My Love Is Cool LP
Dirty Hit Records – 22 June 2015
WOLF ALICE are a bunch of characters. ELLIE ROWSELL plays the effortlessly visceral front woman onstage, but is quietly polite off it hoping to not ‘sound wanky’ in interviews. THEO ELLIS is the suave punk bassist, unapologetic about the dodgy tattoos he gets to kill time when bored on tour. His latest is a black rectangle which is supposed to resemble a pint of Guinness. Guitarist JOFF ODDIE is the insular romantic, picking out folk tunes on an acoustic backstage then noodling the hell out of his solos when the lights go up. Last, but certainly not least, drummer and one half of a rhythmic bromance with Theo, JOEL AMEY provides the life and soul of the party. Joel is incapable of doing anything besides music. He collects oddball trinkets to decorate his chest like some 1970s road dog.
Together WOLF ALICE form a gang of loveable jerks who have spent the past two years together chasing adventure, learning how to craft songs, playing them red raw and having the best time you possibly could in your early 20s, more often than not in the silly, unpretentious ‘museum’ of Camden Town.
“There’s so little going on for Camden culturally at the moment,” jokes Theo. Ellie adds: “It’s not cool. It’s also not cool to say it’s not cool because like, yeah, nobody disagrees.”
Announcing themselves at the start of 2013 with the wallop of FLUFFY, they’ve built a diverse canon of belters, evolving their sound and providing music lovers with a bit of everything on the BLUSH EP  and CREATURE SONGS EP  from indie ballads and folky anthems to grunge screamers and big poppy choruses.
They’ve crashed through cities in Europe and the US, leaving a path of destruction in their wake then apologising for the mess they made, hoping they’ll be invited back next time. Their mischief bears an innocence that explains the contrast in light and dark on their highly anticipated debut LP; MY LOVE IS COOL, released on 22 June via Dirty Hit Records.
Patience has allowed them to improve in scope and technique, rewarding them with an album they’re confident in. Finally. “Everyone kept telling us we were so eclectic and incapable of being pigeonholed,” says Theo.
“The album is an expression of our sound, cross-pollinated by what’s come before; a consistent representation of those ideas.” Ellie scoffs: “You’re too eloquent for your own good, Theo.”
Produced by Mike Crossey [Arctic Monkeys, Foals] the band went into the studio with a sense of panic last November for five weeks in London’s Wood Green. It was an intense and emotional experience, bringing them closer together and allowing them to exorcise their demons. “It’s nice when something’s going badly and eventually you get there,” recalls Joel. “Especially for me and Theo doing takes over and over is so embarrassing. Then you get it and you’re like, Ah! I knew we were good.”
It’s that sense of playfulness, of realising their dream to be a proper band, that shines throughout the 11 tracks on MY LOVE IS COOL. The fact it’s fun doesn’t overshadow its ambition, though. The band were conscious that expectations – their own included – were building. Even the familiar BROS and FLUFFY have been re-worked, now displaying pointier teeth and sharper claws.
From the enormous riffs of single GIANT PEACH to the muffled, urgent melodies of LISBON and hip-hop rhythms of SILK, MY LOVE IS COOL is a masterful, explorative statement of Wolf Alice’s multiple characters. It unfolds like a play, and ends on THE WONDERWHY, which contains echoes of other tracks within, like a final reprise. For a band named after a literary reference, fiction is a conscious part of their manifestation. They lament the lack of theatre among upcoming bands and don’t want their appeal to be limited to new music fans that pride themselves on championing the Next Big Thing. MY LOVE IS COOL is for music lovers period.
Young, invincible and full of potential, Wolf Alice have made exactly the type of debut they should have. MY LOVE IS COOL is a reflection of four individuals, all pertaining to different tastes and senses of humour. They provide a collection of songs to get involved in, an invitation to be part of their gang. Like the title, the emotional response it conjures can’t be done justice with words alone. “‘Cool’ as a sentiment is so weird. How can you be ‘cool’? Alien characters are ‘cool’ but not necessarily good-looking or clever. The coolest thing is to just have something about you.” “‘Cool’ and ‘Love’ are just MASSIVE words,” mocks Joel. It’s the perfect title, not confined to mood or place.
WOLF ALICE play numerous UK and European festivals this summer, including LEEDS / READING, GLASTONBURY, JERSEY LIVE, LATITUDE, LONGITUDE and T IN THE PARK, and have now announced a full UK tour for September. Dates as follows:
Wed 16 BRISTOL Academy
Thu 17 BIRMINGHAM Institute
Sat 19 GLASGOW ABC
Mon 21 NEWCASTLE University
Tue 22 SHEFFIELD Plug
Wed 23 SOUTHAMPTON Guildhall
Fri 25 MANCHESTER Albert Hall
Sat 26 LONDON Brixton Academy