Ten at 10: White Lies - ‘To Lose My Life…’ Ten Years On…

23 September 2019

We're celebrating ten of our favourite albums from 2009, here's why we love To Lose My Life...
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White Lies’ first release, ‘To Lose My Life…’ is as good a debut as you will see from a band, deservedly coming in at number one in the UK album charts. The album is very well produced and the songs clearly take a radio friendly approach but there’s a great balance between the well-polished songs and their dark, post-punk direction and themes of life and death.

It’s hard not to think of the Joy Division influence when listening to this record, but is that such a bad thing!? Singer Harry McVeigh has a wonderful way of using his vocals to help tell the story of each song and showcases this a lot throughout the record. His baritone vocals likened to the great Ian Curtis that set the sombre mood, then often bursting into life into a higher tone as the song progresses.

The album is a journey full of dark themes, huge songs and powerfully unforgettable instrumentation, with McVeigh’s haunting vocals being a highlight. Tracks like ‘Farewell To The Fairground’ is one of the catchier cuts off the record, taking centre stage alongside ‘Death’ and ‘To Lose My Life’, with the track titles suggesting this is far from a record about sunshine and happiness. One of the non-single tracks that stands out is the celestial ‘E.S.T’ which is an emotive song exploring life and death, with the strikingly evocative lyrics leaving a lasting mark on the listener as the track opens with, “If you tell me to jump then I’ll die, in my dreams I’m there”.

Along with a Deluxe Edition release of the original album including b-sides, unreleased tracks and live renditions, White Lies will be playing ‘To Lose My Life…’ in its entirety at a 10th anniversary show at O2 Academy Brixton on December 6th and 7th.