Original Swimming Party: African Beats and Dreamy Electronica Meet on Cape Town Duo’s Debut
Hypergiant, the debut album from Cape Town Afrotronica duo Original Swimming Party (OSP), features over an hour of music ranging from gentle ambient and field recording pieces to seven-minute-long kwaito/dance tracks. The album was released on 3 March 2017.
Hypergiant is available on Spotify, Apple Music and all other major music services.
Hypergiant is influenced by experimental electronica, shoegaze, ambient and drone, South African music genres including gqom and kwaito, and music from the wider African continent.
The album discusses themes of politics and war (‘Weeping Song II’); privilege, colonialism and the band’s own complicity in the divided state of their country (‘Life In The Colony’, ‘Camissa’). Soaring chord patterns meander through tales of the joys and sorrows of human existence, getting older and the power of letting go (‘Chords’); loneliness and celibacy (‘Skin Upon Skin’) and having a good time amidst existential doubt (‘Darkest Hour’). An overarching theme of life in a time of impending apocalypse – both ecologically and sociologically – is tempered by themes of celebration, healing and redemption.
The album features South African guest artists Greg Abrahams (guitar), Keenan Ahrends (guitar), Gene Kierman (French horn) and Ryan McArthur (bass guitar).
Woven through the music are field recordings from the band’s everyday lives around the City Of Cape Town, including unique binaural recordings of the hidden water tunnels underneath the Cape Town CBD (featured in the track ‘Camissa’, ‘Camissa’ being an ancient Khoena pre-colonial name for Cape Town).
The album features artwork by Boston-based visual artist Kevin Townsend http://www.kevin-townsend.com
Original Swimming Party, founded by Jeremy de Tolly and Thomas Glendinning in 2011, are an audiovisual group from Cape Town. The band draws influences from an African tradition of rhythms and harmony merged with elements of left-field electronica. They have played at several of South Africa’s biggest festivals including Oppikoppi (2014, 2015), Fakugesi / Alight and Rocking The Daisies (2016).