latewaves may be new to the Asbury Park music scene as a collective unit, but this trio of scene veterans wasted no time in becoming the go-to band in the city that Bruce built. Their infectious style of punk rock has captivated the scene, and made the band regulars at nearly every venue in the city.
That’s why we’re stoked to have them as a part of our Second Annual Locals Christmas Party on December 9. They’re easily one of the most exciting new acts in the scene, and when you hear them — you’ll be hooked.
Recently, we sat down with the band to recap their insanely busy year, and look at what the future holds for them.
latewaves Are (band members & instruments they play): Mike Pellegrino (Guitar and Vocals), Howie Cohen (bass), Shawna Grabowski (drums)
Year We Were Formed In: 2017
We’re Based Out of: Asbury Park
The Story Behind Our Name: The short version of the long band naming process is simply that we enjoy hanging on the beach late night during the summer. We landed on latewaves and booked all the handles immediately.
Cool/Famous Bands We’ve Shared the Stage With: This past year we have shared the stage with a bunch of awesome bands. Love the Can’t Swim pals and playing with them, and we can’t leave out the reunion shows we’ve played with Just Surrender and Trophy Scars (separate shows) with Rare Futures and Will Wood and the Tapeworms. A recent show we played at The House of Independents with Vinnie Caruana, and friends from The Vansaders, Rocky and the Chapter and Levy and the Oaks was also an awesome time.
Our Sound Has Been Likened To: We’re being told that we have a nostalgic sound that sounds modern day. In other words, it’s reminding people of the early 2000’s and 90’s which was when some of our favorite music had been made so we’re cool with that.
You’ve Seen Us Before In Other Bands: Mike was in The Mosers which did a good amount of touring, Howie is still in Athletics to name some of the past groups, but collectively the three of us had been playing and taking a crack Jersey scene since the early 2000’s.
We talked to you guys earlier this year, right before your EP dropped. Since the release of that EP how have things changed for you guys in terms of gigs, exposure, etc.? Did that release of the record change the way you guys perceive the band, or is it just business as usual?
The release definitely gave us a sense of purpose. A lot of bands start and write and trail off, we’ve all been in those situations. Releasing the record kind of put the name in stone and now we feel a better sense of responsibility to keep going and get to the next step as a band. Which would be touring and writing more.
Will we be seeing new music from you guys in the near future?
Certainly in the future, we started writing the next batch of songs and will be recording those soon. We started testing some of them out live as well and people have been giving a good response.
You guys play a ton in the Asbury Park scene — are there any plans on taking the show outside of the Tri-State area in the near future?
Absolutely. We love playing in Asbury but we really want to spread and play outside of what we’re used to. It’s such a supportive scene in AP and before you know it you blink and you accidentally booked your own little tour of Asbury. But, we have plans to hit the road this winter and will continue to do so in the future.
If someone’s coming to check you guys out at the 12/9 shows, and they want to do a little pre-gaming and check your music out, what would be a good song to start with and why?
Track 1 of our EP “If It’s Over.” We made it the first song of our EP for a reason, to grab your attention. It starts full throttle out of the gate and sets a good precedent for the rest of the record.
What has been one of the coolest and/or most satisfying moments you’ve had as a band? Conversely, what’s been the most frustrating/disappointing? And why to both questions?
Our coolest moment so far was definitely playing our first “sold out” show at the Wonder Bar over the summer on a Monday night. We co-headlined with Can’t Swim and before we went on stage front of house approached us and said the venue was at capacity. Another cool recent moment was at the Halloween show at Bond Street basement when we audibly had people singing our lyrics back at us while we were playing. That was a moment when we were like, “whoa, people dig us AND know our lyrics.”
New Jersey right now is exploding with crazy talent right now — how do you feel you stand out from everyone else out there in the scene?
I think what sets us apart is our stage presence and live show. We’ve been gaining momentum organically by putting ourselves out there and we always took our live performance as the most important thing to hone in on. Not that we think we’re better or worse live than any of the other amazing bands coming out right now; we just think we leave an impression on stage. That’s why we’re psyched to keep branching out.
What do you guys love about being in latewaves? You dedicate a lot of time to this band — so what is it about it that makes you want to put some much time and effort into this?
We all get along and enjoy the presence of each other. We love playing music and we love each other so we have a great time doing it all. Everything is very organic with our chemistry so putting the work in kind of comes naturally.
What are you most excited for in 2018?