Posts Tagged ‘ Lost In The Dream ’

The War on Drugs: March 20, 2014 Bowery Ballroom – FLAC/MP3/Streaming

March 24, 2014

[Photos from the 3/19 show courtesy of P Squared Photography]

My thoughts on The War on Drugs don’t differ much from those expressed in nyctaper’s review of the previous night, but I do think some things bear repeating. Nine times out of ten — more like 95 times out of 100 — worthy bands who toil in the trenches don’t make it. One thing doesn’t go right or another. Maybe there’s a lack of commitment on someone’s part. Or a lack of confidence. Or, in most cases, a lack of pure dumb luck.

We’ve posted a lot of recordings of this band over the past few years not because we thought one day they’d be able to way-sell-out three nights in a row here in New York, which they just did, but because we believed they were worthy. As a fan, your biggest hope always ought to be that the band you’re rooting for makes it. For Adam Granduciel, who toiled for over a year creating his magnum opus Lost In the Dream, it didn’t yet seem to have sunk in that his band had. He showed a bit of nervousness before kicking off the opening number, “In Reverse”, but after that, this show unfolded like the victory party it was meant to be. Compared to night one at the Bowery Ballroom, the band was looser and more poised, playing one song after another as easily as “Suffering” transitioned straight into “An Ocean In Between the Waves”. Just as heavily-produced album tracks like “Under the Pressure” shone as rendered live, so too did re-arranged versions of the band’s classics like a slowed-down “Brothers”. With the bevy of personnel at his command, including a saxophonist, the band’s more complex numbers took on a Destroyer-like caste at times (we’ve recorded WoD opening for them). Granduciel makes that work, too, being the kind of musician who can add complexity without letting it turn to overindulgence.

Normally when you can hear a crowd screaming at the stage between songs it’s mindless heckling; if you listen closely to this recording, what’s being hurled at Granduciel are compliments on the album. This was that kind of show, right through Granduciel acknowledging the fakeness of encores, asking for the lights to go up some so he could read the lyrics to John Lennon’s “Mind Games” (streaming below) a bit more clearly. The War on Drugs may be critical darlings now, but this is isn’t overnight success. This is it being done the old fashioned way. The kind that lasts.

I recorded this set from my usual spot in the venue with Schoeps MK5 cardiod microphones and a stereo soundboard feed provided by house engineer Kenny. The sound quality is outstanding, marred only slightly by light static during two songs. Enjoy!

Stream “Mind Games” [John Lennon]

Stream “Under the Pressure”

This recording is now hosted on the Live Music Archive.  Download the complete show via these links: [MP3] | [FLAC]

Stream the complete show:

Note: All of the material on this site is offered with artist permission, free to fans, at our expense. The only thing we ask is that you download the material directly from this site, rather than re-posting the direct links or the files on other sites without our permission. Please respect our request.


The War On Drugs
Bowery Ballroom
New York, NY USA

Exclusive download hosted at
Recorded and produced by acidjack

Schoeps MK5 (DINa, balcony, LOC)>KC5>CMC6>Sound Devices USBPre2 + Soundboard (engineer: Kenny)>>Edirol R-44 [OCM]>2x24bit/48kHz WAV>Adobe Audition CS 5.5 (align, adjust levels, mix down, compression, fades)>Izotope Ozone 5 (EQ, effects)>Audacity 2.0.3 (track, amplify, balance, downsample, dither)>FLAC ( level 8 )

Tracks [Total Time: 1:39:24]
01 In Reverse
02 Baby Missiles
03 [banter]
04 Under the Pressure
05 Suffering>
06 An Ocean In Between the Waves
07 Eyes to the Wind
08 Red Eyes
09 Come To the City
10 Brothers [Slow Version]
11 Burning
12 [banter2]
13 Lost In the Dream
14 [banter3]
15 Mind Games [John Lennon]
16 Coming Through
17 [banter4]
18 Arms Like Boulders

If you enjoyed this recording, PLEASE SUPPORT The War on Drugs, visit their website, and buy Lost In the Dream from Secretly Canadian.

The War On Drugs: March 19, 2014 Bowery Ballroom – Flac/MP3/Streaming

March 23, 2014

[photos by PSquared Photography]

The War On Drugs new album Lost In The Dream is a record that can only be adequately described in grand sweeping terms. This release is not simply in the “best of 2014” discussion, it will be considered one the best of this decade. There have been some lofty review ratings posted for Lost this week, and much effusive praise, but as we have chronicled the growth of this band and Adam Graduciel over the last five years, the album is a natural progression for a group whose two prior records were each superb. But Lost In the Dream changes the equation and ups the ante for The War On Drugs. The ten songs on this album are each microcosms of the work as a whole — the struggles and doubts of a man in his mid-30s grappling with passage of youth and the inevitable approach of middle age — each set to haunting and evocative melodies that echo in the ear even after moving on to the next track. The stories of Adam’s obsessions with the minutiae of the production of this albums have all been told. The man truly suffers for his art. But ultimately the musicianship finds itself equal to the songcraft. Lost is the first War On Drugs album where the songs are given a chance to breath and step outside themselves to reach remarkable crescendos. The lazy term would be that the songs “jam”, but these aren’t improvisations instead rather meticulously crafted passages. For instance, “Eyes To The Wind” hits its peak with a screaming guitar solo that segues to sax and then piano and back to guitar seamlessly and almost without the listener recognizing the lead change.

For the band’s current tour, Adam has assembled the core band but has added two ringers, multi-instrumentalists John Natchez and Anthony LeMarca. We attended the Bowery Ballroom shows on Wednesday and Thursday and if the album truly deserves the superlatives so in fact does the live show. On Wednesday, The War On Drugs worked through the entire Lost In The Dream (minus one instrumental track) and selected classic material in a 100-minute set that was stunning in its ability to not only capture the magic of Lost but expand upon its instrumental passages. We have never seen Adam more confident and in charge and on stage the band’s mood appeared both celebratory and all-business. There was even a champagne bottle poured into cups on stage on Wednesday. But if there is any sadness in this band’s triumph, its that this is almost certainly the last time The War On Drugs will play a room the size of Bowery Ballroom. Given how quickly and thoroughly the three NYC shows sold out, the band could have played five local shows without an empty seat. As the tour continues West and then ultimately moves to Europe, we expect that The War On Drugs will return to NYC in the Fall.

I recorded this set in our usual manner in this venue – Sennheiser cards mounted in the balcony and mixed with an excellent board feed, this time mixed by the band’s FOH C. Laszlo Koltay to perfection. The sound quality is superb. Enjoy!

Stream “Eyes To The Wind”:

Stream “Suffering”:

Download the Complete Show [MP3] / [FLAC]

Note: All of the material on this site is offered with artist permission, free to fans, at our expense. The only thing we ask is that you download the material directly from this site, rather than re-posting the direct links or the files on other sites without our permission. Please respect our request.

The War On Drugs
Bowery Ballroom
New York, NY

Digital Master Recording
Soundboard + Audience Matrix

Soundboard [engineer C. Laszlo Koltay] + Sennheiser MKH-8040s > Edirol R-44 (Oade Mod) > 2 x 24bit 48kHz wav files > Soundforge (level adjustments, mixdown, set fades) > CDWave 1.95 (tracking) > TLH > flac (320 MP3 and tagging via Foobar)

Recorded and Produced
by nyctaper

[Total Time 1:39:47]
01 In Reverse
02 Baby Missiles
03 Under The Pressure
04 Suffering
05 [banter – Sore Eros]
06 Eyes To The Wind
07 [banter – dad]
08 An Ocean in Between the Waves
09 Disappearing
10 Red Eyes
11 [band introductions]
12 Brothers
13 Burning
14 Lost In The Dream
15 Comin Through
16 I Was There
17 Come To The City
18 Black Water Falls

If you download this recording from NYCTaper, we expect that you will PLEASE SUPPORT The War On Drugs, visit their website, and purchase Lost In The Dream from Secretly Canadian Records [HERE]. Seriously, if you don’t already own this album, do yourself a favor and buy it.


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