Indian Jewelry is a van gang from Houston, Texas. I to the J. Blood on the streets.
TOTALED is their latest record, and their third album for We Are Free/Monitor Records.
TOTALED is weird, dirty and to the point, a direct line to the one true Indian Jewelry under Heaven.
No genre, no rules, no help.
IJ hasn’t turned away from cracked cymbals, feedback, and burning amps. They’re running them through more fx.
Erika Thrasher and Tex Kerschen wrote and recorded the record in 2009 in Houston and Los Angeles. TOTALED is the sum of hundreds of shows on the road and hundreds of hours under headphones. The songs were developed with Richard Durham, Mary Sharpe, and Rodney Rodriguez.
TOTALED is a crash course in sound + vision. In it is the swamp electro of 2003’s We Are The Wild Beast, the nightmare throb of 2005’s Invasive Exotics, and the sonic angel dream of 2008’s Free Gold. This is an encounter with the true and the truly fucked up… woozy and heartpounding and subject to double-vision.
It’s like arriving to the beach, headspun and weightless after a sleepless night, only to remember that a hurricane has come and wiped almost everything away. Hard grass crawls back over the improvised dunes, a few men fish in the surf, and Tejano music plays from the speakers of a parked pick-up.
If you’re hearing funk, that’s because they spend their time at home playing in Houston’s Prince cover band ‘Diamonds+Pearls.’
If you’re hearing anything else, that’s the sound of Houston underwater.
“Indian Jewelry … seem to permanently inhabit a sensual, raw netherworld where curls of smoke drift before your eyes. While not exactly goth, their sound is dark and sort of organically industrial, a soft, ritualistic dronecore conjured from yawning electronic noise, tumbleweed guitar, and disco beats. It’s a growling, prowling, synthetic powwow stomp, glamorous in every sense of the word, but you won’t need a sage or a
sigil to figure it out. This is tantric, orgasmic, blood-warming, bone-rattling music, and I’d give my firstborn to join their cult.” Liz Armstrong, Chicago Reader, 2006.
“To be perfectly honest, I am not quite sure what in the hell this is, and it kind of freaks me out a little bit (and not just the paganistic, blood- splattered cover art). There are synths, piled on in dense layers, pulsing, groaning and grinding, a swooping noise used as rhythm, drums that sound like they are coming from next door, and what I can only guess is a horrendously distorted guitar being hit with something. It all gets stirred together into loping, lurching groove, and up pops the broken tape-recorder vocals. You get an album full of tunes played through thick layers of nasty haze, kind of like how the Swell Maps used to do it, but much more threatening. If you like being unsettled, definitely check this out.”+++ david christensen, fake jazz, 2003.
“Here, time is cellular… just a dream, underground, waiting to be found by starving shepherds and taken to jaded hunters. Who will fall on their bionic knees.” +++Don Allred, Village Voice, 2004.
“Indian Jewelry have invented their own sonic language through which to pump all their endless paranoia, panache and aplomb. Must be scary to be the competition.” Tiny Mix Tapes
“Indian Jewelry stand at a kind of musical crossroads where the gloriously dark moments of rock n’roll’s past hang side by side with clunky rave synths and a droned-out attitude. The stuff of Indian Jewelry is that primal, dark rock n’roll. The sixties as apocalyptic nightmare, as Altamont; the seventies as lawless New York where proto-punks Suicide endure pain to convey their message, filtered through an old Polaroid of the near ethereal, a fading glamour emerges, an almost holy release. Do they see their music as dark? “Any music lighter than ours is only fit for playing in elevators or energy drink commercials.” states Erika who claims she ultimately wants to reach “the Mexico of the mind”. This, coupled with a large, revolving line-up leads me to believe Indian Jewelry could make a pretty nifty cult: “We’d sell your sister to your mother, but we’d only rent your brother to your uncle.” Paul Hanford, Dazed and Confused, 2008.
“Indian Jewelry do not make dark music to trip to; they make dark music to pack with you on spirit quests. Taking the bad acid freak-out aesthetic of fellow Texans the Butthole Surfers, and cutting it in with the droning electronic menace of Suicide, Indian Jewelry are the new robot shamans, projecting nano-bot visions on expansive wastelands and conjuring snippets of digitized desolation… “
Stylus Magazine, 2006.
“Houston noise rockers Indian Jewelry are slinging all types of mad metallics with their third full-length album, Free Gold! True to form, the band has once again morphed into a new and thrilling version of itself, but don’t fret! Still present are the synth-waves of sound pulsating with urgency, the incessant tom-tom drums, and menacing vocals running through miles of fuzz and delay pedal. ” Camella Lobo, Venus Zine, 2008.
“For a bunch of wayward hippies there is something completely savage, hypnotic and nocturnal about the psychedelic rumbles of this Houston, Texas-based ensemble.” The Independent UK, 2008
03/12 Denton, TX NX35
03/20 Austin, TX SXSW / Cheer Up Charlie’s AKA Ms. Bea’s
03/21 Monterrey, Mexico MtyMx
04/23 Austin, TX The Mohawk / Austin Psych Fest 3
04/24 Norman, OK Norman Fest
(We Are Free)
Street Date: May 11, 2010
Never Been Better
Parlous Siege & Chapel
Heaven’s World Destroyer
Touching the Roof of the Sun