Wolf Alice - Blue Weekend
Words from @laurenwhiteheadjourno
Returning with vocals and melodies as angelic as ever, Wolf Alice have graced our ears with their third album, 'Blue Weekend' which many are calling their most impressive to date.
Now six years since the release of their debut, 'My Love Is Cool', the band have gone from strength to strength since, earning a Grammy nomination and Mercury Prize on their way as well as numerous sell out headline shows. The London outfit are now set to headline Latitude Festival in July, alongside embarking on a headline UK and Ireland tour next year.
It is lead singer Ellie Rowsell who has largely blossomed on their latest release, taking centre stage in a stark contrast to the expansive instrumnetal led soundscape of their orevious record 'Visions Of A Life'. On this album her lyrics bare all as she delves into her personal relationships from start to finish – both with others and also with herself- and running this risk of putting her heart on her sleeve has truly paid off. 'No Hard Feelings' and 'Safe From Heartbreak (if you never fall in love)' are two beautifully composed serenades that reflect this narrative perfectly and see Rowsell lull you inside the 'night out' concept whilst boasting a lyrical maturity and refinement.
As the name suggests, 'Feeling Myself' delves further into Rowsell’s notion of self-love alongside a punk-ified 'Smile' which screams confidence as it delivers a combination of crashing cymbals, a commanding bassline, and strong vocals from the four-piece. With euphoric tracks 'Lipstick On The Glass' and 'The Last Man on Earth' that are as glorious as those that surround them, the band certainly do not shy away from delving into various genres, dipping their toes in the water of shoegaze, psychadelic, punk, alt-rock and synth-pop.
The stand-out off the record is 'Delicious Things' is the cherry on the cake as Rowsell describes a trip through Los Angeles, painting the Hollywood hills vividly in your mind’s eye. Being the longest composition on the album – and perhaps rightfully so – this is the track that defines Rowsell’s vocals, lyrical ability and the band’s instrumentation overall as a work of art. If they hadn’t caught your attention yet, this trip to LA alone will surely do just that.
As much as Rowsell paves the way for the band, Joff Oddie, Theo Ellis and Joel Amey are not to be outshone. The trio are as pivotal in the creation of each and every melody within, as they too have matured with 'Blue Weekend'. Incorporating both finger-picked guitar melodies alongside an authoritative electric solo, Oddie is as versatile as ever. Thundering basslines from Ellis and Amey failing to miss a beat, Wolf Alice grab your attention immediately and hold it exactly where they want it.
Whilst each track is as great as its predecessor, the album itself is a masterpiece that undoubtedly distinguishes the London quartet as one of wonder and rightfully deserving of their place in the mainstream. If one thing is for sure, Wolf Alice are truly waving the flag for British music.