• The Fresh List: Movement

    One up-and-coming band we're excited to see more from is Movement, the Sydney-based trio currently making waves on the internet, without having released an EP yet. We spoke to Jesse Ward, the band's bassist, to find out a little bit more about the men behind Movement.
    Interview by Katie Gregory. Photography by Mat Baldwin.

    How did Movement form?
    Me and Sean [Walker, percussion] went to high school together and we started writing a few songs, but we weren't really taking it too seriously. Then we met Lewis [Wade, vocals] through a mutual friend when we left high school and he sang on one of the songs. After that we started working together because we liked his voice.

    How would you describe your sound?
    I don't know…. A lot of people are throwing around the term "minimal soul", so I suppose that. We're really influenced by R&B, but minimal is a good way to describe it.

    What sets you guys apart from other bands?
    If we had to find a point of difference, I suppose we're pretty concerned with representing what we do live, and because it's minimal we can do that. We don't need to, like, work heavily with tracks and stuff, we can just replicate what we write live, which is a good thing. And we work really hard [laughs]. That's one thing!

    What was your first big break as a band?
    I suppose [getting signed to] Modular was a turning point for us. I mean, we wrote a few tracks and then sent them to a local radio station here [in Sydney], and the owner of Modular heard the songs on the radio and reached out to us. We had no idea about who anyone was or what anything was. From there, we've just been strategizing about where to go with it all. Taking it one track at a time. Things are picking up. We supported Solange over here, and those were some good shows. Things are looking good for only having two songs out.

    That's a cool way to get signed to a label. Kinda old school.
    Yeah, it was pretty old school in that respect!

    And so you only have a couple songs of out right now?
    Yeah, one song we came out with early last year called "Feel Real" and then we put a second single called "Us" out, which did pretty well. We got, like, Best New Track on Pitchfork, which was a big thing for us. People started taking a bit more notice.

    Do you guys have a timeline for putting out an album, or are you just seeing what happens?
    There's gonna be new music out, probably in the next month, but as far as a record goes we're just taking it slow because we want it to be something we're proud of. We're all perfectionists.

    You're also opening for Darkside this year. Opening for artists like them and Solange, is that nerve-wracking?
    It is, yeah. We haven't really done that many shows either, so we rehearse, but I think we're still under 20 shows or something. To be playing for those rooms, it's been a nervous experience. But we played in Sydney at the Metro, and we saw heaps of shows there growing up, so that was a cool thing. The room was pretty full toward the end of our set, you know, as they're packing in for the main act, and everyone was really attentive. We got cheers and stuff which is a weird thing to come to terms with [laughs].

    Have you played in the U.S. at all?
    We haven't, but I think we're planning something for the middle of the year. Probably Europe first and then we're thinking the States straight off of that. Fingers crossed we'll be playing there soon.

    And who are your ultimate influences? 
    We're big fans of older classic artists. Stevie Wonder is a huge thing for us. And, like, Marvin Gaye. Musically, we love artists like that. For contemporary artists, we think Frank Ocean is doing amazing things, and we're excited for whatever he's going to put out next. The Weeknd is also pretty cool.