Gangs of Ballet

Unique Mix of Sounds

©Eric Miller
©Eric Miller

The combination of individual musical styles and varied tastes have proven to be a recipe for success for the South African rock/alternative band Gangs of Ballet. Their moody, sultry vocals and vibrant energy makes for an intriguing sound that resonates with rock, pop and electronic fans alike.

The band formed in 2011, a quartet of Durban-based musicians - Brad Klynsmith, vocals/electric guitar, Jonathan Rich, keyboards/synth, Hardus de Beer on bass guitar and Josh Klynsmith on drums. Their debut was as the opening act for the band aKing, and from there on the band flourished.

They released their debut single ‘Breaking the Silence’ in 2011, which did well on the South African music charts. Their self-titled debut album was soon to follow in 2012, and their second album ‘Yes/No/Grey’ was released in 2013, which received five South African Music Award nominations. Within 12 hours of its release, it became number one on the iTunes chart. ‘Form & Function Part 1’ was released in 2015, with Part 2 debuting in 2016, which achieved great commercial success.

The band experimented with a mix of rock, electro, alternative and dance sounds, which made them popular on radio stations, at music festivals and events. Gangs of Ballet brought a fresh perspective on alternative rock and dance onto the SA music scene. Unfortunately, the band broke up in 2018, but the members continue to work on separate projects.

The band members all bring their individual expertise and creativity to produce truly unique offerings of distinctive, hauntingly anthemic sounds. They released ‘Form & Function Part 3’ as a farewell to the fans, which was met with bittersweet praise. Gangs of Ballet made a worthy contribution to South Africa’s music scene and fans will likely always find an excuse to dance to one of their many upbeat and unique tracks.

By Carla Lottering