Arts and Culture Editor
British indie rock band, Wolf Alice, released their second album titled “Visions Of A Life” on Sept. 29. This album wears many different hats, featuring tracks that blend various genres including punk, indie rock, shoegaze, and even folk at times. Wolf Alice is known for their dreamy sound, which is present throughout most of the album.
Also present throughout the album are cliché lyrics and lots of spoken monologues. The lyrics are bearable and some songs are exceptions, but the monologues get old fast. Many tracks would be much easier and enjoyable to listen to without the almost uncomfortable, whispered monologues.
Like most artists’ second album, the group didn’t just stick to what they are known for. The band incorporates some heavier guitar and vocals giving songs like “Yuk Foo” and “Sadboy” a more punk rock feel. “Sky Musings” is also a darker song off the album. The whole song is basically a fast-paced monologue that evokes a feeling of anxiety in the listener. It isn’t exactly enjoyable until the end of the song where the lyric, “you are dead” is repeated in a beautiful mix of haunting vocals and harmonies accompanied by intense instrumentals.
Sticking to their shoegaze roots, a majority of the tracks give a dream pop feel. The first track on the album, “Heavenward,” incorporates traditional obscured vocals and blending of instruments with a hint of grunge. “Don’t Delete The Kisses” also keeps with their traditional sound, incorporating some synth pop. The track radiates an 80’s pop vibe. The lyrics in this song are a little cheesy with the phrase, “meant to be” repeated throughout the song. It doesn’t help that many of the cliché lyrics are spoken in the quiet monologue style that’s used in many tracks on the album.
Wolf Alice incorporates some folk into their song “After the Zero Hour.” The intro features folk guitar riffs. The vocals, however, radiate an early Lana Del Rey vibe. The song is slow and calm with vocals containing lots of vibrato and pronounced syllables very similar to Del Rey’s style. The vocals on this track are very unique to the rest of the album. It is a nice change from the obscured vocals used in most of the tracks.
The final song, which the album is named after, “Visions Of A Life,” is an eight minute ballad. It’s a slow yet intense song full of introspective lyrics. The tempo changes throughout the song and some parts more intense than others. The best part of the song is about halfway through when it really slows down. The song slowly builds back up as the insightful lyrics climb to a climax and the guitar accompanies. “I heard that journeys end in lovers meeting // But my journey ends when my heart stops beating” are the lyrics sang while the intensity builds and the music blossoms into a dreamy symphony.
Wolf Alice succeeds in creating music that is pleasurable to listen to, but some of the lyrics lack depth or originality. Some tracks are stronger than others, but overall, it’s a strong second album for the group. Indie rock and pop fans should definitely give this album a listen. It is available for streaming on Spotify and Apple Music.