Death Cab for Cutie - The Blue EP

Death Cab for Cutie
The Blue EP

I wanted to start this review by saying "Death Cab are back". It seems like the thing to say when a band you have loved for years comes back with a roaring thunder. That was going to be my direction for this review, but then I remembered they never really left. Sure we are years away from their biggest glory days; the days when I would listen to them for hours and hang on every word Ben iIbbard said. He was speaking to me, saying what I was feeling and wrapping it up in this wonderful sound. While Codes and Keys and Kintsugi weren't all time records, they still had a number of hits to hang on to. Their most recent release Thank You For Today found the band finally at their best, recapturing that old magic for a new generation of listeniers. Maybe it just takes some time for things to come back around, but they are following up the success of Thank You For Today with this companion EP The Blue. This record is deeper than the previous, less jublient moments and more introspection. Single "Kids in '99" feels like it should be about 90s nostalgia, but instead it tells the story of the kids who didn't make it past 99, and sort of exist forever in limbo. There is a lot more doom and gloom on this album, which is Death Cab's sweet spot even if their more invigorating tunes have felt more alive as of late.

As a companion this EP works even better than it does as a stand alone. "Before the Bombs" has this highly affected guitar coupled with Ben's often deadpan voice adding this huge sense of dread and instability. This album burns with a constant slow smolder only occasionally allowing that full release to come screaming through. Death Cab feel so much more confident now. For years it seemed like they were chasing former glory, or trying to hard to be relevant. Now older and wiser their sound has followed suit. The Blue is a great continuation of this trend for the band and I can't wait to see where they take it next.

8.5 out of 10


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