Inexplicably taking their name from a syrupy 1991 film about a child prodigy starring Jodie Foster, Little Man Tate is a scrappy indie rock band from Sheffield, England. Like their Yorkshire compatriots the Arctic Monkeys, Little Man Tate offers a veddy veddy British take on guitar pop.
Little Man Tate shares commonalities with Blur, the Dentists, and other devotees of the Kinks’ blend of catchy tunes and playful lyrics about everyday British life. Singer and rhythm guitarist Jon Windle, lead guitarist Edward “Maz” Marriot, bassist Ben Surtees, and drummer Dan Fields originally formed under the name Carousel Moon in 2003, briefly going through the names the Moon and Lazy Eye before settling on Little Man Tate in 2005. Little Man Tate released their debut single, “The Agent,” in March 2006 on their own Yellow Van label. After a second self-released single, “What? What You Got,” hit the lower reaches of the U.K. Top 40 chart in May of that year, Little Man Tate signed to V2 Records. V2 released three more singles — “House Party at Boothy’s,” “Man, I Hate Your Band,” and “Sexy in Latin” — with increasing chart success each time, before Little Man Tate’s debut album, About What You Know, was released in February 2007.