This past Friday, as the evening approached and the week’s end commenced, a buzz surrounded Johnny Brenda’s unannounced show, which hung in the balance as a wildcard. And as time moved forward, word came out that the unnamed act would be The War on Drugs, and there was much rejoicing.
The crowd filed into the friendly confines on the corner of Frankford and Girard with an atmosphere of excitement, and they were not disappointed. With a set heavily weighted upon songs from their latest album Lost in a Dream, including the set opener “Burning,” they sweetened the surprise treat even more with former War on Drugs member Kurt Vile lending his axe wizardry throughout the set, elevating celestial songs like “Arms Like Boulders” and “Eyes to the Wind.” Clicking on all cylinders, the audience was naturally caught up in their hazily powerful set, initially and appropriately concluding with “Lost in a Dream.”
This memorable blur of a night was capped off by an encore, where Vile reemerged joining the Granduciel-led crew on the apropos “Brothers,” accenting why Philly is such a great music town. (Photo by Nikki Volpicelli) - Michael Colavita