“Girls to the front!” is the rallying cry of visionary Harlem artist Destiny Frasqueri, aka Princess Nokia. While she technically is a rapper, that designation seems reductive now. If you haven’t heard her latest emo-inspired mixtape A Girl Cried Red, stop what you’re doing and go listen to it right now on your digital platform of choice because it’s one of the best EPs of the year so far.
While “For the Night” (above) and “At the Top” share some pitch-shifted similarities to the hip-hop tracks on her outstanding Rough Trade debut 1992 Deluxe, Princess Nokia ventures from acoustic emo-pop on “Flowers and Rope,” “Your Eyes Are Bleeding,” and “Little Angel” to straight-up alternative rock on “Look Up Kid” — and somewhere in between on “Morphine.” The 20-minute release is addictive as hell and sure to stay on repeat for several rotations as there’s a little something for everyone here.
Princess Nokia recently spoke with Dazed about her role in the current emo resurgence. Frasqueri told interviewer Lakin Starling:
There’s a vulnerability in associating with pain and sadness that has always lived in that narration. For example, the blues. Black people have always loved the blues — they basically created the blues. Black people created rock music, it’s a fact. Black people created bluegrass and rock and roll way before Elvis Presley and The Beatles. Black people created punk — the band Death was way before The Ramones. Same with Bad Brains. If you think about it, the wool has been pulled over our eyes. This is our shit. Very naturally, that’s why we return to it. It’s ours, it will always be ours.
Anyway, she’s coming to San Francisco on 4/20. DJ Dials, Goldenvoice, Swagger Like Us and 1015 Folsom present Princess Nokia live with support from Qing Qi, Aux Cord, The Candy Rain, Fela Kutchi, Chulita Vinyl Club, Sounds by Arturo, and a Text Me Records Basement Showcase featuring WADE08, Ricky Lake, Fat Tony, and Mikos Da Gawd.
Destiny Frasqueri also hosts the show “The Voices In My Head” on Beats 1 Radio, among other influential projects. Princess Nokia has been selling out shows worldwide since the release of her debut rap album, which expanded upon her 1992 mixtape from 2016. The rising feminist icon is known to put on an unmissable show, welcoming a safe space for her diverse fanbase. While we might be treated to some emo covers and new original songs, rest assured Princess Nokia will also be serving up 1992 Deluxe bangers like “Tomboy,” “Brujas,” and “Kitana.”
RSVP on Facebook and Eventbrite for updates on any additional tickets being released for the 21+ party at 1015 Folsom on April 20. Princess Nokia is also set to headline the Oakland-based Wine & Bowties’ FEELS 6 showcase with Mykki Blanco and more at the Craneway Pavilion in Richmond on June 16, 2018. Grab tickets for the art and music exhibition here.
Princess Nokia, Qing Qi (Live), Aux Cord (APF), The Candy Rain, Fela Kutchi, Chulita Vinyl Club, Sounds by Arturo, WADE08, Ricky Lake, Fat Tony, Mikos Da Gawd
April 20, 2018
10pm, SOLD OUT
FEELS 6 with Princess Nokia, Mykki Blanco, Bbymutha & More
The Craneway Pavilion
June 16, 2018