Skip to content

noise polluter

music that's worth your while



by Parker Harris

My first exposure to South Carolina trio HEYROCCO was when a friend played a show with them. He raved to me that they were a band to keep a close eye on. Fast forward a few months, and another friend was telling me the same thing. It seemed like a good time to investigate. It didn’t take a magnifying glass to find incredibly dynamic music full of angst and 90’s-like distortion- they even have a demo on Bandcamp called “The Greatest Hits of the 90’s.”

I shot some questions to them and here are the results. Enjoy.



NATHAN JAKE: This is Nathan Jake Merli. I sing, play guitar, and occasionally jeopardize Heyrocco.


NP: So, for anyone who hasn’t heard your band, can you describe your sound in five words or less?

NJ: Sheryl Crow’s angsty ex-husband.


NP: Who and or what inspires you? Maybe not as a musician, but as a human being?

NJ: My friends and the people we meet and stay with on tour. It really opens your eyes seeing people be so good to one another.


NP: I typed in “Heyrocco” on YouTube, and clicked on the first video that popped up. It was a live performance of “Loser Denial” for Audiotree. In the video, you’re wearing a huge red kimono-thing. Where the hell did you get that? Is your day-to-day look normally as weird?

NJ: I bought that ‘poncho,’ as we were calling it, in Chicago that afternoon at Buffalo Exchange. It was a one or two time thing, granted we do wear a lot of weird shit. I still find it to be an outlet of expression.


NP: You’re currently embarking on a large tour that’s taking you to the UK. How is that going? Have you crossed the Atlantic before?

NJ: Cant wait!! We have not been over there and couldn’t be more excited.


NP: How do you guys kill time in the tour van (or plane)?

NJ: Van activities include: constant classic rock hour, jah blessing, talking about our feelings, drawing, eating, I like to sometimes write in the van too.


NP: Seeing as how you’re a relatively underground band, I’m sure you’ve slept in some scary places. What’s your most horrifying story?

NJ: We just stayed in a mansion (still under construction) in Venice on Wednesday, that was weird/kinda cool, but at this point nothing is really scary so much as it is uncomfortable. Everyone is scary.


NP: What are some of your favorite unscary cities to play and visit?

NJ: We love to play our home land of Charleston, but some of my favorite cities thus far are Chicago and San Francisco.


NP: Having been a band for several years, have you amassed an army of crazy fans who want you to sweat in their mouths and sign their asses? You’ve got almost 5,000 fans on Facebook, so someone has got to be nuts. If not, how long do you think it is till you’ll get ‘em?

NJ: At first, I liked the idea and thought it would be cool to have crazy fans, but with the way social media works now it can be a little weird/frightening. We are not at the point where we can go straight from the stage > bus > hotel, so we pretty much hang out and meet any fans that come out to the show. Although, it is important to remember there is a difference between a true fan and a true friend.


NP: To get more specific, your single “Virgin” is about high school. What is your most positive high school memory?

NJ: Leaving.


NP: Word on the street says you guys dropped out of high school. What kinda grades were you making before you split to tour the world? Also, how the hell did you convince your parents to let you do that?

NJ: I did my last year at 17 and honestly had decent grades. I don’t think any of us were missing the brains for school, more just the willpower. There are some dreams in life no one can stop you from chasing. It was pretty much ‘you can shun us or get onboard.’


NP: Can you tell me about the video for “Melt”? Who’s idea was it to use the black and white footage with cheesy karaoke lyrics on the screen?

NJ: Our friend in the UK made that video! We like black and white and wanted something easy to watch/relate to the song.


NP: Moving away from specifics, what’s in the future for Heyrocco? (besides robots and flying cars)

NJ: We are wrapping up a West Coast tour followed by some East Coast shows including NYC, Philly, [and a] festival in Virginia. Then we are hanging out for a week or two before the UK trip, probably just rehearsing and catching up on old shit and friends. What we are most excited about though is to put out our record on iTunes, Spotify, all that jazz, and then continuing work on whatever comes next.


NP: Each of you guys have alter-egos/titles (or whatever you want to call them), such as Taco and Black Future. Can you explain them to me? Was there a special naming ceremony?

NJ: Chris Cool’s real name is Chris Cool. TA-nner CO-oper makes Taco, it’s like J-Lo. Black Future doesn’t make any sense, although it may be foreshadowing something.


NP: I appreciate the time and energy spent answering these questions. I owe you one.

NJ: No problem, I’m just eating a shitty hotel breakfast I’m pissed I woke up for. Thank you for your time as well. Have a great day.


HEYROCCO can be found on Bandcamp here and Facebook here.




Tags: ,

%d bloggers like this: