Wolf Alice return with album announce and brand new single 'The Last Man On Earth'
On the first track from their hotly-anticipated third album, Wolf Alice are back and are setting the standard for music from the UK and beyond. After days of teasing with a sole blinking eye, Ellie Roswell and gang have announced a brand new album - Blue Weekend and preceded it with the curious new single 'The Last Man On Earth.'
Interestly, the song is one of Wolf Alice's stunning trademark slow burns that seem to creep onto each of their records, typically providing the gorgeous abum centrepiece - see 'Silk' (from their 2016 debut My Love Is Cool) and 'Planet Hunter' (from 2017's Visions Of A Life) - and not a typical wall of guitars-led banger that might typically lead an album campaign. Then again, they've never been a band to issue something predictable - take the rollout for Visions Of A Life, for example, where the punk-driven 'Yuk Foo' came first, followed quickly by 'Don't Delete The Kisses', a song that barely even featured a guitar yet sat beautifully together when presented in an album sequence.
The Jordan Hemmingway-directed video was shared yesterday and sees Roswell filmed in black and white, vulnerably facing the camera singing lines about "the arrogance of humans."
"And every book you take and dust off from the shelf/Has lines between lines between lines that you read about yourself / But does a light shine on you?” she sings. She had recently read Kurt Vonnegut's 1963 satirical, postmodern novel Cat's Cradle and wrote the line "Peculiar travel suggestions are dancing lessons from God” in her notes to keep.
“But then I thought: ‘Uh, your peculiar travel suggestion isn’t a dancing lesson from god, it’s just a travel suggestion!" she explained further. "Why does everything need to mean something more?'”
“Who are you to ask for anything more? Do you wait for your dancing lessons to be sent from God?” - the opening lines standing firmly against the book’s pseudo-deep assertion.
Sonically, 'The Last Man On Earth' twists and turns through varying soundscapes and is something that is vastly different depending on where you enter the song in its four-and-a-half minutes. Quietly beginning with a simple piano line, smooth harmonies and choir-like backing vocals are quickly introduced along with a complete flip into a quick a Beatle-esque instrumental segue before continuing its journey on to bold levels of dense instrumentation.
It’s sincere sharp, smart songwriting that critically assesses humanity's egotistical impulses and seemingly allows us to do exactly what the song warns us of - finding ourselves in the lyrics and moulding them to fit our own worlds.
Reliability is the most important currency in music making and Wolf Alice, once again, haven't set a foot wrong, offering more evidence that they're standard-setting global conquerors. The single is the first new music since the vigorous touring schedule behind the Mercury Prize-winning Visions Of A Life. The band began working on demos in a converted church with Markus Dravs - a producer who has previously helmed the sound for the likes of Arcade Fire, Brian Eno, Bjork, Florence and The Machine and Coldplay - which informed the basis of Blue Weekend, the upcoming LP which arrives on June 11th via Dirty Hit/RCA Records. Watch this space for future pre-order information as it comes to hand.