The War On Drugs: “Baby Missiles”
A few years ago, the guitarist for Philadelphia’s the War On Drugs struck out on his own. His name is Kurt Vile, and his solo career has overshadowed his previous band–but not for long. With the release of their second album, Slave Ambient, the War On Drugs are stepping into the limelight as one of indie’s most promising acts.
The band formed in 2003 around the core of Vile and Adam Granduciel, an Oakland, California transplant looking to make music in Philly. The duo recruited a number of local musicians before releasing the band’s debut EP in 2005, but Vile soon left to pursue his own music. Granduciel has filled the primary songwriter role quite well, first drawing interest with last year’s Future Weather EP.
That release was just a taste of the band’s abilities. Slave Ambient finds the quartet defining themselves to a greater degree. Oddly enough, Sonic Youth and Bruce Springsteen are two noticeable influences on the group, but Granduciel makes these seemingly incompatible sounds completely work. Each song is a study in momentum, built on top of synthesizers, guitar textures, explosive drumming and Granduciel’s nasally voice. The album’s standout is “Baby Missiles,” a rousing anthem that already sounds classic on first listen. Mark your calendars: the War On Drugs plays Emo’s on October 18. In the meantime, take a listen to our song of the day below.