Dynasty Electric’s sophomore album Golden Arrows is one great surprise of a record, and while their brand of indie electro-pop has been described as ‘Massive Attack meets Blondie’, that label doesn’t do justice to the sexy and sultry voice of Jenny Electrik, nor does it indicate the fevered eclectism of their song catalogue. Think a young PJ Harvey or a Tory Amos saturated with sex and electrobeats, with the performance showmanship of Talking Heads.
The Brooklyn-based group was originally formed in 2002, then consisting of two high-powered individuals, Jenny Electrik (formerly known as the punk goddess Jennifer DeVeau) on vocals and theremin, and multi-instrumentalist Seth Misterka, who co-writes with Jenny. In 2010 the dummer Shimon Hirkri was added. Their influences range from The Beatles to Bjork to Miles Davis. In 2009 the hip-hop mogul Damon Dash hooked them up with noted producer SkiBeatz (Jay-Z, Camp Lo, Curren$y), resulting in Golden Arrows.
“Working with Ski Beatz was really amazing,” Seth recalls. ‘We just had a great creative chemistry right off the bat. As soon as we got together we just kept spinning out song after song. Ski is like a Zen master in the studio, and we learned so much from working with him.”
The title track Golden Arrows opens the record, with Jenny’s ethereal and charged-up vocals dominating the controlled frenzy of fuzz bass. This songs encompasses both psychedelia and electronica in an exhilarating mix, so much so that one wonders what can be done to top it. There are however, several standout tracks on the album, among them Mountain Song (a fairly standard ballad form transformed by Jenny’s outstanding vocal), and Radiation, laced with punk and grit, and Box of Time, a dance masterpiece that fully demonstrates how good a singer Jenny really is.
The sound quality of this production is remarkable – highly electronic and soulful at the same time – not a common feat and one which deserves celebration, revealing as it does all the shadings of Jenny’s strong and sensual voice.
Be sure to catch one of their explosive live shows, especially if your mind and body need a positive charge.
Watch: Golden Arrows
Watch: Bird Song