Barrel House are gathering new fans everywhere, thanks to their eclectic mix of Blues, Rock and Dance beats. Band member Dwaine Cameron is very excited about Barrel House’s upcoming performance at FOTSUN, as well as the release of the band’s debut album, Species Vagabond.
What is the history behind you guys forming as a band?
We got together about three years ago. I (Dwaine Cameron) was just playing solo in the area and wanted to be in a three piece band and ended up hooking up with Jarin Penniall on drums. We had a few jams together, then he introduced me to Jordan Howell on bass.
We roughed together a quick EP after three months and it went quite well, so that was kind of the birth of it. We’ve been going ever since – for about three years now.
How would you define your music genre and style?
Well … we’ve just finished our first album, and the album name is Species Vagabond.
Interesting name; where did that one come from?
It’s another way of saying non genre specific. We have heavy Blues influence, heavy Rock influence, and heavy Dance influence. It’s pretty well balanced – very Rocky and Dancey and Bluesy, all in the same sort of field. Species Vagabond is another way of saying group outcast, because it isn’t defined by any particular genre … but we thought vagabond was a cooler word to explain our mix of styles than outcast.
We’ve heard you boys all have your own individual riffs you like to muck around with in your jamming sessions?
Yeah, we do. We often finish a song and keep playing and get into a bit of a zone out jam – depending on the crowd, you know? If everyone is up and dancing and having a good time, we just kinda go with that and carry our songs on a bit longer and try and stay along with the vibe of the crowd to keep everyone happy.
What has been the highlight for Barrel House so far?
So far would probably be Bluesfest in Perth. Our first FOTSUN gig was really good; two years ago it was kinda our first proper festival we played at, which was pretty exciting. Then we had Bluesfest following that, which was just amazing. We had Lisa Hunt come on stage with us and play a few cameos, which was an amazing experience.
How do you like playing for the local audience like at FOTSUN?
We travel around so much; we play everywhere from Perth, to Melbourne, to Brisbane, to Adelaide. It’s really nice to come home and play a good local show. It’s much more relaxed; we don’t have to travel for hours on end, and we’re not strung out because we’re on the end of a tour. We can just chill out a bit and concentrate on putting on a really good show.
Is that what you are most looking forward to playing at Festival Of The Sun?
Yeah, definitely. With our new album we are starting a new tour in October that goes through November and then FOTSUN in December. That will be the icing on the cake for that run, the last show of that tour, and we will be happy to be home. Festival Of The Sun will be a really nice way to end it.
What should the crowd expect from a Barrel House performance?
Put their dancing shoes on. There may or may not be a hoedown style intro, but we can’t give anything away just yet … they might have to get ready to dance a bit like hillbillies. We will have a special guest, whom we are still searching for, to come on and play some percussion with us in some various forms; we’re still looking through the videos for that special talent.
So you’re still sourcing talent to date?
Yeah, we are. If anyone wants to enter, it’s fotsun.com and upload a video. We’re looking for creativity and innovation, as well as skill. Something a bit eye catching and left of centre, funky instruments etc.
Who in the music industry do you get inspiration from? Does your mixed genre mean a mix of differing artists?
It’s good, because our style of music is not straight Roots or Blues, or Rock band. We’re a bit of a mix of everything and have heavy influences like Muse, Daft Punk, John Butler Trio, and Groove Armada.
You get a bit of an idea of the outcome of the music; we have a pretty wide range of the inspiration that we draw from.
You’ve been across a pretty wide range of Oz on tours … what would you name as your favourite place to tour, or best gig so far?
Perth for us is really fun. Last time we went over to Perth, we had an absolute ball – a really good crowd and great shows, so we are really keen to get back over there in November. Different states, different people … you know. All the tours are very memorable for all different reasons.
Our first tour is surprisingly the most memorable. Starting at Port Macquarie, we went up to the Sunshine Coast over about two weeks. We had the band, my kids, our support acts and we were kinda just dragging the trailer along and everyone was there … just heaps of people and a lot of organising and inexperience, but we all had a ball – heaps of fun. It’s probably the one that sticks in our head the most.
Anything else you want to put out there from Barrel House?
We’ve just finished recording our first album, which was out early November. Stay tuned and keep your ears out for Species Vagabond.
The single will be released before then and we will be selling the CD on tour, but it doesn’t get officially released in stores until after the tour.
Our shows for our tour and release dates for the new album are all on Facebook and Myspace, so check that out. We’re pretty excited about the album. We just finished recording it last week and are really happy with the outcome – keen to get some feedback.
Thank you Dwaine.
Barrel House perform at FOTSUN on December 10th/11th.
Photo Courtesy of Matthew J Photography.