REVIEW: Wolf Alice at Pie & Vinyl, Southsea

Wolf Alice at Pie and Vinyl. Picture by Paul Windsor

It’s not everyday you get a Grammy-nominated rock band playing a pie shop in Southsea, but that was the case when Wolf Alice dropped by for an in-store performance at Pie and Vinyl in Castle Road .

Sixty lucky fans clutching their pre-ordered vinyl are shoe-horned into the store, with almost as many outside peering through the window.

Wolf Alice at Pie and Vinyl. Picture by Paul Windsor

The band have not long finished a two-year world tour stopping only to record new album Visions Of A Life. It’s a sign of the band’s confidence that their normally full-blown rock sound can be stripped down to an acoustic performance. Seated lead singer Ellie Rowsell nervously looks up at the crowd standing literally a foot away, a mobile phone goes off, bass player Theo Ellis, grabs it off the embarrassed fan and tells the caller: ‘Sorry, we are about to start a show’. It certainly breaks the ice.

The band soon hit their stride – Ellie’s vocals taking on a PJ Harvey-like authority, it’s difficult to tell how the new songs will translate to the bigger stage – rather well, one would suspect.

It’s a short set, 30 minutes or so, before the band head outside to do autographs and selfies before whizzing off to Brighton for another in-store gig. Needless to say the band are back on tour soon, including a show at the O2 Guildhall in Southampton, before headlining the 11,000 capacity Alexandra Palace in the capital.

‘See you next year,’ say the band. I suspect the queues may be a lot longer.

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