Warpaint Pick The Records That Shaped Their Career

From Enya to Eno, lead guitarist and vocalist Emily Kokal from Warpaint defines herself with an eclectic music taste which is easy to spot in the band’s output. They belt out woozy dreamy pop just as easily as they do harder rock.
Emily singles out some of the songs and albums that have shaped her life. “It’s funny,” she tells us, “I think you can pin point the influences of my life based on the cassette tapes people gave me. The most random collection of things that people gave me ended up becoming who I am.” To prepare you for Heads Up, Warpaint’s third LP, to be released on September 23rd,  here’s a few tracks that helped Emily and Warpaint through their formative years.

1. “Enya came quite early.”

Enya – Orinoco Flow‬ (1988)


“With me, my household was a little chaotic and Enya had this really calming angelic feeling, so that was my way of chilling out. I listened to it so much because I had a cassette player alarm clock and as soon as the tape played all the way through it would flip and play the next side. If I was reading or doing homework the tape would constantly be flipping, so it just became such a part of me.”

2. “It’s also similar with this album by Harold Budd and Brian Eno, The Pearl.”

Harold Budd and Brian Eno – Against the Sky (1984)


“I’ve been sleeping to that album for so long that it doesn’t even sound like music anymore, it’s just like a pacifier. . . I think when you’re a kid and you listen to things you develop. . . at least for me there was always a very specific visual imaginative world that it still takes me back to. That’s why I found both Enya and that Brian Eno album so comforting. They are both old friends.” […] “There are so many feelings I remember from childhood but I don’t know what albums they were. Later on when I was dating John [Frusciante], he re-introduced me to Brian Eno and I was like – oh this is what that was! There were albums I could remember but I never know what they were.”

3. “I grew up in a house where I had older step sisters, four to six years older than me, so what they were listening to was always a big influence.”

U2 – With Or Without You (1987)


‘The music that I think of when I remember my childhood is War and The Joshua Tree by U2. Those albums were playing constantly in my house. So I have a great love of early U2, which also gets a bad rap. It’s funny that all my influences like U2 would probably be considered uncool, but they were a big part of what inspired me to play music. This created a world of so much music.”

4. “I can’t think how many times my mum must have played Blue by Joni Mitchell…”

Joni Mitchell – Blue (1971)

5.”…It’s the way I listen to Portishead’s Dummy.”

Numb – Portishead (1994)

6.”I was also an 80s child so there was a lot of Tina Turner, Michael Jackson, George Michael, and Brian Eno.”

Michael Jackson – Thriller (1982)

Warpaint collectively choose their three favorite records:

Aphex Twin | Analord Series

Can | Ege Bamyasi

The Cure | Disintegration