The Swing Movement
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The Swing Movement

Ilkley, England, United Kingdom | SELF

Ilkley, England, United Kingdom | SELF
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The Swing Movement @ Live At Leeds

Leeds, Not Applicable, United Kingdom

Leeds, Not Applicable, United Kingdom

This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



The Swing Movement are one of those bands who are so easily tagged "improbably young". The mothers have come for a quick one and to say hello as the kids with guitars set up. They have to drink water cause not only are the Mums in attendance but they probably could not get served either. They are that sort of young, they are also that sort of good.

The sort of good that demands attention of the room when they start up with the anthemic Keep It Red with it's "shudda/wanna" refrains and scratched out guitar. As a band they welcome comparisons to The Clash for the funked up bass sound of moody Joe Gamble and with Ben Walker and Patrick Wanzala Ryan riffing off each other in a familiar way. They share the energy of performance and have a dynamism between them that drives the music impressively.

Walker looks like every scruffy bleached blonde teen hanging around a town centre but takes the middle of the small Love Apple stage and looks off to top right with effacement, almost embarrassment. Wanzala Ryan's hair puts one in mind of the legendary Ces Podd and his bandy legged bobbing shows a similar lack of hauteur. Joe Gamble is just moody while Drumsman Kieran Borrett might be able get served at the bar. As good a reason to pick one drummer over another one supposes.

All of which sells The Swing Movement short. While not being the most original band to pick up guitars they are certainly authentic. They stand nervously on stage with a refreshing lack of arrogance but they hint at a confidence as they buccaneer through the lyrically nimble Shooting Blanks - "I'm happy if you/but I'm happier if you're not/you've got all the money in the world/but you never show me a smile i believe in" - and on to the ridiculously catchy Kiss Kiss Bang Bang.

Just as the set draws to a close they lads on stage begin to notice the room of attention and confidence grows with Walker and Wanzala Ryan going guitar to guitar with a swagger. They own the night - they will own more and more nights if they carry on as they are now - and blast away the earlier malaise. -

THE SWING MOVEMENT are the youngest band on the bill. But confidence comes from quality musicianship. Ben Walker has a fine voice on him and the songs rattle along in confident cheeky fashion. Patrick Wanzala Ryan plays precise guitar lines and I have to stand back and say "Oh yes!". The pair of them work well in the contrast department. We could be talking boy band cuteness here, but I'm sure they would have something to say if I said that. Fresh air, blast, skies the limit ... and so on. Mark your card punters. The Swing Movement have made a cracking start.

There's a journalistic convention that dictates that articles should start with a short blurb about the
band(s) in question. It seems distinctly pointless here, as there's no short blurb that could possibly
be as informative about The Swing Movement as this rough-and-ready demo is. The Swing Movement's efforts far outshine what's written about them on paper - as, in essence, they are a locally
successful school band. There's musical talent in unexpected abundance here, notably guitar
noodling copious enough to keep you perpetually amused and basslines that avoid too much 'rootnoting'.
Another convention is making easy comparisons, and here I give in - there's a definite shadow of the Libertines circa 'Up The Bracket' era
in terms of attitude and, in 'Jigsaw', even hints of The Doors. This isn't to say it's a faultless demo (it has charming shortcomings) but, as a starting point, this one's more than formidable.
Kate Zezulka -

More well known for ‘On Ilkla Moor Baht ‘at’ than The Swing Movement, Ilkley – in Yorkshire is the backdrop for a group of talented musicians, who got together some five years ago and have since developed a pretty distinctive sound. Much more than yet another brit-pop indie band, The Swing Movement combine clever instrumentation with driving drums and strong bass lines, over cut with the distinctive voice of Ben Walker.I can relate to the formation of the band, a group of about 20 people got together with a few instruments and out of the chaos. four musicians – Ben Walker (Guitar and Vocals), Patrick Wanzala-Ryan (Guitar) , Joe Gamble (Bass) and Kieran Borrett (Drums) emerged to form The Swing Movement. -

The Swing Movement aren’t like anything I have heard before. I keep trying to compare them to other bands, and there are definitely similarties to other well known bands, but there sound is very unique.

The Swing Movement are an indie/alternative band from Bradford, UK. The band features:

Ben Walker - Vocals, Guitars

Joe Gamble - Bass Guitar

Kieran Borrett- Drums, Percussion

Patrick Wanzala Ryan - Guitars

They have been playing together for several years and have begun to gain a following with 55,000 plays on myspace and airtime on BBC Introducing…. The Swing Movement describe their influences as The Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan and The Velvet Underground and you can hear these influences in their music, however as I said at the beginning, they are quite original.

Their songs are very theatrical with very interesting guitar and intriguing lyrics which are extremely well written.

Head over to their myspace now to listen to a few of their songs. You can also follow them on twitter @swingmovement.

If they let us we will also be posting one of their songs soon, so keep a eye out.

Let us know what you think of them in the comments and on twitter @indiereviews -

The Swing Movement hail from a town right outside of Bradford in the UK. They formed in 2006 and make downright fantastic music. They sound like a lovechild of The Beatles and The Rascals who was raised in an indie night-club somewhere in the middle of Scotland. Ok, so the part about Scotland is speculative, I'm not all that familiar with their nightlife, but I am just guessing that it is awesome. Basically, The Swing Movement is Brit-pop at its finest, kind of like Oasis in their glory days mixed with the lively energy of the Arctic Monkeys circa 2006.

A lot of their tracks obviously draw from their musical inspirations of Nick Cave and the Rolling Stones, but there is no doubt that they are a 21st century band. Like a lot of my favourite bands, they know how to capture the perfect balance between old and new music. This is the kind of music that you can dance to or use as a muse for your poetry.

Although The Swing Movement currently do not have any music for sale, they are in the process of getting things organized as they continue playing gigs in the UK. You can download a couple of their songs below, and I'll keep you updated about the band. If you live in the UK, definitely trek out to one of their shows, and if you don't, well, you'll just have to wait like me.

The Swing Movement - Disaster [mp3, HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!]

The Swing Movement - Jigsaw [mp3]

The Swing Movement - The Town and the City [mp3]
(this is their newest song)

The band consists of Ben Walker (vox, guitars), Joe Gamble (bass) and Kieran Borrett (drums, percussion) and Patrick Wanzala Ryan (guitars). I had the lovely opportunity to grill Patrick and Ben, so read on below:

How did you guys form? Did you always want to play music?

Ben Walker - We were exiled from our community after being involved in some unsavoury activity. Forced to live on the outskirts of society we thought we ought to do something to stop us from getting bored. So forming a band was that very thing…
Patrick Wanzala-Ryan - I don’t think any of us ever harbored huge desires to make music until we actually started making it.

You played Leeds. How was that experience? How difficult is it to play to huge crowds who are obviously waiting for bigger name bands?

BW - Leeds Festival was fun, but the sun was going down into our eyes; we looked like four squinting moles that were seeing sunlight for the first time in eight years. I think we coped though. The fact that other bands were hanging over our heads didn’t bother us, you just have to go play and try keep people interested for half an hour of their time. I don’t think we did too badly.
PWR - In any case until you’re a ‘bigger band’ all gigs are in front of crowds who are waiting for bigger bands so its best just to get over yourselves and enjoy it.

What was your first gig, and how did it go?

BW - We played in an old loft style building…
PWR - One of those places that’s down a back alley, then down another back alley then down another.
BW - It was a rotting punk club called the 1in12; the room had camouflage hanging from its ceilings, and the sound desk was in a cage. Terrifying as the place was; we did love it, so did the 150 people who turned out! As a consequence we’ve played there a few times since.

What have you been up to lately? The new song “The Town and the City” is moving in a different direction than your older work. Are you guys going for a more mature sound or will you continue to stay true to your name and make catchy dance numbers?

PWR - We’ve always made a point of not discussing what sound or direction we should head in. But I think since recording the first set of songs we’ve all improved as musicians and all that boring jazz, therefore naturally I suppose the songs will have a more mature feel to them. The dancyness has never been intentional; we don’t really make tracks for people to dance to but if people fancy dancing that’s cool.
BW - We’re all keen to keep changing and evolving. We’ll just have to see what happens.

What’s your town like? Do you have a solid music scene?

BW - Our town is slipping from the edge of a Moor, the shops are 20 years behind; and the music scene even further so. But we elope to the nearby Bradford and Leeds for our gigs, and there’s always been a strong scene over there, Bradford is especially friendly to us.

What is your fondest musical memory from adolescence?

BW - When I was 14, Joe, myself got a coach to go see Kasabian at the Manchester Apollo shortly after their first album came out. It was my second ever gig and the bus there was full of Mancunians pissed up to their eyeballs singing Club Foot and discussing how Han Solo used to be a painter and decorator. That journey will go to the grave with me.

There are tons of great bands out there. If you could be granted the wish to collaborate or tour with any band in the world, which would you choose?

BW - Nick Cave & Warren Ellis from the Bad Seeds. The noises Ellis gets out of that violin are insane. As is the facial hair. I would love to work on one of their film soundtracks with them. Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds are phenomenal, but the soundtracks Nick & Warren have done are absolutely incredible.

Which song do you wish you could have written, and why?

BW - “Goin’ Out West” from Tom Waits’ Bone Machine. Everything about that song is impressive. The vocals, the guitars; that double bass creeping in the background, the whole sound and atmosphere. Apparently that whole album was recorded in the old cement hatchery rooms in the basement of the studio. He just took all the kit down there because he liked the echo. It’s that kind of Lateral thinking that makes Tom special.

In this digital age, new music is a dime a dozen, and it’s really easy to spread the word about a new band. The problem is, a lot of bands can’t stand the test of time, unless they bring something completely indispensable to the table. What can The Swing Movement offer that will set them apart as a force to be reckoned with?

BW – Free Condoms. For everyone. After every show.
PWR - Always a difficult question. Folk end up sounding like fools by saying “Feel our music and our passion duuuude” or give big huge bullshit replies about how revolutionary they are… We don’t want to look like fools and we certainly don’t want to bullshit you so… I can’t answer that.

visit the band on MYSPACE for gigs, music, and other excellent things -


'Keep It Red' played on:
BBC Radio 1 by Huw Stephens
BBC Radio Leeds
BBC Radio Bradford
Bradford Community Radio
Radio Basile

Disaster played twice on BBC 6 by Tom Robinson

Jigsaw played once on BBC 6 by Steve Lamacq



We The Swing Movement.

We are Joe Gamble // Ben Walker // Kieran Borrett // Patrick Wanzala-Ryan.

We from Ilkley, it's a tiny village.

We spend as much time writing and perfom songs, that is all we want to do forever.

We have performed these songs on lovely stages with many lovely folks including Foals // Yeasayer // Esser // Wild Beasts // Red Blood Shoes // Sons & Daughters // Dutch Uncles // Young Fathers // Screaming Lights // Team Waterpolo // Four Dead in Ohio...

We would probably fall into the Indie category. Real indie. Hopefully. To the extent that we ain't happy-go-lucky-jingle-jangle-radio-friendly-major-label shizzzle.

We played Leeds Festival 2007 and In The City 2008.

i don't know what else to say.