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Nominations for top alt-rock band

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By Sameer Naik

Johannesburg - Fresh from a successful 2012, doing well with their self-titled first extended play (EP) recording, Gangs of Ballet have just been nominated in two categories at the MK Awards.

The Durban-based rock outfit has been nominated for Best Live Act as well as Best Newcomer. The alternative rock band, made up of brothers Brad and Josh Klynsmith, Jonathan Rich and Hardus de Beer, will come up against popular bands like Bittereinder, Fokofpolisiekar, Jeremy Loops, The Black Cat Bones and Van Coke Kartel for the Best Live Act award.

Gang of Ballets’ first EP produced three singles that dominated the charts on a variety of platforms, not only countrywide but internationally. The first single, Breaking the Silence, enjoyed high rotation on national and regional radio stations, while cellphone network Cell C used the song in their “Be” campaign. The second single and opening track of the EP, This Love, also went to number seven on 5FM and the video is still getting good rotation on MK. Their third single crowned an incredible 2012. Hello Sweet World enjoys massive airplay on VH1 USA and was also adopted as the opening theme for VH1’s reality TV series Dr Drew’s Rehab.

The video has already had in excess of 81 000 views on YouTube while the song was also the Christmas number one on 5FM. Speaking to the Saturday Star, guitarist and lead singer Brad Klynsmith said the band was delighted about being nominated for two awards.

“We hold MK in high esteem so to be part of the awards and alongside some of our favourite bands is amazing,” he said.

Just being nominated alongside bands like Van Coke Kartel was a huge privilege for Gangs of Ballet, said Klynsmith.

Klynsmith said the band took just over a year to produce their first EP, which includes five tracks. The band was originally formed as a side-project in 2011, and had their official first gig opening for local rockers aKing in April 2011.

The past 12 months have turned out to be remarkable for the band, with major label EMI signing them up.

”The one memory of 2012 that sticks out for me… is our first number one on 5FM.”

Klynsmith said the band was now hard at work on their first full-length album. “…and then we head straight into a countrywide tour,” said Klynsmith.

Last year the band also opened for international rock bands Civil Twilight and Switchfoot – a dream come true.

So what does the future hold for Gangs of Ballet? Klynsmith said one of his dreams was to open for Coldplay so he could meet his idol, Chris Martin.

The 7th MK Awards will be held at the State Theatre in Pretoria on Sunday, March 24. To vote for Gangs of Ballet visit the MK Facebook page.

Saturday Star

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