It’s no secret that I love Warpaint, it goes beyond love. Its admiration and respect. It’s being in constant awe of 4 people who have created a sound that owns a large chunk of my heart. I’ve got a big heart, but I think it’s reserved mainly for music. It’s good and bad thing, maybe. I doubt it’s a bad thing to be honest.
As sleep is a foreign concept to me, I’m going to write about a song by Warpaint that is easily the most beautiful acoustic ensemble I have heard in a very long time. I compare anything that can be deemed as beautiful to this song.
I cannot pick a favourite song by Warpaint, that’s ridiculous. Even if a gun was pointed to my head- I couldn’t choose. I’d spend hours, and I’d change my mind 20 times. So I guess an awful, bloody end would actually cause me less trauma. That’s wrong, I know. Fuck it, I’d choose Lissie’s Heart Murmur. NO! I’d choose Krimson. No! Fuck…shit! I can’t. This is going to give me a migraine if I continue with this.
Right, so there’s a song by Warpaint that breaks a fraction of my heart because it is so beautiful. Majesty hurt to listen to because of how honest it was, and I heard it at a time where it was frightfully apt. This isn’t about Majesty, this is about Baby.
When I first heard Baby, I’m pretty sure I cried. Let’s be honest, I probably cried listening to The Fool in full because of how perfect it was. Baby just broke my heart a bit. It is quite sad, but it is so bare. So stripped and vulnerable. It’s just Emily Kokal and a guitar. Her voice is extremely delicate, even if she was to scream it’d sound so pure and innocent. She has this tone to it that just makes you feel so tranquil.
If there came a time where Baby was apt, I’d be utterly petrified. Imagine letting someone mean that much to you? Bloody hell, that’s powerful. However, I’ve made a vow to myself to never let anyone be associated with a Warpaint song. I couldn’t cope if someone ruined them for me. I’d probably shut the world off and never listen to music again. My love for Warpaint is that deep. You know how Lester Bangs was with Lou Reed? Pretty much me with Warpaint. Except, I’ve met them and they weren’t arseholes to me.
The lyrics to Baby, you cannot deny how stunning they are. It gives the same feeling as Billie Holiday does- the clarity in the vocals and simple sounds. The fact that it is so stripped down makes it that much fragile. You’ve basically got someone throwing their feelings out there saying, “Don’t you call anybody else baby, ‘cause I’m your baby still.” When I heard that line, I wanted to know what being in complete and utter love was like. The proper kind, not the kind that makes you stupid and unaware y’know? When I listen to it now, that feeling has gone. Instead I just take in the vulnerability of it and a wave of respect for the band comes through. I mean, I already respect them so much, but Baby just does something. Its like, how can you allow yourself to be that open? It’s scary but gorgeous.
“It took a long time to make it, but I never changed my mind.” Some things take time don’t they? The things you want, the person you want- it takes a while to get there. If you stick to it, and remain dedicated; you’ll get there. You have to; fate is sometimes on your side. Is it fate? Who knows? The way Emily sings this line isn’t in a pleading or in a desperate manner. It’s just owning up to that she stuck with it. It’s so beautiful. When I hear it, I just want to hug her and say thank you. Thank her for singing such a fragile song that many would be afraid to touch.
With most of their songs, they send you off into a different world. With this song, you stay exactly where you are, you face everything. It’s very up close and extremely personal. It’s intrusive but in a gentle way. Maybe when you listen to this, you think of someone you don’t want to think of. Maybe you think of nothing or no one in particular; you can just hear how pure this song is. That’s what I take from it. I think of nobody when I hear it; I just fall in love with what I am hearing. Its 5 minutes of perfection.
“You speak your fears. Thinking in circles and checking what mirrors don’t see. You live your life like a page from the book of my fantasy.” I wish I could write something as beautiful as that. There is really no other word but beautiful that one could use to describe this song. To me, this part of the song just sums up exactly what love is. Its noticing things about the one you love that they try to hide- but you don’t judge them for it. You don’t judge them for trying to hide what they fear another to find out. They tell you their fears, but make sure nobody else finds out. That’s how it should be. You love them and even their faults are perfect to you. You look at them and you think it’s a dream, a fantasy that you have created; but it’s real. So very real and all yours. Even someone like me would appreciate that! The way Emily sings this, you just feel it. You feel it in every part of you. It moves you from your soul outwards.
When she sings, “How I love you” you can feel this admiration and loyalty just trickles out from her voice, it’s so haunting and perfect. When I can’t sleep, I usually play Warpaint. Mainly because their sound makes me feel like I am floating on water and it’s just the most relaxing atmosphere a piece of music can create for the listener.
How I’ve managed to write over 1000 on one song at ten past one in the morning is just weird. I just love this song so much, and I guess I just had to let this out. I know, I’m strange and the only ones who will get what I’m on about are those who truly love Warpaint as much as I do. They are the ones that GET them. They see past that they are 4 beautiful females. They see the talent, they feel the depths to the music and they get lost in it.
In their live shows, Emily plays this on her own. I’d probably stand and weep if I witnessed this and my life would never be the same again. You just have certain songs that if you saw live, your life would change forever. Nothing would or could ever compare to that moment. It’d complete you; you’d be in awe of what you were witnessing.
For me, Baby is more than a love song. It’s a dedication. It shows how one person is dedicated to another, unconditionally. It’s innocent and undemanding. It’s perfect and everything you wish to feel. It makes you cry because it is so honest and real. It’s not raw or brutal. It’s gentle. You feel like you are being swayed and loved in a simple way. You are theirs, and they are yours; simple as. No complications. You can take what you want from it. If you want it to be about the one you are in love with; go for it. It can be about anything, but it stems from love. This song rips my heart out, but in a good way. Yes, that is possible. It’s easily one of the most gorgeous songs I have ever heard. It’s a lullaby, it’s comforting. Just like Warpaint, it is everything.
Thank you for this post. It’s exactly the way I feel about ‘Baby’; absolutely everything you said has resonated with me. 🙂
No no THANK YOU for reading what I wrote. Oh it’s such a gorgeous song. It just breaks you but in a way that doesn’t shatter your feelings. It’s so beautiful x
I first heard Warpaint the same way you did – Looking for something else I found the Billie Holiday video – and now I wonder how it is that I never heard them before. In the Athens Soundies video, Theresa is playing a beautiful acoustic guitar. I wonder if you know what guitar that is.
Finding something by accident is always the best way! I’m not sure what it is, but I’ll try find out for you =) x