RGM INTRODUCING – WE INTERVIEW CANADIAN BAND SWiiMS
What made you decide that music is a thing for you?
I’m not sure it is a choice really. Melodies and chords fill your brain and keep you from sleeping, music gets into you, fills you up and you have to let it out.
For all of us it comes very naturally and we’re fortunate we get to record our ideas and have them released out into the world for others to enjoy.
Introduce us you / all to the members and your musical history?
The band is…
Mai Diaz Langou on Vocals & Guitar
Colin Thompson on Guitar & Vocals
Cian O’Ruanaidh on Bass & Vocals
Our musical history is really one of the pandemic. We formed the band the summer before COVID hit, released our first EP just after the lockdown and have been working online ever since. We got to play our first show this summer after being a band for 4 years!
What was life like for you before music?
We honestly can’t remember a time when music wasn’t part of our lives. I can say that music has always been fun and a big part of our lives, but it is certainly more fun when you love the music you’re writing.
What was the first song you heard that steered you into a music path?
Colin – I listened to a lot of the Beatles as a kid, lots of early Rock ‘n’ Roll stuff like Buddy Holly, but I can distinctly remember hearing Johnny Marr playing “This Charming Man” and that made me want to be better.
Mai – I was a melomaniac since I was a little kid. But what made me interested in learning how to play the guitar were bands like Red Hot Chili Peppers, No Doubt and Radiohead. If I had to choose a specific song it would be “Street Spirit (Fade Out)” by Radiohead, which was one of the first ones I learned how to play. I was so glad my guitar teacher was cool and got me interested in alternative rock!
Cian – I remember listening to Neil Young unplugged in my parents’ van as a kid. That album has made a lasting impression on me.
Where do you feel you currently sit within the music industry?
I think SWiiMS is in the early stages of stardom! The music industry is big and we are small, but we love getting such positive reactions from people who reach out to us. It’s very satisfying to be a part of this community.
What’s the biggest thing you have learned from someone else in the industry?
It’s important to keep an open mind when recording. Work with creative people who may hear things differently than you do and be open to try things in new ways.
Tell us Two truths and a lie about you?
One of us was almost run over by Ice T while on vacation in Miami
One of our brothers dated Saoirse Ronan
We charted nationally on the NACC charts without ever playing a show
If you could wish for one thing to aid your career, what would it be?
To be asked to open for one of our favourite bands on their tour!
Do you ever worry about people taking things the wrong way or cancel culture? Discuss….
I don’t think we are controversial enough to elicit those responses from people. The biggest controversy we’ve encountered so far is to be accused of writing “Word Salad” lyrics (a comment which we actually loved!).
Do you sign up to any conspiracy theories? If no why not?
No, not really. We are generally optimistic people and those things tend to appeal to people looking for something that’s going wrong.
What was the worst experience on stage?
We had a malfunctioning spot light that would randomly explode light into our eyes, kept catching us off guard whenever it happened! It was scary!
Tell us something about you / each member that you think people would be surprised about?
It took 4 years to play our first show! We’re also a very DYI band: Cian loves photography and filming, Mai is into design and editing videos, and Colin is amazing at translating crazy ideas into our songs.
What makes you stand out as a band/artist?
Having a broad range of musical inspiration and very different life experiences come together in a unique way. Mai is from Argentina, Colin is from Canada and Cian is from Ireland, each has had a very different path to this point.
I hear you have a new music, what can you tell us about it.
We are set to release our first full length LP “Into The Blue Night”. It has been a long road to get here and we are very excited to get it out into the world. The record feels like an emergence from a long dark tunnel into the light. Something that is new and exciting, but at the same time nostalgic and familiar.
What was the recording process like?
We enlisted the help of Toronto producer Josh Korody to help find new ways of expressing our ideas. A fresh set of ears and ideas to give new life to the songs. We spent the winter and spring of 2023 recording and mixing. The process was very smooth and getting to record with him was a lot of fun!
What was the biggest learning curve in writing the new tunes?
Having to write exclusively online. With COVID raging, we had to rely strictly on individual writing. Not having others to bounce ideas off of in real time. We got pretty good at it and it’s a very useful workflow to keep writing continuously, even if we’re busy with our own routines.
Would you change anything now its finished?
It’s pretty easy to second guess decisions once you’ve had time to live with the finished product. But we absolutely love this record and are proud of the creative decisions we made while working on it.
Is there anything else you would like to share with the world?
We appreciate you taking the time to listen to “All I Die For” and hope you’ll enjoy the rest of the record when it comes out on November 10th.