BANDSPEAK

Wolf Alice Interview with Joel Amey about Making Friends with Swim Deep and the Influence of the ’90s on Their Tunes

Photo by Jenn Five

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Alt-rock four-piece Wolf Alice is bringing some fresh new tunes to Allston on their second US tour. If they sound like they’re from London, it’s because they are! I had the chance to speak with drummer Joel Amey about their new album, My Love Is Cool, out June 23. Catch them out at Great Scott on April 28 with Black Beach and Mini Dresses.

Boston Hassle: Are there any places you are particularly excited to perform?

Joel Amey: I think to just be in the USA in general is an incredible thing for us; it’s always a pipe dream for a UK band to get in a van and drive across the Americas playing music, so to be able to do it for a second time this year is blowing our little minds. It’s gonna be great to get to some of the more Southern places where we’ve never been and also to get back to Boston! Both Ellie and Theo have family there, so it’s going to be half-gig, half-family get-together.

BH: How long have you been playing the drums?

JA: I actually started playing with intent when I joined the band, so about three years? I didn’t really have a drum kit ’til about a year after that though.

BH: What musicians have influenced you? Is there any band you really like right now?

JA: Influences are a funny one; they change all the time, and I think all our tastes change pretty rapidly. There are some incredible UK bands you should check out, though. Crows are a Stooges-meets-BJM band from North London who are insane live, and our mates Bloody Knees are the most refreshing punk band I’ve heard in a long time.

BH: I read that you opened for Swim Deep on their tour last year. How was it touring with them? Do you think their music influenced you?

JA: That was a while ago, but some of my fondest memories. We are all super good friends, and have nothing but love for each other. Being so close means you have this healthy need to constantly impress one another, which has lead to us all pushing ourselves and ultimately writing better music, so I think in that sense we’ve kind of influenced each other. Their new album is going to blow your mind, by the way . . .

BH: Do you see your music as being tied to one decade or multifaceted in terms of influence? I’ve noticed your music videos, style of dress, and songs have an ’90s grunge feel like Hole.

JA: I dunno. I personally have no ties to the ’90s except I was born in them. I’d rather be around in the future, think it would be funnier. It’s hard not to be influenced by the era of your youth, but we’ve certainly never tried to pigeonhole ourselves to any other band, decade, style or whatever. Doing so would seriously limit where we would be able to take this band.

BH: Your next album, My Love is Cool—what’s the concept behind it?

JA: I wouldn’t say there is any concept behind the record (we haven’t gone prog yet), except for us to represent this time as a band as fully as we could. We feel these songs are the best we have as Wolf Alice right now, and we’re incredibly happy to have got them to where they are on the record. Hopefully everyone else will dig them too!

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