The War On Drugs: Lost In The Dream

Philadelphian dreamers bringing it all back home.

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Since 2005, Philly’s TWOD have worn their hearts on their sleeves as their Bob Dylan-esque indie Americana crossed ley lines with Arcade Fire’s breathless moxie. But gradually the dreamier post-rock and atmospheric textures have crept in, especially on 2011’s Slave Ambient, where elements of Low, My Bloody Valentine and the Elephant 6 collective simmered away in the quintet’s melting pot.

Shortly after, a natural split saw co-founder Kurt Vile pursue a righteous solo career in lo-fi indie folk, leaving guitarist/vocalist Adam Granduciel at the tiller.

Lost In The Dream adorns an hour of exuberant noise with a wealth of analogue and synth effects, harvesting a meld of Avalon sashaying (Under The Pressure), Flock Of Seagulls uplift (Red Eyes) and Elbow introspection (Suffering) along the way. Although the vocals evoke Tom Petty, tracks like the beautiful, poignant Disappearing could easily fit alongside the bruised romanticism of Marillion’s Sounds That Can’t Be Made.

There’s a definite ‘side two’ to this album, as Eyes To The Wind and Burning return to the Dylan/Hold Steady blueprint. But even on closer In Reverse, there’s enough wistful spirit to keep listeners tuned in.

Jo Kendall

Jo is a journalist, podcaster, event host and music industry lecturer with 23 years in music magazines since joining Kerrang! as office manager in 1999. But before that Jo had 10 years as a London-based gig promoter and DJ, also working in various vintage record shops and for the UK arm of the Sub Pop label as a warehouse and press assistant. Jo's had tea with Robert Fripp, touched Ian Anderson's favourite flute (!), asked Suzi Quatro what one wears under a leather catsuit, and invented several ridiculous editorial ideas such as the regular celebrity cooking column for Prog, Supper's Ready. After being Deputy Editor for Prog for five years and Managing Editor of Classic Rock for three, Jo is now Associate Editor of Prog, where she's been since its inception in 2009, and a regular contributor to Classic Rock. She continues to spread the experimental and psychedelic music-based word amid unsuspecting students at BIMM Institute London, hoping to inspire the next gen of rock, metal, prog and indie creators and appreciators.