need To Do’ Chelsea attends a Springsteen concert feeling both insecure and inspired. She reminds herself “All I Need To Do is make the music and try to be true”. The Loneliest Girl marked a turn away from synth-heavy production, instead returning to the eclectic pop sound of Lil’ Golden Book. She captured moments of inspiration, madness and spontaneity, through single take recordings, free form waxing lyrical, yelling, collages of guitar shredding and sketches recorded in under an hour.

This slightly looser attitude to recording is developed further in forthcoming Everything is Going To Be Alright. The new album is an exemplar of her singular Princess Chelsea vision, her strength as a collaborator, and as a live performer. For this album, Chelsea’s instrumental arrangements are inspired by her live band, whose interpretations of her bedroom recordings have produced a legendary and somewhat surprisingly ‘heavier’ show than what one might expect.


out October 7

1. Everything Is Going To Be Alright
2. The Forest
3. Love Is More
4. Time
5. I Don’t Know You
6. Forever Is A Charm
7. We Kick Around
8. In Heaven
9. Dream Warrior
10. Everything Is Going To Be Alright (Pt. 2)

Princess Chelsea