Wolf Alice Rocks Out In A Night Of Feral Fun
April 4th, 2018
Our cousins across the pond know how to rock and roll, sometimes even more so than American brethren. Bands like The Beatles, Queen, and Pink Floyd have made their mark on America over the last several decades, and one day, perhaps, the young British rock band Wolf Alice may be enshrined on Lake Erie's south shore in the edifice we call the Rock Hall. That, of course, remains to be seen, but the crowd at Waterloo's Beachland Ballroom got to see a spectacular show from the young Indie rockers last evening.
Immediately when the show began, all eyes were drawn to the beautiful Ellie Rowsell. She’s fierce and, oh yeah, plays a mean guitar. The rest of the band members are equally as electrifying; lead guitarist Joff Oddie plays his Fender Jazzmaster and Jaguar with unique experimentation and aggressively shreds with vigor. The bassist, Theo Ellis, jumps and down during the show, driving the beat, and the audience with high energy. The drummer, Joel Amey, lays down really great beats in which to bang your head.
Ellie sings with grace but also with a ferocious wildness that whips the crowd into a frenzy. She’s got this beautiful voice for singing raw and untamed music. The style of Wolf Alice is very much rock and roll that’s about intense emotions of displaced, frustrated youth. And it’s the audience, the youth, that connects with Wolf Alice so deeply that makes this outfit one to keep your eyes on. The crowd, knowing the songs intimately, sang the lyrics along with Ellie; when the band played “Moaning Lisa Smile," she got up close and personal, down to her knees, and held the microphone directly in front of the people to sing the chorus. Ellie was having fun, smiling and laughing, and in deep devotion to her fans.
Wolf Alice is full of surprises too: Joff Oddie and Theo Ellis got up close to the edge of the stage and held up their guitars high to play some really powerful riffs. The way in which they play is something very indie and experimental, too; Joff took off the strap from his guitar, held it super close to the amp to produce this loud and grungy sound effect, then near the end of that song, he threw his guitar on the ground. He stomped on the strings before pushing down on it with both hands. When returning to his other guitar, Joff produced very haunting and atmospheric sounds to accompany Ellie and the rest of the band. He would play a unique slide technique by sliding down the back of his hand rather than using a glass or metal slide for a different effect on the strings. Not bad for a guy who can claim a violin in his roster of instruments as well.
Ellie sang into a secondary microphone for an echo effect, and created tender moments with her black Telecaster while singing higher pitched notes, in gentle, yet tearful harmonies, as evidenced in “Bros” and “Don’t Delete the Kisses."
Wolf Alice knows how to rock and roll with her crowd of feral children. “You can join us if you think you’re wild,” Ellie Rowsell sang on “Freazy. ”You can join us if you’re a feral child!”
Cleveland answered that call and rocked out with their feral friends from the UK.
Makes sure to check out their newest album, Visions of a Life, and tell all your friends about Wolf Alice!
Photos and Review by Kevin Ng