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Indian Jewelry: Free Gold!

Indian Jewelry made a small mark in indie-rock two years ago with Invasive Exotics' experiments in aggressively disconnected garage-psychedelia. Apparently the band hasn't reached any conclusions, as the follow-up, Free Gold!, continues tinkering with lo-fi junkyard slur-pop. But instead of traipsing aimlessly through a sonic wasteland, Free Gold! sharpens its focus: The pulsing, nerve-pinching freakouts and dramatic mood shifts are still there, but there's a coherent structure to the album. A deliberate pacing underlies songs with connected grooves (such as "Temporary Famine Ship"), more closely recalling the least retrained psych-rock of the '60s. People looking for it will find elements of The Doors, The Velvet Underground, and others (the wonderfully eerie "Everyday" sounds like The Mamas And The Papas at a funeral), but Free Gold's noisemakers are more distant. Soaked in cheap reverb ("Walking On The Water"), murky instrumentation ("Bird Is Broke (Won't Sing)"), and oozing vocals, the album feels like a more reclusive The Jesus And Mary Chain. Thankfully, though, the tighter foundation of Free Gold! makes it easier to follow the band through its dystopic dreamland.

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