Swimming Tapes have had a clear agenda from day one. The band formed when four friends – Louis Price, Robbie Reid, Paddy Conn and Jason Hawthorne – settled in London from Northern Ireland and met drummer Andrew Evans.
Drawing on a range of musical influences, from the effortless summer melodies of The Beach Boys to Wild Nothing’s dreamy, shoegazing hue through to the interweaving guitar work of Real Estate, the indie outfit formed the unmistakable sound of Swimming Tapes and self-released their debut single “Souvenirs” in March of 2016.
This marked the beginning of the journey: organic online support was immediate, as the Paddy Baird-produced track was given glowing write-ups by a slew of tastemaker sites such as The Line Of Best Fit and Indie Shuffle, pushing the debut effort to the top of the HypeMachine chart.
The accompanying EP of the same name highlighted Swimming Tapes’ ability to produce infectious, nostalgic, indie-pop, with “Cameos” hitting multiple flagship indie playlists on Spotify and going on to amass well over six million streams, to date.
EP 2, produced by Adam Jaffrey (Palace, Gengahr, Leif Erikson), pushed the band on a level, with “Queen’s Parade” and “Alison” adding a punchier element to their sound, winning the band a session at the legendary Maida Vale Studios for BBC Radio 1’s Huw Stephens, a ‘New Name’ tip from Annie Mac as well as Beats One spins from Matt Wilkinson and Elton John, KEXP and KCRW.
Swimming Tapes have always been at home on the live stage, with vocals split between the dulcet tones of left-hand-right-hand singing guitarists, Reid and Price soaring above Hawthorne’s glistening riffs, Conn’s sliding basslines and the relentless rhythms from Evans. Triumphant early outings at showcase festivals such as The Great Escape, Dot To Dot and Mirrors came ahead of a sold out headline show at The Lexington, London and a flawless live session for Distiller.
2018 saw Swimming Tapes sign a deal with Sub Pop Publishing, win PRS Momentum Funding, tour the UK for the first time with a packed-out London headline at Moth Club and was used writing and recording a record that shows a band who continue to develop, while staying true to their original ideals. Slow-burning instrumental sections swoon alongside the quick-fire accessible pop songwriting that won Swimming Tapes fans from day one. With Tom Schick – known for his work with the likes of Real Estate, Iron & Wine and Jeff Tweedy – behind the mixing desk and a UK tour set for April 2019, the anticipated debut LP proves Swimming Tapes as an indie outfit with a very bright future ahead.