Daytime TV talk lockdown, finding inspiration and their upcoming UK tour.
Pop-rock fourpiece Daytime TV are a brand new act who have just dropped their second single Zombie. I was lucky enough to catch up with vocalist and guitarist Will Irvine for a chat, keep reading to find out more!
Would you like to say a few words to introduce yourself to our readers at Discovery?
I’m Will from Daytime TV and we’re a rock band from the UK, primarily Scotland, and we just released a new single called ‘Zombie’.
How would you describe your sound to someone who has never heard your music before?
I’d say our roots are in rock, but we’re very modern sounding and we don’t shy away from putting synths in, or anything that fits the song really, People have kind of compared us to all sorts of people, which every band gets and hates! People have said Arctic Monkeys and Biffy Clyro, things like Tame Impala, which was a shock but I get it with the synthier side of our sound. There’s definitely a pop element to what we do, so it’s somewhere in the middle of rock and pop with our own little flavour thrown in.
What would you say is your goal as a band? What do you hope to achieve?
We want to be the best live band on the planet. That’s a genuine aim that we’re actively going after and we’ve always had big aspirations and we’re a group of people who don’t see the point in doing it unless you want to be at that pinnacle, we want to be festival headliners, we want to be playing to as many people as possible as m any consecutive days as possible. We want to be the best live band out there and have a reputation for putting on amazing shows.
This month saw the release of your second single ‘Zombie’, how did you find the support for it?
Amazing to be honest, it was such a nice shock releasing that song, we’ve had it on the back burner for a little while and I wasn’t sure how people would react to it because its quite a different sounding song. It’s immediate and in your face and the reactions been incredible, the radio play and the press and fans on social media saying how much they enjoy it, its just a really nice pat on the back at a time where people need new music and exciting things to be happening, so to be able to deliver on that front for people is a nice feeling.
How did you find the recording process this time around?
It was different. We were in Cardiff for five weeks recording essentially an album worth of material. We’d never really spent any time in Cardiff before and we were just in this weird little Airbnb. Because we’re cheapskates we booked it in the worst part of Cardiff and it was pretty hairy at moments. I remember one night we sort of went out to some pub after a session, we came back a guy pulled a handgun on us. It was quite a moment but at the time it didn’t seem that crazy, it fizzled out then we got home and we were laughing about it. We woke up the next morning and realised ‘that guy pulled a gun on us, that was a real thing’. Apart from that Cardiff is an amazing place, but don’t book the Airbnb that we booked because its in gunville.
How did you find shooting the music video over three different locations?
It was really interesting, at one point we weren’t going to do a video because we couldn’t get together so we thought it’d need to be some animated thing that none of us are in, or something with just one of us. Then we thought lets just do a video with all of us and find a concept that works where we don’t all need to be in one shot together. It fitted really well with the song and I think if we’d tried to do that with a different song it might have been more difficult. John and Gareth live in London and they had to meet up in Hyde Park to film their little bits, normally when you’re on a shoot together you see it all happen and you know what its going to look like, but this time we were all blind to what everyone else was doing. The shots where its me with darkness behind me are actually filmed next door in my bathroom! We had to be creative but that’s part of the fun of it, and we wanted to make sure there was a visual that people could get their teeth into so I’m glad we did it.
How have you found writing and releasing music over lockdown?
I think the other songwriters I’ve spoken to have had a similar thing where in the first lockdown all of my creativity just deserted me and I didn’t have any new ideas, I had full writers block and I couldn’t sit down and write a song. I think everyone was in this collective state of shock whether we knew it or not. I thought I was kind of chilled about the situation but I guess my creativity only thrives, and I guess it’s the same with everyone, when you’re a bit more settled. That was really hard at first but as I got more used to it, it actually became a bit more of an asset because you’re really going through something. I got quite badly struck with long covid for about five or six months which was not fun, so coming out the back of that I just had this desire to get out there and write about things and experience things. We’ve gone through these highs of playing great gigs in front of amazing people to the world being in lockdown and me being ill and no new stuff happening. That change was quite a huge part of everyone’s life but as a writer it played into my hands a little but because it game me all this ammunition. You find out about yourself in those moments, so to dig a little deeper it really helps. When we played one of our first gigs this wise old guy came up to me and said “your melodies are good, your songs are good you sound good, but you need to get your heart broken before you can really write a song”, and at the time I thought in was writing great songs but he was right. It wasn’t necessarily a heartbreak but you need something to happen to you to be able to really write about real stuff. As an 18-year-old I couldn’t write about all these mad experiences that I’m now having, so I guess he was right.
Who would you say are your biggest influences, musically or otherwise?
I get really influenced by films, it can be anything but I’m quite weird with TV and film, I always buy into it way too much whether it’s a documentary or some hard-hitting movie I’m always quite altered by it. It can be like a month later and I’m still talking about it and thinking about it. I find quite a lot of inspiration in films because I guess I’ve got a really active imagination but it never really comes out, you can’t see into people’s crazy brains, but cinema and film live out those wild ideas that you have in your brain, those extreme feelings that you might touch upon in your own weird moments. I think I always just connect strongly with movies and they provide quite a lot of inspiration for me. Musically everything inspires me, there’s just so many different styles of music that I listen to and love whether its hip-hop or rock stuff or really poppy stuff; a good song is a good song in my book and I like to ingest cool sounds or interesting moments and try and do our own thing.
As a film student I’ve got to ask, what’s your all-time favourite movie?
Now you’re talking! So, I’ve got a weird sort of obsession with prison movies and documentaries, I watched this series about death row once and I thought about it for six months straight, it changed me as a person thinking about these people who have or haven’t done what is being said of them and they’re just sat in this cell block waiting to be injected and killed. Off the back of that there’s a film called the hurricane which is based off the song that Bob Dylan wrote called ‘Hurricane’ which was about the real-life events of a boxer called Rubin Carter, a black man who was falsely accused of murdering someone and he went to jail for 30 years when he was about to become a world champion boxer. The horrendous sense of injustice struck a huge chord with me and I hate watching that film because it affects me so much but I love it.
The Scottish music scene has no shortage of brilliant bands and artists at the moment, who are some of your favourites?
There are so many great artists kicking off in Scotland right now, obviously big up The Snuts for leading the way right now! Some great people that we’re pals with that I’d recommend are a pop band called Heights, there’s a solo artist called Dev Green who’s out of Dundee and does some really cool and colourful alt pop stuff. There’s a great band called The Van T’s which we love, those are some of my faves!
In November you’re set to embark on a UK headline tour, which of the venues are you most excited to play and why?
Glasgow is always special, we’re doing two nights at King Tut’s which will be one hell of a thing, that’s right up there. I always like going down and making the noise in London, for some reason it just feels like you’re shaking up the system when you go down there and its always great. For me my hometown gig will be up in Inverness, we’re playing the Ironworks there which is like 1000 people, its really close to selling out so that’ll be a packed house in a place I used to go and watch gigs, for me that’s probably going to be the most special.
I’ve just got one more question for you, what’s next for Daytime TV?
More music! Since our fun time in Cardiff, we have a lot of material that we haven’t been able to release during covid with so much kicking off that we’re now in a position to map out the releases and build towards an album at the end of it. We’re seeing Zombie as day one of this year of music and there are going to be a lot of releases happening quickly, a lot of videos and we’re itching to get back to playing live so there are some festivals that we’re booked for that may or may not happen this year. Aside from that we are going to be putting out plenty of new music for people to get into.