Durand Jones & the Indications aren’t looking backwards.
Helmed by foil vocalists in Durand Jones and drummer Aaron Frazer, the Indications conjure the dynamism of Jackie Wilson, Curtis Mayfield, AND the Impressions. Even with an aesthetic steeped in the golden, strings-infused dreaminess of early ‘70s soul, the Indications’ sophomore LP, American Love Call, is planted firmly in the present, with the urgency of this moment in time.
The Indications’ 2016 self-titled debut was the product of friends who met as students at Indiana University in Bloomington, In., recorded for $452.11, including a case of beer. American Love Call, the band’s sophomore LP is instead the record the Indications dreamed of making, fleshed out with strings, backing vocals, and a newfound confidence in songwriting.
Blending a slew of influences from years spent crate-digging, guitarist Blake Rhein says the Indications approach songs in the same way hip-hop producers do, as likely to pull inspiration from ‘70s folk-rock or classic R&B as they are Nas’ Illmatic.
“Did I expect to do this shit once I got out of college? Hell no,” Jones relays, laughing. “Totally not. But this is what God is telling me to do – move and groove. So I’m gonna stay in my lane.”
“My grandma always heard me singing at home, and she said, ‘I’m gonna put your ass in the youth choir,’” remembers Durand Jones, “I was reluctant. But one day the organist could hear me in the choir, and said ‘boy I’m gonna give you a song.’ So I sang the song… the whole church just flipped out. People were running and jumping and afterwards they were giving me money and stuff. Man it was really cool. That’s when the realization came that maybe I could make something of this.”
Their fiery single, “Smile” caught the ear of regional record-man Terry Cole of Colemine records, who swiftly pressed up a batch of 45s. Initially a sensation among record collectors, Durand Jones & The Indications began to receive recognition from music fans of all kinds.
“Easily one of the best deep soul albums we've heard in years.” – DUSTY GROOVE
“… soul music that's so much of the old school that it might as well drive a car with fins.” - MILWAUKEE JOURNAL SENTINEL
"The album is beautifully produced...Jones absolutely dominates the songs with his powerful, soulful and ever-evolving voice.” - SPILL MAGAZINE