From a tiny space tucked behind an old pub in Haggerston, Swimming Tapes create escapist, fragmentary soundscapes that send them somewhere else. Images of the Northern Ireland coast – where three of the five-piece are from – possibly float through their minds as they merge subtle vocals, featherweight guitars and mute drums to create a blanket of noise you’d happily wrap yourself in.
Their new single ‘Passing Ships‘ opens their debut album ‘Morningside‘, and it makes for a faultless, sun dappled introduction. Inspired by singer/guitarist Robbie Reid passing up the chance to speak to somebody on the tube he knew from years back, ‘Passing Ships’ is fittingly shot through a lense that’s both fragmentary and nostalgic. “I started thinking of all the times paths nearly cross without you knowing it. Sometimes there are people that mean a lot at a certain time in your life, you can have intense experiences and maybe never see that person ever again, the song reflects on that.” Robbie explains.
From the moment Robbie sings ‘I’m afraid of you’ and his voice wilts along with the meandering Real Estates-inspired guitar, you know you’re in the presence of blinding beauty. After a plush chorus, the song hits it’s high point as guitarist Louis Price shouts ‘we were just’ from a distance before Robbie finishes his sentence singing ‘ships out on the sea’; it’s wistful and illuminating. Robbie said that they try to get a ‘snapshot of a moment’ across when they make a song. With ‘Passing Ships’ they’ve hit that particular nail bang on the head.