Last time we caught up with the members of Prince Rama, the sisters were cooking up the perfect storm of psychedelic trance hipness for their next album, Trust Now. Taraka and Nimai Larson, who together make the Brooklyn-based cult-rock duo, promised a “more focused, cohesive, urgent, spooky” album than their past releases and described their sister-sister psychic connection as “kind of intense” and stronger than ever. Trust Now is the band’s first album since Michael Collins left the group about a year ago, but fear not—it is as hippie and as trippy as ever. You know how Kreayshawn says “I smoke a million swisher blunts and I ain’t never coming down”? Yeah, that happened to the Larson girls, only instead of smoking a million swisher blunts, they spent their formative years on a Hare Krishna farm.
To say that Trust Now is noticeably spookier and darker than past LPs would be to some extent true, but it turns out that Prince Rama’s music has always been kind of scary—after all, how are Hare Krishna farms not scary? Trust Now sounds like more Prince Rama songs as much as it sounds like more macabre Prince Rama songs, which is to say that the girls have a style all their own and they’re sticking to it. One might say that the Larson sisters are totally on their culty chant-rock swag right now. One might also say that music made by Prince Rama invariably sounds like the soundtrack to the deep inner bowels of an out-of-control endless k-hole.
Tracks like “Portaling” spiral into echoing vocals and grumbling bass that fizzle into an electro breakdown and coalesce into retro 1960s rock, and much of the lyrics on the album are gobbledygook—unless, of course, you are one of the psychically connected Larson sisters. Lines that sound like “Gobingta verbing tayang” in “Summer Of Love” are examples of the language Prince Rama made up themselves, which is a Brooklynese mixture of Hare Krishna chants and complete gibberish. It is moments like those that serve as evidence of the Larson sisters’ alleged total sobriety—no one can get that freaking high. Doing drugs would only make Prince Rama’s music less trippy, because even Owsley’s best is not as psychedelic as what comes out of the Larson girls.
The clearest singing on Trust Now occurs in the last track, “Golden Silence,” a sweepingly magnificent buildup of haunting vocals and dark, pulsing synth in which a Larson chants things like “Spirit hold me” and “There is a fire in every stone.” Over the course of four and a half minutes, her singing becomes progressively higher in pitch and less intelligible, wrapping up the album with the shortest track on the list. Most of the six songs on Trust Now are more than six minutes long, giving the sisters time to lose track of all reality during each number. The bass churns, chimes tinkle, and tribal drums patter rhythmically, drawing listeners into wide-eyed sonic journeys only Prince Rama could cook up.