The main criticism for new bands is that they either fit themselves into a niche too quickly or rush to release a debut album. Wolf Alice have done neither with their last major EP ‘Blush’ being released last year and the constant disparity in sound of their releases. Their most recent release ‘Creature Songs’ follows the same pattern with there being a mixture of rowdy, anguish-filled tracks which then are completely overlooked by the meaningful ballad-like songs which follow on.
It starts off with a fairly tame acoustic riff in ‘Moaning Lisa Smile’ but seconds later we’re met with the brash return of the angst familiar with previous tracks like ‘Fluffy’. There’s no hesitation from Ellie Roswell as her vocals make the switch from soft and easy-going to being weighty and loud-mouthed. The easily picked up cries of “ahh ahh” have turned ‘Moaning Lisa Smile’ into Wolf Alice’s new anthemic live track. Not ending the boisterous approach is ‘Storms’ which again contrasts leisurely paced verses with an authorative chorus; it’s fiery and full of energy. Big bass lines lead the way in the smoother parts while reverb-heavy guitars oversee everything else during the rest making it the epitome of their live sets.
Forgetting all the chaos from the first half of the EP is ‘Heavenly Creatures’ which takes you back to their first release of the subdued ‘Leaving You’ back in 2012. Husky, almost whispering vocals accompanied by unflustered riffs, soft bass lines and calm drums encourage the tapping of feet rather than the pits and disorder from their more rowdy side. Carrying things on till the end on a softer note is ‘We’re Not The Same’. From the offset the harmonious vocals obscure the almost insensitive lyrics of “We’re not the same / You and I / Oh what a shame / Bye, bye” but they can’t leave their heavier side alone for too long as there’s a slight unrestrained break where the amps are turned up slightly and the drums reveal themselves a little more.
‘Creature Songs’ has shown off what Wolf Alice do best – being able to work big guitar hits alongside unhurried, emotion-filled ballads. When their debut album makes an appearance maybe we’ll get to see if they take their sound completely one way and stop being the renown juxtaposers or they might just stay ballsy and keep doing what they do best.