We had the pleasure of connecting with Melbourne-based heavy act Alpha Wolf, who are setting the scene alight with their emotionally honest music and intense live shows. Here’s what went down in the interview with Alpha Wolf.
Firstly congrats on the mega album that is Mono! I loved it when I reviewed it (and with each time I’m listening to it), and it’s really cool to see people enjoying it so much now that it’s out there, not to mention the ARIA chart placing. Is it all a bit surreal?
The response as a whole for Mono has been unbelievable, every goal that we had set for ourselves we have smashed out of the park, we didn’t realistically expect to achieve any of them.
Did it feel like a huge risk to make Mono which is clearly a very personal album, and have it potentially not understood?
The whole writing process for Mono just felt right in a sense. We created the album for ourselves as our own outlet, pouring everything into it to make it OUR album, which is what we set out to do.
It’s amazing to see that others can relate to it in their own ways though and we’ve had countless amounts of people reach out to us as they’ve connected with it.
You guys seem like the nicest and most down to earth people ever, and it’s interesting to see that ‘bring me Cheezels’ vibe up next to ‘I’m a ward of the state, motherfucker!’ 😉 Is there any kind of pressure to present yourselves as being ‘harder’, colder, or more badass because of the heavy genre?
We love to bring an intense live show to our audience but that’s the only time you’ll ever catch us being ‘badass’, we’re all super friendly and love having a chat to anyone and will always try to spare every second to meet new people.
Maybe it’s just that Greyscale bands are the best people.. 😀 What’s it been like with Joshua and Ash backing you guys so far?
Having Joshua and Ash back us has helped us immensely, they seem to have the knack where if they say something is worth listening to, people may be more inclined to give it a listen. We can’t thank those guys enough.
I’ve been hanging out to see these tracks from Mono screamed out by a room full of people and I wasn’t disappointed at the album launch show at Wrangler Studios. There was such an amazing vibe! What was it like for you guys?
Playing our album launch show was an incredible feeling, being able to sell out a show in our hometown was a huge step up for us, to see all of that support in one room for songs that were getting played for close to the first time live was unforgettable.
Have there been particular songs you’ve been keen to play live, or keen to see how the crowd responds?
I think overall, we’ve been keen to play every song and to see that the crowd just doesn’t stop the energy is awesome, it’s good to see that they enjoy every track and not just the singles.
Speaking of live, you guys have an awesome stage presence (definitely badass, by the way). What goes into bringing that to life?
We have always taken pride in our live show and it has definitely been a work in progress, we’ve tried to find the perfect balance between energy on stage and playing tight and heavy. I think we’ve nearly found that balance.
You’re currently on tour with Thy Art Is Murder. How has that been?
This tour has been incredible for us, every night so far has sold out (except Wollongong) and our response has been nothing short of amazing every single night. We were a bit intimidated at first getting given such an opportunity but after the first few shows we couldn’t feel more great about it all.
On the topic of ‘bigger’ bands like Thy Art, what can you share by way of your own experience with music and inspiration toward where you are now?
Being from Tasmania originally, we always looked up to any band from the ‘mainland’ that was touring, it’s all we ever wanted and we feel we’ve finally ‘made it’ in that sense.
There was never many heavy bands in Tasmania doing what we’re doing now so we basically always just pushed ourselves and aimed as high as we could until we built a following interstate.
I am respectfully hesitant to delve too much into the songs themselves because they’re so personal and it’s mostly apparent what is being said in them. But could you tell me more about the ‘Golden Fate’ loop/connection though? Is Golden Fate referring to suicide? I haven’t heard the phrase before.
The ‘Golden Fate’ term is something I came up with a while ago after watching a documentary called ‘The Bridge’. It’s about the Golden Gate suicide jumpers, as it seems to be a hot spot for people to take their own lives. Lots of friends and families of victims were interviewed and they all in some way or another told stories of how they feel their friends/family were almost drawn into committing suicide, hence I created the term ‘Golden Fate’. Water Break being the act of jumping and Gut Ache being the aftermath that all of your friends/family feel.
I thought it was very cool how the two Golden Fate videos are connected at the start and ending of the other.
Since the songs always had their connection via the story we thought we had to continue that with the videos, we always wanted ‘Golden Fate; Gut Ache’ as a single and we thought we may as well go all out and do both.
The songs of Mono process a lot of heavy emotion. Of course in terms of loss, the circumstances remain the same, but does it feel now that some of these heavier inner experiences have lightened with the creating of the songs?
Not entirely, there has been a lot of pain from the topics in our songs, and unfortunately just writing about it doesn’t help entirely. It feels good to open up about them but just in any circumstance only time will heal.
I saw a thread on Facebook where I think Aidan asked people to share their favourite tracks from Mono, and there seemed to be a really even spread across the whole album as opposed to a few favoured tracks. I personally feel this is because of how people individually respond to the subject matter of the song. Is this really humbling? How these rough experiences have been received by people in their own way and helped them with their own processing of how they feel?
That’s something we’ve picked up ourselves, lots of the topics are widely different to others and that is definitely impacting other people favouriting certain songs. This is a great feeling for us as we don’t necessarily feel there’s a bad song on Mono and the public seems to agree with us.
What’s next for Alpha Wolf? It seems like you’re in an amazing position right now!
We’re taking our live show on the road as much as possible as we love people being able to interact with our live show and to witness Mono in a different setting and we’re also getting straight back into writing for future releases.
We won’t be slowing down at all.
Keep up to date with where you can find Alpha Wolf here: https://www.facebook.com/pg/alphawolfcvlt/events/