The War On Drugs: Lost In The Dream (2014)
The album sports a new wave/classic rock vibe, ethereal reverb and extended guitar jams reminiscent of U2 and, especially, early Dire Straits, as well as shades of more recent arena-friendly Americana like the National or My Morning Jacket. Frontman Adam Granduciel's vocals conjure Dylan and Mark Knopfler, full of portent and poetry, while it's the gentle but room-filling music which envelopes you and gives the album such a feeling of depth. The longer-running song lengths give the album plenty of breathing room, best suited to a cozy afternoon on the couch.
Which isn't to say there aren't hooks here to draw you in. Lead-off track "Under The Pressure" moves at a steady clip and is downright catchy, before sliding off into a long fade of feedback-drenched ambience. It's followed by the even more compelling "Red Eyes," the sort of track that begs for "classic rock" status twenty years from now; while the quiet, mellow title track demonstrates that the band is no less powerful when eschewing the big, boomy reverb-swaddled guitars. And even where the songs are more sprawling and meandering than focused, they simply sound fantastic. This is one where I like to give the big-ass speakers in the family room a good workout.
Here's the "Under The Pressure" video: