On the radar: Chelsea Wolfe

LA's Chelsea Wolfe is, by her own admission, "not a natural performer type". However, when it comes to her work - five albums of boldly experimental gothic rock - she does not shrink from the task.

"The first time I met [producer] John Congleton, there was an immediate tension," she recalls.

"Riffs sound like castles dropping from the sky - almost unfathomably heavy"

"It wasn't that we didn't like each other, just that we're both strongwilled, with our own creative processes. That was a good thing, though. When it's too easy, it sounds flat, but you can hear the back and forth between us."

That 'back and forth' seems to span chasms on fifth album Abyss (out 7 August). Riffs sound like castles dropping from the sky - almost unfathomably heavy - while Chelsea's dramatic Siouxsie-style vocals drift over the top.

Death by audio

"I wanted this album to be heavier," she says. "We've been touring with a lot of really good bands like True Widow, Russian Circles and Queens Of The Stone Age and it rubbed off on us. We wanted some songs that would translate live."

Key to that sound was a Death By Audio Apocalypse pedal, through which Chelsea channeled her beloved Fender Jaguar and Gibson ES-335. Now, it's a case of conquering her nerves to take Abyss to the masses.

"I like the behind the scenes part," she says. "When it comes time to put it out in the world I'm suddenly full of anxiety. But if I want to connect with people, that's part of the job."

  • For fans of: Russian Circles
  • Hear: Iron Moon

Chelsea Wolfe official website :: Chelsea Wolfe Facebook :: Chelsea Wolfe Twitter

Matt Parker

Matt is a freelance journalist who has spent the last decade interviewing musicians for the likes of Total Guitar, Guitarist, Guitar World, MusicRadar, NME.com, DJ Mag and Electronic Sound. In 2020, he launched CreativeMoney.co.uk, which aims to share the ideas that make creative lifestyles more sustainable. He plays guitar, but should not be allowed near your delay pedals.