ARMED LOVE MILITIA (FAIRUZA BALK & MEL SANSON): WHITE LILLIES REVIEW

ARMED LOVE MILITIA (FAIRUZA BALK & MEL SANSON): WHITE LILLIES REVIEW

Armed Love Militia, fronted by the beautifully present Fairuza Balk are in the process of releasing their 3 song EP and a part of this is the track White Lillies. Haven’t heard their previous tracks? Check out Davie, Dream 45 and Stormwinds. White Lillies was written 8 years ago however last year Fairuza recorded a duet with friend and fellow singer songwriter Mel Sanson and the results are astonishing. You’ll be familiar with Sanson’s own haunting sound from our review of her latest track here, but now, the musical gods have blessed us and Fairuza and Mel have come together to produce a track that’s so good we’re going to be devastated if these two don’t sing together again soon.

Two previews of the track have been released online so far but we were lucky enough to be sent the whole thing to review for our readers. In a nutshell the track is down to earth, mellow, and every aspect of the track is beautifully defined. Featuring crisp acoustic guitar and siren like singing from Fairuza and Mel, it’s relaxing to the casual observer and a painful experience to those who are familiar with the tale.

The introduction to the track is a small masterpiece on its own. The pause just before the vocals is intense and the intro does a good job of setting the atmosphere and building the anticipation for the duet. Being fans of both Fairuza and Mel separately we could barely wait for the introduction to finish to hear them both together.

The vocal melody between the two is unforgettable. They sing not only like sirens, but two wise women you’d meet on your travels with every single syllable holding your attention. Insane vocal quality, there is simply not a better combination of voices for the track.

Fairuza describes the lyrics as follows:

The lyrics speak of a lover mourning the loss of the beloved, eternally searching for them through eternity, calling out to them through song like a Siren to try and find them again, to be reunited. Also a warning that should the song be heard by a strangers ears the curse that befell the beloved could land on them as well.


Fairuza is inspired by traditional folk music and was taught some by her father when she was younger. Here she has created her very own folktale, written years ago, initially recorded back then too. But like all folk tales, as they are retold the story changes. This change has come with the addition of Mel Sanson.

My very talented singer/songwriter friend came in and we did it as a duet and finally FINALLY it sounded the way it had in my head! Joy! That’s one thing about songwriting, you know the difference intrinsically between when it’s not quite there and when it’s right. This felt beyond right and it was like breathing a huge sigh of relief that it was finally done.

All in all there’s not a lot of words for White Lillies. For us, the simplicity of this track IS its complexity. The welcomed absence of over-production and the presence of only 2 key elements: vocals and acoustic guitar, imprints the track in your mind far too easily. The emotional impression the track leaves on you is intense. Their performance is intimate and sincere. Even if you forget the story this track tells, you won’t forget the feeling it gave you.

You can pre-order the EP on Fairuza’s website. There’s a lot of awesome packages up for grabs, including signed CDs and tapes, badges, t-shirts, or even the whole set.

We encourage our readers to share this piece and support Fairuza/ALM and Mel Sanson as independent artists bringing great contributions to the industry. People power!

Cover photography Valentina Socci

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