Biography All Music Guide
All Music Guide:
Princeton formed in 2005 when twin brothers Jesse and Matt Kivel and their childhood friend Ben Usen teamed up while all three were studying abroad in London. Given that they'd left most of their instruments back home in California, they only had access to the basics: an acoustic guitar, a keyboard, a tambourine, and an egg shaker. In spite of these lean conditions, the trio managed to record enough material for a mini-album, A Case of the Emperor's Clothes, which they self-released the following year. Usen and the Kivel brothers graduated from college in 2007 and returned to the Los Angeles area, where they wrote and recorded the breezy, well-read indie pop songs that would become their second release, Bloomsbury. Inspired by the various members of London's Bloomsbury Group, the EP was released on the band's own Striking Peasant records in 2008.