Who Cares How It Ends is the debut album from War Strings and is the result of passion and perseverance. Los Angeles-based indie artist Andrew Stogel has been working on his craft from a young age and all of that hard work has led up to this. War Strings is an evolution of fronting bands like Dreamer Dose and LOVEYOU combined with his life experiences, both good and bad. Stogel suffered a major head injury that caused him to be bedridden for almost eight months, making him feel like he was on his deathbed. However, he came out of this stronger than ever and stumbled upon a new musical perspective in the process. He recalls, “I wrote Who Cares How It Ends following a debilitating injury in 2018. I remember, on the way to the hospital when things seemed their most dire, feeling a sense of clarity. When I got home, I wanted to get songs down quickly. I spent months stuck in bed, writing in a dark room. Endless days of reflection. Who Cares How It Ends are those reflections.”
The album starts with the sounds of a jarring guitar riff, a sound that becomes very familiar throughout. “Right Side” sets the tone for War String’s signature sound and opens the floodgates for the rest of the tracks to flow through. Sounding like a male version of Snail Mail, “Tragedy” is an indie-punk headbanger that is bound to stick around in your head for a while. The lyrics that stand out the most are, “She’ll ever listen to my love songs / she’s all I want / I’m doing it all wrong”. Not only is Stogel’s sound reminiscent of Snail Mail, but the sounds of The Strokes and Pinegrove. There is a reliance on this prominent guitar sound that compliments his vocals, “Seventeen” is the prime example of it. If you listen closely to the lyrics, “My Alien Heart” stands out among the rest of the tracks. You can hear the strain behind his voice and the passion behind the music.
This re-approach to music and the life-changing experience he faced made Who Cares How It Ends a true journey. About halfway through the album, things start to slow and become more vulnerable. “Archer” sounds like a song that was released in the 90’s, a slow, indie rock single. This sound is similar to “One Shot” and “Loved” as well. The final track, “An Answer”, is the most vulnerable and soft song. Stogel’s vocals float over the light instrumental and leave you with a good taste in your mouth. Over three months, and mostly in bed, he crafted this debut album and overcame a big setback in his life. All music and lyrics were written, arranged, and performed by Stogel himself. He admits of the project:
“I wrote Who Cares How It Ends following a debilitating injury in 2018. I remember, on the way to the hospital when things seemed their most dire, feeling a sense of clarity. When I got home, I wanted to get songs down quickly. I spent months stuck in bed, writing in a dark room. Endless days of reflection. Who Cares How It Ends are those reflections.”
It all represents reconstructing his life and embracing the imperfection because you only have one shot at life, so why waste it?