Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Album Review: Warpaint-The Fool

The words ethereal and siren-esque instantly come to mind when describing or even listening to The Fool and that's to be expected. Warpaint is the equivalent of the XX growing up on a steady diet of Television, post punk, and a little grunge as well. Shimmering guitar lines layered over a interlocking rhythm section with choir like voices weaving in and out of the music.

A cinematic feel encapsulates every track, slow motion movie scenes unfold in the mind as they play out. This probably is aided by the band refusing to stand still with their songs, having them crescendoing and evolve within the song, stretching them out and then snapping them back into the original form. The way "Shadow" moves into a simple soft ballad of feeling empty, then shifting when the electronic style drum work comes in, with each section expanding in hurt while still encompassing the same sound that the songs began with illustrates what the album is trying to sound like. It's a dark and agonizing album encoded with dissonance, but crafted from beautiful guitar liens and pitch perfect voices. It's a juxtaposition that works.

This not even bringing up the single "Undertow". Hitting the apex of an album three songs in says so much about a band, the dark imagery piling on top of itself from the band mates' haunting vocals cooing and swaying so in sync while the Nirvana like line of "What's the matter/Hurt yourself/Open your eyes/It was somebody else" comes out. Goosebump inducing. It's a dark album with the tribal vocals and spidery guitar lines spinning webs of pain and heartache with no release, except for the momental acoustic beauty of "Baby". Even the lovely piano line of "Lessie's Heart Murmur" leads to more pain, with the explosive finale casts a downward spiral with the now mildly bombastic drum work and aquatic vocals equate to some of the same emotional feel of Slint's Spiderland, as if the claustrophobia is closing in and is inescapable. A yin yang of an album built on great beauty and great darkness, accumulating to something so much artful.

(mp3) Warpaint-Undertow


Warpaint's Website
Get The Fool here, from Rough Trade

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