Themes, dreams and plenty of funk

The Last Carnival
The Last Carnival

IT’S been a long time since funk reigned over the charts, but now it’s back, thanks to London band Theme Park.

The band are touring in celebration of their much-anticipated debut, as the band’s Marcus Haughton explains. “It’s great its out and all the fans can enjoy and listen to it. It took about two and a half months to do most of the recording.”

And recording the album proved to be a colourful experience. “We did it in a studio in east London with a producer called Luke Smith. It was a strange place, in the unit opposite there was a rasta weed den so there were always some strange characters wondering around the corridors late at night when we were tracking.”

There is no single concept for the album, according to Haughton, rather, there are a number of themes running through Theme Parks songs at once. Haughton says: “Lyrically there is a sense of melancholy in some of the songs, which people might find strange as they are generally very happy up beat tunes. But it was never a conscious decision to have a concept or a single inspiration.”

And with a heavy emphasis on bass lines and grooves, it’s inevitable that the band have been compared to a certain New York New Wave band. “When we first started one of the songs we put out had elements that could be compared to Talking Heads.

“It probably wasn’t helped originally by our friend who was helping us do some press stuff sending out a press release saying: ‘If you like Talking Heads you’ll like this!” They are one of our favourite bands though. It was an honour people thought we sounded like a band at all when they first heard our music.”

But Theme Park’s musical philosophy is much simpler than that of the Talking Heads. “We just want to make people dance! To have a party.”

Theme Park play at the Harley on Tuesday.