The five members of Dynamos may hail from Southern California, but don’t go listening to this track expecting to hear a bouncy anthem to the sun. Dynamos’ single release “Shake, Rattle, and Roll” rips its title from a venerable rock and roll gem and revamps the spirit behind those words with a blazing guitar-fueled rock number that has a world class singer to help put it over the top. The band’s two guitar attack strikes just the right note, never cluttered, and the band’s rhythm section has the sort of steadiness such songs demand while still expanding its reach far beyond simplified root note nonsense. This is vibrant rock and roll that breathes, crackles, and frequently catches on fire. It doesn’t attempt to remake the wheel, but that’s okay, because Dynamos prove that they are marvelously adept at pouring old wine into new bottles.
The bass playing and intermittent slashes of guitar opening the song create an early mood. It’s obvious that this is a song that’s, musically, ready to tangle with listeners and the raw-boned intimacy created by the production gives it a steady, crackling simmer. The two guitar configuration will draw a lot of attention, all of it warranted, but the true unsung heroes of this performance may be bassist Nick Schaadt and drummer Ian Nakazawa. Their propulsive musical marriage is the underlying foundation that keeps “Shake, Rattle, and Roll” such a memorable physical experience – particularly from the combination of hard hitting strength and swing Nakawaza brings to the song. Make no mistake, however, that lead guitarist Jacob Mayeda and guitarist Carlos Barrera are a potent pair and bring an arsenal of musical fireworks to bear on this performance. Mayeda, especially, punctuates the song nicely with some rather incendiary lead flourishes.
Nadia Elmistikawy’s singing is the final ingredient. There’s no question that Dynamos deliver the goods instrumentally, but they possess a genuine force of nature behind the microphone with Elmistikawy. She’s just as capable of investing the song with emotion and yearning as she is bring white-hot vocal fury down on listener’s heads and she has some perfectly solid lyrics to work off of. She makes another critical contribution to how the song turns out with the way she tailors her vocal to suit the instrumental attack – there’s no low points in the performance when she’s clearly content to coast and, instead, is trying her best throughout to present her voice as one with the music in an unified whole. Dynamos’ “Shake, Rattle, and Roll” solidifies this young band’s position as one of the most promising forces in modern rock and their clear focus on giving nothing less than a five star performance for listeners, complete in every facet of their presentation, separates them from the pack thanks to the obvious talents they show off. This is a band off to a hot start and one to keep watching as time unfolds.