W.How it already begins: with a dull drumming. Sloshing up to the rhythm, piling up, a spray of sound and a voice, Ellie Rowsells, doing a somersault in the surf. Then the carpet for the hymn is rolled in the sand: “Let me off, let me in. Let others battle.” An offer, an outstretched hand. And finally the song breaks off very suddenly. Old indie tradition.
The argument about praise and condemnation of the indie genre should not be reopened here. However, it is difficult to hide a certain sentimentality in these lines. The view taken here: Critics did not understand or did not want to accept that it was just another, almost as versatile variety of rock. Hence the accusation of sentimentalism and complacency to a generation of those who are unfortunately now and then rightly scolded as apolitical.
Those days are over. Now that summer is rolling in like the sound wave in “Beach”, the first song on the new album by Wolf Alice, this most contemporary of all British bands, one would almost like a new term for this passionately produced music to be the To withdraw the indie corner and to trumpet in all parks and stadiums, if the band is not allowed to do it themselves. So entranced and full of confidence is what you hear from her, a call to liberation from the monotony, especially for the younger ones.
You sympathize with the boys
Ellie Rowsell agrees with the boys. For the kids, she says in the digital interview, the first thing they do is sing, preferably at a festival like Leeds or Reading, where the really young Brits usually get together. “I feel for a lot of people right now,” she says, “but I’m especially sorry for the youngsters.” Apart from that, it was actually clear that Rowsell, singer, songwriter and guitarist for Wolf Alice, would not be easily caught. Not in a spontaneous video interview (“hair not done”), not with indie labeling or pandemic psychology about major changes. “I’ll be thirty soon. What is going on in this time! Just because there is a pandemic doesn’t mean every change is associated with it. “
The outside has changed, however. Ten years ago she founded the band named after a short story by Angela Carter with guitarist and singer Joff Oddie, and Theo Ellis on bass and Joel Amey on drums. Since 2018 at the latest, when they won the Mercury Prize for their second album “Visions Of Life” and were nominated for a Grammy, Wolf Alice has been internationally regarded as the hope of guitar music. It could now go on with “Blue Weekend”. But before we talk about concert tours that are impossible to organize, paperwork and politics regardless of the music industry, rules that forbid a British band from traveling to more than a handful of venues in Europe with a large entourage – a fact that makes Rowsell curse – before it gets frustratingly realistic again, it should be about the eleven new songs that Rowsell wrote before the pandemic, which Wolf Alice set to music in a house in Somerset and in peace with the arcade fire producer Markus Dravs have perfected.