Upcoming indie stars, Wolf Alice, played to a young crowd in Leicester’s O2 Academy 3.

The night started with a shockingly young and clearly quite inexperienced band, going by the name of Murmur. The most that could be found of the band online is a description stating they are an “alternative rock band from Leicester”. This seems an accurate description; very generic indie pop made for crowd-pleasing, yet failing to ignite the predominantly teenage crowd in Leicester.

Untuned guitars didn’t help the situation.

Untuned guitars didn’t help the situation as the band worked their way through a series of bad covers. These included the Franz Ferdinand classic, ‘Take Me Out’ and an even worse version of ‘R U Mine’, leaving me wondering whether I had accidentally walked into a hideous karaoke night rather than a real gig. Hopefully, in a few years time they move forward into a better musical direction because they are still only 15.

They make exactly the opposite of what you might expect of a band hailing from Cambridge; fast-paced, heavy, grungy rock.

Next came Bloody Knees, who brought much more excitement to the night. They make exactly the opposite of what you might expect of a band hailing from Cambridge; fast-paced, heavy, grungy rock. They were quite energetic which caused a few lively members of the crowd to even begin a mosh pit in appreciation of their songs. Stage dives by audience members were encouraged and their set ended in lead singer Bradley Griffiths diving into his (newly) adoring fans. Having already played alongside the likes of other grunge newcomers Loom and Polterghost, Bloody Knees are definitely ones to look out for.

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Finally, Wolf Alice arrived on stage. They opened with a few unknown new songs, but singles ‘Leaving You’ and ‘Bros’ induced more crowd participation. Lead singer Ellie Rowsell had an interesting live stage presence; she appeared distant and shy at some moments but at other times, completely immersed herself in the performance. This reflects their unique music style, which switches abruptly between being both subtle and delicate yet heavier at times.

This reflects their unique music style, which switches abruptly between being both subtle and delicate yet heavier at times.

There’s no denying that Wolf Alice have made a vast amount of progress following various support slots over the past year, and their confidence performing live is continuing to grow. The set ended satisfactorily in debut single ‘Fluffy’, an undoubted contender for highlight of the night as the crowd gave their all for the final time, while the band left the stage looking quite pleased.

Tasmin Chowdhary

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