The War On Drugs have announced Live Drugs. The Live album will come out on November 20th via Super High Quality Records, bandleader Adam Granduciel’s own record label. The full-length is a collection of tracks from 40 hard drives of recorded live shows spread out across years of touring behind multiple albums. It’s the first volume to capture the band’s live interpretations and a document showcasing the evolution of the band’s live show over the years. It’s also a portrait of the enduring relationship between Granduciel and co-producer Dominic East, a longtime friend, guitar tech and stage manager. Ahead of the album’s release they have shared the song “Pain (Live),”
The album is designed to reflect how a typical 70-minute show would flow. It thrives on live set staples immortalized on record for the first time and illustrates how years of live performance nurtures an evolution of the songs. This includes “Buenos Aires Beach” from the band’s 2008 full-length debut, Wagonwheel Blues, and a cover of Warren Zevon’s “Accidentally like a Martyr.” An early live version of A Deeper Understanding’s “Strangest Thing” feels joyfully loose; Granduciel fell in love with this version while going through the recordings with mental notes of memorable shows.
“As a band leader, I always want to know where a song can go,” Granduciel explains. “Even though we’ve recorded it, mastered it, put it out, and been touring on it, it doesn’t mean that we just have to do it the same way forever.” And in that way, LIVE DRUGS is a freeing moment for the band. Now finally captured, these live iterations of the songs feel recontextualized, and subsequently less precious. “It feels like it’s kind of a reset, to be able to put something out that’s a really good interpretation of the way we interpret our music live. Even though this recording is from a year of tours, this is really how these six guys evolved as a band from 2014 to 2019.”
Over the last six months, The War On Drugs have been laying low — working in the studio on a new album, remixing The Rolling Stones “Scarlett,” and recording exclusive performances for various non-profit groups, including Vote Ready for voter registration, Love From Philly benefitting Philadelphia’s arts community and Tzedek DC supporting legal rights of low-income DC residents.
The War On Drugs
1. An Ocean Between The Waves (Live)
2. Pain (Live)
3. Strangest Thing (Live)
4. Red Eyes (Live)
5. Thinking Of A Place (Live)
6. Buenos Aires Beach (Live)
7. Accidentally Like a Martyr (Live)
8. Eyes to the Wind (Live)
9. Under the Pressure (Live)
10. In Reverse (Live)
pre-order Live Drugs here