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Hail the Cab

Aug 08, 2011 11:47PM ● By Anonymous


I do love Ben Gibbard--"The District Sleeps Alone Tonight" by the Postal Service is one of my favorite songs. But for some reason, Death Cab has never really done it for me. I think it's the combination of harder guitars with the nasal tone of Gibbard's voice. That being said, I'm glad I wound up going to their concert.

The boys from Seattle opened their 23 song set with "I Will Possess Your Heart," followed by "Crooked Teeth." And, although the songs aren't on my iPod, it was weirdly cool from an "I've heard these on the radio a bazillion times" sort of perspective. I clapped and cheered just like the rest of the audience. Gradually, I found myself getting pulled into their performance.

Sometimes, bands just phone it in. To their credit, Death Cab absolutely wasn't one of them. Despite Gibbard's frequent references to the sweltering heat (it was pretty awful), they never let up. Each member was a standing pile of sweat before the night was out. At one point, Gibbard's chin-length hair was so soaked that it stuck to his forehead in chunks. I thought he was wearing a headband for a second.

And, even though they just released Codes and Keys in May, the alt rockers made sure to play all the old fan favorites. "Soul Meets Body," "Summer Skin," "The Sound of Settling"--they got 'em all, finishing the night up with "Transatlanticism." Check out the full set list here.

During "We Looked Like Giants," Gibbard joined drummer Jason McGerr for a spectacularly syncopated and rhythmic bridge. It was super cool.

My favorite part of the show, though, was when Gibbard stepped on stage with his acoustic guitar, and started "I Will Follow You Into the Dark." I thought they'd save it for the encore. Instead, it came in at number ten on the set list.

The song itself wasn't the awesome part. I mean, we all knew it was going to happen. It was the fact that the crowd joined in that pushed it over the top. Sure, people sing along with songs at concerts, but during "I Will Follow You Into the Dark," it seemed like everyone was letting loose. Even half-hearted fans like myself knew all the words. The song's quiet tones made it all the more powerful--voices just poured out of every corner of the pavilion.

Overall, I had a really good time. It sounds banal, but there's nothing that sums it up quite so perfectly. I don't know if I'll go home and buy every album, but for one night, Death Cab for Cutie shattered my music snobbery.