Alpha Wolf
Alpha Wolf | Credit: Third Eye Visuals

Alpha Wolf: “We Found Out About Knotfest When We Were Out on the Town in Europe”

It’s taken Alpha Wolf a decade of nose-to-the-grindstone work to earn international recognition, and the members of the Melbourne band feel like they’re just getting started.

That’s the sentiment of lead vocalist Lochie Keogh, who’s talking to Music Feeds ahead of the band’s appearance at next year’s Knotfest Australia. Alpha Wolf will appear on all dates of the 2023 Knotfest tour alongside Slipknot, Megadeth, Parkway Drive, Trivium, Amon Amarth and more.

“We found out about Knotfest when we were out on the town mid-tour in Europe,” Keogh says, “and we instantly toasted to it.”

Keogh didn’t grow up listening to Slipknot. “I started off with more trendy scene stuff,” he says. But his perspective shifted a few years ago. “I realised they had done everything before everyone else. When you go back to bands like that, you realise nothing that you listen to was original.”

Alpha Wolf aren’t complete Knotfest maidens. “We saw a Knotfest in Cleveland recently, in this gigantic basketball stadium, so getting the offer for this was so dope for us. It’s fucking Slipknot.”

Alpha Wolf’s Lochie Keogh: “It’s fucking Slipknot”

Alpha Wolf
Alpha Wolf | Credit: Brendon Thorne/Getty Images

Alpha Wolf’s second LP, 2020’s A Quiet Place To Die, was released internationally via SharpTone Records. Led by aggro singles ‘Akudama’, ‘Creep’, and ‘bleed 4 you’, the album racked up press accolades on both sides of the equator and landed Alpha Wolf tour supports with the likes of Thy Art Is Murder, Fit For A King and Justice For The Damned.

The record was Keogh’s first stint on the mic for the band, a role he’s seized by the throat since replacing original vocalist Aidan Ellaz in June 2018. Alpha Wolf will celebrate their tenth anniversary in 2023.

“It’s weird,” says Keogh of the impending milestone. “You think of a human, and a 10-year-old goes from a baby to a full-on person in that time. [The band’s] been going for so long, but it only feels like we’re getting started.

“Some bands have one album that’s an awesome success and then they do 20 records that do nothing. We’re trying to make music now that people will still love in five years.”

Like all bands, the pandemic momentarily halted Alpha Wolf’s touring momentum, with the majority of shows supporting their newest record played over the last nine months. However, industry-wide shutdowns didn’t stop them from working on new material, with this year’s EP, The Lost & The Longing – a split release made with UK metalcore outfit Holding Absence – providing a possible clue to the band’s future direction.

“When I joined, we were always talking about how cool it would be to put out songs whenever we wanted, do collabs whenever we wanted,” Keogh says. “But once I joined, we quickly signed to SharpTone, and there were contracts and stuff.”

“The label really looked after us over Covid,” Keogh adds. “They didn’t put too much pressure on us and they gave us a full blessing to do that split with Holding Absence, which was sick.”

But Keogh and his band mates – drummer Mitch Fogarty, guitarists Sabian Lynch and Scottie Simpson and bass player John Arnold – are still generating more material than the label can accommodate. “We always have music sitting around in a pile. That’s where those two new songs came from on the split,” Keogh says. “We’ve planned out our year and there are definitely slots for more writing and recording.”

Alpha Wolf – ‘Akudama’

Given the quality of Alpha Wolf’s output, it’s no wonder audiences want a piece of them, which is something Keogh and the rest of the band are still getting their heads around.

“We were gone for three months last time doing both the US and Europe. I only processed that when I was at the airport, realising that we were going to be gone for a huge chunk of the year. My mind is still bent from this last round of touring,” he says.

“It’s easy though because it’s fun. You get tired and you bottom out, but then you start recouping again. It’s such a wave for us doing these longer tours. If the last six months are anything to go by, that’s nothing compared to what we’re about to start doing – it’s only getting more and more exciting.”

Knotfest Australia 2023

  • Slipknot
  • Parkway Drive
  • Megadeth
  • Trivium
  • Northlane
  • Amon Amarth
  • In Flames
  • Knocked Loose
  • Spiritbox
  • Story of the Year
  • Alpha Wolf
  • Void of Vision
  • Bad Omens
  • Malevolence

Dates & Venues

  • Friday, 24 March – Flemington Racecourse, Melbourne
  • Tickets: Knotfest
  • Saturday, 25th March – Centennial Park, Sydney
  • Tickets: Knotfest
  • Sunday, 26th March – RNA Showgrounds, Brisbane
  • Tickets: Knotfest

Further Reading

Citadel’s 10 Favourite Australian Bands and Tracks

Slipknot’s Jay Weinberg: “We’ve Become a Better Band and Better Band Mates”

Parkway Drive: “Our Abilities Have Finally Caught Up to Our Imaginations”

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