3D Great Rock Bible
Warpaint iTunes Tracks Warpaint Official Website


It is indeed refreshing for an all-girl band not to take the wannabe popstar route and instead side with the punk alternative angle. As they celebrate exactly 10 years since their formation in Los Angeles, California, on Valentine’s Day 2004, we scrape away the foundations of WARPAINT and herald a talent that could be around for another decade – and some.
Inspired by shoegazing boy/girl dream-pop combos that littered the early 90s scene (SLOWDIVE, LUSH, MAZZY STAR, etc.), WARPAINT originally consisted of Emily Kokal (vocals/guitars/synths), childhood chum Theresa Wayman (guitar/keyboards), plus sisters Jenny Lee Lindberg (bass) and Shannyn Sossaman (drums). Touting their own compositions around the L.A. Strip for three-to-four years, the cutesy quartet stepped into the studio with half a dozen tunes that eventually comprised the Jacob Bercovici-produced `Exquisite Corpse’ EP.
Mixed and mastered with the help of Kokal’s then-boyfriend, JOHN FRUSCIANTE (on/off RED HOT CHILI PEPPERS guitarist), the self-financed disc was further elevated, when, in October 2009, Manimal Vinyl re-released the record in America, while Rough Trade – who’d inked a deal with the band in the UK – presented it to coincide with their debut album. The “Corpse” EP showed promise, as the self-penned `Billie Holiday’ track (which interpolated their take on the classic SMOKEY ROBINSON-scribed smash `My Guy’) was testament to; the fragile and frippery came by way of `Stars’, `Elephants’, `Beetles’, `Burgundy’ and the bonus piece, `Krimson’.
In the meantime, Sossaman had had to leave due to acting commitments, her place finally filled by Stella Mozgawa, who’d superseded temp members David Orlando, Michael Quinn and Josh Klinghoffer, respectively, after their tribute split-single version of BOWIE’s `Ashes To Ashes’.
A year of transition, 2010 saw the brooding WARPAINT come of age with their UK Top 50 debut, THE FOOL {*7}. From icy to chilly to cool, Emily’s ethereal vox was soothing as well as detached; `Set Your Arms Down’, `Composure’, `Shadows’, `Baby’ and the FLEETWOOD MAC-meets-NIRVANA-esque `Undertow’, creeping in on one’s unsuspecting soul and mindset.
Three years in the making and kicking off 2014, patience was rewarded when the band’s eponymous follow-up, WARPAINT {*8} gate-crashed the Top 50 (Top 10 in the UK). Transfixing an eerie balance that would’ve been at home with SIOUXSIE AND THE BANSHEES or COCTEAU TWINS, the wintry women of WARPAINT procured misty melodies from out of a hauntingly hazy and cosmic strato-atmosphere. `Love Is To Die’, the hypnotic `Hi’, the slo-fi-SLITS-like `Go In’, the crescendo-building `CC’ and The WAITRESSES-esque `Disco/Very’, WARPAINT had stripped down to the bare bones of indie-pop/rock without de-robing in the need to sell records in a lapdance-pop video age.
© MCS Feb2014

Share this Project

Leave a Comment