Life on the road can be tough, but it’s made a hell of a lot easier when you’re part of a gang as strong as Warpaint. The LA four-piece have developed into an established force in guitar music after releasing three excellent albums in the last seven years, with their dazzling live shows in particular becoming a must-see spectacle.
There can be a hundred reasons behind a successful live tour, but one of the keys to surviving the rigours of incessant travel and performance undoubtedly comes through the tireless work of a band’s tour manager. Handily, Warpaint’s representative on the road, Robin Laananen, has not only become an integral part of the band’s everyday operations (or, as drummer Stella Mozgawa puts it, she’s “our tour manager-dear friend-long suffering sister”), she’s also served as the band’s tour photographer since 2010.
Laananen is now releasing a selection of her never-before-seen photos of Warpaint for a new limited edition book, Us / Then, which will be available to buy on July 1 through Setanta publishers. The deluxe photo book will also contain an exclusive 7″ vinyl single of live favourites ‘Whiteout’ and ‘Bees’ – pre-order is available now.
In an exclusive sneak peek of some of the images from the new project, Laananen has also elaborated a little on the story behind each selection – check them out below.
1On The Bright Side Festival, Perth, Australia July 2011
"This was the first show of a long tour, jetlag can do funny things to a person. And, for long haul flights, the airlines giveaway these stylish eye masks."
2Fuji Rock Festival, Japan, July 2011
"This was four months after the giant tsunami shook the whole country, and we all felt overwhelming compassion for the people of Japan. It truly is one of the most special places in the world."
3Off Festival, Poland, August 2011
"Stella’s family is from Poland, so its always enjoyable for the fans."
4Oslo, Norway, August 2011
"This Scandinavian portion of the tour involved planes, trains and public buses."
5Manilla, Phillippines, February 2014
"Anything to sleep, anywhere."
6Coachella Festival, April 2014
"Jenny warming up. A dust storm began to roll in as they played, hitting almost immediately after they left the stage."
7Austin, Texas, April 2014
"Warpaint supported The National for three nights in a row in Austin, so I rented the band and me a giant house. We enjoy skipping the hotel rooms and becoming temporary residents when we have the chance."
8Aspen, Colorado, April 2014
"The ladies played an acoustic set for an Indie radio station while in town. We didn’t have mallets, so we made them with toilet paper and scotch tape. She can play on anything… even buckets."
9Flight from Mexico City to Nashville, June 2014
"The ladies were mid-rehearsal for Superjam at Bonnaroo when we had to take a day to fly in/out of Mexico City for a show, then quickly return to finish rehearsal. Why not?"
10Rock Werchter Festival, Belgium, July 2014
"Emily and Jenny warming up, playing after Robert Plant. This is one of my favorite festivals."
11Warpaint tour manager and photographer Robin Laananen
“I feel the photographs in this book show the candid side of the music world, not usually seen by others, and the connection between people only shared when going through the same experiences. I can't articulate how grateful I am to these four inspiring women for not only being open to my camera (being comfortable with me shooting from anywhere and everywhere, at anytime) but for also becoming collaborators.”
Robin Laanen's Us / Then is available July 1 2017 through Setanta Books.