By Jeremy Hallock
By James Khubiar
By Observer Staff
By Kelly Dearmore
By Jim Schutze
By Rachel Watts
By Lauren Drewes Daniels
Kevyn Green, the mastermind behind Denton's Dharma, is an intelligent young woman—something that, along with her eccentricities, one might notice during casual conversation. What could be surprising to the uninformed passerby, however, is the confidence, command and certainty with which she captivates during live performances.
"It's fun to play," Green says. "Fun to play in front of people, fun to be someone else in front of others."
With a tape release titled Flesh in 2009, a recent LP called Technology and Truth released on the Copenhagen-based Skrot Up label and a healthy amount of bookings to her name, Green has caught plenty of attention of late. But the attention arises from more than just the quality of her music. She's also been earning accolades for her showmanship, which has quickly helped establish Dharma as one of the more interesting acts to see live in the area.
As an electronic musician, Green has been experimenting and working on music since her days in the duo Peace Corpse while she was a student at Texas Woman's University. She spent the last two years of her undergraduate degree at the University of Texas at Austin working on the same project, but started to focus more on Dharma during that time, too.
"We were just really bored, and it's a good output of energy and frustration," Green says, noting that her early work was simply a creative outlet.
When Dharma blossomed shortly thereafter, Green took what little equipment she had and the knowledge of production she had gained from her previous collaboration, and combined them into a new project with its own distinctly identifiable sound.
"It's trash...pop," says Green, clearly not wanting to give too much thought to what genre tag her music falls under. It's not a bad description, though, taking into account the melodic nature and percussive simplicity of her music, especially when it's combined with the distant vocals and deliberately stripped-down sound quality Dharma also offers as part of its well-executed, yet jumbled, spookiness.
Drawing from influences such as Fad Gadget and Arab on Radar, Green's music harkens back to earlier decades of electronic music, and could be considered part of the current movement of '80s revivalist artists in the region.
Green is already planning work on new material—most likely utilizing her recently acquired Roland SH-101 synthesizer. She's also planning on branching out of Denton: Her next show comes Saturday at Dallas' Pastime Tavern. The show is only Green's second performance in Dallas. But don't expect it to be her the last.