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Video of the Moment #1178: Theme Park

By on Tuesday, 16th April 2013 at 6:00 pm

‘Ghosts’ is the new video from Theme Park, their next single out on Transgressive Records on the 6th of May. Their self-titled debut album dropped in February. This song is just in time for summer, I’d say. Watch the video for the sun-kissed song below.



Video of the Moment #1110: Theme Park

By on Friday, 1st February 2013 at 6:00 pm

Theme Park will be releasing their debut album on the 25th of February on Transgressive Records. Here is the video for ‘Tonight’; the track itself was produced by the dad-dancing Ed Macfarlane of Friendly Fires. (Oh, so that’s where he’s gone…) There appears to be some dissension on whether the band has changed since signing. Have a watch and listen and tell us what you think in the comments!

The band hit #4 on our 10 for 2013 poll, with guitarist Oscar Manthorpe kindly answering our Quickfire Questions, as well as Tom’s burning questions.



(10 for 2013!) Quickfire Questions #41: Oscar Manthorpe of Theme Park

By on Thursday, 20th December 2012 at 1:00 pm

On Monday we posted a q&a with Oscar Manthorpe of Theme Park, the band you voted to the #4 spot on the 10 for 2013 TGTF readers’ poll. Oscar also was so kind to answer the TGTF Quickfire Questions as well. What song does he raise a cup of tea to when he needs to calm his nerves? Keep reading…

What song is your earliest musical memory?
‘Stumblin’ In’ by Suzi Quatro and Chris Norman. My family used to dance to it around the table every Sunday morning.

What was your favourite song as a child?
I remember always loving ‘In My Arms’ by Nick Cave. Still do, in fact.

What song makes you laugh?
Frankie Valli, ‘Can’t Take My Eyes Off You’. A guy did the single most bizarre rendition of it in the bar of an Indonesian hotel, and since then we’ve developed a little dance to remember the moment.

What song makes you cry?
Probably ‘Hallelujah’ by Jeff Buckley. Manly tears for Buckley.

What song reminds you of the first time you fell in love? (It’s up to you if you want this to be sweet, naughty, etc.)
Something like ‘Wake Up’ by Arcade Fire. Euphoric in a kind of adolescent way, but also fairly exhausting and a little bit ridiculous.

What song makes you think of being upset / angry? (Example: maybe you heard it when you were angry with someone and it’s still with you, and/or something that calms you down when you’re upset, etc.)
‘The Lark Ascending’ by Vaughan Williams. That and a cup of tea is very calming.

Which song (any song written in the last century) do you wish you’d written yourself?
‘Across 110th Street’, Bobby Womack. It just doesn’t make sense – I don’t understand how you could write something that good.

Who is your favourite writer? (This can be a songwriter or ANY kind of writer.)
Maybe Capote for books and Thom Yorke for music.

If you hadn’t become a singer/musician/songwriter/etc., what job do you think you’d be doing right now?
Probably trying to scrape together some kind of career in film.

If God said you were allowed to bring only one album with you to Heaven, which would it be and why? (Sorry, but double albums do not count.)
Neil Young, ‘After the Goldrush’. His voice might end up driving me insane, but wherever that record is feels like home.

Thank you Oscar for your help answering these questions. And thanks also to Adam for making this possible.


10 for 2013 Interview: Oscar Manthorpe of Theme Park

By on Monday, 17th December 2012 at 11:00 am

London band Theme Park landed at #4 on our 10 for 2013 countdown as voted by you TGTF readers. Guitarist Oscar Manthorpe, ever so humble when proclaiming himself the “Other guitarist” in the band on his personal Twitter kindly answered Tom’s questions.

For the new listeners out there, how would you describe your sound?
The core of the sound is based in danceable pop music; catchy hooks, strong melodies, concision in the songwriting – at least that’s what we aim for. But I’d hope people don’t judge it in that framework alone; there are weirder and darker aspects, particularly lyrically and rhythmically.

How do you feel about the constant comparisons to the Talking Heads?
On the one hand, great! They toyed with what a pop song could be. That philosophy of mixing great hooks with odd sounds and rhythms to make something darker and dancier is absolutely something we strive for. But beyond ‘Milk’, I believe we execute that blueprint in a really different way, a different aesthetic. I know how easy it is to listen to new things with that ‘file next to’ mindset, but I think it’s often better to judge something on its own merits, outside referential parameters.

I mentioned earlier how you’ve supported many bands; who’s been your favourite to be on tour with?
Two stand out for different reasons. Bombay Bicycle Club was a lot of fun because they’ve been friends since however long, and Bloc Party ‘cos well… it’s Bloc Party. They released ‘Silent Alarm’ just as we were getting to grips with what an electric guitar was. So to share a stage with a band that people love so much was an honour.

Bands with brothers in are always a big yes, but are there any Oasis-style spats whilst on the road?
None! Not a single one, I’m afraid. The Haughtons (Miles and Marcus) are a very peaceful pair, and I’ve known them for about 20 years, so we’re all settled in to the rhythms of friendship. The closest we’ve come on tour is bow and arrow battles in castles.

Oscar Manthorpe, are you aware of the following you’ve gathered in the form of the There Goes The Fear podcast?
Ha, no! Should I be worried? [I think Tom needs to flesh this out in a future piece for TGTF. Just sayin’. – Ed.]

If you weren’t in this band, where would you be right now?
I love the idea of working in film or teaching. I’m planning on teaching classical guitar for a bit in the next break from touring actually. And Miles is perennially working on a screenplay, but he’s very protective of it. It could end up as a lost masterpiece.

The Mystery Jets remix of ‘Jamaica’ is incredible, what was it like working with such a great band?
Fun! At least, as much as working over email can be. I remember seeing them at Mean Fiddler just after ‘Making Dens’ was released, it was incredible. So having our paths cross was very cool.

Blaine Harrison’s dad famously played bass for Mystery Jets when they started out, is there space in the band for anyone’s father?
I’d have to credit my dad with introducing me to many of my musical favourites, but he only knows how to play one song, ‘Suzanne’ by Leonard Cohen, on guitar. So, barring a *dramatic* change of direction, probably not.

If you could have written any song already released, which would it be?
It’d have to be ‘Across 110th Street’ by Bobby Womack. Although it’s about growing up in a world a million miles away from my own, it’s just so atmospheric and evocative that it feels almost canonical. If I write a song 1/100th as good as that, I’d die a happy man.

TGTF thanks Oscar for answering our burning questions and Adam for facilitating.


10 for 2013: #4 – Theme Park

By on Tuesday, 11th December 2012 at 11:00 am

Keen listeners of the There Goes the Fear podcast will have heard me gush over them before, but Theme Park are definitely one to watch for the coming year. The line-up including everyone’s favourite ginger guitarist, Oscar Manthorpe, a pair of handsome Haughton twins and Louis “the H is silent” Bhose.

The London foursome have been busy this year, delivering their Talking Heads-esque vibes to numerous festivals and supporting the likes of Bloc Party, Bombay Bicycle Club and Florence and the Machine. ‘Two Hours’, the title track on their recently released EP, definitely showcases the kind of energetic, light guitar pop that they produce so well. The London equivalent to the summery pop that Vampire Weekend have popularised in the last few years.

I can see 2013 being the year that Theme Park stop supporting bands and start being the main event.



Video of the Moment #989: Theme Park

By on Sunday, 30th September 2012 at 10:00 am

Theme Park‘s new single ‘Two Hours’ will be released on the 12th of November. Evidently, judging from the comments the promo video for the song has already garnered, they fan sourced extras for the video. Watch it below.

You can see them supporting Bloc Party on their UK tour in October.



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There Goes The Fear is where we tell you about the latest music, gigs, and tours we love and think you should too.

We love music that has its heart on its sleeve, tells a story, swims around our head all day or makes us dance like no-one's watching.

TGTF was edited by Mary Chang, based in Washington, DC.

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