After a four-year-long hiatus, the London-based alternative rock band Wolf Alice has announced their third album ‘Blue Weekend’, and it’s a banger.
Words by Alice Stevens
Following their 2017 Mercury Prize-winning album ‘Visions Of A Life’, Wolf Alice is back and stronger than ever before. After becoming one of the UK’s most adoring and successful alternative bands, the four-pieces new album ‘Blue Weekend’ perfectly confirms that title. After being sent the album in early April, you could definitely say I was jumping for joy. The album is quintessentially themselves: self-assured, hopeful, cool, and unpredictable. During our interview, Joff Oddie, the guitarist, explained that the title ‘Blue Weekend’ can have two meanings; “being blue is a cliche thing of feeling a bit down and glum, but a blue weekend can also mean blue skies and fun, a promising time of excitement. So it has multiple meanings. Joel said it in an Uber once and we couldn’t stop saying it.”
“I don’t think we quite realized just how long the gap is with releasing new music because we spent so long touring for Visions of a Life. The more we talk to people and hear their reaction to the record, it’s just making me even more excited” -Joff Oddie.
With the band’s first two albums My Love Is Cool (2015) and Visions Of A Life (2017) just missing out on the UK’s Number 1 spot, pre-orders for Blue Weekend are reported to have surpassed those of Visions Of A Life within two weeks of its launch, once again proving high anticipation for their return. After winning the 2018 Hyundai Mercury Prize with Visions of a Life, Oddie emphasised how “It’s odd as we won the mercury right at the end of our campaign so it always feels like we didn’t see much of the ‘return’ you’d expect because we were away, and now we’re back talking to journalists like you and they say ‘how does it feel to be one of Britain’s biggest bands and I’m like ‘are we? So it feels like we have grown in that time in between and it feels like now we’re kind of seeing the outcome of that growth.”
Following the release of the first single “The Last Man on Earth” from Blue Weekend back in February, Oddie explained that: “after such a long gap between releasing music, It felt like the naughtiest one to release first in a way. I think first and foremost it’s a good song, but I think it’s the thing that would hopefully make people go ‘oh what’s going on here? What’s this new album going to do and what’s it going to be like? It was the song I first heard from the demo that Ellie sent over, and I was fairly certain it was an important song from that very early stage. I hope people will get that vibe.” On the 15th of April, a 12-second teaser for the track ‘Smile’ was posted to social media (my personal favourite from the album.) It is a heavy-no-crap-taking expression of female independence, “a part of the sphere of empowerment and going ‘‘I’m a boss, fuck you.’”
It has proved to be a successful year for the band with the release of their new album on the 11th of June and the announcement of the virtual Glastonbury live stream that is to take place this May. The band is to play alongside the likes of Coldplay; IDLES, Blur frontman Damon Albarn and Jorja Smith.
“It’s always amazing to be close to Worthy farm, it’s a really special place for us and internationally. It’s an important part of our heritage now, it feels like such an important cultural institution. To be there with some wicked bands and artists will be great! Live-streamed gigs have been a lifeline for so many people, witnessing something live and having a shared experience is a good way to feel a part of something when everyone is stuck.”
Wolf Alice’s ‘Blue Weekend’ is out June 11th.