Drums march to unique beat
KYABRAM’S Matt Heard could be forgiven for being sick of people mentioning American a capella comedy Pitch Perfect to him.
As a member of a capella group Drums of War, it’s a regular topic.
However, he said he doesn’t mind.
With a capella only just rearing its head in Australia, he said the group welcomes the awareness the film has raised of the niche music market.
“It’s huge in the States and in many Asian countries, so it’s exciting to see it finally taking off in Australia as well,” Matt said.
The Kyabram local was studying music performance at the Box Hill Institute in Melbourne when he was first approached by fellow student Michael Honey and asked to join a new a capella group.
While Matt had an impressive musical resume – having learnt piano, bass, drums and guitar, and sung in the Cooma Men’s Choir – a capella was a mystery to him.
“They ran auditions for the group and I was terrified, to be honest,” Matt said.
“But they constantly encouraged me – and I’m so glad they did.”
As an a capella group focused predominantly on RnB and hip hop, Drums of War describe themselves as “a niche within a niche”.
“Not many groups stick to one kind of music, so we offer a distinctive brand of a capella – which is already a distinctive field,” Matt said.
Their brand – in addition to being distinctive – has also been a massive success.
The group blasted on to the scene in 2015, crowned the national champions at the Vocal Australia AUSACA 2015 Championship.
The six-voice group didn’t stop there, appearing on Channel 7’s Sunrise and The Big Music Quiz, as well as performing at various music festivals and events around Victoria.
With their debut EP Shadowboxing recently released, Kyabram’s Matt Heard said the group don’t plan to slow down any time soon.
“We’re always looking to see what’s next,” he said.
Kyabram’s Matt Heard, far left, sings with a capella group Drums of War. Picture: Little Olives Photography