Top Ten Songs by Death Cab for Cutie

Here are the Top Ten songs of the band from Bellingham, Washington.

10. Summer Skin (from the album “Plans”)

This is a terrifically mellow track from a group who knows exactly how to mellow you out. Bass-driven, this song lacks a major guitar influence, but in its place is the piano. Drummer Jason McGerr rolls the snare straight through, providing a perfect background for the ivory and bass. The lyrics are linear, sung in the same style from beginning to end. That may seem boring, but upon hearing the song you’ll realize it shouldn’t have been any other way.

9. I Was A Kaleidoscope (“The Photo Album”)

Lead singer Ben Gibbard sparkles here as a lyricist, as illustrated by the metaphoric title of the song. This really has a great feel to it. It’s almost three minutes long, but it feels like there’s enough material to make it a six minute long track.

8. Photobooth (“Forbidden Love EP”)

A fan favorite, this song starts off with a techno-like beat that carries on throughout. It’s one of the songs where within the first ten seconds you know you’ll be listening to it again, and soon. It’s got a peacefulness to it that puts the listener at ease, and that’s much to the credit of Gibbard and his vocal approach.

7. Title And Registration (“Transatlanticism”)

This is an acoustic track, but not your average strumming of the strings acoustic song. There is a constant tainted percussion in the background, while the forefront consists of guitarist Chris Walla’s finger picking. It’s a wonderful recipe for a unique and special acoustic track.

6. What Sarah Said (“Plans”)

This is about as solid as it gets musically. So many different aspects make up this superb track. It’s the way this band merges those aspects that makes it so special, with no better example then this song. This has a very sad pull with it; where halfway through the song it takes a somber tone. Gibbard then exclaims “So who’s gonna watch you die?” as the tracks winds down, almost symbolically.

5. Transatlanticism (“Transatlanticism”)

The title track from their final indie label LP, this is a very emotional song that anyone who ever missed or longed for someone can feel deep down inside. Standing at just about eight minutes long, this epic track steals your soul and places it right next to the person you love the most. From the moment you hear Gibbard say, with drums in toe, “I need you so much closer”, you know you’re sticking around for the full listen. This song has often stopped me in my tracks, as you have a tendency to melt into the music.

4. Company Calls Epilogue (“We Have The Facts And We’re Voting Yes”)

Stemming from Death Cab’s earlier days, this song is a nice, chill journey proving just how good this band has been for years. There’s nothing over the top here, nor is there anything particularly impressive, it’s just the mold that comes together at the end that is so soothing, you can’t help but love it.

3. A Lack Of Color (“Transatlanticism”)

Another acoustic track highlighting by the piano. Once again, Walla picks his way through beginning of the song, with Gibbard tickling the keys and providing lovely, innocent sounding vocals. What really makes this track so high on the list is the last half of the song, and the manner in which it takes on a whole new life. Gibbard’s lyrics hint at a depressed man giving in to the fact that he now realizes what he could’ve done to make a relationship work.

2. We Looked Like Giants (“Transatlanticism”)

One of the harder, faster paced Death Cab songs; this really illustrates how the band can just rock out whenever they want to. Terrific work again on the drums, as McGerr sets the table for the verses by accompanying the lyrics wonderfully. The track begins by easing in the music, almost saying “here we come”. On the tail end, there’s an interesting three minute long outro that isn’t without its character.

1. 405 (“We Have The Facts And We’re Voting Yes”)

This song has a relatively muted appeal to it. By this, I mean the band produced the song purposely altered, different than the normal clean songs you would hear on a CD. It’s a one of a kind track that really can’t be described by pointing at another. The tone Ben Gibbard provides for the vocals is perfectly fitting, as well as Nicholas Harmer’s distant bass track. Just an amazing song that can be listened to at any time no matter how you feel.

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