This Saturday, one of Oxford’s local rock bands will take the stage at Proud Larry’s for a free, two-hour show.
The Heard, a bass and drum-fueled two-piece band, has had a steady ascent since their formation last summer.
Brian Hatch, bassist and half of the duo, said he “just wants to get everybody out there groovin’ and dancing. It’s mostly rock-n-roll,” Heard said. “Some of it’s more in the punk bane, and some of it you could call ‘indie.’ It’s mainly just rock-n-roll.”
Grooves, loud vocals, booming drums and distortion will make up this pre-exam rock-out session at The Lyric.
In fact, Hatch, senior English major at the Ole Miss, has two exams on Monday, which is why he will be celebrating his birthday at Proud Larry’s during Saturday’s show.
About two or three years ago, Hatch met Jace Hughes through his roommate, who also happened to be Hughes’ girlfriend.
“We jammed together a few times— nothing really serious,” Hatch said. “We played together for a while, and then eventually, summer of last year, we just really started trying to do it.”
With Hughes on drums and vocals and Hatch on bass, a band was born. With extra time during the summer, they were able to practice three or four times a week. They eventually had six songs under their belts, and The Heard began to start playing and opening for local shows.
Hughes and Hatch, no strangers to the food industry, say the name of their band partly comes from popular jargon used in restaurant kitchens. “Heard!” is a term used by an employee to signify he has understood any direction given to him but does not have time for a lengthy answer, Hatch explained. After arguing about band names for months, the two decided on the name when Hughes replied with “Heard!” one day, and it stuck.
The band has now recorded a self-titled EP made up of four songs that are about as metal as two men can get. Hughes pounds the drums while simultaneously ripping out lyrics. As for Hatch, he does not simply strum the bass. He carries a deep, thundering melody as Hughes continually supplies the beats.
Their music video for “Inside Your Head” recently won the Local Voice’s “Townie” award and was screened at the Oxford Film Festival this year, much to Hatch and Hughes’ excitement.
In the past year and-a-half, their repertoire has grown from the six songs they formulated over the past summer to 20. As Hatch and Hughes bonded over time, their song writing and stage-presence became more natural.
“Sometimes we’ll write a song from start to finish in five minutes,” Hatch said. “We’ve been playing together so long that we’re getting to where we read each other and play together and know what the other’s about to do.”
After Hatch graduates, The Heard will take on a tour of the Southeast.
“We’ve got a tour booked this summer,” Hatch said. “We’ve got some shows in Mississippi, Alabama and Tennessee. We’re just trying to build some momentum and get as many people out as possible.”
The pair is most excited for shows near home, Hatch said. After their kick-off this Saturday at Proud Larry’s, The Heard will travel to Memphis for a performance at Murphy’s Memphis Bar and Grill on May 15. For those who miss their performance this Saturday, they will be part of a group show alongside Gilded Creatures and others at The Blind Pig on May 21.