Day 248: The War on Drugs – Wagonwheel Blues

3 Nov

Taking the Farm

With a band name like “The War on Drugs,” I was expecting yet another conventional bleepy-bloop-core indie band in the vein of Strfkr or Neon Indian. I was only partially right in my assumption; what I actually got was a very strange hybrid of indie pop and Dylan-esque folk music.  While the inventiveness cannot be denied, its listenability most definitely can.

The War on Drugs was doomed to fail as soon as I pressed play.  I’m not the biggest fan of Bob Dylan, so I’m definitely not going to be a fan of what appears to be a completely irony-free (terrible) impersonation of the man.  Additionally, there has been a fair share of indie rock trashing going down on this website as of late, so another 45-minute robo-guitar collaboration was not exactly what I needed to hear.

Also, I’m not a fan of terrible album covers. Usually the first thing seen before listening to a new record, I feel that the cover’s importance is often ignored.  If an album has a cover that looks like ones that I’ve already seen quite a few times in my life, I’m naturally going to assume that the music within the album lacks creativity as well.  Ironically, the opposite is true here, but with their painful combination of bad folk and bad/often-generic indie pop, The War on Drugs shows that creativity is not always a good thing.  There’s just some music that does not need to be made, and Wagonwheel Blues’ existence is hard to justify.


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