Click above to watch Chelsea Wolfe performing a live acoustic set with strings on KEXP in Seattle.
The inimitable Chelsea Wolfe has just finished her recent US tour, so this seemed like the perfect time for Terrorizer to catch up with her. We sent Joy Shannon to quiz Chelsea on her creative process, overcoming stagefright, her collaboration with King Dude and what we can expect from her new film, ‘Lone’…
An absolute hush goes over the crowd when Chelsea Wolfe stands on stage. Her presence is otherworldly and when she sings, it seems as if even the ghosts in the rafters of the old theatre stop and listen.
Terrorizer caught Wolfe on her last US tour date in Los Angeles at the Orpheum Theatre opening for the Eels, right before she embarked on a Canadian and European tour. This was a unique tour for Wolfe, which she crafted to be a stripped-down acoustic experience, accompanied only with by her co-producer Ben Chisholm & violinist and backing vocalist Andrea Calderon. The trio created devastatingly gorgeous melodies and vocal harmonies, which didn’t shy away from moments of bold, bleak minimalism. Much of the set was played on a very darkly lit stage, transforming the spiralling Baroque architecture of LA’s Orpheum Theatre into a shadowed cave, out of which Wolfe’s voice howled.
Chelsea Wolfe “Apokalypsis” is now available for pre-order in limited edition colored vinyl “Orange/Black Smoke” limited to 1,000 comes with download card. Orders will ship on July 20th from the Chelsea Wolfe store only.
CD and Vinyl will be release by Sargent House to stores starting August 26th - in Black Vinyl.
Also now available is the album shirt - sold separately or as part of the vinyl bundle that also comes with 3x3 Album magnet - PRE-ORDER HERE
Chelsea Wolfe is going on tour in Europe in July / August and will also have these two titles in vinyl with her on tour. SEE ALL TOUR DATES HERE
HEAR Apokalypsis or DL below
Chelsea Wolfe debut album “The Grime And The Glow” is also now available for pre-order in limited edition colored vinyl “Grey/Black Smoke” limited to 1,000 comes with download card. Orders will ship on July 20th from the Chelsea Wolfe store only.
CD and Vinyl will be available in stores starting August 26th - in Black Vinyl.
The first 250 pre-orders on this vinyl bundle will come with a 3x3 Album magnet - PRE-ORDER HERE
HEAR The Grime And The Glow or DL below
BY JORDAN MAINZER
Like Marissa Nadler and Liz Hysen of Picastro, Chelsea Wolfe is a folky, pseudo-goth singer-songwriter with connections to heavier music. To group her in a scene, or to suggest her music is not heavy simply because it’s not loud, however, is a disservice to Wolfe’s unique vision. It’s hard to describe Wolfe’s music, let alone give it a genre label; her most recent album alone, the incredible Pain is Beauty, features elements of blues, noise, industrial rock, and baroque pop. But what’s notable about Wolfe is that you, as a listener, are often emotionally confused when listening to her. You’re sad, scared, and overcome with hope, and sometimes, as in eight-and-a-half minute penultimate track “The Waves Have Come”, which was inspired by the 2011 Japanese Tsunami, all at the same time. In this sense, Wolfe’s music is very visceral. It’s simply real.
When listening to the macabre melodies of Chelsea Wolfe, one might not immediately jump on comparisons to country and western tunes, but as a songwriter, Wolfe believes a lot of the pain and longing for which she’s renowned to spill on her records is due to the old country crooners she listened to growing up.
“Old country is so honest, simple and emotional,” she says. “Hank Williams, Johnny Cash, Tammy Wynette, Patsy Cline. Honesty is what drew me to playing music in the first place.”
Indeed, honesty is something that Wolfe has in spades. Her sprawling albums of dark, droning and silky songs are riddled with personal anguish and a palpable honesty that makes your spine tingle. There’s also Unknown Rooms, the collection of acoustic songs she released back in 2012 that shed a bit more light on her folkier side, a side that Wolfe says she’d love to return to at some point.
"IT’S NOT SO MUCH who I’m playing with,” says Chelsea Wolfe, “but how I’m presenting my set. I have to get in the right mind frame for it.”
Wolfe’s explaining how she can transition from a tour with stoner-rock icons Queens of the Stone Age to hitting the road with eclectic pop project Eels in a single day. This is the same day she goes from fronting a full rock band to being at the helm of a chamber ensemble, and the same year in which she’s shared the stage with a disparate assortment of artists extending from black-metal group Deafheaven to the tongue-in-cheek fusion band Primus.
Chelsea Wolfe has a super power - she can destroy and rebuild your entire emotional constitution in the space of a single song. Her ice-like voice slices through scary seas of reverb, with cryptic lyrics as splintered life rafts of hope. A half decade into her career, Wolfe has already handled horror-noise (2011’s Apokalypsis), dark folk (2012’s Unknown Rooms) and ghost-industrial dance music (last year’s Pain is Beauty), to devastating effect. -Cristina Black (LA Weekly) See full list here
Chelsea Wolfe is on tour now- see all dates here - She will be playing in LA on June 11th at The Orpheum Theater.
Last month, LA-based folk metal chanteuse, Chelsea Wolfe, made her film debut with the release of Lone, an hour-long short film that bridges the divide between music video and short film. The surrealist/expressionist flick was directed by Mark Pellington, best known for directing Pearl Jam’s music video for “Jeremy” as well as videos for Nine Inch Nails, Foo Fighters, INXS, and Michael Jackson, and a handful of feature length films. Utilizing tracks from Wolfe’s 2013 record, Pain Is Beauty, the film visually explores the themes introduced on this album, which according to Pellington are “nature, sexuality, memory, mortality, forgiveness, love, innocence, fragility, violence, and beauty.”
Currently the film is not available to stream online, but curious fans can buy a USB key either online or at the Chelsea Wolfe merch booth. Currently on tour with Eels, Wolfe will be in Seattle this Saturday night playing an acoustic set at the Moore. I caught up with Wolfe on Monday night to learn more about Lone and her recent experiences on this spring tour.
On le pressentait depuis sa récente signature chez Sargent House, il faut se rendre maintenant à l’évidence : celle qui reprenait Burzum dans son coin est devenue une véritable icône en l’espace de quatre albums. Sans jamais tomber dans le compromis, la musicienne de Sacramento a pourtant réussi la prouesse de mettre d’accord indie-rockers et chantres de l’underground, qu’on pensait encore irréconciliables il y a peu. Si Pain Is Beauty, le dernier album en date, parait plus accessible de prime abord, le mystère qui auréole le personnage reste quant à lui intact. On a cherché à en savoir plus, on s’est retrouvés à discuter de chiffons, de bravoure et de Wardruna.
September 2013 marked the release of Sacramento native Chelsea Wolfe's fourth studio album, Pain Is Beauty. The album, widely considered her best to date, lives up to its name: Gorgeously introspective and alluringly moody, the gothic rocker’s heady distortions and droning production emote as effectively as her astute lyricism. Wolfe has compared the album’s narrative to that of a forest fire. Despite the destruction of trying times, such tribulations ultimately allow for personal growth.
Such emotionally complex work allows for a slew of interpretations, which is where Wolfe has shone brightest in 2014. Lone, an experimental short film by filmmaker Mark Pellington, acts as a surreal adaptation of Pain Is Beauty and was just released in full last month. The singer is also mid-tour with Eels; she’s playing an exclusively acoustic set. The tour comes through New York this Sunday at the historic Apollo Theater. Wolfe had a lot to say about translating her work to such diverse mediums, working with Pellington, and prepping for summer excursions through Europe.
In less than a month, Under the Radar is headed to Canada to check out the Sled Island Festival. As per our tradition, we’ll be running mixtapes from some of the artists performing at the festival. The first in our series is from singer/songwriter Chelsea Wolfe. She gave the Broadcast, Fka Twigs, and Fuck Buttons-featuring mix the ambitious title, FLYING IS A TIMELESS LIMBO AFTER WHICH A NEW REALITY IS CREATED. Says Wolfe, her song choices were inspired by “tour & travel / the forest & the field / the hotels & the wheels / the task & the insanity / the beauty in the chaos / never sleep.”
Listen to the mix below. You can also revisit our interview with Wolfe here. For those headed to Canada, Chelsea Wolfe is playing Sled Island on June 19th - SEE ALL CHELSEA WOLFE TOUR DATES HERE
Chelsea Wolfe Mixtape:
BEAK “I KNOW”
ZOMBY “DIGITAL FAUNA”
FKA TWIGS “HOW’S THAT”
FUCK BUTTONS “THE RED WING”
GORGOROTH “OF ICE AND MOVEMENT”
KATASTROPHY WIFE “SWEETHEART”
QUEENS OF THE STONE AGE “AVON”
Following on from her incredible 2013 opus ‘Pain Is Beauty’, the inimitable Chelsea Wolfe has teamed up with director Mark Pellington to release an accompanying feature-length film entitled ‘Lone’ – but is it as good as the album? We sent Joy Shannon to find out…
The prolific and genre-defying songstress Chelsea Wolfe has crafted a mesmerizing long-format film called ‘Lone’ with renowned director Mark Pellington, best known for his striking music video for Pearl Jam’s ‘Jeremy’ and his work with artists including U2, Nine Inch Nails and the Foo Fighters. Inspired by the themes of Wolfe’s haunting 2013 album ‘Pain Is Beauty’, the nearly 60-minute film speaks to the sweeping themes of “nature, sexuality, memory, mortality, forgiveness, love, innocence, fragility, violence and beauty”, according to director Pellington. For ‘Lone’, songs from ‘Pain Is Beauty’ are set within a sweeping, extended soundtrack by Wolfe and collaborator Ben Chisholm.
Both surrealistic and expressionistic, Lone crafts a barren landscape and eerie cast of characters which seem to coexist in the tangled halls of someone’s haunted memories. Wolfe’s music weaves throughout, at times desolate and tense and, at other times, erupting into ferociously layering builds of apocalyptic imagery. Like Edvard Munch’s painting ‘The Scream’, this is an emotional landscape where the turmoil of the human figures, the chimera, and the very land itself are intricately entwined, and even when Wolfe’s music finds a temporary calm, the land itself seems to be silently screaming. In essence, this is a surrealistic, psychological horror film, which confronts a barrage of difficult issues in the most visually beautiful way imaginable.
Chelsea Wolfe has just been announced to play on the Orange Stage at Fun Fun Fun Fest in Austin, TX this year. Dates and set times for all bands will be announced later in the year - tickets and all FFF Fest info can be found HERE.
Starting tonight, Friday May 16th Chelsea Wolfe goes from rock to unplugged. With only one day off between her rock tour with Queens of the Stone Age Chelsea Wolfe meets up in Austin today with The Eels to begin an all acoustic with strings tour.
See all Chelsea Wolfe Tour dates and Details here.
THE EELS & CHELSEA WOLFE (Acoustic w/ Strings Sets) 2014
May 16 - Austin, TX @ The Paramount Theatre
May 17 - Houston, TX @ House of Blues
May 19 - Dallas, TX@ AT&T Performing Arts Center
May 21 - Englewood, CO @ Gothic Theatre
May 23 - Saint Louis, MO @ The Sheldon Concert Hall
May 24 - Chicago, IL @ Vic Theatre
May 25 - St Paul, MN @ Fitzgerald Theatre
May 27 - Toronto, ON @ Wintergarden Theater
May 28 - Montreal, QC @ Corona Theater
May 29 - Boston, MA @ Berklee Performance Center
May 30 - Glenside, PA @ The Keswick Theatre
May 31 - Washington D.C., DC @ Lincoln Theatre
Jun 1 - New York, NY @ Apollo Theater
Jun 3 - Royal Oak, MI @ Royal Oak Music Theatre
Jun 4 - Madison, WI @ Barrymore Theatre
Jun 7 - Seattle, WA @ The Moore Theater
Jun 8 - Portland, OR @ The Aladdin Theater
Jun 10 - San Francisco, CA @ Palace of Fine Arts
Jun 11 - Los Angeles, CA @ The Orpheum Theater
CHELSEA WOLFE - CANADA 2014
Jun 19 - Calgary, AB @ SLED ISLAND
Jun 21 - Vancouver, BC @ Electric Owl