Joff Oddie (seen here on the left), guitarist and vocalist with Wolf Alice chats with Kevin Cooper about winning two Brit Awards, playing at Rock City, their debut album My Love Is Cool and their forthcoming tour of the UK.

Wolf Alice are a four-piece indie rock band from North London, formed initially as a two-person band in 2010. Its members since 2012 are Ellie Rowsell (vocals, guitar), Joff Oddie (guitars, vocals), Theo Ellis (bass), and Joel Amey (drums, vocals).

They released their official debut single Fluffy in February 2013, and the single Bros followed in May of that year. In October 2013 they released their official debut EP Blush. In February 2015 they released the lead single Giant Peach from their debut album My Love Is Cool. Their single Moaning Lisa Smile was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Rock Performance at the 2016 Grammys. They have also won Best Live Band and Best Track for Giant Peach at this year’s Brit Awards.

About to start their tour of the UK, Joff Oddie took time out to have a chat with Kevin Cooper and this is what he had to say.


Hi Joff how are you today?

I’m good fella how are you?

Thanks for asking, I am very well thank you and let me just thank you for taking the time to speak to me today.

It’s always a pleasure Kevin.

And just how is life treating you at this moment in time?

Life in general is all good at this time. As rare as it sounds we have actually managed to have some time off. It was great to be able to relax, sit down and get our bearings a little bit. It’s been lovely really. All of us are now feeling a little refreshed and ready to go once again, which is a nice feeling that we haven’t felt in a while.

You are about to set out on your tour of the UK. Are you looking forward to getting back out on the road?

Yes we really are Kevin. We have just played a sell-out tour over in Europe but it is always nice to come home and tour the UK. That tour will then take us over to the USA and then into festival season so it’s going to be an intense couple of months.

It may be intense but I am sure that you would rather have it that way as opposed to sitting at home waiting for the telephone to ring?

Oh god yes, of course (laughter). We really do enjoy being busy.

Do you enjoy all of the touring that you do?

Yes I do otherwise I wouldn’t do it. However, touring is like anything that you do over and over again, there are certain aspects which become routine. The way in which we approach shows also helps us to keep things fresh; we don’t play to pre-recorded tracks or anything like that which frees us up and makes every show feel a little different, which is really nice. Having said that there are a number of artists who do that and they must be as dull as fuck (laughter). Playing the same gig every day for a whole year, no thank you. It’s boring and on so many levels it’s cheating as well so fuck ‘em (laughter).

Your album, My Love Is Cool were you happy with how well it was received?

Yes Kevin most definitely. I think that it exceeded the expectations and it managed to get us into places and it achieved more things than I thought it would have. I have to say that it actually took us all by surprise a little bit with just how well it was received. We are an Indie band who are operating on an Indie label, which sometimes feels as though you are operating in a totally different world to most other music, so it is very nice when your work is recognised.

Dare I ask you about the dreaded second album, do you have any thoughts on it? Are you writing songs for it as we speak?

(Laughter) what I will say is that we have been making a start. However I personally feel that it is far too early to be doing anything if I am honest. We are simply beginning the process now. What I can say is that we have a few fun things floating around (laughter). Unfortunately I can’t give away too much at this moment in time (laughter).

Are you always writing?

No (laughter). I have always thought that if you try to write something every day then there is a danger that things will seem contrived if you do. I think that you have got to have a balance between being diligent with it and actually having something to write about. There is a danger that if you are writing too much then you simply find yourself writing bullshit. There are definitely peak-points for writing when you get a little feeling in your gut and it is at that point that I pick up my guitar (laughter). What I can tell you is that I play every day but I don’t necessarily write every day. Everyone has their own individual method of writing and that’s mine.

You are playing here in Nottingham at Rock City on Wednesday March 23rd are you looking forward to it?

Yes I am Kevin and I really can’t believe that it is going to happen. I love that venue, it’s amazing.

But this won’t be your first time playing Rock City will it. Didn’t I see you play there a couple of years ago at the Dot To Dot Festival?

Fucking hell Kevin (laughter) that’s right you did. We actually played Rock City just before Macaulay Culkin’s Pizza Underground and what a total train crash that was for him (laughter).

That’s right, they only managed to last two songs before the crowd turned on them if my memory serves me correctly.

It was actually a little bit sad but what can I say other than it was an awful idea poorly executed really.

But how was the experience for you; how did you find playing Rock City?

It was great, and I think that it was possibly the best gig that we have ever played up there in Nottingham. I can always remember playing The Bodega in Nottingham back in 2013 and us having our first ever mosh pit (laughter). That really was a big moment for us. We totally love playing in Nottingham. However playing Rock City was amazing, the sound was great and the audience were totally up for it. I don’t know what it was about that gig but it was simply amazing. To be fair Nottingham does have some totally amazing venues. Whenever I think of Nottingham, live music is never the first thing that comes to mind but looking at it you have a great culture of live music there.

If you take your time and look for it, you can find some live gig here in the city on almost every night of the week. We are really spoilt.

It’s a fantastic city and such a great social life for the students.

You formed Wolf Alice back in 2010. Are you now in a place which you hoped you would be?

Yes, I guess so. We have done far more than I thought that we ever would do really. I know that sounds rather clichéd but it’s true. I never thought that we would ever play a show as big as Brixton Academy. I never thought that we would play as many festivals as we have or go to as many countries as we have. It’s kind of bizarre really (laughter).

You mention festivals, what was it like playing Glastonbury?

That was totally awesome as Glastonbury is the mecca of music festivals. I went there a bunch when I was a kid and so I feel almost indebted to Glastonbury. I always have a bit of a moment before and after the shows there when I think fuck I’m playing at Glastonbury, let’s make it a good one (laughter).

Can it get any bigger than that?

(Laughter) it can but it’s not bigger that we are after, its better if you know what I mean. Quality control is the name of the game (laughter).

Who has inspired you?

I would have to say all of the obvious guitar people really, bands such as The Smiths, Blur, Stone Roses and Oasis. All of the kind of obvious people really. And then later on I got interested in 70’s folk with people such as Nick Drake, together with all of the guitar players like that.

I have been looking at your music videos and a homage to the 1970’s thriller killer movies springs to mind. Do the group have any input as to exactly what goes into the videos?

(Laughter) we do, and we have input our kind of ideas in everything apart from the latest Freazy video. With the Freazy video we all simply said that we wanted it to be a kind of horror or zombie themed video; the old fashioned blood and gore music video (laughter). So in answer to your question Kevin, all of them have been our ideas with the exception of the Freazy video, which when we saw it we all said just what the fuck is going on (laughter). I think that we were halfway through a tour, we were all very tired and so we just let someone else do the video (laughter).

2016 has already been a good year for you and the band, winning the NME Best Live Band Award together with the Best Track Award for Giant Peach. How did that make you feel?

Awards are awards if you know what I mean. I personally don’t think that they have too much bearing on what is going on in the world. Having said that it is very nice to have been recognised by the body and it is a nod towards our label, Dirty Hit here in the UK.

On that note Joff let me thank you for taking the time to speak to me.

It’s been an absolute pleasure Kevin and I look forward to seeing you at Rock City. Make sure that you come and say hello.