London based band Swimming Tapes categorically brand themselves as ‘Dreamy Guitar Pop’, a muddled genre which has really stepped out of the woods over the last year. It remains something fairly easy to put your name to, but when done right it can fall just on the right side of niche and incredibly easy to find yourself lost within. Soundcloud has proved an extremely effective way to get your music out there as a new band and when Swimming Tapes uploaded ‘Souvenirs’ to the platform, they did not expect to have 30,000 streams within a few days. Online success has propelled them to a sold-out London show next month and an appearance at The Great Escape in May. Speaking to Jason from the band, Ben Bowman managed to uncover their burning desire to play the festival and their experience as Great Escape punters.

How does it feel to be playing The Great Escape 2017?

We are really excited. We played the Alt Escape last year and it was such a fun show so we’re pleased to be coming back and doing the main festival this time around. It’s a festival we’ve always wanted to play.

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What do you know about the festival?

We’ve been as punters before and it’s always a great weekend. That thing of being able to duck into almost any venue in the city and know you’ll be watching something good and usually pretty interesting is such a nice vibe. We’re hoping to do plenty of that this year as the line-up is really strong and we’ll be staying down all three days. As a band together, we haven’t played the festival ‘properly’ yet but we have friends that have and they’ve told us the crowds are always amazing.

What can we expect from your set at The Great Escape?

We have a few new tracks up our sleeves which we are really enjoying playing in the rehearsal room that we haven’t played live yet. So expect lots of mistakes and plenty of swearing.

What do you know about the other acts playing this year and who would you like to check out?

I actually swapped guitars with Duc from HMLTD almost a year ago and I have been hearing so much about them and their mad live shows that I would be super keen to go and check them out. A band who I can’t get enough of who are playing at the festival are Kane Strang – their tracks are just so infectious that I think I’m turning in to their number one fan boy – they are definite watch for me.

What is the best thing about Brighton? / Have you been to Brighton before?

Four of us grew up by the sea in Northern Ireland so I think we all have a real propensity to enjoy being in coastal cities or towns. Last year we had a beer on the beach before wandering up the venue to play our show at the Alt Escape and there aren’t many places you can do that. It’s a very good vibe.

What were you doing this time last year?

It was about two weeks in to the release of our first song ‘Souvenirs’ and it was a bit of a strange time as we put this song up on Soundcloud one evening, and sent it to some blogs that we enjoyed reading. A few days later it had 30,000 plays. So this time last year we were messaging each other saying “the Soundcloud play counter must be broken”.

When you go to the Beach what can you not go without? Sunglasses, Pennies for the slot machines? A Ball of some sort?

My beach attire would almost certainly require some factor 50, a nice bright pink beach towel and enough change for a fab lolly.

What is the best seaside holiday you’ve been on?

About 8 years ago me and some friends when to stay in a holiday home in Antibes in the south of France. It was the most chilled and beautiful place I have ever visited – oh, and at that time I was a huge M83 fan and they fact that they came from there was enough for me to be won over. Amazing music from an amazing place.

What’s your favourite thing to get from the Ice Cream Van?

That would have to be a Fab, like I mentioned before. For some reason I never find them in shops but Ice Cream vans always seem to have a surplus of them. Maybe cos i’m the only person that buys them.

What are your plans for the rest of the Summer?

We have our first proper headline show in April, which we’re really looking forward to! We got new songs coming out over the summer, a few more festivals and shows and ALOT of writing to do. Gonna be a great summer!

Tickets are selling fast for The Great Escape, for more information on tickets and for the full lineup,  click the picture below.

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