Every Monday through Friday, we deliver a different song as part of our Song of the Day podcast subscription. This podcast features exclusive KEXP in-studio performances, unreleased songs, and recordings from independent artists that our DJs think you should hear. Each and every Friday we offer songs by local artists. Today’s selection, featured on the Afternoon Show with Cheryl Waters, is “Comin’ Through” by The War on Drugs from the 2010 album Future Weather on Secretly Canadian.
You could easily argue the actual “war on drugs” has been a failure since the term was first coined in the 1970’s; however, that wouldn’t apply to a band of the same name from Philadelphia: The War on Drugs. Since forming in 2003, the band has released four outstanding EP’s (one self-released, the other three on Secretly Canadian), and survived numerous line-up changes (Kurt Vile, Charlie Hall, and Kyle Lloyd had all left the band by 2008). Despite the obvious subtractions, the band seems to have hot their stride as a three-piece with Adam Granduciel on vocals/guitar, Dave Hartley on bass guitar, and Mike Zanghi on percussion. The War on Drugs seem to take inspiration from great Americana influences like Springsteen, Petty, and Dylan, while doing just enough tinkering to make it immediately clear this was made in 2010, not the late 60’s. In fact, the band really seems to be at their best when taking those classic cues and making it uniquely their own in the studio. Our featured song “Comin’ Through” is a perfect example of what we mean: dreamy, bluesy, and slightly psychedelic. Tom Petty and Bob Dylan fans should rejoice at a brave new direction. We can’t wait to hear what the band has in store for their full-length next year!
You can follow all the exploits of the band on their website and listen to additional tracks from the band on their MySpace page. They just finished a 5-week tour and will be touring Europe early next year. Hopefully, though, 2011 will bring a new album from The War on Drugs and a new tour. Until then, here’s an older video, comprised of stock footage, for “A Needle In Your Eye” from 2008’s Wagonwheel Blues: