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In Session

In Session: Swing Ting

Samrai and Platt mix an hour of energising soundsystem music as Swing Ting

  • Words: Harvey Reynolds | Photography: Louis Reynolds
  • 11 March 2020

Swing Ting founders Samrai and Platt are drawn to beats that bring dancefloors to life. A shared passion for soundsystem music first sowed the seeds of collaborators’ friendship, and since establishing the Swing Ting club night in 2008, the pair have made their own significant contribution to soundsystem culture. After throwing monthly parties, most often at Manchester’s Soup Kitchen, for more than a decade, the Swing Ting sound has become defined as an energising blend of dancehall, hip hop, garage, jazz, soul, bassline and grime, to name a few.

The party has become an essential outing in Manchester’s busy club calendar. Joey B, Murlo and Fox are residents, while a cast of regulars includes the likes of Hipsters Don’t Dance, Florentino, Epic B and Anz. Over the years Swing Ting’s infectious output has travelled beyond their beloved basement home, with the launch of an outstanding label and establishment of Samrai and Platt’s production partnership under the Swing Ting moniker. Trips to the Caribbean have seen them build fruitful relationships with the likes of Equiknoxx and Alexx A-Game.

Read this next: Berserk dancehall: How Equiknoxx caught the world's attention

This week the duo are releasing their debut album ‘100 Dances’, channelling the depth of experience gained from 11 years of throwing parties into a richly layered and stirring collection of tracks that’s packed full of collaborations. Manchester remains at the core: Trigga pulls up with a boppy dub flow, and fellow local stars HMD, EVABEE, Fox and [ K S R ] all make triumphant guest spots. New York dancehall singer Kiyano, Equiknoxx’s captivating vocalist Shanique Marie and Dublin-hailing Gemma Dunleavy all bring their own unique dimension to the record; Thai'Chi Rose and Lovescene contribute soulful r’n’b vocals; and Midlands rapper RTKal’s energetic flow helps the bouncy UK funky beat of ‘Feel It’ take off. Masterful production from Samrai and Platt throughout ties all the strands together and carries the record’s uplifting energy. “We’ve really enjoyed and improved at working with vocalists over the last few years - bringing out the various artists’ personalities and strengths allows us to explore all kinds of vibes with our own touch,” says Platt.

Samrai and Platt are sure to be belting out cuts from the album on their upcoming tour, hitting up intimate locations around the country, including London’s TOLA on release day this Friday. Moving west Swing Ting will lay it down in Bristol’s infamous 300-cap Crofters Right venue, and of course it wouldn’t be Swing Ting without a homecoming celebration at their bread and butter home Soup Kitchen, which will undoubtedly have the walls rocking. They’ll finish off with a trip over the Irish sea to play Yamamori Tengu’s upstairs Kaizen Bar in Dublin. Find tickets for each date here.

Read this next: In Session: Florentino

Looking forward, Swing Ting has a new raft of residents to announce soon, more labels releases coming, and will be turning attention to running community projects, aiming to help young people with the wealth of experience they’ve built up and through access to their studio. “Hopefully we’ll be able to advise and support younger generations who want to get started in producing, releasing & running events,” says Samrai.

Swing Ting’s In Session mix moves through bright and busy polyphonic textures and pacey rhythms, with splashes of soulful r’n’b, playful dancefloor UKG, punchy stepping beats and heavier basslines. Their ability to smoothly transition from genre to genre shines through in the consistent flavour and buoyancy to the mix.

Swing Ting’s ‘100 Dances’ album is out March 13, pre-order it here

Harvey Reynolds is a freelance writer and photographer, check out his website

Tracklist:
Swing Ting x PERiiSU - Business & Culture
Ikonika - Kicks Count
KG - Blackberry Music Remix
Swing Ting & Lovescene - Signs
Sharda - 2 Step Tek
Anz - Open the Curtains Sis
Lady Leshurr - Your Mr [Petit Piment Remix]
Magugu x Famous Eno - Big Don
Swing Ting & Trigga - Swagger & Flex
Roska, Dread MC, Bay-C, Fox & Serocee - Freaky
Al Wootton - Levi
Y U QT - Deeper Love
Millennium Dubs - Over & Over
Part2Style ft. Runkus - Labels [Zed Bias UKG Remix]
Blvk H3ro & Wayne J - Original
LEVi x Yvngface - Bova Dem
SYYMZ - Baby_R
Swing Ting & HMD - Just A Feeling
Swing Ting & Kiyano - Bubblegum
Architect - New Manager Bounce
Aitch, whYjay & LiTek - Mice
Bobby Blackbird - Black Dragon
Xzavier Stone - XZAVIER
Shanique Marie - Ring The Alarm
Gavsborg - Crocodile Tears [Interlude]
Swing Ting & Shanique Marie - Give Thanks

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