Wednesday, June 25, 2008


Ben Gibbard isn't getting old at all. We went to see Death Cab For Cutie tonight at the SB Bowl, and they were so un-disappointing, nay terrific, that I felt a little bad for thinking Narrow Stairs is rather a valley amidst their consistent series of album-release peaks to date.

Secretly, I had feared they would only play the new album front-to-back and exit the stage leaving us sorely unsatisfied, glum, and willing to pathologically re-think all of our relationships since childhood and deem ourselves complete failures. Secretly, I wished Ben would consult me while putting together the set list for tonight, so that I could rescue the band from certain doom. ("Trust me, I know this SB crowd, and they're not going to want to get stoned while contemplating 'pity and fear.' They, like, wanna hear about glove compartments, bro.")

Lucky for me, I had no reason to worry. DCFC, as if reading my sentimental soul, took on all my favorites from the last six releases, plus they rocked out and made us very okay with Narrow Stairs (as if I needed help with that). I couldn't have crafted their set better myself--unless I made them play for another couple of hours. From Ben's acoustic "follow you into the dark" interlude, to the opener for Something About Airplanes, to "Manhattan" to what would have been my pick for the only friggin' way to end the show--the back-to-back encore "Tiny Vessels" bleeding into "Transatlanticism" (which, so you know, has positively nothing to do with the distance between California and Hawaii, and IS NOT even remotely an apt metaphor whatsoever for my impending trans-Pacific lifestyle move)--DCFC delivered the finest performance I could have custom-designed. Dangit, I sound like a fan. Wait, I am a fan. I bought a shirt. Does that mean I'm a fan? I have all their albums. Does that mean I'm a fan? I listen to them all the time. Does that mean....?

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