This is a band I was a little late to get into, but they really are only the most important indie rock bands of the last few years. There’s not much bad I can say about this band, so I’ll just let you read for yourself about what this band does that moves me. enjoy the list, Thanks for reading!
10. GHOSTS OF BEVERLY DRIVE: KINTSUGI
By the time this record came out, the band had firmed their position as one of the biggest risk takers in modern indie rock, if you can even say DCFC is still Indie rock. Either way, “Ghosts'' has that familiar DC feeling to it, but the instrumentation is more kingly than many of their other tracks. For all intents and purposes, that musical element makes a nice contrast to the odd lyrical content of the song. Gibbard's lyrics have the tendency to be either very clear or very symbolic and metaphorical, with this song falling in the latter category. For all those previously stated reasons, “The Ghost of Beverly Drive'' opens our countdown at number ten.
9. BIXBY CANYON BRIDGE: NARROW STAIRS
The guitar part here twinkles and shines just like the stars do at night. Then the crunchy guitar section comes in and the song completely changes course. I’m not exactly sure what the song is about, but it’s pretty rocking and very out of the ordinary for this band. Again the lyrics are an added compliment to the music, with this track being more youthful and optimistic than some of the other selections on this list. As the song progresses we get thumping drums and soon the rest of the band follows along. It’s important to always try to push yourselves to try new things, and in this number, they succeed very easily.
8. CATH…: NARROW STAIRS
One of the best things about DCFC is their ability to make freeing and often reflective songs that are also really fun to sing along to. That’s what Cath is to me. It has many good elements working in unison, and while the lyrics aren’t exactly uplifting, it’s still a fun song to listen and dance to while you hold your partner close. The drums are clutch here, as they literally guide the song from one section to the next. The imagery is again expertly painted lyrically by Gibbard, but really the song is more interesting from a musical standpoint rather than a lyrical one.
7. BLACK SUN: KINTSUGI
I’ve always felt like this was an exploration of songwriting after Gibbard's divorce, and the more I think of the lyrics the more relevant it seems. Once strong emotions now torn and ravaged by sadness and finality are presented casually but sullenly during the duration of “Black Sun.” Signs of a tainted conclusion are littered through the song, but it’s the voice of Gibbard that makes you feel as though you can get through it. “Black Sun” paints a picture we all know, of the difficulty of partners who aren’t really in it for the unit as much as they are for themselves. It’s a sad song full of regret and sadness but in its pain it also shows us truths we’d rather not address until we have to.
6. CROOKED TEETH: PLANS
I just love the imagery they present us with. The tune itself is jolly and carefree, no real surprise there. While I do love the imagery, I’d be lying if I said I knew what the song was actually about. It’s pretty all over the place, but I like it. It’s an upbeat track that uses the band's whimsical effects to the benefit of the song and the lyrics. I feel the regret seeping through the song, but the lyrics are sung in a way that makes it seem less dark than it actually is. There might be people who hear this song and think its just your average indie song, which it might have been, but I argue the success of Death Cab makes it easier to refer to this song as average, simply because the groundwork laid out by the band sets the stage for many indie artists to follow their path.
5. THE SOUND OF SETTLING: TRANSATLANTICISM
Another good sing-along. To me this song is about not knowing where life is going to take you, and trying to just enjoy the ride and learn from everything you can. Like the song says, “ Old age is just around the bend.” I have known quite a few people in my brief time on earth who I’ve felt never truly lived. I’ve always felt sorry for the people who chose to live that way. The song reminds us to always live in the moment, and to experience life for all the treasures it holds.
4. I WILL POSSESS YOUR HEART: NARROW STAIRS
This album was the biggest departure from the bands earlier records, and brought about a more experimental sound for the band. That’s why this song makes the list. It works in regards to developing a new sound, but it also works with the older songs from the earlier records. The winding and meandering of the opening minutes set’s the stage for what becomes a pretty dark song, at least to me. At first I thought it was pretty romantic, but once I started to hear the lyrics, I’m now convinced it’s about a psychopath who can’t truly understand what love is, and how one day he get’s fed up with trying to get women to like him, and more than likely start’s kidnapping those same women and forces them to be involved with him.
3. WHAT SARAH SAID: PLANS
At number three, we have “What Sarah Said,” a song seeped in the heartbreaking traditions of the band and some if theur best songs, but it's also an interesting juxtaposition in how the track came to be. Many of Death Cab’s work because of their autobiographical nature, but ‘Sarah' comes straight from the mind of Gibbard. Which is to say none of this ever happened as it is presented. The song was inspired by Gibbard's brain as he thought about the loneliness and sadness that are often associated with hospitals and places of healing. In truth the song breaks the tension effortlessly, as the protagonist has one of the worst conversations you could ever have, all as he watches his loved one die. This is not a happy, well meaning song, but in its brutal reflection of death, you feel the strength of life and love. At number three, may i present to you “What Sarah Said
2. TRANSATLANTICISM: TRANSATLANTICISM
The opening lines of this song set the tone and high caliber for the rest of the remaining minutes. Ben Gibbard’s voice, soft and sweet, looks over a valley, and reminisces about the world coming to an end, or at least that’s what I like to imagine. The sky overlooking us is hazy, with mixtures of pink and purple. The waves are enveloping everything around us, and for a brief moment, we understand how meaningless we are in terms of the grand scheme of things. This song captivates the listener in a way many songs simply can’t. Death Cab has always had a way to move emotions and spirits in a small, restrained beauty, and this song is one of the best examples of the band gradually building and adding little things until all members of the band are not only sharing the load, they’re being rewarded for the struggles that make up the song.
1. I WILL FOLLOW YOU INTO THE DARK: PLANS
There are times in one’s life where nothing feels right, but for those times there are always songs that bring you a sense of closure and peace. This is that song for me. It could be about a romantic relationship, or a friendship that has weathered storms, or it could be about a family member who’s left your world to join the other. For me it’s a little bit of all three. I’m reminded how amazing it is to share your life with someone who understands you perfectly, and who will always be there. It’s also about the loss of my grandmother, who was a shining light in me for the first three decades of my life, who unfortunately had to exit this world. People come and go in life, in varying stages of importance, but for everyone who gives something to someone, you get value in love and meaningfful gifts in every day of life. “I Will Follow You Into The Dark” is a testament to the struggles of life and also to the joy in finding people who complete you and who will always take the leap and will happily follow you in the dark, hand in hand, just as they joined you.
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Landon Murray is a music connooisseur who craves sounds of all shapes and textures. He's seen over 2000 bands and looks forward to welcoming you into his world of sound,
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