WARPAINT-Lissie’s Heart Murmur (take two.)

“On the edge of the water where the ships pass by,
 And the sound of your laughter in the endless sky.
 Tips my head back, full of swimming thoughts.
 Beneath deep breathing.”


I wrote about Lissie’s Heart Murmur last year, or maybe the year before. I have no idea, I just really love Warpaint and I love writing about them. So anyway, I was walking (or hobbling) home from the gym this morning. It was really hot and I listened to Warpaint on the walk home; I played Lissie’s Heart Murmur a few times and noticed some things that I wanted to write down. I have no idea if any of it is going to make sense. I’m not for making sense, ever. That could be something else altogether though, but anyway..

I think it’s obvious one should play Warpaint through headphones. You pick up small details that make you fall even more in love with Warpaint; especially this song. When I listen to them I always find certain parts by each band member to fixate on, over and over. For the most part it is Emily’s delicate voice that just hypnotises me. I’m fully aware that when I see them in October I’m going to be left in a trance for days. I hope I never snap out of it.

The keys on Lissie’s Heart Murmur are so frail. The way they are played during the first few seconds of the song lures you, but at the same time you immediately imagine someone stood staring out to see with all their worries surrounding them. The keys are the worries falling out; then Emily’s voice comes in and you are soothed straight away. Are these things I have said before? More than likely. I don’t know if I could have a physical conversation with anyone about Warpaint because I’d just waffle on. Pretty much like I am here, but no one is telling me to shut up. But I’m writing this for those who are as in love with the band as I am. The ones who truly get it. Not the ones who just like one song and that’s it. The ones who have fallen asleep listening to Stars and it gave them the best sleep ever.

As the keys get lower; so does Emily’s voice. Then Jenny comes in with her stunning bass playing which merges so perfectly with Stella’s drumming. The drums sound like gentle crashes against the waves, and it is like the bass line is the life jacket to stop you getting out of your depth. In short, this song saves. Split yourself in two, and go with the part that is unsure. There’s a part in the song, I think it’s from 4.30 for 30 seconds where the song goes as wild as it can. It feels like a current in the water taking you over, then it becomes calm again towards the end and everything is alright. It is so beautiful.

Lyrically it is my favourite Warpaint song. The thing I love about their lyrics is that you have no way of being certain on what they are about. Of course you have the likes of say, Lou Reed and Morrissey for where the most part it is obvious about what they are on about. They go beyond being poets; but with Warpaint, they truly have lyrics where you can just make them into whatever you want. I know you can do that with Morrissey and Lou Reed, of course I do. Yet with Warpaint, maybe it is because of the trance they place you in with their music, you are gently carried into another world and the words are yours to take your own way. I’ve read the lyrics over and over, and you get the same feel as you do when you hear the song. It makes you feel as if you are floating on water- Warpaint are delicately pulling you along, who knows where you will end up. However, I’ve also realised that all Warpaint songs make me feel this way. They make you feel as if you are carelessly bobbing along, sometimes go under but when you go under it isn’t so bad. They’re there to get you above water again. You can call them a safety net.

I hate that I write personally, but this is the song I go to when everything seems a bit shit. I think it is mainly because Emily’s voice is so gentle on this song. I know it is delicate on songs such as Baby, but Lissie’s Heart Murmur has something else. It makes you feel like everything just might be okay; maybe not soon, but it will be. For the most part it really is, but the song is full of such reassurance and care; it is such a comforting song. When I was listening to it earlier I realised that this song, although it seems quite simple- there is so much going on. Like I mentioned above, you have to listen through headphones to really pick up on this. You pick up on the way the keys float through your ears so freely, and when the cymbal crashes it is like waves hitting the rocks. The way the bass is introduced after about 45 seconds is so beautiful. The bass resembles stones being cast into water; and the ripples that occur are like Emily’s voice. This could be the only song I ever hear for the rest of my life and I’d be completely happy with that; and I’d notice different parts to love. This song is like looking at the person you are in love with and noticing more things you love about them.

Warpaint are one of the very few bands I feel okay with taking their songs apart to talk (well, write) about certain parts in the song; certain moments that come to mean everything to the fan, the person listening to the song.  The way in which Emily sings the word “sinks” is so clear and beautiful. Small moments like this are just beautiful. And the way “I’m in two” is sung and the drums kick in. Tiny moments that make the song. I’m fairly sure that Lissie’s Heart Murmur is my most played Warpaint song, and probably one of the most played songs I own in general. There is something about it that just makes you know that this is a song you’ll play in 10 years time and you’ll be taken back to when you first heard it, and how you will feel at that point will be exactly how you felt when you first heard it. I could have just summed this up by saying this is one of the most gorgeous songs of all time, I think that’s obvious. You just bask so freely in the tranquil atmosphere that they create, over and over again.

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