Wallice isn’t a big shot, but she’s 100% a big deal

With her new EP ‘Mr Big Shot’ out now, WALLICE might see herself as normal, but her music is anything but. Check out the latest cover story for our New Music Friday playlist edit The Cut.

Words: Ali Shutler.
Photos: Nicole Busch.

Wallice’s brilliant new EP’ Mr Big Shot’ is out today, but the title doesn’t entirely reflect how the musician sees herself.

“I flew business class for the first time the other day, and I was so excited about that,” she beams. “I was also far too nervous to attempt to go and say hi to Alex G at catering at a festival the other day, so no, I’m definitely not a big shot. It’s just funny though, isn’t it,” she says, continuing the trend of tongue-in-cheek titles that started with last year’s ’90’s American Superstar’.

Wallice may see herself as very normal, but her music is anything but. The last time she spoke to Dork, she’d just signed to Dirty Hit and was about to play her first headline shows after releasing her debut EP ‘Off The Rails’ in 2021. Since then, she’s developed a passionate fanbase thanks to her snarling, vulnerable coming-of-age guitar anthems and has grown into one hell of a performer. “I’m very comfortable on stage now,” she explains. “I don’t really get nervous anymore. It’s just excitement.”

In a few days’ time, Wallice will play her 100th proper live gig (she keeps a running tally in the notes app on her phone) after starting the year supporting The 1975 in arenas across Europe, Australia and Asia. “Those shows were way bigger than anything I ever dreamed of playing,” she says, explaining just how vast a 10,000-capacity room looks from behind the microphone.

“It was crazy to think the songs that I made with (producer) Marinelli, who I’ve known since I was ten-years old, got me here. We made them in his childhood bedroom before we had any knowledge of how to be successful, and I ended up playing them to thousands of people on the other side of the world. There were also a few people every night that knew a couple songs, which is incredibly cool,” she beams, with countless more people flooding her DMs and calling Wallice their favourite new artist.

“It’s everything I wanted since I was a young girl, but never thought possible”


It’d be very easy to be overwhelmed, but at no point has Wallice felt like things have happened too fast. “I’ve been working towards this for so long. The last few months of touring has been the most I’ve ever done and I’ve been home for maybe 15 days in the last three months, but it’s literally the dream,” she says, wrestling with the ever-familiar niggles of jetlag. “It’s everything I wanted since I was a young girl, but never thought possible.”

It’s given her a confidence that can be felt across ‘Mr. Big Shot’, a dreamy 6-track EP that sees Wallice sure of the world she’s building. “I don’t know how to explain it, but it just feels like a step-up from my other records, which have been character-based, kitschy and not necessarily based in reality,” she says, describing ‘Off The Rails’ as a “cowboy, coming-of-age” record while ’90s American Superstar’ was as fantastical and extravagant as the title suggests. “‘Mr Big Shot’ has more authentic stories and feelings. It’s more thought out than just a collection of spur of the moment decisions. It’s more mature,” Wallice adds, but fear not. “There’s still a lot of humour in it,” she promises.

‘Why Do You Love Me?’ and ‘Loser At Best’ are Wallice’s versions of love songs. “They’re not too sappy. They’re more self-deprecating,” she explains, with the rest of the EP continuing to explore coming-of-age as a young adult.

The explosive ‘Prepaid Wireless’ was written after Wallice’s mum moved from LA to Georgia, meaning she no longer saw her every few days. “It felt like my whole world was crashing around me, because it was such a big change,” she says while ‘Quarterlife’ is the big sister sequel to ’23’ and sees Wallice explore the pressure of maintaining a certain level of hype. “When I take away the numbers, I do feel like I’m building an audience that genuinely relates to what I’m putting out, but when has that ever stopped someone comparing themselves to others. It’s so easy to be so hard on yourself,” she explains.

“I try not to make trendy music. A song might have a TikTok moment but then never be played again,” says Wallice, who’d rather craft a body of work that means something than chase instant gratification. “I just hope these songs help people feel less alone in the complicated feelings of growing up, love and relationships,” she explains. The fact they’re all big, triumphant bangers comes directly from those giddy live shows.

For the first time, Wallice also worked with other musicians to create ‘Mr Big Shot’. ‘Prepaird Wireless’ was co-written with Jonny Pierce from The Drums (“I’ve loved his music since I was 14”), ‘Why Do You Love Me?’ was created alongside The Marías’ Josh Conway while Two Inch Punch helped out with ‘Loser At Best’.

“I try not to make trendy music”


“I was really nervous ahead of those sessions because I’ve only ever really worked with Marinelli before,” says Wallice, with her long-term producer still heavily involved in shaping ‘Mr Big Shot. “I had imposter syndrome and was constantly asking myself, ‘why would this person want to write with me? They must have been forced’, but I came out of every session with a cool song, so I feel more confident about my abilities now.”

The record even sees Wallice taking direct inspiration from Radiohead, one of her favourite ever bands, on closing track ‘Disappear’. “Hopefully, it’s unique enough that it grows past those ‘Weird Fishes/Arpeggi’ comparisons,” she says. “I didn’t go into this EP knowing what I was going to make, and I’m never seeking out specific sounds. I’m just influenced by what I’m listening to, and I’ve had the same music taste since I was 12,” she explains. “That’s why my music sounds cohesive, but I never want it to be the same song over and over again, either.”

And after the release of Mr Big Shot and the celebratory headline tour, Wallice will enter “debut album creation mode, which I’m very nervous and excited about,” she reveals. There’s a handful of songs that she thinks will make the cut but she knows that’ll probably change when she actually gets back into it. “I want to have so many songs to choose from, and I want to play it at a bunch of festivals next summer,” she says, longing to connect with more people. “I want the record to still be relatable but, once again, a step up from everything that’s come before.”

“Honestly, it’s just going to be a continuation of what I’ve been doing though,” she adds, confident in the world she’s been building over the past two years. “I already know I’m going to make something I’m very proud of.” ■

Wallice’s EP ‘Mr Big Shot’ is out now. Follow Dork’s The Cut Spotify playlist here.