Tag Archives: David Hartley


The War on Drugs – Terminal 5 – September 19, 2017

September 20th, 2017

(Try to Grow a Pair of tickets to Friday’s sold-out War on Drugs show at SummerStage.)

Photos courtesy of Gregg Greenwood | gregggreenwood.com


Grow a Pair: Win Free Tickets to See the War on Drugs on 9/22

September 19th, 2017


Touring behind their standout fourth studio album, A Deeper Understanding, the War on Drugs land in New York City this week for two shows. A few tickets still remain to see them tonight at Terminal 5, but their show on Friday at SummerStage is already sold out. But the good news is that The House List is giving away two tickets to see them in Central Park. Want to go? Try to Grow a Pair. It’s easy. Just fill out the form below, making sure to include your full name, e-mail address, which show you’re trying to win tickets to (War on Drugs, 9/22) and a brief message explaining your favorite tune on the new LP. Eddie Bruiser, who’s been listening to it on a loop, will notify the winner by Friday. Good luck.

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A Double Dose of the War on Drugs in New York City Next Week

September 15th, 2017

Philadelphia’s the War on Drugs craft songs with momentum. The synths underlying “Holding On” (above, performed live on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert), off their latest release, A Deeper Understanding (stream it below), chug along like a runaway train. Over the band’s four full-length albums, songwriter Adam Granduciel and Co. have fine-tuned what was already a well-oiled machine right out of the gates. They enlisted the production help of L.A. engineer Shawn Everett, known for his work on the Alabama Shakes’ masterful Sound & Color, for their first major-label record. A Deeper Understanding takes the War on Drugs’ signature expansive sound and pushes it, well, deeper into new terrains. On “Nothing to Find,” the beats plow through gorgeous swirling soundscapes of analog synths, and Granduciel’s vocals at the end sound like he’s howling into a massive canyon the song’s just blown into the earth. The War on Drugs’ music feels both large and personal, with softer numbers still showcasing a tenderness that sounds just as grandiose. The album’s gorgeously produced, and any little snippet of its soundscapes risks working its way into your head and never leaving. As their sound has grown bigger, so too has the group’s following, snowballing off the success of 2014’s much-acclaimed Lost in the Dream (stream it below). One album later and the New Yorker is ready to propose that they’re rock’s next torchbearers. The War on Drugs will make their case and then some when they return to New York City next week to play Terminal 5 on Tuesday and SummerStage on Friday. —Dan Rickershauser | @D4nRicks


The War on Drugs – Radio City Music Hall – October 8, 2015

October 9th, 2015

The War on Drugs - Radio City Music Hall - October 8, 2015

Photos courtesy of Charles Steinberg | charlesosteinberg.com


The War on Drugs Provide Easter Treats

April 9th, 2012

The War on Drugs – The Bowery Ballroom – April 9, 2012

I’m guessing it’s not easy to sell out a show on Easter Sunday, but Philly’s the War on Drugs did just that and gave the Bowery Ballroom audience a basketful of treats in the process. Opening with “Arms Like Boulders” off 2008’s Wagonwheel Blues, Adam Granduciel and the band showed the tightness of a group that claimed to have been on an eight-month multicontinental tour. Early on it was David Hartley’s tumbling, deep-throated bass that supplied the bounce to Granduciel’s troubadour lyrics and vocals. But the band proved to be a musical Easter egg and cracked open its songwriter shell to reveal, gooey, psychedelic stretches, with resonating guitar and Day-Glo jams.

Appropriate for the holiday weekend, the band was in a friendly mood, dedicating several songs to friends and members of the audience, including “Comin’ Through” to Dan “NYC Taper” Lynch, recording up in the balcony. Here, the lights went full-on psychedelic pastel, with the War on Drugs playing from inside an Easter egg as the guitar reverberated into the room. From there, things got impressively weirder, with songs melting into one another, echoing trumpets going intergalactic and the lights swirling into UFO shapes bounding behind the band. Later, they brought out friends Doug Keith and Jimmy Carbonetti of Caveman to beef up the big guitar jam in “Brothers.” Granduciel has a distinct guitar tone with gnarled toeholds that help his solos climb otherwise unwieldy mountains.

As the set wore on, the music seemed to get louder and more intense, but the sound in the room was perfectly balanced and crisp throughout, allowing each nuance of the full-band jams—and they were certainly jamming at this point—to be digested. The lone cover of the night saw a switch to 12-string acoustic, which brought a hypnotic dream-like quality to the Waterboys“A Pagan Place.” The set ended appropriately with a big psych jam, heavy with drums, double keyboards, looping guitar and feedback all ensconced in rainbow lights, like an overturned Easter basket of sound. Like the show itself, the three-song encore started as a perfectly formed chocolate bunny, but the band nibbled at it until it became a surrealistic, unrecognizable, truly delicious mass of sound. And the closing number, “It’s Your Destiny,” built into an awe-inspiring outer-space free-for-all. —A. Stein