Wolf Alice – My Love Is Cool – Album Review

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Half a decade of hard-work, touring and a few tonnes of glitter has resulted in one golden album, My Love Is Cool; the most powerful debut album since the release of Arctic Monkey’s Whatever People Say I Am, That’s What I’m Not. The debut album from the London alt-rock foursome Wolf Alice is one which has been highly anticipated since they emerged in the rock scene when their debut single ‘Fluffy’ back in February 2013. The band aced their tour earlier this year as not only did they play old favourites, they also showed off their new work. The new material plus mosh pits, that very nearly put participants’ lives at risk, and crowd surfing left fans with sky high expectations for the new album.

Prior to My Love Is Cool, Wolf Alice released two previous EPs: Creature Songs (2014)and Blush (2013). Since I bought Wolf Alice’s Blush EP back in 2013, I am not ashamed to say that I have been utterly obsessed with the band. I loved, and continue to do so, the innocence of Ellie Roswell’s voice and the way in which it clashed against the dirty guitars in ‘She’. ‘She’ is the perfect contrast to the slow, heavy hearted melodies of ‘Blush’. The way these two songs are so different gives some clues as to what My Love Is Cool is like: each song is different, and this album can’t be restricted to just one genre. Songs from both EPs all sounded so different, with examples of post-grunge in ‘Moaning Lisa Smile’ and indie-rock in ‘Nosedive’. Whether it was the case of Wolf Alice exploring different genres to see which particular ones they fit in best, or the band showing their versatility the fact that they aren’t afraid to test the waters is the main component of the band’s success.

The band still isn’t afraid to explore so many different styles in their album. Hints of grunge are evident in recent single ‘You’re A Germ’, while essences of indie-pop manifest in the gorgeous ballad of friendship ‘Bros’. The fact that the album explores so many genres is a huge contribution as to the uniqueness of the album. For instance, opening track ‘Turn To Dust’ sets a dark and mysterious tone to the album. However, the more upbeat ‘Bros’ quickly diminishes the darkness and replaces it with the nostalgia of a careless and ‘feral’ childhood.

Since I got my hands on my copy of My Love Is Cool, the effortless beauty of the marbled gold vinyl has not left my record player. I have completely fallen in love with this album, taking a particular fixation on ‘Your Loves Whore’. This is such a powerful song, with easy to relate to lyrics. It starts off so calm, describing desperation for the object of someone’s affection: “Don’t you want to take time and get to know me / We could build a perfect world”, then at the end, Roswell belts “I let your love tease me / Now I am your loves whore / Keeps me hardly breathing / But I can only love you more”, the overwhelming frustration is very prominent in her voice which will make you go one of two ways:

  • Belt out the last verse as loud as your lungs will let you (possibly singing into a hairbrush, pretending you’re in front of a crowd of people chanting your name), letting out all the anger which you may feel towards a particular someone.
  • Just listen to it in complete awe, taking in all of the band’s excellence.

Every song deserves a place on this album. I admire the meanings, the darkness in the lyrics, and the screaming yet mellow vocal range which Rowsell is very happy to show off. I admire how the band isn’t scared to go against what is comfortable for them, as in ‘Swallowtail’. It was a huge surprise, for me, to hear Joel Amey, who normally you’d find behind a drum kit, take to the mic. This just shows how the band isn’t afraid to bend the rules. A willingness to take risks is where the band’s success lies. They are fearless. They have ambition. Their love is cool? This album is cool.

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