Years ago, when I was still buying physical CDs (which I never thought would be a thing of the past), I had a special ritual every time I bought an album. I would sit on my bed, press play and just listen for the entirety of it, usually reading the lyrics in the CD booklet. Nowadays, the rare times that I buy a full album, I usually listen to it on my way to school, or during my day at home. It becomes background music and I find I forget to really listen.
When Death Cab for Cutie released their latest album came out on Tuesday (get it here), I listened to it on my way to school and back, and while I studied. Some things stuck, and others became background for my scattered thoughts. Yesterday, as I sat in bed at home with a sore throat and little to no voice, I thought back to my old ritual and decided to try it out again.
From the first track, it is distinctly Death Cab’s sound, however the more I listened, the more I realized that that was only the case because of Ben Gibbard’s unique voice. Though there are similarities in sound between their past albums, Kintsugi I find it is more like most of their previous albums in the sense that it is something completely new. “Good Help (Is So Hard to Find)” has the classic upbeat, perfect road trip vibe to it, while “You’ve Haunted Me All My Life” and “Hold No Guns” are the perfect acoustics which I am such a sucker for. I’m still not sure what my favourite is. It’s probably a tie between “Binary Sea” (acoustic guitar and piano? I’m smitten) and “Good Help” and “No Room In Frame” (that chorus gets me every time).
I knew I would love this album. I have loved DCFC for more than ten years, from Transatlanticism to the present, and everything in between (and before too). I really feel like, unlike many of the bands I listened to when I was 14 or 15, they have grown with me.