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The first time I saw Alpha Male Tea Party live was ArcTanGent 2015 and I was fucked up, yet, I could still tell there was something off about them, they reeked of Merseyside. It’s like the sea air but, putrid, the Mersey air follows us all wherever we go. And they had Liverpool stamped all over them like a lady in the post office who’d been in a ‘void’ stamp fight with a co-worker. Bedlam. I guess my first question is, why play down south when there arearguably good venues in Liverpool like Macguire’s Pizza Bar or The Buyer’s Club? (I think that’s pretty much it)
There are plenty of very good venues in Liverpool; I’ve heard that there are too many venues in Liverpool from some people! Its not the venues but more like the scene. There’s not been a strong… shall we say… math scene in Liverpool for a few years, things are getting better though, and it’s still got a great DIY ethic in regards to those kind of shows. Liverpool has a big electro, indie and psych scene going on in the bigger venues. So you’ve got to dig a little deeper to get to the more experimental stuff. We’ve always struggled at “home” in the past, we don’t have much of a following in Liverpool. We’ve played a fair share of very random shows back home, from bakeries and tiny cafes….to big reverberant nordic churches playing to nobody and getting it shut down by the priest. I just think sometimes we have better shows outta town.
That’s a good answer; I’m surprised you guys aren’t playing Wrong Festival, come to think of it though.
What do you feel is usually special about playing in London and/or specifically Birthdays?
We’ve been a bit lucky to get quite a few good shows in London over the years, there’s always a bit more of a ceremony about playing London, feels like more of an event y’know? The launch gig of our last record was at Birthdays; its a fine fine venue. Good beer, great vibe downstairs… big fan of the lighting!
…And on that thread could you tell us also about your history as a band, your background, influences and perhaps other projects for those who are unfamiliar?
AMTP as an entity has been going for about 8 years now, although it was a bit of a different line-up back then to what we are now and pretty different musically… maturing like the fine old men we are now. We’ve just recorded our 3rd album, ‘Health’ which was run from a Pledge campaign, and everyone has helped and mucked in. We plan on doing a few tours to promote the record this year and hopefully… with all extremities crossed, get back over to Europe in the not too distant future. We’re playing Truck festival and a couple of others that I can’t divulge into yet! Our influences are vast, we´re not usually into the typical “math” stuff that you´d expect from the music we play. We’re influenced by everything around us musically, anything from Meshuggah to Billy Joel to Madonna via Hall and Oates.
If you were to sell somebody on one of the bands you were playing with on 28th April, how would you describe them?
Valerian Swing – Big jazzy loud strong boys of math, AMTP – don’t bother, Asian Death Crustacean – Doomy, end of the world kinda math, the good stuff.
And as always on the subject of selling, what sort of Alpha Tea Party’s merch might I find at Birthdays?
Some lovely new T-shirts, CDs, Vinyls, mega value bundles, Ben topless, sweating profusely.
How would you say your live sound differs from your studio sound?
The records are a bit slicker than we are live, sometimes we’re pretty off-the-rails and unhinged performance-wise onstage… in a kinda punk way, without sounding like an pretentious arsehole. The way we play tracks from ‘Health’ are pretty much how we play them on the record, we’ve kinda gone out of our way to emulate the record as much as we realistically can.
Will you be playing any songs from ‘Health’ at Birthdays?
We’ll be playing 8 of the record’s 10 tracks on the next tour, on a squad rotation basis. There will be an airing of the super international mega hits off the album ‘Droids’ too.
Last but, not least who would win in a collision; a trillion lions or The Sun? (The fire orb, not the disgraced tabloid).
I’d say the Sun. If you had a trillion lions all lying down you´d probably not cover the surface of the earth, so I think that theory answers the question for you.
Well, there you have it Alpha Male Tea Party are in The Big Smoke and looking to rock your socks off; catch them as they headline Chaos Theory at Birthdays, Dalston 28/04/17