Undertow

Songfacts®:

  • This is a single from The Fool, the full-length debut by Los Angeles-based female quartet Warpaint. The song originally began life as a cover of Nirvana's "Polly," but mutated into their own song with the only similarity being that the words "hurt yourself" appear in both tunes.

    Bassist Jenny Lee Lindberg told BBC 6music: "[Guitarist] Theresa [Wayman] and I were just working and I had a bassline. She just started singing the lyrics to 'Polly' over that song. But instead of making that a cover - even though it sounded really cool - we said: 'Well, write your own words to the song.'"

    She continued: "There's definitely an homage to ['Polly'] in the chorus, the first line - [but] you listen to the songs back-to-back they sound nothing alike. Yeah, it is a bit of an homage to Kurt [Cobain] and Nirvana."
  • Vocalist Emily Kokal told Mojo magazine about the band's song writing process: "We write from beginning to end, in a linear fashion. We don't say, OK, here's a verse, here's a chorus, another verse. We usually start jamming on an idea, then it feels like it's time to change, so we'll write the next part, and then the third part might be completely different, and the fourth. We might never repeat any of them again, but it feels like it's a natural progression from beginning to end."

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