Wolf Alice have just released their second album and head to Newcastle this month so Laura Sanderson caught up with the band to talk about playing intimate venues, the reaction to the new album, and more.
You played the Westgarth Social Club in Middlesbrough this summer. What made you want to play intimate venues on that tour ahead of the album?
A lot of these venues don’t get a lot of bands passing through them. The first time around playing some of those smaller venues we literally played to nobody but they’re almost designed to be played if they’re packed. Middlesbrough was very good to us the first time we went there so it was on our list to go back to.
Do you prefer playing smaller venues or big festival slots?
I’ve played small shows and been like “this is sick!” but I’ve played festival shows, like the pyramid stage at Glastonbury, where I’ve just been in complete awe of it all. With our band though we can kind of tailor our set to whatever suits the room best.
So what is it like now that you’ve finally released your second album, ‘Visions Of A Life’?
We’ve been completely overwhelmed with the reaction. We’ve been going around the country meeting people; it’s very humbling to meet people who have connected with the record in a short space of time and them telling us their favourite songs. Obviously it’s very flattering to have the press be into it but to see people who come to the shows enjoying it makes it a special thing.
How was the process of making this album different to the first?
It was a shorter period of time. We were on the road for two years while songs were coming to us and then we had maybe about six months in London from starting to really work on it to having it kind of written and finished and then in the studio. Your whole life is working up to that first record and then for a band like us where you’ve got to do the next one in a shorter period of time, problems can arise but we’ve been lucky because the process was quite smooth and organic.
Is there someone in the band who does most of the writing or is it quite an equal contribution?
We all work on every song with all of our heart and soul. There is some stuff where there is probably more of one person in different bits though. There is a lot of Ellie in this album – a lot of ideas came from things she had sent over.
Have you got any favourite songs on the album?
I like the album in its entirety but I do like picking it apart a little bit. I enjoy listening to ‘St. Purple & Green’ in a kind of indulgent fashion because I’m so amazed about pulling it off and I’m so happy about the way it came out.
What can fans coming to your Newcastle date expect on your upcoming tour?
Obviously we will be playing the new album as well as some of the old bangers. We have a really fun production that we will be putting on. We can’t wait to do it and I tend to think when all four of us have that feeling behind us there is no stopping us.
Which bands do you love at the moment that you’ll be listening to while travelling on tour?
I’m into the new Grizzly bear album and I’m revisiting the Father John Misty album ‘I Love You, Honeybear’. The new Superfood album ‘Bambino’ is really good. They’re coming on tour with us and we’re all really good friends so it’s just like being on holiday with all your best mates.
Wolf Alice plays Newcastle’s 02 Academy on Monday 13th November with support from Sunflower Bean and Superfood. Standing tickets have now sold out but balcony tickets, priced at £21.40 (including booking fee), are available from seetickets.com.