In some aspects, Jason Friedman and Eleanore Everdell are your stereotypical Brooklyn kids. He’s a musician. She’s a singer. They’re in a hip band and chose to name themselves by flipping through an American history book until they found an alliteration they enjoyed just enough: the Hundred in the Hands.

Yet, after listening to their debut EP, This Desert, you tend to catch a different vibe. What that vibe is, I’m still not sure.

The two and their drum machine spent last summer prepping a mini-EP – only half a dozen songs – to confuse the shit out of the iTunes genre button. They self-describe This Desert as, “the summertime-gothic and dreamy tracks we made thinking they’d go well with open hydrants and looks that kill.”

What does that mean? It does very little to help classify these records that seemingly do all they can to declassify themselves. Almost overabundant with genre-crossing influences, songs like “Tom Tom” play out like pop-y dance tracks over a dub drum line. Others reminisce of vintage French house, while “Sleepwalking” sounds like the open for a Ladyhawke single. It’s “ethereal, gauzy” and strikingly impressive in reach.

“Both of us come from backgrounds where we’re more kind of like punk and weird. This whole project for both of us was going for it a little bit,” explains Everdell. “It’s really hooky melodies and going back to all the songs throughout our life and earlier ’60s, ’50s – proper pop songs that really do something to you right when they start.”

As ambitious and nondescript as it sounds, the Hundred in the Hands were successful in fulfilling their vision. Their first song together, “Dressed in Dresden,” was an absolute hit – evidenced by the propensity of NYC deejays to remix it.

Desert will no doubt continue to build the fanfare, as will their coming September release, with a sound that lends itself incredibly to 808s and tempo tuning. As Everdell notes, the result is always a tad rougher around the edges than your typical electro-pop.

“Whether or not it’s kind of an accident, I think that we do end up with a dirtier sound than traditional dance and electro stuff, and I like that. We’re not just up on stage with five synths,” she says.

Friedman’s guitar is responsible for a lot of the “dirtier sound” on the records, providing the human element that electro-pop lacks.

This Desert songs were all consciously a little more washed out,” adds Friedman. “We have another 11 songs coming out in September, and those ones have a different vibe. They’re a little more put together.”

The creators are as interesting as the creation. Friedman, the man behind the Boggs, is quite the imaginative guitarist. Meanwhile, Everdell lends the perfect dreamy voice to their collaborations. And although one would rather choose a keytar and the other a guitboard, the two have made it work.

“I think we kind of go a lot of places stylistically,” admits Everdell. “I hope it holds together as a cohesive sound.”

And somehow it does. Maybe it’s all because they are indeed Brooklyn kids. With no disrespect to Silver Lake, the BK does seem to foster quite the musical and artistic community. It’s a place where creativity (and way too many blogs) seemingly go to flourish.

“People come here with big ideas a lot of the time,” Everdell explains. “People come to the city and want to do something, and they work really hard at it. So you find a lot of people who are smart and working really hard at what they’re into. That’s exciting and inspiring to be around.”

Exciting and inspiring are notions that you get from The Desert. Still, as a genre, it’s hard to pin the savvy Hundred in the Hands. I guess it’s just Brooklyn kids being Brooklyn kids.



This Desert is currently available. The Hundred in the Hands perform June 4 at Spaceland. For more information, visit thehundredinthehands.com.