Amidst the cultural detritus of television’s after hours rises a freaky new street beat played by London’s Late TV. Culling influences from jazz cats and art rockers, B-movies and trash television, via Lynch and Tarantino, Late TV are the moonlighting house band for a surreal all-night dream club where the intangible dance floor shifts and folds to become the set piece of a talk show beamed onto the farthest reaches of your channel selector. Helmed by Luke J Novak, who hails from the slabbed post-industrial backwater of Kidderminster, Late TV originates from a folk noir group formed by Luke and Richard ‘The Showman’ Bowman, a drummer whose restless search for groove quickly outgrew their genre. Joined by Chicago’s jazz fusion obsessed Ryan Szanyi on bass, Parisian keyboard maestro Martin Coxall, tenor sax player Evesham Nicholas, and Matthew Halsall (whose bionic heart valve’s separate mic-detectable rhythms occasionally cause problems in the studio), their new outfit Late TV harks back to a time when music was all fearless fusion and intractable improvisation. In the postmodern wastelands of pop they’re the high-brow/low-brow mutant junk dwellers, collecting the shards of our fragmented culture and building something both irresistibly dangerous and dangerously irresistible
In this interview, I chat with Late T.V. about their newest release, challenges, motivations and more.
Full Q&A along with links and music below.
Where are you from and what style of music do you create? (In your own words, not necessarily in marketing terms or by popular genre classifications.)
My name is Luke and I’m the lead singer of Late TV, a band from London UK. However we are international within the ranks, like a marauding band of musical mercenaries. We’ve got Martin from Paris (France) on keyboards and Ryan Szanyi from Chicago on bass. The rest of us are from all over the UK. This is a side effect of living in a place like London, which is a point where lots of different people cross paths. We are unified by cultural reference points where we all cross over; jazz, funk, rock n’ roll, style, movies, Etc.
Musically we like to think of ourselves as somewhere between a Jazz-Funk Disco, the soundtrack to a David Lynch or Tarentino movie, and the house band of a late night chat show.
What led you down this path of music and what motivates you to keep going?
I think we like to tap into that feeling you get when you stay up too late and you really shouldn’t be. It’s a guilty pleasure which is the best kind. You could be the last person at the bar, or find yourself watching a TV movie and suddenly realise its 3am. Your enjoying yourself with a touch of melancholia, I have always enjoyed that vibe. We want to your go-to entertainers for that feeling.
How is this new release different than previous ones? Were you trying to accomplish anything specific?
We’ve released one other song called ‘Citizen’ back in October. That track has a kind of Nu-Disco flavour to it and a bit of acid jazz. The lyrics touch on the frustrations of life in small town, or just a small ‘situation’ while having a feeling that there’s more out there. This track ‘Losin’ It’ is sister piece to that song, in that it’s about someone trying to act on those desires and then banging up against everyone else’s in the process.
Name one or two challenges you face as an indie musician in this oversaturated, digital music age? How has technology helped you (since we know it does help)?
It certainly helps you to find new things, and take on-board wider influences. That’s probably what I appreciate the most, going on Youtube and watching a concert that I could never have been at. That’s an amazing recourse. In terms of platforms it certainly provides the scope to be heard more, however being heard above everyone else is probably as much of a dark-art as it always was.
Where is the best place to connect with you online and discover more music?
Well you’ve got to check out the video for Losin It, which is an animated extravaganza by Vlademir Studenic. We collaborated on an epic stop motion where at least one Casio keyboard got destroyed.
We’ve also just filmed some great live sessions which are also on the Late TV Youtube channel –
We’ve got the usual social media going on and we’ll put anything we’re doing on there so come find us, say and hello, lets be friends –
Anything else before we sign off?
Thanks for listening and I hope you like our tune, there’s plenty more where that came from! We hope to have an EP in the can soon so stay tuned!