Wolf Alice on their next album, 2019 plans and stepping up as festival headliners

Ellie also reveals her New Year's Resolutions...

Wolf Alice‘s Ellie Rowsell has spoken of the band’s 2019 plans, when they’ll be headlining their first major festivals and writing new material.

The band enjoyed a whirlwind 2018 after winning the Mercury Music Prize for their acclaimed second album ‘Visions Of A Life‘. Now, the band are enjoying a rest before working on album number three and playing a handful of summer festival shows.

Speaking of stepping up to top the bill at this year’s Standon Calling Festival, Ellie told NME: “This is our first [headline set] with a big line-up. It’s really exciting and it’s nice to have something in the diary to look forward to.


“It’s a really good line-up. Obviously Chic have got about 1000 bangers, so that’ll be fun. I also saw that Fleetmac Wood are playing so I’d love to go and watch a serious covers band. IDLES are playing too, so there’s loads of good stuff.”

Does the band view this as the next stage before headlining Glastonbury or Reading & Leeds?

“I guess I’m going to treat these headline slots as one of the biggest things we’ve done,” Ellie replied. “It doesn’t matter what festival it’s at, I’m just really honoured to have a slot like that. It’s going to be a taster of what that kind of responsibility feels like. I’m quite nervous to be honest, but it’s an honour to be asked to headline. I’m really chuffed.”

Asked if the band could debut new material, Ellie said: “It’s too early to say at this point, but ideally I’d like to have something new. I’ll still be just as excited if we didn’t, but that’s six months away so I’m not going to be chilling that hard the whole time!

“Once we have new material then we’ll see where plans go, but this is like a holiday so we’re trying not to think about it too much. We’ve never really worked in a way where we’ve discussed how we wanted to change. We always take things very naturally. It’s all a mystery about what it will sound like. Your guess is as good as mine.”


Meanwhile, the band are currently enjoying downtime before they will “casually start writing again” for their third album. As 2019 rolls on, Ellie said that was keeping her New Year’s Resolutions to “stay inspired, stay curious, stay positive and stay happy.”

“It can be anything to me – I keep my mind open to try new things, be constantly reading, going outside, seeing people,” she told NME. “It’s nothing drastic. You never know what’s going to inspire you. I think watching TV and films is key, sometimes. I’m not like, going through the back catalogue of Friends or anything.”

She continued: “I’ve just read the book Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine [by Gail Honeyman]. That was quite a good read. I’ve been listening a lot to that new Crows song. I’ve been trying to listen to a bit of country music. I’ve never written country and I don’t know anything about it, so you can listen to it without putting on your analytical ears. That’s quite relaxing to me as a punter.

“I used to play Irish music so I’ve been trying to get back into that.”

Wolf Alice’s Ellie Rowsell

While Slaves recently said that they felt it felt like there was more an an acceptance towards punk and guitar music at the moment and IDLES agreed that it was “absolutely more popular right now“, Ellie said that she didn’t believe that the mainstream’s perception have shifted much.

“It’s hard for me to answer these questions because I’m so involved,” she told NME. “Most of the people I follow on Twitter are in guitar bands or listen to them. My world is quite small in that sense, and to me it’s always there because it’s hard for me to step outside.”

Ellie added: “I don’t feel like it’s changed that much. If I turn on the radio, I don’t hear that many new guitar bands. When I speak to people who perhaps are in this world, they don’t really seem that aware of what’s going on with guitar music.”

Standon Calling Festival takes place from July 25-28. Visit here for tickets and more information.