Experimental | Electronic | Futurepop
Things have weirdly gone full circle with Dorian Electra and my written work. And what I mean by this, is that this innovative artist’s debut album, 2019’s Flamboyant, became the last album to be reviewed by myself as part of last year’s, last minute reviews week (an exercise I conducted in which I wrote one short album review for album’s I missed in 2019, in the week leading up to Christmas), and that exercise served as the closure of my activity on Blogger (formerly Blogspot) before moving to Medium. So with that being said, It is nice for my 100th record review this year (including articles outside of Medium), to be for a brand new album from Dorian Electra, via this platform.
But admittedly, I wasn’t expecting another album release so soon from the brilliant mind of the transgender, genderfluid, Houston-based, and independent singer/songwriter Dorian Electra, especially given just how complete and creative their debut album sounded. But after a consistent amount of teaser tracks caught my attention from May onwards, I felt that the start of a back-to-back yearly streak was imminent.
But as much as the prospect of a new album excited me, I initially failed to get the same kind of wow-factor from the teaser tracks of 2020 that I did with Flamboyant. The factors behind this included the brief durations that many of these tracks had, as well as what seemed like a change in style that felt more like 100 gecs than Dorian Electra.
That being said, the bar I set for the sophomore album that is My Agenda was fairly low, and I predicted it to be a solid effort that didn’t quite match up to the amazingness of Flamboyant. Therefore, it came as a pleasant surprise to find that My Agenda turned out to be a pretty amazing album too.
I feel that in a sense, this album takes itself slightly less seriously than Flamboyant. but this only gives the album more creative freedom to be a more fun and enjoyable listen. I mean, if The Village People and Pussy Riot featuring on the same track doesn’t show this album’s near-uncanny level of creativity, I genuinely don’t know what will.
However, the creativity doesn’t simply stop with the features; My Agenda stands as a grossly enchanting amalgamation of different musical styles. While the likes of Dorian Electra’s debut album felt more consistent with it’s Future-Pop sound, My Agenda adopts elements of Punk-Rock, Hip-Hop, and even Dubstep.
And while the chaotic nature is favourable in some aspects of this album, the same is harder to say about other qualities of the album. Conceptually, My Agenda feels like a clash of two personas; the first being somebody who has newly discovered their sexuality, still settling in to the newfound truth, and the other being a fedora-wearing, incel edgelord. And while these two personas separately, create great aesthetics, they are in need of clarity when dumped together on this album. While listening to it, I theorized that My Agenda might be trying to tell a story of the transition between one persona and the next. But if that is the case, it is simply a matter of re-ordering the songs to give My Agenda a truly strong narrative.
But when all is said and done, My Agenda focuses on the most important quality an album could have; and that is it’s raw enjoyability. And paired against Flamboyant, I feel that the only fair verdict would be to praise them equally, as they are both great albums for different reasons. But in terms of how these two albums reflect on Dorian Electra, they only show just how much of a musical genius they really are.
Favourite Tracks: My Agenda | M’Lady | Barbie Boy
Least Favourite Track: Monk Mode