Let’s just start this by stating the obvious. ANYTIME a Band uses’ “Thee” in their name , they have my attention. It’s such a great history of garage and garage punk that you can not ignore . And I’m glad to say that Thee MVPs were perfectly right in putting “Thee” in front of MVPs. Living up to the standards set by a true genius (Billy Childish) is not an easy feat, yet Thee MVPs manage to pull it all off, sounding authentic and ever bit as fun. That in itself is impressive enough for me. Pure exhilarating guitar driven garage rock sung with conviction and all done with a backbeat that keeps you glued in. As we head towards the weekend, have some fun, give a listen to Thee MVPs…. LOVE IT ALL….
Hi our name is….
Thee MVPs, but people keep spelling that wrong somehow?
People say we sound like…..
We have been compared to the Hives, Parquet Courts, Billy Childish’s associated acts and that California sound of Thee Oh Sees or Ty Segall
Charlie Wyatt and Alex Ives on guitars
Dan Bishop on Bass
Jack Shelefsky on Drums
We all sing
We are from……
We’re currently split between three towns due to high rent prices, no job prospects and final years of Higher Education, our current locations are in Gravesend, Norwich, Deptford and Hackney.
Who are some that have an influence on you
We listen to a lot of hip hop more than anything when we’re all together, the band name is taken from a Big L song. Although more obvious influences of ours are bands like Black Sabbath, Hot Snakes, Pavement, Coachwhips and Harlem.
How old were all of you when you started to play and who plays what in the band
We have been at it in a couple tweaked lineups since 2012 with Jack being the newest member in 2014. We started in our early twenties and are fortunate enough to confirm we’re still in them, though we act like 16 year olds whose parents are perpetually “seeing the grandparents for the weekend so the house better be spotless when we get back”
Can you tell us about the process you use, from writing the songs all the way through getting the songs out
Charlie use to write the bulk of things but its become a lot more of a group effort now, we don’t get much time to get together lately what with our hometowns being separated but we strive to practice at least twice a month with this setup.
Jacks more meticulous and detailed with the writing so it’s a good foil to Charlie’s “whistled it on the walk home” approach, Alex and dan are both writing great numbers too.
We record everything live and stick the vocals on after, as for releasing we’re lucky enough to be on two very good good labels (PNKSLM and Slovenly) who have put out a ton of music we both like and respect.
what are some of the challenges you face as musicians and how have you overcome those challenges
The biggest challenge if you’re a London group is to stand out, luckily though when everyone here takes to the stage they act like their cat just got run over and it’s innards are under a big old pedalboard so they can only step on their five reverb pedals ever so gently. I suppose what we’re trying to say is we get pretty lively live, actually speak in between songs, actually look at the crowd and always crack some in jokes or shoot a silly look to make the other guys laugh when we perform. We don’t buy into that whole ‘cool guy’ thing a lot of people do here, the audience are the cool ones for thinking your square ass is any good.
Also it just took us a little over two and half years to actually get paid more than £50 for shows, not that it’s about the money but it is a little bit, we’re not gonna starve for anyone not even ourselves.
Beatles or Stones?
Jack’s Beatles all the way, The stones woulda been fun to party with but We’re gonna throw a curveball and say the Kinks
Pizza or Tacos?
We’re from england man! We don’t get decent versions of either of them!
Who are all of you currently listening to ….
The Blind Shake, Mujeres, Male Gaze, Orang Utan, Eddy Current Supression Ring, Juan Wauters, Ex-Cult, Useless Eaters, Primitive Parts, Big Tits, Meatbodies.
If you could open for any Band right now who would that be and why?
Anything we have listed! Jack and Charlie just hit up Burgerama and SXSW too there’s been a lot of inspirado flying about for us, I guess for now the question is where do we wanna play more? Which is anywhere but London and then more than the same four spots in London.
My youngest son is 13 and in a Band, what advice would you give him?
Forever be a 13 year old with it, it’s easy to get jaded and cynical as you get older because you do see bands catch breaks before you who may not have put in the work you have. Just make sure what you are doing is good to your own ears first before you share it, and many bands don’t even get paid much these days so don’t work for chump change if you’re playing with cats you hate.
Having said all of this, the one thing we pride ourselves on more than anything is being a well rehearsed band. Take playing well seriously but no other parts of this whole music schtick seriously.
Our plans for 2015…..
Play absolutely anywhere that will book us, and record a new record. We have a single due out in a month or so too. Also get to play with every best band ever.
listen to some kicking tunes…
Gravesend, UK, home of THEE MVP’S, is a stones throw from Billy Childish’s Chatham, and Mssr. Billy’s primitive Medway beat has seeped into the territory and minds of this pretty new and pretty ugly combo. Also taking a cue from San Francisco’s Coachwhips, Thee MVP’S have laid a Slovenly stomper on us with “Oh Sally”, an ode to leader Charlie Wyatt’s Fender Mustang “Sally,” and written with his rockabilly playing father. True story. The flip here is a tough dancefloor mating ritual known as “Amok Time,” named for the second season premier of the original Star Trek series where Kirk and Spock go toe to toe against each other on planet Vulcan. A solid debut from this rapidly rising Limey garage-punk crew.