The War on Drugs "Lost in the Dream" (Secretly Canadian, 2014)
I’m standing around the back hall after the El Ten Eleven show talking with a group of self proclaimed music people, and naturally the conversation turns to War On Drugs, and why shouldn’t it [?], after all Kurt Vile had played this very venue almost a year ago to the day, with someone asking, “What do you think the new War On Drugs album’s gonna sound like?” That was quickly followed by another who remarked, “What won’t it sound like.” Of course my ears perked at these comments, and as I turned on my heels, said “Have any of you actually heard the album?” The hall was quiet until I went on, saying that I had, and that Lost In The Dream was not only quite good, but very important, representing not only a smooth, but remarkable step forward from Slave Ambient, and every bit as intoxicating as Dylan’s step into Blonde On Blonde ... that with each song [and Lost In The Dream was recorded using analog tape] they mixed tape on tape creating a density that’s impossible to push through on one listen, delivering a constructional concept of intelligent hazy smoke filled neo-psychedelic enchantment that is both breathtaking in its beauty, and laden with dreamy washes and sonic guitar solos designed and to spirit your soul into another dimension ... though making the decision to come back, may be the most difficult part.
Lost In The Dream really is a beautiful body of work, one filled with some of the finest most considered guitar structures and insightful lyrics I’ve heard in a very long time, one I can’t get enough of, and having it on purple vinyl only makes things that much more remarkable and enticing. I find it hard to believe that in 2014, there will be an album released to best these efforts, and while I realize that’s a bold statement, I can count myself among the first to be lost in the dream.
Review made by Jenell Kesler/2014
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