Happy WARPAINT Day!

14 02 2012

“Oh wonderful one, why are you like that?”

It isn’t just The Kills that are celebrating an anniversary today- Warpaint are now 8 years into their career. Yep, it goes way back before 2010’s The Fool and 2009’s Exquisite Corpse.

The band formed on Valentine’s Day 2004. The band have gone through some changes over the past 8 years. Jenny’s sister  Shannyn Sossamon and current Red Hot Chili Pepper’s guitarist Josh Klinghoffer were part of the band during the start. As well as David Orlando and Michael Quinn. However, it is with Stella Mozgawa, that they found a soild with. When you watch Warpaint play, or just even on record- you can really feel such positive energy coming from them- much like The Kills.

It is fairly obvious how much I love Warpaint. I think my Warpaint tattoo has cemented my love for them, but like The Kills- my love goes beyond the music. It is the way their bond can make you feel so positive about..anything and everything. Even when it all seems a bit well, shit I suppose. Music can make you feel so much, and Warpaint’s music does that. Some songs feel like a powerful confrontation, others feel like a personal confession. I can quite happily just sit in my room, in the dark listening to their music and just allowing the sounds take me to a different universe. That’s what is so beautiful about music. When you find a singer or band that you connect with on an almost spiritual level, you allow yourself to feel so weightless and just drift off into a whole different place. A place where you can feel free without the shackles of every day life.

I remember first hearing Warpaint for the first time in 2009. I was researching some Billie Holiday songs for my dissertation, and I was using Strange Fruit as part of one of my articles. As I was watching a performance of Strange Fruit, I noticed in the corner “Warpaint-Billie Holiday.” I clicked on it. I was immediately hooked. Much like The Kills, I knew with first listen that I had found something sacred. For some reason, Warpaint aren’t a band I want to listen to with other people. It’s a thing I always feel comfortable doing alone. I guess it’s because I know of no one that connects to it like I do. I don’t mean it in a superior way at all. Most that I know that have claimed to listen only dig one song, or just fancy Jenny. Come on now. If you’re going to claim to be a fan- listen to EVERYTHING. I listen to Warpaint and I lose all my senses. I feel like I’m having some outer obdy experience. I’d feel like a massive idiot if I listened to them with someone and announced that to them. They’d probably punch me, and tell me to snap out of it. Honestly, if you listen to Shadows or Lissie’s Heart Murmur and do not feel like something has taken over you- you’re not listening to it properly.

The music is so ethereal and pure. Jenny’s bass playing is enough to make you wish you could play bass like that. Fuck it, the way they all play makes you wish you had musical talent (obviously if you already play an instrument this isn’t the case.) It’s the kind of music that makes you want to explore everything. The kind of music that just makes you want to become a better person, and discover things about yourself that you may have worked hard at pushing away.

I’ll never ever forget the day I interviewed Theresa. I haven’t done much that I am proud of, but I honestly believe that day to be the best day of my life, and one I am so fucking proud of. They say you should never meet people that you class as your heroes. I stick two fingers up to that declaration! I loved the interview because it didn’t feel like I was sat with “someone from a band.” It was like talking to someone you’ve known for years about something you both love- Music. The love they have for each other, and what they do is so beautiful. If you’ve ever seen any videos of them being interviewed, you will see that they are the most hilarious and warm people. They don’t take themselves seriously, and just love what they do. Like The Kills, they haven’t compromised who or what they are in order to get where they are now- they stayed honest to their art, and have made music that fast became timeless.

The euphoric feeling their music gives you is something every music lover searches for and craves in a band. That feeling of safety with hints of “where is this taking me?” It keeps you hooked for a lifetime. I honestly couldn’t imagine my record collection and life without their music. There was a huge void, but the wait for a band like Warpaint was truly worth it.

With only an EP and a full length album, they have fanbase that is just so loyal and passionate towards the band- and towards each other. It’s like the unity they have with each other is shared between the Warpaint fans (not the ones who buy the band shirt from Urban Outfitters and have NEVER fucking listened to the band.)

When I listen to their music, I always feel like I am in some kind of dreamy state. That I’m floating through life, and everything is just passing me by. Even with songs like Majesty- I still get that feeling. A feeling that, as much as I love certain bands- only Warpaint can give me. Each band that I hold so very dear to me does this. Each play a part, and give off certain feelings. Some feelings that, I just cannot explain. It’s almost as if words are not good enough to even try. However, if you listen to the music, you’ll probably understand what I mean.

Although I’ve met them, I’m still waiting to see them live. I just know it again, will be worth the wait and it will be some kind of life changing experience. There’s so much more I could say about Jenny, Emily, Stella and Theresa- but what good would it do? It’s obvious how much their music means to me.

Warpaint are one of the few bands that keep me going with regard to writing. There are so many times where I just think, “Fuck this fucking shit. No one reads this. I’m wasting my time. I’m really shit.” I think that at least once a week, maybe more. But, it’s this mind-set that keeps me going. If I thought I was any good, I wouldn’t bother. Warpaint inspire me to always write with heart, honesty and passion- the day I stop writing like that is the day I just give up forever. They make me feel like it is okay for me to put everything I have into something, even if it may seem so small. It will pay off eventually. I guess, they just give me hope. I also think they are a bit responsible for my huge urge to live in L.A.

Theresa, Emily, Jenny, Stella- thank you. Thank you for the music and for creating a sound that my ears were so in need of hearing. Big love. Olivia xxxx