Elijah Barrera, better known as Action Doll Joe, is all about creating action for his listeners. As an Alt/Rock artist that hails from California's deserts, Action Doll Joe is utterly in-tune with his understanding of the power that music holds. Keeping it consistent with his ultimate goal of providing relief and therapeutic sounds to listeners, Action Doll Joe learned the ins-and-outs of music to offer energetically-infused collections of pop, alternative, rock, and slightly indie sounds. His latest construction project: "Just Dance," a song coming directly off of his EP, 'Hello!".
A fast-paced tempo immediately unwinds in "Just Dance," which kickstarts the explosive energy that's consistently emulated within the pop-infused alt/rock track. Action Doll Joe keeps a very distinguishable vocal performance throughout the entirety of this song--you can always tell when it's an Action Doll Joe production, that's for sure. His slightly monotone yet slightly impassioned tone gets easily fused into the track and offers a great contrast to the overall melody expressed within "Just Dance." Ironically, and yet completely unironically, "Just Dance" makes us want to move our bodies in one way or another, solidifying that Action Doll Joe did exactly what he set out to do--make listeners feel the essence of his forward intensity.
"Just Dance" left an impressionable sound and stood out incredibly compared to other tracks from this artist. Whatever Action Doll Joe sets out to release next, we're intrigued to see if it follows a similar pursuit present within "Just Dance."
Compared to your other tracks, "Just Dance" had detectable energy that broadly stood out. How do you personally feel that "Just Dance" contrasted and/or complemented your other music releases?
The entire Hello! EP is meant to be like me introducing myself as an artist to people, so in that regard, "Just Dance" complements the other songs by being a taste of what I can do musically. On the other hand, it contrasts with the songs because it was written later than the others, and I also figured out how I wanted my music to sound when I recorded it. I still feel like it meshes well with the EP as a debut release, but it can stand out because it is more grounded in the style I'm going for compared to the others.
What aspect of your life influenced you to write "Just Dance", and how were you hoping it would get translated across to its listeners?
"Just Dance" was influenced by watching people use any form of entertainment to distract themselves from their personal issues or vices. I've seen people avoid things like trauma, addictions, or even character flaws by continually seeking something to distract themselves; this song uses partying at a club as a metaphor, but this can range from things like sex and drugs to something simple like binging on t.v. shows (sounds stupid, but I have seen it). I realized at a young age that I never wanted to go down this same path, so this song is about making that choice and choosing to face my struggles. I hope that listeners could not only see where I am coming from but that they can also make that decision for themselves. I made this song with that in mind, so I hope listeners can learn this lesson just like I have.
You strive to construct music that is alleviating for your listeners. What type of feeling and/or effect were you trying to impart with "Just Dance?"
I guess the effect I am looking for is to get listeners to think and dance at the same time. Maybe someone has seen the same things I have but haven't really learned from it until now; maybe others have never thought about this reality, but this helps them to think about it. I hope that this could give them a feeling of relief from their own struggle with this, or even just a way to vent their frustrations. I also hope it makes them happy and feels understood. Of course, I still would like them to just have something to dance to and pick up their spirits when they feel down.
Do you see the essence of your sound falling in-line with the type of rhythm and content provided in "Just Dance?" Alternatively, do you see your next music releases being completely disparate from the energy-driven single?
Good question! I do see my sound falling more in line with the way "Just Dance" was done. My next releases have a similar energy to them, but I do plan on experimenting with new sounds and styles for other songs I'm preparing.
2020 has been a very challenging year for everyone. What has been keeping you inspired to create music? What advice can you give another artist who's finding it difficult to do so?
My source of inspiration to create music has still been the same since I started getting into music: I just want to help people with the songs I make. Music helped me during hard periods of my life, so all the music I make is made with the hope that it could help someone. Whether it causes them to think, feel understood, or just gives them something fun to listen to, this has always been my goal. My advice to anyone who's struggling to be inspired is that it can take time to find your motivation. I was always around music and entertained the idea of being a musician when I was a kid, but I never got serious about it until I entered some very troubling moments in my life. Everyone finds their own inspiration in their own way, so don't be afraid to wait for it: just face the things that happen in your life and use those experiences to inspire you. After all, some of the best musicians found inspiration from personal experiences.