Following the 2013 breakup of the Regrettes, keyboardist James Allison retreated from the spotlight, unsure what musical direction he might pursue next.

Following the 2013 breakup of the Regrettes, keyboardist James Allison retreated from the spotlight, unsure what musical direction he might pursue next.

"It had to start out with me trying to find my voice," said Allison, 28, who will be making his live debut with his new project Digisaurus during an EP release show at Spacebar on Friday, June 19. "The songs were all over the map. I've got all these demos where I'm trying to sound like Morrissey, and it's cool, but I didn't necessarily feel comfortable in that [guise]."

These experimentations gradually pushed Allison toward a more electronic, dance-based sound informed by acts like Big Data, Gorillaz and Daft Punk. In addition to serving as a source of musical inspiration, these artists offered a new template for how to approach the project, since Allison had little desire to work within a more traditional band structure this time around.

"I've been in three bands now that have all been on the cusp of going somewhere, and I didn't want to be in a position again where my fate was in so many other people's hands," said Allison, who logged time in the Blastronauts and the Town Monster in addition to his stint with the Regrettes. "I really wanted to decide my own fate."

Digisaurus, in turn, functions as something of an open marriage, where musicians are free to contribute, but can step away when "life comes up," as Allison termed it.

"When you're in a band you have to work at your weakest link's speed, and that's often what holds bands back," said the frontman, who will be joined for the concert by a lineup that includes backup singer Lizzy Morris, guitarist Jeremy Fina, bassist Eric Groseclose, and Matt Whistlar and Mike Rist, who will split drum duties. "It's like, 'Oh, four of your best dudes got together and they were 15 when they started and they're going to be together the rest of their lives.' It's a very romanticized concept, the band."

This desire to approach the music from unexpected angles carried over into the experimental recording sessions, where hours-long jams would center on a single concept ("The theme tonight is going to be wobbly bass sounds") and samples were occasionally cobbled together from unlikely sources, like a phone recording of chattering guinea pigs.

"So much of it was just trying things. If it sucked it sucked, but we had to know," said Allison, who traces this free-spirited side to the first time he picked up a guitar as a teenager following years spent studying the piano. "I could approach [the guitar] on my terms, and I think that stuck with me. Having the opportunity to really express yourself is what everyone wants."