The Philadelphia quartet (Granduciel, multi-instrumentalists Robbie Bennett and Dave Hartley and drummer Mike Zanghi) established their unique course on 2008’s Wagonwheel Blues, where soaring Synth Pop melded with expansive Space Rock and was perfectly grounded and centered by a Classic Rock/Folk Pop perspective, like Spiritualized re-imagined as a Byrds tribute.
The War on Drugs’ debut was surprising and satisfying, but it was merely an introduction to the band’s power and range, as evidenced by its amazing 2011 sophomore album, Slave Ambient.
Utilizing the populist anthemics of Tom Petty and Bruce Springsteen and the Folk simplicity of Bob Dylan coupled with the aggressive Ambient texturalism of Brian Eno and the big-beat Synth Pop of New Order, The War on Drugs invested Slave Ambient with the swelling power of its disparate influences and the enduring strength of its translational abilities.
The War on Drugs plays Mayday Friday with Carter Tanton and Purling Hiss. Go here to read Brian Baker's full Sound Advice.