Thirsty Hippo features experimental pop bands

Guitarist and vocalist of the band Smile, Jake Miles, performs at the Thirsty Hippo.

SMiile describes itself as an experimental pop band from Austin, Texas. The group is currently in the middle of a five-week national tour, and this weekend was the band’s second time performing in Hattiesburg.

“We love Hattiesburg. We played here once in our first tour and everybody was so nice and awesome that we were like we absolutely have to come back,” Mary Bryce, vocalist in SMiilE, said.

While the group has played in a number of cities and smaller towns, Hattiesburg seemed to stand out.

“My favorite small town [we have played in] is Hattiesburg for sure,” vocalist in SMiiLE Annie Long said.

Inside Voices is from West Monroe, Louisiana. This was their first time playing in Hattiesburg. The band found it somewhat difficult to describe their specific sound in comparison to other music groups.

“Whenever people ask us what Inside Voices sounds like, we have a really hard time coming up with whatever we sound like, but as far as what sets us apart is just to an extent we feel like we bring something original,” Tyler Jones, vocalist and guitarist for Inside Voices, said. “We’re not trying to sound like something, we just want to make music.”

Inside Voices released an EP two years ago with just a few songs on it, but the group is set to release more of its music soon.

“We’re releasing a full-length album Oct. 5th and we’re really excited for it,” Jones said. “We’re actually getting to release something that we wrote cohesively and get to finally put it out.”

Goth Dad, a band currently based in Hattiesburg, commented on some of its past performances.

“We did a week run back in March to Cedar Rapids. We haven’t done anything on the same level as SMiiLE, but we’ve done a few short tours,” band member Colin Cameron said.

Cameron expressed its excitement about playing with SMiiLE and Inside Voices.

“As far as Goth Dad is concerned, these two bands are our favorite bands that we’ve played with, and so it’s really exciting to play a show here in Hattiesburg with our two favorite bands,” Cameron said. “I listen to both this bands on a regular basis, so getting to have them here and hang out is really cool.”

Cameron noted how SMiiLE’s musical style is in a genre of its own.

“SMiiLE sounds like nothing I know of,” Cameron said. “That’s hard to explain, but they don’t sound like any other band I’ve heard of.”

Cameron also gave his thoughts on the Inside Voices’ sound.

“From an objective third party, what sets Inside Voices apart is the fact that they’re a three-person band that sounds like there’s like 10 people playing,” Cameron said. “That’s the difference between them and other bands that we listen to or play with is that there’s three of them and they’re playing sound that’s so full it sounds like there’s tons of people on stage.”