Fighting for Classic Rock with The War on Drugs

Classic-rock revivalists The War on Drugs have made a major breakthrough with their third album, "Lost in the Dream." Frontman Adam Granduciel offers up a playlist he'd spin at a dinner party.

Hey, this is Adam Granduciel from The War on Drugs. Our new album is on [the label] Secretly Canadian.

The Waterboys, “A Pagan Place”

I guess I’d start a dinner party with a song called “A Pagan Place” by The Waterboys. It’s from The Waterboys’ second record, early ’80s, ’83 or ’84. When we played the UK recently people were always comparing us to The Waterboys, and I’d heard a little bit of them years ago and never really caught on, so over the course of the last couple months I’ve been buying every Waterboys record when I see it.

They invented the term “the big sound” and that was what they categorized as this record and the one after it. Just the production was really, really big and I think a lot of bands around that time took cues from the way that those two Waterboys records sounded. It’s a gorgeous song. So maybe that would be something.¬†Definitely not for the end of the meal because that’s when you put on this other song I’m gonna say.


Blues Control, “Migration”

[It’s by] a band called Blues Control, and they have a couple records out. The one song that I always loved by them is called “Migration” and it’s from their self-titled LP And they’re an instrumental band. I don’t know if they’d be called instrumental or… “new age” is probably what they’d like to be called. I’ve taken cues from a lot of their stuff over the years.

There’s two people in the band: Leia, who plays piano, and Russ who plays the guitar and does all the cassette sampling. Running everything through amps, but it’s really pretty and really lush, and really thick. It’s got a lot of heart to it. At then end of the meal this is what comes on, and everyone lets the turkey sit in, and just lean back on the couch and maybe have a cigarette, or maybe make some tea or some coffee.

Roxy Music, “2HB”

And finally there’s a song from Roxy Music called “2HB,” which Bryan Ferry wrote for Humphrey Bogart.

Bryan Ferry and Humphrey Bogart do have similar personalities.¬† I think Bryan Ferry looked up Humphrey Bogart a lot, probably for his class — his general mystique.

This is probably the one actually at the end of the night, when everyone’s putting their coats on, when you’re helping your friends put their coats on. Maybe 45 minutes after Blues Control. Everyone’s finished their coffees, and wiped the cake off their face.

The War on Drugs, “Red Eyes”