Monday, January 17, 2005

Song of the Week 1/14/05

Death Cab For Cutie - "The New Year"

I arrived at the Death Cab party incredibly late. It wasn't until mid-2004 that I actually listened intently to the copy of The Postal Service album Give Up that my friend Mike copied for me. That Friday night at my desk I was capitivated by the singer's voice. That singer is, of course, Ben Gibbard, who is the singer-guitarist for Death Cab. I saw the group open for Pearl Jam on the Vote For Change tour in October 2004, and was rather impressed by their set. However, I still wasn't impressed enough to buy any of their albums. That changed the Tuesday after Christmas while I was killing time before going to visit a friend who works at a popular East Village bar in Manhattan. I stopped in this very tiny record store on Avenue A, and while leafing through the used section I came upon the most recent Death Cab album, Transatlanticism. Seven bucks seemed like a fair price to pay, and the next day I discovered that this Gibbard guy is damn talented, whether he's fronting a electronic duo and a standard four piece rock band. "The New Year" is the lead-off track on Transatlanticism, and that song became a the lead-off track on a New Year's day mix I made for the bar. That mix has become quite popular, and "The New Year" has come on the bar's stereo almost every night I've been there the past two weeks. It clinched Song of the Week honors once I heard it Saturday night on Vin Scelsa's Idiot's Delight on WFUV. Scelsa made a little speech that touched upon my exact thoughts about this song--even if you think you're turning on people to lots of new music, there's never enough time to discover everything, and each new year brings more that you don't know. The title of my New Year mix summed it up: Brand New Year, Same Old Trouble. As do thse opening lyrics:

"So this is the new year and I don't feel any different."
(c) 2003 Death Cab for Cutie

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