The four Warpaint women took the main stage when the sun went down at the FYF fest on Saturday, and I only had heard good things about their music. They had drawn a large crowd, and for a festival dominated by punk, noise rock and hardcore, they were an exception in the middle of this buoyant day.
Their sound was floating, building something between atmospheric music, and synth-pop with melancholic guitar, sparse drumming and aching vocal harmonies. It is a little bit difficult to describe their original compositions, which sounded sad and detached at the same time, dreamy with darker episodes or even totally sinister. May be it was because I had seen a million bands already, may be it was because I was focusing too much on my feet which were hurting very bad in this eighth hour of standing, but I didn’t feel very engaged in these girls music, I was listening passively, that’s why I can’t really tell if I totally liked them… lots of people did though!
It was definitively not pop music, not even rock, but it made people dance a sort of slow and hypnotic dance. There definitively were beats, even restless beats, but the women’s echoing and crying vocals were transforming them into something curious and distant, a little mysterious, as if they were fairytales witches dancing and agitating their mousseline veils,… or may be it was the lack of food and water that made me hallucinate at this moment. Their set was a little surreal, definitively not something to cheer you up, but behind the languished atmosphere there was some constant propulsive assaults.
Their songs were alternating between almost naked aching vocal harmonies with spiraling guitars and dance numbers, one of the songs had its Radioheadish moments, and these dreamy-melancholic vocals had something to do with Cat Power’s own delivery, however not her smoky vocal presence
What I remember the most was a feeling of a certain abandon that was exuding from their performance, as if you had to let yourself go with their mysterious languished and nebulous ambiance and forget about your body, your feet… But at this point of the day, I was not sure there was any music capable to make me forget about them.
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