Future's Now for Princess
It's the year 2080, people have product sponsorships instead of names and glamorous singer-rapper Princess Superstar and her cadre of 10,000 Duplicant clones are the only celebrity presence on ... oh, never mind.
Suffice to say that "My Machine," the new album by veteran New York indie club diva Princess Superstar (nee Concetta Kirschner), recalls everything from "Metropolis" to "Blade Runner" to "Demolition Man"a sci-fi dystopian tale that in reality is, as sci-fi dystopian tales tend to be, an allegory for our present.
But when she performed a staged version of the concept at the Echo on Monday, she did it in a way that made this present quite enjoyablewith an earthy D.I.Y. approach and a big ol' smile.
Live backing by guitarist Eddie Cooper, drummer Mr. No and DJ Alexander Technique kept things fresh and spirited as the Princess pumped through a rap-rock-punk-disco-electro-glam mix.
The story, such as it is, provided a good excuse for some moderately witty social criticism and pop-culture references exploring themes of commercialism, hedonism ("Sex, Drugs and Drugs") and self-discovery (the climactic "Death of a Superstar").
Sexuality was never far from her platinum blond-encased mind, but hers is an inviting sort of forwardness, as opposed to the intimidating kind associated with Peaches, another D.I.Y. rapper to whom she is often compared.
The plot is certainly less absurd than that of the Queen musical "We Will Rock You." And who can argue with a more-or-less moral that there's no place, er, no time like home?