Drowned in beautiful strings and a set of monotone vocals, Rex Orange County’s second studio album Apricot Princess is a definite synthesis of modern and old taste in music. Combining inspiration from a plethora of genres such as jazz, rock, and alternative music, this blend makes a truly tasteful album. This Rex album was a major step up from his debut record Bcos U Will Never B Free, which featured very little production but still held great musicality. On his sophomore album, we see more experimentation with guitars, synthesizers, and strings. Overall, this led to a better listening experience and more creative flow.
Some standouts from this record are “Television / So Far So Good,” “Apricot Princess,” “Nothing,” “Untitled,” and “Happiness.” Each song on this album truly holds on its own and each has a vastly different sound. The title track, “Apricot Princess,” opens with a gorgeous string arrangement and also features an unexpected flamenco-esque section creating a fun vibe ready for dancing. “Untitled” consists of a basic indie guitar tone poured over a jazz chord progression. This bare track is short and sweet and resonates very easily. “Television / So Far So Good,” the most popular song from the record, also incorporates many aspects of a great song. With many changing tempos, the song feels as if it is a multitude of smaller pieces. Spectacular guitar, piano, and vocal work make this song worthy of the hype around it.
The main takeaway from this album is that Rex Orange County had grown heavily in the short time between his freshman and sophomore albums. Released in 2017, Apricot Princess had success in both the United States and the United Kingdom. The album charted at number 2 for a brief period of time. The record helped to bring Rex to a whole new audience and massively grow his popularity – a level of popularity that is very well-deserved.