Entertainment, Music, Reviews|September 5, 2011 12:10 pm

5 Hot Acts to Follow

It’s no secret that we here at Safindit are fans of local music (well we love almost all things locally produced!) and we like to think we keep our fingers fairly closely on the pulse of the SA music scene. For this reason, we want to share with you 5 new artists/bands/acts who we feel you should keep an eye out for! Now when we say ‘new’ we also mean comparitively unknown – as in, under 1000 Facebook fan page likes. So, give em a listen and ‘Like’ if you’re feeling the vibes. We’re amassed a fairly diverse collection here so we hope there’s something for everyone.Perhaps we may even make this a regualr feature on our blog. Just remember who let you in on these little secrets mmkay?


Gangs of Ballet

1. Gangs of Ballet
An unusual name to be sure but remember it because these Durban boys are going to be big news very soon. Four extremely talented musician, three of which have studied music at Varsity, they have been involved in the Durban scene in one way or anohter for the last 10 years or so – mostly sessioning for other well-known artists. Now brothers Brad and Josh Kleynsmith take the helm of this energetic Indie-rock monster of a band. There very first show was as the opening act for Aking at Unit 11 and since then, just a few short months ago, they’ve been putting final touches on their debut album. The 2 singles released on Facebook have already managed to gain them over 700 Facebook fans and have an anthemic, funky, upbeat sound that makes you wanna dance your face off.


Toiboe Delazy

2. Toiboe Delazy
We saw this girl on a stage at open mic about a year back and we knew she had something special. Since then Toiboe De Lazy – an anagram of her name Latoya Boetelaiz – has been featured on TV and opened for some big name acts and played some presitgious shows. Even though it’s just her and a keyboard, this young dnyamo cammands the stage! With a soulful voice like Adele and a funky vibe like Estelle, Toya manages to create a perfect blend of jazz-hip-hop-soul and funk. Inspired by her late mother and driven bya floodgate of soul, this girl is just beginning to realise her immense potential and awesome talent and we predict she is going to rip it up – you just watch!

The Kickstands

3. The Kickstands
Another Durban duo – we’re not biased we promise!- The Kickstands have built a solid name for themselves gigging like trojans in bars, pubs, clubs and at festivals all the way along the KZN coast and further inlands towards the Drakensberg. at the heart of their sound is Gary Nixon – a solid guitar player and vocalist with a natural and exciting songwriting talent. When he started out collaborating with Rudi Greyvenstein in March 2009, it was Rudi phenomenal guitar talent that initially stole the show. But his flamenco-infused leads were the sprinkles on top of what actually was a pretty tasty cupcake! Influenced by the surfside culture and artists like Xavier Rudd, John Butler Trio, Jack Johnson and Tallest Man On Earth, they made a rough EP which started selling like hotcakes at their live shows. Just before they scored a main stage slot at Splashy Fen 2010, Rudi announced his departure from the band. So Gary teamed up with lead guitarist Daniel Mudaley and developed a new sound that he debuted to a 1000 strong crowd at Splashy. Gary’s true songwriting talent shone through and won the crowds over and now he continues to make a mark on the local scene – and we’re hoping to see some new recordings from him soon! (hint hint!)

Vana & the Oh So Serious

4. Vana
Vana is a blues and folk singer/songwriter and guitar player from Pretoria. He started making waves in the PTA scene already in early 2000, but after living and performing in London for around two years Vana returned to his home town infused with folk spirit.Vana started performing with three other local musicians Jay Bolton, Franco Jamneck both from another hot local band Soil 7T7 and Wynand Davel, the charismatic fiddler for groups like Die Kaalkop Waarheid and Radio Kalahari Orkes, in a group called GreenAcre. GreenAcre surprised with their unusual twist of blues and original folk songs, performed at the Aardklop Festival, made an appearance on SABC2’s Morning Live, did the Levi’s Sunday Sessions and harvested their success at the 2006 Oppikoppi Festival. In 2007 his friendship and alliance with the enigmatic Denzl Keenan of Rooibaardt led to the recording of his second full length album Like Good Wine. Recorded in (and inspired by) what Vana has dubbed “the Tennessee of South Africa”, Clarens, Like Good Wine continued Vana’s foray into folk collaborations. Vana’s live shows feature a host of songs and stories wrapped in steel slide guitar, mandolin and violin. Strong vocal tales of street smart short cuts, together with a strong blues guitar style, bring the music to life.His latest folk incarnation is ‘The Oh So Serious Folk Collective’ – a massive jam of around 10 highly skilled artists on everything from banjo to accordian, double bass and fiddle. The sound is one that transports you back to another time and the show is never the same and always highly entertaining. Go and watch Vana whenever you can!


Parking Ponies

5. Parking Ponies
As most good bands start out, this one is born of the jam sessions of 2 friends. Greg Morgan + Stephen Eckard, ex-members of rock/indie/electro band Spacekid have been collaborating on various musical projects for the past 9 years, some of which have never seen the light of day.After realising that a lot of their compositions were actually pretty epic, they decided to record them and create Parking Ponies. The band was to become the vessel for the producer duo to release the songs they felt did not suit the mold of their previous bands but deserved to be heard by you, the discerning listener.Producing, Mixing, programming as well as playing every instrument on the recordings, the team now plan on releasing these tracks they’ve been keeping stored in their little treasure chest.The sound is at times driving and punk-ish but always melodic with a Foo Fighters-esque song-writing quality. Their skill as writers, producers and instrumentalists is clear in every element – down to the recording, which is top quality.SA needs more of this sound.

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