“Our music could be described as an auditory assault on the central nervous system through aggressive electronic rhythms. We are highly influenced by Tony Scott, The Smiths, The Prodigy, and Christopher Walken.”
So says Donny Fontaine, male vocalist for the hyperkinetic dance trio Hyper Crush. If the statement sounds sarcastic or funny – or both – then mission accomplished. The group, whose other members are female vocalist Holly Valentine and “keytarist” Preston Meronie, specializes in block-rockin’ beats that owe a little to ‘80s era Human League and Depeche Mode, a bit to current synth-driven duos Daft Punk and Mouse on Mars, and the rest to a devil-may-care, happily hedonistic attitude all its own.
Tirelessly gigging around its Los Angeles base and promoting its self-released albums, including the well-received The Arcade, on its MySpace site, the group eventually signed with Universal Motown in late 2008 and is currently working on an album that may or may not be called Bella Vista Rocks The Arcade, a name the group threw out during a past interview with tongues somewhat in cheek.
At any rate, the album, expected to incorporate reworked versions of some of The Arcade’s songs, will definitely include samples from any number of Nintendo and Sega games, long a mainstay of Hyper Crush’s sound, as evidenced by the video for longtime favorite “Robo Tech,” which combines early ‘80s “sci-fi” graphics with overt nods to that era’s cult hit Tron.
Small wonder, then, that the group found itself opening for the like-minded Lady GaGa on her recent European tour. While not quite in the Lady’s league when it comes to over-the-top concert presentations, Hyper Crush is fast gaining a reputation for the intense sensory bombardment during its own gigs.
“We’re not scared to burn some people’s eyes out with lasers,” Fontaine deadpans.
And, while most dance-oriented groups’ fame is usually fleeting, Hyper Crush figures to be around for awhile.
“In two years [we’ll] probably be traveling throughout the world and performing,” Fontaine muses. “Five years, we’ll have released our 25th album and have grossed a total sale of 24,000 records worldwide. In 10 years we will be doing another interview with you guys from San Quentin penitentiary.”