WOLF ALICE, Britain’s best band, have released their uncompromising new single SMILE. The track was inspired by lead singer ELLIE ROWSELL’s desire to fight back against those who try to define her, and is the second single from their highly anticipated third album, BLUE WEEKEND, the follow up to the Mercury Prize winning VISIONS OF A LIFE.
SMILE is carried along on a tide of visceral energy, and is a song destined to be a live favourite. The band envisaged this during their time recording BLUE WEEKEND in Brussels during lockdown. “This is one of the songs we wrote thinking that we would play it live,” says Rowsell. “I miss that feeling of singing on stage. It’s like screaming into a pillow or something – you can get away with being more nasty. There’s a whole other part of me missing.”
SMILE is accompanied by a video directed by Jordan Hemingway (Gucci, Raf Simons, Comme Des Garcons), the band’s second collaboration with Hemingway following the video for the previous single THE LAST MAN ON EARTH. The saturated visuals of the band in full flow, combined with the casting of riotous punk extras and pub locals, provide the ideal hedonistic backdrop to the track.
THE LAST MAN ON EARTH spent seven weeks on the BBC Radio 1 A-list. It was premiered by Annie Mac as her Hottest Record in The World, further cementing a long-standing relationship between the band and Annie. The band recently released a live version of THE LAST MAN ON EARTH here:
The release of SMILE follows the announcement of a 2022 UK and Ireland tour, their first headline shows since 2018. Dates below. Before then, on Saturday 22 May, WOLF ALICE will play GLASTONBURY PRESENTS LIVE at Worthy Farm alongside Coldplay, Michael Kiwanuka, IDLES, Haim and many more.
Wed 05 GLASGOW Barrowland (Extra Date)
Fri 07 GLASGOW Barrowland (Sold Out)
Sat 08 GLASGOW Barrowland (Sold Out)
Sun 09 NEWCASTLE O2 City Hall
Mon 10 NORWICH UEA (Sold Out)
Wed 12 MANCHESTER O2 Apollo (Sold Out)
Thu 13 MANCHESTER O2 Apollo (Extra Date)
Fri 14 SHEFFIELD O2 Academy (Sold Out)
Sat 15 LIVERPOOL University (Sold Out)
Tue 18 LONDON Eventim Apollo (Sold Out)
Wed 19 LONDON Eventim Apollo (Extra Date)
Sat 22 SOUTHAMPTON O2 Guildhall (Sold Out)
Sun 23 BEXHILL-ON-SEA De La Warr Pavilion
Mon 24 DUBLIN Olympia Theatre (Extra Date)
Tue 25 DUBLIN Olympia Theatre (Sold Out)
Thu 27 BIRMINGHAM O2 Academy
Fri 28 PLYMOUTH Pavilions
Sun 30 BRISTOL O2 Academy (Sold Out)
Mon 31 BRISTOL O2 Academy (Extra Date)
Wolf Alice are ELLIE ROWSELL (vocals and guitar) JOFF ODDIE (guitar and vocals) THEO ELLIS (bass) and JOEL AMEY (drums and vocals). It has been a decade since the band began as a duo of Ellie and Joff, later expanding to a four-piece with Joel and Theo joining the group. The band have since seen their 2015 debut album My Love Is Cool soar to #2 on the UK album charts, their sophomore album Visions of a Life also reach #2 and win the 2018 Hyundai Mercury Prize. The band also played a massive 187 shows on the Visions of a Life world tour, including a sold-out Alexandra Palace in London, two sold-out dates at Brixton Academy and a set on the Pyramid Stage at Glastonbury.
It was no surprise that creating a follow up to Visions of a Life was a daunting task. The record was a huge success which subsequently led to many months spent on tour, with intercontinental flights, hotels and long bus journeys taking its toll.
The band decamped to an Airbnb in Somerset, and it was here that they reconfigured who they were together, far away from festival stages, tour buses, awards shows and fans. They cemented their friendship and set to work on some fledgling demos in a converted church. These demos evolved into BLUE WEEKEND, a record produced by Markus Dravs (Arcade Fire, Bjork, Brian Eno, Florence and The Machine) who has aided the band in refining their sound to an even sharper point. Ellie Rowsell’s personal storytelling is at the core of BLUE WEEKEND, an album that sees Wolf Alice embrace a newfound boldness and vulnerability in equal measure.
BLUE WEEKEND will be released on 11 June 2021 via Dirty Hit and will be available on all DSPs, vinyl, CD and cassette. Pre-order here