One thing that I've found to be fairly universal is that everyone has a rainy day playlist. It may be a 200 track compilation that is left on shuffle throughout the day, or one special song that just fits the atmosphere perfectly enough to be on repeat for the duration of the storm. One band you're guaranteed to find on any rock lover's rainy day playlist is The War on Drugs
. The band was formed back in 2005 and made their musical debut with Wagonwheel Blues
in 2008; since then, The War on Drugs has become known for their eclectic sound and unmatched instrumental tunes.
For a brief period following their second album when The War on Drugs were mentioned, your mind would go to upbeat rock tracks with a feel good energy. As they continued to make music, their sound changed little by little over time until the majority of their discography became slow burning tracks engulfed with feeling. Now that The War on Drugs' fourth studio album, and first since 2014, has arrived, we see that they have come prepared for any gloomy, melancholic day.
The ten track album begins with "Up All Night," the glitzy fifth single to be released from this project. This track sets the pace for a decent number of songs on the album, including "Nothing to Find" and "Holding On." These songs, along with a few other upbeat tunes, seem to be placed strategically throughout the album. Here's the thing, when The War on Drugs creates a quick paced track, the instruments are wonderful and the track is almost always enjoyable; but, when they slow things down, they really slow things down. Take "Strangest Thing" for example–the nearly seven minute long track picks up in pace towards the middle before leaving off with a drawn out instrumental.
Adam Granduciel's voice croons over bright acoustic guitars and a slight country twang on "Pain." Like much of the songs on the album, "Strangest Thing," is set for an open road and melancholic thoughts. "Thinking Of A Place" features groovy bass and restless guitar solos. "In Chains" is one of the more up-tempo cuts, while still holding onto the album's atmospheric airiness. Overall, the album opens up a ton of sonic space, allowing the listener to breathe and motivating them to pack their bags, get in a car, and drive. Granduciel embarked on an adventure to search for A Deeper Understanding,
and his travels feel almost tangible on this record. He's bringing the adventure to us.