The Band CAMINO are feeling anything but the sophomore slump.
On Friday, the Nashville-based trio — featuring Garrison Burgess on drums and Jeffery Jordan and Spencer Stewart on vocals and guitar — released their second full-length album, The Dark. Then on Sept. 14 they’re set to kick off their Screaming In the Dark tour.
During a recent chat with PEOPLE, the band talked about the “pressure” that comes with embarking on this new era, which follows the release of their self-titled debut in 2021.
“I think there’s pressure because we want to do right by the people who have believed in us,” Jordan says. “Also, at the end of the day, we have to remind ourselves that we make music for a living. So the worst thing that can happen is it doesn’t go viral, and then we make more music later. So the worst case scenario is still pretty awesome.”
Since the release of their debut EP My Thoughts on You in 2016, the band — which was formed in 2015 by Jordan and Stewart while they attended the University of Memphis together (Burgess later joined in 2017) — has opened for the likes of The Killers, Twenty One Pilots and Dan + Shay. Their 2019 song “Daphne Blue” has also amassed more than 45 million Spotify streams.
Throughout their eight-year grind as a band, Jordan says “music has been a way of helping me understand myself and my feelings.”
“It helps me explain my heart and my brain in ways word never could,” he continues. “So I’m remembering why this was my dream in the first place, [especially when] the music industry can be tiresome with how fast things move, how slow things move.”
Adds Burgess: “Without sounding pessimistic, sometimes you go through those phases where you’re like, ‘Man, I think I hate music.’ But you don’t. You have to find that childlike innocence of, ‘Man, I love what I do and the reasons that I do it,’ whether it’s for other people or yourself or whatever. A lot of people around the world seem to really like The Band CAMINO, and that’s crazy and so cool.”
Here are five things to know about the rising rock band.
Taylor Swift Is a Fan
Taylor Swift used her skills as a “Mastermind” to bring the current The Band CAMINO lineup together — without even knowing it. In 2018, the superstar put the band’s song “Berenstein” on a playlist of songs she loved.
“That was a pinch me moment,” Jordan says. “We were on our first-ever U.S. tour opening for this band called The Dangerous Summer in 200 to 300 capacity rooms. So we were just stoked to be out there in the van. One day someone texted one of us and was like, ‘Congrats on the Taylor Swift playlist.’ We were like, ‘What do you mean?’ We looked it up, and we were like, ‘Holy s—.’ That was probably five months before we met Garrison. So Taylor Swift led us to Garrison somehow.”
“Thank you, Taylor,” adds Stewart.
Their Beloved Hit “Daphne Blue” Was Born from Their First-Ever Co-Write
In addition to the Taylor Swift approval, Burgess knew he wanted to join the band when he heard “Daphne Blue.” “I was like, ‘I should play in this band,'” he recalls.
Stewart and Jordan say the song was born from their first-ever co-write. They traveled to Nashville with singer Seth Ennis and their producer Jordan Schmidt.
“‘Daphne Blue’ was the first time we had written a song with someone that wasn’t in our band, which was weird and scary, but also they were both fans of what we’d done so far, and they knew what we were trying to do and what we were trying to say,” Jordan says. “I think that moment definitely opened the doors to a lot of people finding our band. That song got a lot of attention at the time, and on the inside, it did a lot for us as far as our creative process. If we hadn’t written that song, who knows if we would’ve started working with Jordan, our producer. And that’s been a relationship now for five years. And then Seth, we’ve written with him constantly since then.”
Their New Album Has Been a Long Time Coming
As they’ve made The Dark, Jordan says it’s been “a lot of hurry up and wait.”
“We were working every day to finish the album and then once we finished recording, we were mixing, we were mastering, we were doing all this stuff for months at a time,” he says. “And then we turned in the album to the label in March, and they were like, ‘Cool, we’re going to put it out in August.’ We’ve been getting it done as fast as we can, like, ‘OK, album is coming out in August, and tour is starting in September. We have five months to just get ready and work on all kinds of things.'”
Jordan adds that the trio all “balance each other out.”
“We’ve made a lot of music together, so we can read each other without having to over-explain how we’re feeling,” he says.
They Aren’t Afraid to Show Their Emotional Sides
Love is a major theme on The Dark, and as Stewart puts it, he and his bandmates are “all pretty emotional men.”
“It’s a cool culture in the songwriting community where you can be vulnerable and not concerned that you’re going to be judged because there’s somebody else in the room that’s about to do the exact same thing,” he says. “Our job is to share. So you have to think of it in a way that it’s not only for your benefit, but it’s for somebody else’s benefit.”
When it comes to songs about exes, Jordan says they mostly take a “put it out there” approach.
“There have been situations maybe where if something is a little bit more personal, if you’re sharing something that you feel like is personal to them or whatever, you would want to reach out and be like, ‘Hey, I’m going to say this. How do you feel about this?'” he says. “But I think for us it’s more about, ‘I went through a breakup and this is how I feel.’ It’s just you getting it out for yourself.”
Adds Stewart: “It’s universal. Most people have gone through breakups and gone through these feelings, so they can touch a lot of different lives and different relationships.”
They Have Stadium Dreams
As they look to the future, the band is continuing to dream big.
“We opened for Dan + Shay on tour and got to play Madison Square Garden in New York, which was pretty wild,” Jordan says. “The next goal is to headline it. It’s attainable, but we got to put in the hours, as Dwayne Johnson says.”
For now, though, they’re focused on their upcoming tour.
“It’s over a year and a half since we played a US headlining tour, so it’s time to rip it,” Burgess says. We’re all very excited.”