There’s nothing new about 15-year-olds drawing pictures of or writing songs about their favorite TV characters. It’s a little less common, though, for the teens in question to then release those songs as part of a massive, self-produced album that gets covered by a ton of major music outlets. But then, most teens aren’t Willow Smith, self-avowed Radiohead fan (and also, you know, daughter to Will and Jada Pinkett Smith.)
After a couple of weeks of teasing on Twitter, Smith—who’s been releasing her own music via Soundcloud for years, from her home in “Your Imagination, United States”—has dropped her new album, Ardipithecus, onto an apparently waiting world. The title is a reference to the evolution of man, and is accompanied by cover art depicting various naked stages of evolution, complete with lithe, zombie-looking figures that wouldn’t be out of place in the notebook of Bob’s Burgers’ Tina Belcher.
But it’s a different cartoon character that serves as the object of Smith’s attention, as revealed in the two-part track “Marceline,” an ode to the friendly vampire queen voiced by Olivia Olson on Adventure Time. After expressing her dissatisfaction with her life “spitting rhymes on Gaia,” Smith wishes for the mischievous immortal to whisk her away to space for some “loving communion.” Like all the best fan-fiction writers, Smith peppers the track with references to stuff from her source material, like the Nightosphere and the knifestorms that sometimes force the people of Ooo indoors. (Although you’d think a fan would know that Jake The Dog’s flying girlfriend steed is Lady Rainicorn, not “Lady Unicorn.”)
But love letters to fictional vampires only make up a part of Smith’s new album, which is full of exactly the sort of things you’d expect a self-serious teenager to sing about. Describing the album, Smith wrote that, “it makes me feel so blessed to be able to share my evolution with the LightEaters as I continue excavating my inner worlds…,” whatever that could possibly mean. Still, given the vast galaxy of truly awful things a 15-year-old millionaire with massively famous parents could get up to if so inclined, “self-producing an album of pleasantly spacey and pretentious music” probably deserves some sort of humanitarian award.
Prospective LightEaters can pick the album up on iTunes or Tidal; it’s also available on Spotify.