Saturday, June 28, 2008

Death Cab for Cutie Narrow Stairs

Death Cab for Cutie
Narrow Stairs

Death Cab for Cutie had the all pressure of the indie world on its shoulders when it moved to a major label for its 2005 release, "Plans." The band rose to the challenge. The resulting record was both perfectly polished and beautifully intimate.

"Narrow Stairs" is the antithesis to "Plans." Loose and a bit rough around the edges, the new record feels much more organic than its immediate predecessor. This approach works well on the album opener "Bixby Canyon Bridge" and the eight-minute vamp "I Will Possess Your Heart." But the rest of the album just feels cheaply constructed.

Softer songs always work best for Ben Gibbard's shaky tenor and "Grapevine Fires" and "Your New Twin Sized bed" add some emotion to a surprisingly uninteresting outing. For the first time in their career, "Narrow Stairs" finds Death Cab just going through the motions.

Your New Twin Sized Bed [MP3] (via

Rating: 2.5 of 4
For Fans of: Pedro the Lion, Nada Surf, Postal Service


elasticwaistbandlady said...

This has been the season for new releases from established artists that are just plain "meh."

Coldplay's Viva La Vida bores me.
Aside from I Will Possess Your Heart so does the new Death Cab For Cutie. And Weezer's latest is truly awful.

I've replaced Coldplay with the newish UK band, ROYWORLD. They're fantastic!
Here, give them a try:

Ike said...

Spencer, I found your blog via your status update on facebook. Nice work. I'm going to add you to my blogroll if that's ok.

I have to somewhat agree with you on your analysis of the new Death Cab album. But I really like the album and would give it at least 3 stars. I listen to it and the songs are so different from one another that it seems like the album was made by 3 or 4 different bands. My wife and I do love "twin sized bed." I'm a sucker for sappy clever songs like that.

ps. Coming hopefully soon to youtube and my blog - "Rashed's Neighborhood" (if that's ok with you). Stay tuned!