Camera Cult, a new duo between friends David Gonzalez and Ricky Vazquez, will open for Nashville-based Hardcastle Wednesday at East End’s Satellite Bar. With the debut of singles “Heart Brakes” and “Don’t Hang Out” in 2016, this energetic band reminiscent of Classix and Chromeo sits at a crossroads. After experimenting with a synth-heavy, four-on-the-floor sound, the duo says they’re contemplating a more eclectic R&B production style in the vein of The Weeknd and Kanye West.
But, for now, they describe themselves as “Indie synth-pop that’ll make even the too-cool-for-school crowd shake it.” Houstonia spoke to Gonzalez and Vazquez ahead of their show about their beginnings, their inspiration and their future.
How did you guys meet?
Basically, David and I met in high school in our freshman year. Like, the first day of freshman year we had a class together. We were friends throughout high school, but it wasn’t until afterwards that we started working together on music. We’ve been a band since 2015 but we had a third member that eventually left. That’s when our music started to gel and come together a lot more efficiently and creatively.
Why did the third band member leave?
It was definitely creative differences. He really wanted to go into more of a funky, disco ‘80s vibe and we wanted to keep it contemporary and modern with our music.
Listening to your music, I got a really cool ‘80s throwback vibe. How would you describe your style?
It’s kind of hard for us to describe it because we’ve been reviewed by a few other Houston writers and the always put us in a retro ‘80s genre. I understand why a lot of people would. If you heard our first two singles, I totally get that’s a super ‘80s influence. Now we derive a lot of our inspiration from modern acts like Neon Indian and Toro y Moi. We would describe it as simply as indie synth-pop.
You guys have been putting out singles, but do you have any plans for a full album in the future?
Full lengthwise, no, we don’t really have any serious plans for that. I don’t think we really want to do anything as far as an LP until we feel like we’ve reached a big audience. I think for now we want to release singles here and there and maybe an EP next year.
Although you guys dismiss an ‘80s influence, I really love it in your music. Do you ever see that evolving into something else?
I think so. I think there’s obviously always room to grow for any artist. We do take a lot of influence aesthetically now from hip-hop and R&B and that’s something we really like on the side. From hearing our music, you really couldn’t tell that. Musicians like The Weeknd, Travis Scott and Kanye West. Those three artists really get us going lately. I think if we ever did evolve it would be more in the production of that style of music.
Right now you guys are working in the studio. Can you tell me what y’all are working on?
We are working on a lot of rough ideas that we’ve been sketching out for the past few months. We try not to force anything out creatively because we feel once we try to force a song to come out it’s really stale.
I’m also really digging the vocals in your tracks. What can you tell me about the inspiration behind your lyrics and the song writing process?
I think if someone were to pay attention to our lyrics, they would notice that a lot of them were inspired by breakups and trying to get over them. A lot of our songs are about breakups, but in the sense that it’s okay to move on or I’m confident with myself to get over this. Growing up there were always people telling us to write about what we know. What we do know is about relationships and why they do and don’t work at times. The song writing process is easy for the two of us because we work really well together. It’s easy to bounce ideas off of each other and there’s less people to answer to for sure as opposed to someone in a band with four or five people.
Camera Cult, Hardcastle and Whale Bones. Tickets from $8. Satellite Bar, 6922 Harrisburg Blvd. 713-425-6669. More info at satellitehtx.com.