It’s refreshing when a band’s name is so appropriate that the name eventually comes to define its sound. With just an EP to its name, New York’s The Flesh can already say as much – insanely dancey, decadent hooks just scratch the surface of the band’s multi-layered, mazelike song structure. Never has something so stripped-down and raw sounded so … well, fleshy. The Death Connection EP, released on Kanine Records, produces a hybrid of such distinctive sounds – eclectic beats and infectious melodies – that its facets are only outdone by the sheer tenebrous mood within. It would be post-punk if it weren’t for that R&B groove. It would be electro if it weren’t for that sleazy rock & roll passion. The title track would already be anthemic even if it didn’t break out in a chilling Cars-esque crescendo. That’s the hook. Just as the sound seems to set in, it awkwardly, yet successfully jolts in another direction. Blending all of this in just under 14 minutes would otherwise be impressive if it weren’t the point entirely. Nathan Halpern’s brooding vocals and complementary guitar work stabilize Jason Binnick’s relentless bass line, while Gabriella Zappia’s stinging keyboards and Greg Rogove’s forward-march drums add an emulous depth to the raw sound. Recently, the Weekly Dig caught up with Halpern just as the band returned from a short UK tour.

OK, so, as of December 2003, is it a good or bad thing to be “a New York band?”

You work all day, you write and rehearse all night, so you don’t sleep. We’re just obsessed, and we live on that feeling of tension, and New York City is perfect for people like us.

Technically, you’re a Brooklyn-based band. Is Brooklyn still reprazentin’?

I heard that Andre 3000 of Outkast is moving to Fort Green, so it’s about to get a whole lot better.

Do you think people will hear the immediate post-punk influence and not bother attaching themselves to the other styles and layers of The Flesh?

The only important moment between the audience and the band is when someone sees herself in the song and goes with it to a new place. All we can do is make the song and give it up with all the truth we’ve got.

Do the association tags and labels belittle what you’re trying to accomplish musically in the first place?

We make our songs to please ourselves. But it means the world to us when somebody makes a real connection to it. That’s why we bust ass to get our songs out there, focused as they can be, so they can be heard by the people that they’re gonna mean something special to. That other stuff is meaningless.

Desire seems to be a theme constantly popping up in the music; there’s a dark sense of yearning throughout the EP.

Our lives are nothing more and nothing less than the sum of our desires and what we choose to do about them. There’s something beautiful about asserting what you want in the face of death and disappointment, striving in the face of futility. It’s nobly irrational, and making music is the same. We know what we’re going for, but we don’t know why. We know it when we feel it.

I read Jason and Greg have both scored independent films. How does that influence the band’s direction and sound?

Jason’s also scored theater pieces and Gabriella composed soundtracks to her own films. When we make a song, it’s a world with its own logic, and every little thing we do has to build the bigger picture. Everybody in the band’s real sensitive to that, and that’s why we work well together. Narrative or not, the song is a story, so everybody has to really feel the story – and that’s why we were meant to be together.

Is the Death Connection EP a good indication of what Boston audiences will experience live?

The live performance is very much our life, and we’re really looking forward to playing for everybody in Boston. Each show is a new chance; it’s a compulsion, and we just can’t stop it.