Keep It Healthy
Love Is to Die
Having won the heavy hearts and minds of indie rock's cognoscenti with their 2009 debut, The Fool, the L.A. quartet Warpaint set their sites higher on this self-titled follow-up. Here, they enlist veteran producer Flood (U2, PJ Harvey) to help them beef up their sensual and spooky postpunk. The band decamped to Joshua Tree to write the album, and the eerie desolation of the California desert haunts the tracks accordingly. The serpentine "Keep It Healthy" features fidgety guitar riffs atop the group's lockstep rhythm section of bassist Jenny Lee Lindberg and drummer Stella Mozgawa, while "Teese" layers Emily Kokal's hushed vocals over a creeping beat and atmospheric synths. The single "Love Is to Die" is a gauzy midtempo song with a persistent beat, over which Kokal incants a subtly catchy hook: "Love is to die/Love is to not die/Love is to dance."