Sunday, October 24, 2010
cd sunday: the postal service's give up
and so we reach the end. way back in june i embarked on a quest to share with you my favorite twenty albums. i hope you've enjoyed the journey as much as i have. it was tough to select just twenty, and made me realize how diverse my collection is - and the way that my collection has changed over the years.
today's final album is by the postal service - a side project of ben gibbard, lead singer of the band death cab for cutie. this album is quirky - part indie rock, part electronica, part ear candy pop. some songs are familiar - you might recognize "such great heights" as the song was featured in us postal service commercials as part of a name copyright settlement, and was covered by the band iron and wine and featured in the indie film garden state.
but the album has even more than that. some of it is melodic enough to be a lullaby (such as "homage" or "see the light"), while others are uptempo enough to be featured in a play-list for the gym workout.
i cannot remember who introduced me to this album. it came out while i was in college but i didn't have it during my semester in south africa which occurred at the end of that year (i know this because my cd folder was stolen on that trip, containing hundreds of cds - many in my current collection of around 400 albums are actually burned copies because of this unfortunate incident, give up is not one of them, which means it was not on the trip). it certainly wasn't very early. in some kind of odd twist, it made me much more curious about death cab for cutie - i'm not sure how often a side project ends up making people interested in the main event, but that is what happened for me.
so why the photo of the capitol building? well the opening track always makes me think of washington with the repetitive line from the chorus, "d.c. sleeps, alone tonight".
it is a brilliant album and i'm baffled as to why a follow-up never came forth. maybe someday my fellow ben will get around to it.
and so, here is the final list. my twenty favorite albums, in no particular order...
1. u2 - the joshua tree
2. dave matthews band - crash
3. cake - comfort eagle
4. blue rodeo - five days in july
5. the beach boys - pet sounds
6. coldplay - viva la vida
7. weezer - pinkerton
8. mates of state - re-arrange us
9. radiohead - ok computer
10. nickel creek - this side
11. u2 - how to dismantle an atomic bomb
12. the beatles - the white album
13. sloan - one chord to another
14. o.a.r. - risen
15. paul simon - graceland
16. jack johnson - brushfire fairytales
17. led zeppelin - iv
18. belle & sebastian - the life pursuit
19. sara watkins - sara watkins
20. the postal service - give up