In The Works – Patrick Wolf

Latest on his forthcoming album

For his next album, Patrick Wolf is swapping aggression for romance.

Revelling in the splendour of London’s iconic Metropolis Studios, Patrick Wolf kicks back with a glass of chardonnay. “This place is amazing! Gaga recorded here at the weekend, and I think Mariah Carey was here yesterday too,” he says, taking a sip. But although Wolf’s flamboyant presence and penchant for dress-up may suggest otherwise, the South London boy is by no means a diva.

He is, in fact, as gracious as they come. Wolf is refreshingly self-sufficient too, setting up his own, fan-funded label Bandstocks and taking on the production duties of his first three albums. Hiring industrial synth-noir guru Alec Empire and other such luminaries on his fourth, for his fifth he is flying solo again. “I decided that I had got bored of sonic masturbation, you know, sitting around and doing it all myself,” he says. “But I found my confidence again on this album. I made a lot of mistakes and went off on a few diversions in order to gain confidence with what I wanted to do now.”

Far removed from the fucked-up miserablism of his previous attempts, this album is a triumph of romanticism; grand orchestration and heart-wrenching lyrics create surges of positive sentiment, shedding the skin of his former self in the process. “Getting rid of all that aggression on the last album left me with a clean slate, ” explains Wolf. “My writing is always a reflection of me at the time as a writer. Maybe I’ve been hiding in characters a bit and I really wanted to get to that Joni Mitchell confessional place. I’m trying to leave behind an aggressive, depressive way of writing. I’m really over that part of myself now.”

Words by April Welsh
Photo by Rachel Lipsitz

Patrick Wolf’s new single ‘Time Of My Life’ is out now.

Watch Patrick Wolf’s video journals for Clash:
Journal 5
Journal 6
Journal 7.

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