Indian Jewelry and Prince Rama: Tex talks to the sisters
By Tex Kerschen
I’m not much for feelgoodery, but Prince Rama keep getting better and better. The two sisters, Taraka and Nimai Larson, sell crazy like it’s closing a run on Vegas. They have a knack for being really funny (and on purpose too) while maintaining their enthusiasm and as well as an incredible amount of sincerity. Nor are they blips of the post-internet age; they’ve already put in hard years and tough miles. They’re at a fever pitch now, zooming out records from a sweet spot. The further they go, the weirder they get, and the weirder they get the more audiences get it.
First of all, we’re all very excited to see you again. We’re huge fans of your music and your art and your recipes, and we appreciate your taking the time to chat with us.
We’re excited too!
I’m not big on metaphysics, so let’s get down to brass tacks. Is the pitch-shifter working?
Either the pitch shifter is working or the testosterone shots are.
Which version of the band will you be bringing to Day For Night? I heard a rumor that Peter Hook might have signed on; could you confirm? Whatever happened with the rap album y’all were making with Paul Laffoley? When’s that coming out?
Peter Hook offered to play bass with us, but we were more interested in resurrecting the ghost of Ian Curtis to sing in my place. Mediums have been contacted, an onstage-seance is in the early planning stages…If I disclose anymore I could ruin everything.
We made an album with Paul Laffoley back in 2010 that came out on the Denton-based private press Animal Image Search, but it’s all sold out now. Not much rapping going on, but definitely some chopped and skrewed homages. Actually just visited Paul the other day up in Boston, he has the last copy of the album on top of a stack of DVDs of different subtitled versions of “The Day The Earth Stood Still.”
I’ve often found that being in a band is only good for the occasional free coffee. The rest of it is a pain in the ass. But y’all are always smiling. Why are y’all always smiling?
To many minds, Florida and Texas are neck and neck in the race to ruin. Or, as some may say, optimized futuring without the deadweight of civilization. So, could you break a tie, which is it?
Oh Florida definitely wins that race hands down. Especially after savagely hunting down all those bears. The bears were the only thing Florida had going for it. Now there are only gators left. The only thing that could save it now if if the gators started eating all the people.
For those festival-goers unfamiliar with your ongoing collaborations with some of the social institutions that contribute to the current greatness of America, namely, Guitar Center, Monster Energy, and the Parmenides lobby, could you tell us more about this aspect of your work? Besides the obvious financial remunerations, in what other ways do these communities and their sizable legacies enable your music and art practices?
Oh, they don’t enable our music and art practices… It’s actually the other way around. We enable them. Some bands are sponsored by corporations. We’d rather sponsor the corporations ourselves. We buy their products and market them how we’d like to see them marketed. That way we can retain full creative liberties over how we want to present their brand. For instance, we installed a post-apocalyptic Guitar Center in a reclaimed warehouse in Bushwick and invited a bunch of their staff to come and do a performance where they’d just shred on guitars simultaneously for hours on end. It sounded fucking great. Almost as good as a real Guitar Center on any given Tuesday afternoon after work. Around them we had stuff for sale, but it was all just pictures of guitars and mixers and pro-audio equipment that we had ripped out of Guitar Center catalogs. People could make an offer and buy whatever they wanted. I think we brought Guitar Center a lot of business that day.
As far as Monster Energy goes, we’ve been sponsoring them for almost three years now, since the winter of 2013. We were asked by the Whitney to do a pop-up installation in one of their galleries, so we thought we’d make our own futuristic Whitney Biennial 2067: Sponsored by Monster Energy. It made sense to us that in the future energy drinks would be sponsoring art biennials. So we reached out to Monster to see if they were interested in sponsoring our event. They just wrote back with one line- “What’s the Whitney?” When we explained what it was, they rejected us. We realized then and there that if we wanted to get Monster on board to sponsor our biennial, we’d have to do it ourselves. Since then we’ve been having them “sponsor” lots of events of ours- art exhibits, shows, tours, recording sessions- even our outfits! I really think we’ve helped to diversify their image a lot. Now whenever people see Monster logos on instagram or on the street, they tag us instead of Monster Energy. Someone told me anytime they see a Monster Energy logo they think of Prince Rama. Which is great for us because there are Monster logos everywhere! It’s the cheapest band ad campaign ever.
Furthermore, while you’re here in Texas, why not work directly with the Energy industry? Oil & Gas are in a slump right now, slashing jobs left and right and leaving the future of this region in a terribly precarious situation, but nothing lasts forever. In the larger scheme of things, Energy Drinks are just one facet of the Energy Industry. Would not this sort of thing could be copacetic to our yearning for a total synergy between artists and industry?Honestly, we’re not really into that kind of energy. It’s too wasteful. Our energy tastes are lean and clean and serve an alchemical purpose. Consume Monster, Unleash the Beast, Transform the Beast into Beauty. Consume shit, turn it into gold in the hermetically sealed container of your body. Bam. No wasteful byproducts. The new album we’re working on is mostly fueled by Monster Energy- Monster Energy for us is a therapeutic way of tapping into our inner demons and releasing them through a transformative sonic process. If that’s not synergy between artists and industry, I don’t know what is.