Currently comprised of founding members Ellie Roswell (vocals, guitar) and Jeff Oddie (guitar, vocals), along with Theo Ellis (bass) and Joel Amey (drums, vocals), the London-based indie rock quartet Wolf Alice derive their name from an Angela Carter short story, and can trace their origins to when its founding members Roswell and Oddie began the act in 2010 as an acoustic act. Eventually, Roswell and Oddie decided to add more electric elements to their sound and they recruited Roswell’s childhood friend Sadie Cleary (bass) and Oddie’s friend George Barlett (drums) to join the band. And with the original lineup, the quartet released a self-titled EP, which featured “Every Cloud,” “Wednesday,” and “Destroy Me,” with the band releasing a video for “Wednesday.”
When Barlett broke his wrist in 2012, Joel Amey joined on as a temporary replacement but later became a permanent member. Also in that year, Cleary left to focus on her studies, and Theo Ellis was recruited to join in. Despite the lineup changes, the band released “Leaving You,” on Soundcloud as a free download, and it received airplay on BBC Radio 1 was featured in NME‘s Radar section. Building upon the buzz they received nationally, the quartet toured with Peace, and they began the following year with a session for Huw Stephens’ BBC Radio 1 show.
Since then the quartet have released two EP’s 2013’s Blush and 2014’s Creature Song and a full-length album — 2015’s critically applauded and commercially successful My Love Is Cool, which featured the Grammy Nominated-single “Moaning Lisa Smile,” a track that peaks at #9 on Billboard‘s Alternative Songs Chart. The British indie rock quartet’s soon-to-be released sophomore effort Visions of a Life is slated for a September 29, 2017 release through Dirty Hit/RCA Records, and the album’s aptly soaring, latest single “Heavenward” reminds me quite a bit of A Storm in Heaven-era The Verve, as lush layers of shimmering guitar chords, four-on-the-floor drumming and Roswell’s yearning vocals are paired with an arena rock-like power chord-based hook. And while revealing some impressive guitar work, the song manages a rare feat — to be intimate, immediate and bombastic yet yearning as the band arches heavenward, even if just for a few moments.
Directed by Andy DeLuca, the recently released visuals for “Heavenward” aptly capture a vision of a life — a life on the road, as the video follows the band on tour, rushing from place to place, goofing off to kill time between shows, playing sets in front of enthusiastic crowds in sweaty clubs, the rare moments between the members of a band before they hit the stage; but adding to the psychedelic vibe of the song are kaleidoscopic colors that includes members of the band playing superimposed over various imagery throughout.