‘Interesting and unusual venues are part of the Be_Hear/Now ethos’: Pyrex take to the stage

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‘Interesting and unusual venues are part of the Be_Hear/Now ethos’: Pyrex take to the stage

words by Joanne Brookfield

This winter, Pyrex will be appearing as headliners at the Be_Hear/Now live music festival.

There’s no denying that a global pandemic is a terrible thing. As disruptive as it was, though, there were also some silver linings behind our many locked-down clouds. For musicians Arian Lane, Jedd Linke-Nagel and Jordan Hicks, attending a barbecue in between the long stints of social isolation in 2021 led to the formation of a brand new band.

“Arian and Jedd played together in a band called Honey Hunter,” explains Jordan. “I met Arian at a BBQ and we formed a relationship. One of the things we bonded over was music and soon enough we started jamming on some of her songs. It was a no-brainer to bring in Jedd to fill out the sound,” he says of how Pyrex, purveyors of dream-pop, came to be.

Keep up with the latest music news, festivals, interviews and reviews here.

Pyrex will be headliners at the Be_Hear/Now live music festival, which is taking place in Ballarat across the weekend of June 30 to July 2. Celebrating music, arts and place, this year’s festival will present the biggest program of Ballarat artists and performers to date, all in unique curated collaborations, different venues and unused spaces.

“Interesting and unusual venues are part of the Be_Hear/Now ethos,” explains Jordan. “It’s to activate these spaces that aren’t typically utilised for music events and as a result, garners attention and interest. Plus, it’s really fun for all involved and creates entertaining and unique outcomes.”

Pyrex will join four other local acts honoured with headlining the event. Sharing the bill are electro-western band Confetti Western, 60s and 70s inspired Iridescence, rising triple j star singer/rapper Sami and Cassells, who although usually a solo acoustic alt-folk act will be performing with full band.

Pyrex’s core trio – Jordan on drums, Jedd on guitar and out the front, vocalist Arian, who also plays guitar and percussion – all live in Creswick, so are not only well versed with the band scene in Ballarat (“the scene has come a long way in the last five years in terms of diversity,” notes Arian) but they’ve performed at the festival in previous years, albeit in different configurations.

“Honey Hunter played in a previous iteration of Be_Hear/Now. We got to play a cool gig in a bowling alley which was live streamed due to Covid restraints,” says Jedd of the 2021 show.

“I did a similar thing for Be_Hear/Now last year with Skyscraper Stan,” adds Jordan, who has also played with Vowel Movement, Rob Casino, Contrast, Bench Press and, to use their full title, Skyscraper Stan and the Commision Flats. “Again, it was Covid-affected so we filmed a live performance inside a storm water drain. It’s great that it’ll be an actual gig this year, with an audience!” he says.

For the festival show, they’ll be debuting a couple of new band members as well. “One on guitar and one on bass. So Pyrex will be a five piece herein,” says Jordan. “We’ll also be playing somewhere unusual and unexpected,” hints Arian without revealing anymore for the moment.

Although individually experienced musicians, it’s still early days for Pyrex, whose first gig together was opening for Children Collide at the Eastern, however they’ve been off to a strong start. “Things have gone well. We’ve had the opportunity to play some great shows and work with some talented producers and directors,” admits Jedd of their progress so far.

As the band’s songwriter, Arian says the support they have received from community radio with each single release has been really validating. “We call it ‘dream pop’, but it’s really an amalgamation of all our tastes. Namely psychedelic, shoegaze, hip hop and grunge,” she says of their sound. Lyrically, most of her songs document “difficult relationships with people,” she says. “I have a very unconscious song-writing process; I can usually clear my mind and a song forms”.

Jordan elaborates: “our first single I Want Love went live around this time last year. Our second single Same Things came out a couple of months ago, along with a video clip directed by the wonderful Champagne Internet (Yacht Club DJs). Both of these tracks are taken from an eight track EP called Noise For No Reason, which we have waiting in the wings”.

While Be_Hear/Now offers a chance to play live, as part of The City of Ballarat’s live music program, they also provide support to these artists in the form of mentoring and training, assets and resources to help musicians refine their craft. “It will be great to utilise the opportunity to progress,” says Jordan.

“We are working towards our debut release,” says Arian, who not only moved in with Jordan, the couple got married last November. She says “we’re keen to build a team around the band to take on some of the management and booking work so we can focus on the music.” When you see them on-stage on July 1, they’ll be doing just that.

Visit the Be_Hear / Now website here for all the information and follow them on Instagram and Facebook.

This article was made in partnership with City of Ballarat.