“You’ve got to try.”
When you love something or someone with everything you have, you notice different parts and features every single time you are faced with it. I guess it keeps the love and attraction going. There are different ways of being in love. When you’re in love with a band, it goes beyond that feeling of being in love with a person. A person that you may or may not be with. Then again, if the feeling isn’t reciprocated is it even real on your behalf? You don’t have to think about it. If I were you (and let’s be glad you are not me) I wouldn’t bother wasting your thoughts on it. Direct it all towards a different thing. Go read a book, go for a nap- shut off. When I feel like I just don’t want to be bothered, I just listen to music. I listen to one specific band. It doesn’t take a genius to know it is of course, Warpaint.
My love for Warpaint is one I will openly write about here. I don’t think anyone actually understands what it means to me when I get a comment or email about Warpaint and how I write about them. I’m told I manage to get out how I feel about the band in a way the person wishes they could. Thing is, Warpaint make me feel I can be totally honest and open. Since being a fan of theirs, it is like I have allowed myself to get rid of ugly feelings and replace them with something worthy of feeling. They give you this sense of openness that doesn’t make you ashamed of who you are. We all struggle at some point with who we are. You can be so together on the outside, but inside you’re a mess. Sometimes a band is all that can put you back together again. I probably wouldn’t be so laid back and calm if it wasn’t for Warpaint.
Warpaint teach you to let go. I mean really really let go. A piece of music that sounds like a battle cry for the soul, well- that’s sometimes all you need. That’s why I’m going to attempt to write about The Fool opener, Set Your Arms Down.
Setting your arms down can be seen as dropping your weapons. Giving up to your defenses and facing up to what you are, and who you are. Not to mention all you have done. I remember hearing this record and being in awe of every single build-up in every song. Even in songs like Baby,m there is a sense of intensity in that song that is overwhelming but quickly turns into one of the most vulnerable songs I have ever heard.
Set Your Arms Down is a perfect album opener. As they tell you to set your arms down, you feel it is an instruction for the listening process of the record. You must surrender to this band. You must give it up for Emily, Theresa, Jenny and Stella. They must have every single part of you as you listen to them. Thing is, Warpaint are not a band you just play in the background. They aren’t a band you tidy the house to or play for friends. They are a band you play if you want answers. They are a band you play when you want to find the part of you that has been missing for so long. They take you on a journey that you cannot ever imagine taking with anyone else. They become, with first listen, a part of you. They become a way of life.
I guess sometimes when I write about Warpaint it is like a catharsis. Like I am cleansing myself of something by listening to them and writing it down. A lot of the time, I just throw away how I feel or how certain things make me feel. Warpaint chase away all that fear. It begins on The Fool with Set Your Arms Down. The lyrics really really mean a lot to me. It is like they are telling you to give it all up and face everything. Keep trying, because it’ll be okay. It is basically like a swift kick up the arse. The intense vibe in this song is so powerful. The instrumental towards the end makes you feel as if everything you fear in life is coming towards you- and you are stood frozen. Without your defences, facing it all. The song ends, and it is totally up to you now how you deal with the outcome. Are you going to fight off all you fear? Or are you going to remain a coward?
My favourite lyric in this beautiful song has to be:
“Walk through the fire, walk ’till it gets light. There is no hiding to save your life.”
I just find it to be so important, and so true. You have to walk through hell in order to get to where you want to be. You can try to hide as much as you want, but you cannot escape all that bothers you, and at times consumes you. You just can’t That’s what I take from this song. I know I probably seem borderline mental with my love for Warpaint, but everyone has a band that give them a feeling of being able to do anything. Being able to face up to all they must. I guess what I’m trying to say, is that Warpaint give me courage. I don’t know how it is for any real Warpaint fan- but I know that there are some out there who feel this way. Warpaint don’t just sum up how you feel- they also make sense of it. Sometimes it isn’t in their lyrics, sometimes it is just the way their music flows through you.
I have played Set Your Arms Down on repeat so many times whilst going for walks. Walking to nowhere in particular. Sometimes you just need to get out and clear your heard. Warpaint do that. They cleanse you and clear your head in a way that no other band comes even remotely close to doing.
There’s a change on this song. Theresa does the drumming on this song, and she plays equally as strong as Stella. The guitars sound like water flowing through, whilst the bass-line feels like the part of you that is being held together. The song doesn’t lead you astray, it holds you together. Warpaint make you feel like you can do anything, even if you’re a shy and sensitive soul like myself; they kind of bring you out of your shell a bit. Although you cannot physically share what they have given you with anyone else, as it so sacred- you keep it in your heart, nobody can take that from you. Ever.