Wolf Alice: Blue Weekend review – marvellous sequel to their Mercury winner

In every episode of TV’s Better Call Saul, there is at least one extended scene that dives deep into the pleasure of work. Typically, it’s one character completing a prosaic task with dialogue-free diligence. It starts humdrum, but eventually the dignity of work confers its grandeur, transforming small-screen prose into breathtaking cinematic poetry. A similar alchemy has alighted on Wolf Alice during the 18 months they’ve been crafting this marvellous sequel to Mercury-winning second album Visions of a Life.

Arcade Fire producer Markus Dravs brings depth and heft, whether spotlighting each player or drowning everything in a deluge of guitars. Singer Ellie Rowsell steps up with some wonderfully shapeshifting vocals – almost rapping on the brawlingly brilliant Smile, careering from conspiratorial whisper to feral yowl over the band’s mix of stadium shoegaze, folk and indie pop. Her storytelling on the superb Delicious Things, dismantling media predators and their depredations, soars to the standard of live favourite Don’t Delete the Kisses. No Hard Feelings’s breakup drama and masturbation memoir Feeling Myself deliver more shiveringly direct, personal observations. “I am what I am and I’m good at it,” she tells us, and it’s impossible to disagree.

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