King Princess @ Mtelus - October 29, 2019

The stage at MTELUS had been transformed into a queer rockstar fairytale. Various instruments lay scattered around, framed by a giant golden picture frame held aloft by four bleeding hands with 'Cheap Queen' monogrammed behind on an enchanted forest painting. Literally a dream.

Girlpool, an LA based queer band, are supporting Mikaela Straus, aka King Princess, on the Cheap Queen tour. Girlpool's synthy folk-punky love songs soured across the high ceilings of Mtelus, enchanting many members of the audience who had never heard of Girlpool before. Girlpool's newest album, What Chaos is Imaginary, dropped this past february.

Between sets, Henry, who was dressed in a pink princess dress and is Mikaela Straus' best friend, would come onto stage to edge the audience while pretending to sweep the stage, following a Cinderella trope. But, instead of a dancing at the King's palace, we had our very own King dancing for us.

Just before King Princess' set, Miss Denim Pussy, a local Montreal drag performer, lip-synced while dancing around in a cow print and leather bodysuit, whipping a lasso around and momentarily riding in a baby car (look it up on instagram). The audience ate it up.

Finally, our midnight-moment had arrived. The band members of King Princess came out in matching white jumpsuits with their name, zodiac sign, height and instrument stitched on. Mikaela ran onto the stage and immediately jumped into their opening song, "Tough on Myself", also the first song on their new album, Cheap Queen. Despite Cheap Queen only dropping a week before, the audience new every lyric to every song, even those released in previous EPs in 2018. King Princess knows how to put on a show. Clad in a red sparkly crop top, white rhinestone slacks, and a denim 'diaper', she executes her stage performance perfectly, her dance moves indulging the audience's sapphic tendencies. Her stage hands knew what was up as well, appearing on stage to hand off instruments, tying shoes, and to unzip Mikaela's 'diaper'.    

"Do you like my new record?" King Princess asked the audience coyly, responding with "I'm so glad," after the expected screams and cheers. She jumped into track after track, nobody ever losing any energy, even during the slower and sadder songs, which one could hear audible sobs emanating from the audience. Cheap Queen is a queer breakup album, 'full of tea' as Mikaela described it. She spoke about her pain and loss from love, but how she's healed and come more into herself. The popularity that King Princess has reached is telling of a society evolving to acceptance and equity, and freaking great albums.

Jasper is the host of party @ marpiter, their show airs every Tuesday at 5:00 PM EST.