After six years, Brian Barrett’s dream of being a rock star has come true. The SoCal-expat provides haunting vocals and impressive guitar skills to local indie rock band, Syas. This month, the band just released its first album, Stained Glass.
Barrett took some time from his schedule to chat with us about the band’s journey so far.
So, you’re from Seattle, right?
I’m from Southern California, actually. But, I’ve been in Seattle for about six years.
How are you adjusting to the weather? It’s a pretty big contrast.
I tell people I had about 20 years of sun, so I got my fill.
Talk about your new album, Stained Glass. From what I read, it’s autobiographical?
It’s really about the events that happened before and after I moved to Seattle. It’s about dealing with relationships, and changes in my life that inspired me to move on and start a new chapter up here.
I’ve been playing music for a while, and I’ve always been attracted to music scene in Seattle. It’s much more vibrant and genuine than Southern California.
Really? How so?
The scene in California is dominated by L.A. It’s the driving force for the entire scene for the rest of California. It’s very dictated by the image and presentation of band, as supposed to content and substance. Seattle is much more different. It’s the opposite of that.
What’s the hardest thing about self-promoting your band?
It’s difficult because it’s so hard to put number on the work that you do. I may put in hours of work promoting one show and get almost nothing back. It happened to me at our last show at the Comet, actually. But, our most recent show, I barely promoted it, just told friends and stuff, and we had the biggest turnout we’ve ever had.
From whom or what do you draw inspiration?
My biggest influence is a local band called, Sunny Day Real Estate. The Vocals in particular are amazing. Another one is Explosion in the Sky. It’s big, epic, instrumental. Like a rock version of classical music.
Who are you listening to right now?
More than anything, I’m split between two types. I’ve been listening to classical on King FM, and on the complete opposite side, late 70s- early 80s arena rock. It’s like the candy of music. It has no substance, but it’s tons of fun to listen to.
In your opinion, who is the next big thing?
There are a couple really awesome bands up here. Clouds over Moscow is mind-blowingly good. I really hope they are the next big thing because there is a real emphasis on the technicality and complexity of the music. There are a few bands that are doing this, and are really amazing at it.
Syas will perform an album release party at the Skylark in West Seattle on May 26 at 8 p.m. Download Stained Glass at http://syas.bandcamp.com/