The Band CAMINO joined Boston’s vibrant live music scene for the first time on Nov. 18, bringing their indie-pop music to life at the Berklee College of Music’s Red Room. Having released their second EP “Heaven” (2017) last June, the band is in the midst of a fall tour around the country, though they are mostly concentrated around their hometown of Memphis, with a majority of their tour stops in the South and Midwest.
The Red Room on Boylston Street, a venue with a 200-person capacity, provided an intimate space for the band to give a personal and captivating performance. The space, although not completely full (capping at around 120 people for the evening), was the ideal concert venue, allowing the band to connect and interact with people in the audience on a deeper level. In comparison to big venues like TD Garden, and even to smaller settings like House of Blues or Royale, which tend to leave the concertgoer feeling like a consumer of a product rather than of an experience, the Red Room elicits a more individualized experience.
Because of its proximity to both Berklee and the New England Conservatory (NEC), the Red Room tends to be a space that caters toward college students who are musically informed and who often hold a deep appreciation for a wide range of different music.
The Band CAMINO took the stage after two opening bands, Morningbird and The Wldlfe. Both openers have a similar sound to CAMINO, falling into the indie-pop genre that has become more mainstream since the popularity of artists like The 1975, Khalid and LANY. The electronic backbeats in juxtaposition with more traditional rock elements produce the sound that has begun to dominate the indie-pop scene.
Even with new drummer Caleb Hughes, who joined the band in September, replacing original band member Andrew Isbell, The Band CAMINO has begun to establish themselves as part of the alternative pop scene. They have been cultivating an image popular with college students while still keeping elements of normalcy within their lives, especially as recent college graduates and students themselves.
And although the band bears such a resemblance to The 1975 that on could call them an American knockoff, CAMINO has developed their own sound, diverging from The 1975’s slow ballads and opting for a more chill pop sound.
The performance was heartfelt and personal, the band’s set artfully interrupted with short anecdotes about both their history as a group in addition to personal quips and jokes about college, being on the road and writing music. Opening with one of their more upbeat singles, “Who Says We’re Through,” (2017) their set alternated between their more poetic, slow rock songs and their synth-inspired pop, keeping the audience engaged throughout the night. The group finished their set with “California,” (2017) which, according to vocalist and lead guitarist Jeffrey Jordan, is one of the band’s favorite songs to perform.
However, what made the show so memorable was the passion that the band had for their music and the obvious thrill they found in performing in front of an audience. The Band CAMINO has a true authenticity in their music that makes it easier to imagine them hammering out notes in their parents’ garage in a recording studio. It’s clear by their stage presence — which, while not flashy, was by no means lacking — that their attachment to their music extends beyond capitalist motivations and is a true passion project for all of them.
Despite only establishing themselves as a band two years ago, The Band CAMINO has churned out three singles and two EPs with a third to be released this winter, according to Jordan. He also hinted that the band would be returning to Boston in February 2018.
Maybe The Band CAMINO understands the plight of the broke college student. Maybe it’s just because they don’t care much for the money. Or maybe it’s a little bit of both, but with a ticket costing just $10, the marginal benefits of the concert were pretty unreal, and February’s tour dates can’t come soon enough.