Album Review: Warpaint The Fool

By Jacqueline Smith

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Warpaint's album cover for The Fool. Photo / Supplied
Warpaint's album cover for The Fool. Photo / Supplied

Rating: 4/5
Verdict: Float across a tumultuous sea of female emotions

Like many of the hip young indie bands on the Laneway Festival bill, Warpaint made a name for themselves thanks to the cool kids of the blogosphere.

And, like many others touring the Australasian festival, they hail from LA, the most fashionable breeding ground for experimental music at the moment.

Currently an all-female four-piece, they create atmospheric, undulating, and haunting psychedelic rock. At times it seems more intimate than the work of most of their contemporaries. This could be because the band was born out of a childhood friendship.

In Undertow lead singer Emily Kokal teases her listeners by opening with a sweet, earthy melody then launches into hyperactive vocal mockery to thick bass and rumbling keyboards.

Between the subtle energy of spookier minor keys of Set Your Arms and gloomy piano of closing track Lissie's Heart Murmur, the kitsch pop of Warpaint, and the wild composition of Composure which boasts splashings of piercing cries, choirs, winging guitars and scattered drumming, it's a varied album, that keeps its audience on their toes.

At times, Kokal is whimsical and warm, and at others she pulls out icy Bjork-like vocals. This means some songs start brutally, but then turn a soft romantic corner, or do the reverse. An impressive debut and a complex listening experience.


- NZ Herald

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