EMQ’s with THE VENUS FLY TRAP
Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with Northampton, UK based Gothic/Post Punk/Dark Wave band The Venus Fly Trap. Huge thanks to Alex Novak for taking part.
What is your name, what do you play, and can you tell us a little about the history of the band?
Alex Novak/Venus Fly Trap (Vox)
Not a straightforward answer as the line-up has changed many times, but to summarise, I had finished being in a band called ATTRITION who were based in London at the time. I had done one album and toured Holland with them. Decided to move back to my native Northampton (famous for BAUHAUS, ALAN MOORE and the film KINKY BOOTS), hooked up with my brother JOHN NOVAK (ISAWS/WHERES LISSE) and TONY BOOKER an x-art school student (I had also studied at Northampton Art School).The line-up changed pretty quickly. We originally used a drum machine but then decided to use a drummer instead. ANDY DENTON was drumming for a local band CROWMAN at the time. He joined the band and as these things happen, more band changes and he ended up playing guitar. He has done for a number of years. Myself and ANDY DENTON (Guitar/Programming) have produced four albums together “DARK AMOUR”, “ZENITH”, “NEMESIS”, and most recently a new studio album, “ICON” which came out in 2018, probably our most consistent period as a band.
How did you come up with your band name?
Hard to pick a name that has not been used before. I liked the idea of a plant that eats insects rather than the other way round, the connections with the planets Venus and Mars, mythology, sci-fi, so there were plenty of images and ideas to play around with.
What country are you from and what is the Rock/Metal scene like there?
England (UK), the music scene here is pretty strong whatever type of music you are into.
What is your latest release?
We have a new release available VENUS FLY TRAP/ALEX NOVAK – “MERCURIAL 1978-2018” on CD/DL via Glass Records Modern. It is a best of VFT and other projects, bands I have been involved with including ISAWS, RELIGIOUS OVERDOSE, TEMPEST, ATTRITION, NOVA STATE CONSPIRACY, THE DEN and SPORE. A career spanning retrospective for people to delve into and explore further if they wish, about eighty minutes of music packed into this release.
Who have been your greatest influences?
Everybody is influenced by somebody else. The trick is to take these elements and arrange them into something original, never wanted to sound exactly like another band, always striving to do something unique.
What first got you into music?
When Punk exploded it changed my perception, it was a get up and give it a go attitude, minimal experience, but it did not matter, it was the ideas that counted. The DIY approach got people to do music who would not have thought of it before.
If you could collaborate with a current band or musician who would it be?
We are always open to collaboration, no one specific.
If you could play any festival in the world, which would you choose and why?
A country we had not been to before or in an unusual location would be my criteria.
What is the weirdest gift you have ever received from a fan?
Dont want to start a competition to come up with weird items.
If you had a message for your fans what it be?
Dont come out of the bunker until the all clear has been given.
If you could bring one rock star back from the dead, who would it be?
If I had that power, I would be using it on myself.
What do you enjoy the most about being a musician? And what do you hate?
Experiences, gigs, travel, interaction with different people and anything is possible, the downside is logistics of travelling and the hanging around.
If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?
If you don’t like what’s going on, do your own thing, create an alternative.
Name one of your all-time favourite albums?
Such a difficult question to answer.
What’s best? Vinyl, Cassettes, CD’s or Downloads?
Put out material on all formats! The one thing about vinyl is you have a lot more scope for artwork/design because you have a bigger space to create on.
What is the best gig you have played to date?
Hopefully, it will be the next one, although 2019 was a pretty good year for us gig wise.
If you were not a musician, what else would you be doing?
Well, as mentioned earlier, I studied graphic design and later photography so something to do with the arts, but I also run a record shop, which I have been doing for the last twenty years.
Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?
Five people who hated each other, sit back and watch the fireworks.
What’s next for the band?
Re arranging dates for September that were organised for May to tie in with the release, but due to events beyond our control this did not happen. All the latest info here.
Jaffa Cakes? Are they a cake or a biscuit?
Cake according to the name, small cake though…
Thank you for your time. Is there anything else that you would like to add?
See you all on the other side.
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