The War On Drugs In Concert It's been almost four years since the Philadelphia rock band released its terrific full-length debut, Wagonwheel Blues. Hear the group perform songs from its long-awaited sophomore record, Slave Ambient.

The War On Drugs In Concert

The War On Drugs In Concert

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The War on Drugs. Courtesy of the artist hide caption

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Courtesy of the artist

Set List

  • Best Night
  • Baby Missiles
  • Comin' Through
  • Arms Like Boulders
  • Brothers
  • Your Love Is Calling My Name
  • Buenos Aires Beach
  • I Was There

With lyrical and vocal techniques that recall Tom Petty, Bruce Springsteen and Bob Dylan — coupled with the blazing guitar riffs of Sonic Youth and My Bloody Valentine — the Philadelphia band The War on Drugs plays classic-sounding rock music that never stops looking forward.

Founding members Adam Granduciel and Kurt Vile met at a party and bonded over their mutual admiration for Dylan; the two would soon begin recording together. Granduciel's gritty vocals are supported by the band's dreamy ambience, and together they form a rich sound. With its full-length debut, Wagonwheel Blues, the band experiments with a wide variety of styles and influences, blending noisy distortion and rootsy rock.

Though Kurt Vile left the band and there have been other lineup changes, The War on Drugs has steadily built an audience in the past few years. Four years in the making, Slave Ambient is a hearty dose of rock 'n' roll, with plenty of side influences. From the expertly placed synthesizers and bold electric guitars to the undercurrents of country-rock and vintage pop, Slave Ambient is just plain stimulating.

The War on Drugs played the XPoNential Music Festival in 2008, and you can listen to the full concert here.