Wallice – Off The Rails EP

The rising L.A. artists’ debut effort captures the engrossed anxieties of a generation who are ready to shake everything up.

Released, June 4th, 2021, Self-Released.

Whether it’s balancing a quarter-life crisis, telling boys not to be dicks, or trying to find a sense of self when control feels unobtainable, Off The Rails” captures the nightmare that is trying to navigate your early 20’s through insatiable garage-pop.

As a 25-year-old, I can assuredly tell Wallice that her quarter-life crisis makes total sense. Most say your 20’s is for finding out who you are, although Gen-Z and the 1996-97 crowd will overwhelmingly agree that our 20’s have currently been in a constant state of feeling late or left behind. “I just can’t wait to be, all grown up at 23”, sings Wallice on the anthemic ’23’, longing to escape her childhood family home and skip ahead to when her life is comfortable and not riddled with existentialism.

Balancing the seriousness of her narratives with bouts of dream-pop and garage rock, the overload of reverb throughout “Off The Rails” captures Gen-Z’s familiarity of dealing with their anxieties and saying I’ll enjoy myself despite everything going against me. Hey Michael’ and ‘Dramamine’ focus on navigating those first romantic relationships, figuring out when you need to follow your gut and when you need to listen to the ick and call a spade a spade; while ‘Off The Rails’ and’23’  focus on anxieties of the future and the sense of not feeling in control when society tells you that you should be by now.

The now eponymous ‘Hey Michael’ is set to become a Gen-Z anthem with its straightforward call you out attitude and unapologetic honesty. With a chorus made to be echoed back by its crowd, as is ‘Off The Rails’ with its whirlwind buzz of slacker-pop perfection, Wallice’s talent for creating bangers is at its strongest here. ‘Dramamine’ and ‘Punching Bag’ on the flipside capture the art of ‘sad bangers, piecing anxiety-fuelled romanticism together with slower takes on dream-pop and folk.

The EP closer ‘Headache’, comes as a shock to the system as Wallice’s now-familiar lyrical flow is mixed with sharp overloaded guitars instead of her melodic use of garage-rock and pop. Harsh and unpredictable, much like the feelings of affection portrayed in her lyrics, ‘Headache’ captures the anger of finally being told the news you once wanted now that you’ve moved on. <et with disdain and a sense of, FFS it’s too late now; the track runs away into a glorious blaze of reverb, fading out to the sound of brutalised guitars.

“Off The Rails” perfectly captures the moment in your life when you’re expected to have it all completely together, even though you’ve only just passed being a teenager. The transition from her final teenage years to her current early 20’s are displayed with abject honesty, a feeling that stays with most throughout their 20’s, as the desire for stability battles it out with the desire to cling on to the freedom of pre-adult life. Juxtaposing her largely anxiety-loaded lyrics with unshakable garage-rock and pop, Wallice captures not only the mood of a generation but those caught somewhere in-between and all before her flawlessly.

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