May 29, 2008

Narrow Stairs

Artist: Death Cab for Cutie
Release Date: May 13, 2008
Favorite Lyric(s): "You can do better than me but I can’t do better than you"

Thoughts: In my opinion, Death Cab has so many albums that its hard for them to deviate from their "sound" and still be original anymore. Yet, they manage it. The first thing I noticed when I listened to this album was that there was a kick to it. It's less pop than Plans, but more edgy than Transatlanticism. The record truly is diverse. From the driving Long Division to a slower Talking Bird, each song is different from the last. Listen for the stand out tympani in You Can Do Better Than Me and the talba in Pity and Fear.

I also noticed that more of the songs build to a climax. Obviously the first single I will Possess Your Heart is no exception. Clocking in at just over eight and a half minutes, it is the longest song on the album. The iTunes version also has the radio edit version, for those of you who don't like to wait through a four and a half minute intro. The digital version also comes with two videos, which are worth a watch for hardcore Ben Gibbard fans (video link).

Overall, I like it. A few of the songs sound a little familiar, but the contrast of the rest of the album keeps it fresh. My favorite part is the exit of You Can Do Better Than Me into the beginning of Grapevine Fires. That last daunting chorus fading triplets on the hi-hat, it just makes me smile.

Bottom Line: 88 / 100

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