Music Millennium



Format: CD
Label: BARS
Catalog: 31028
Rel. Date: 10/22/2002
UPC: 655173102824

You Can Play These Songs With Chords
Artist: Death Cab for Cutie
Format: CD
New: In Stock $13.99

Formats and Editions


''You Can Play These Songs with Chords'' (1997) is the first release from the Indie rock band Death Cab for Cutie, which at the time consisted entirely of founder Ben Gibbard. This album was originally released on cassette, and it proved so popular, Gibbard decided to recruit other members to make a full band, which would go on to record ''Something About Airplanes''.

''You Can Play These Songs with Chords'' was expanded with ten more songs and re-released on October 22, 2002, through Barsuk Records on the heels of the success of ''The Photo Album''. - Wikipedia

Barsuk finally got around to issuing a CD release of the impossibly-rare cassette-onlydebut "album" Death Cab for Cutie, released on little label Elsinorin 1997. For the majority who've never heard this, they might harbor thesuspicion that the label is merely trying to milk a bursting cash cow—afterall, the band moved an indie impressive 50,000 copies of their third and latestLP, The Photo Album, so demand has never been higher. But those who'dheard this material always knew it was a valuable piece of the DCfC canon, nota mere historical artifact. Besides, this reissue is done right: the LP'slength is doubled by adding 10 mostly excellent bonus tracks, culled from sevenunreleased recordings—four even predating the You Can Play These SongsWith Chords sessions.

The first eight songs, though, are the original You Can Play, which wastechnically recorded before DCfC even existed, as its lone original members,singer/guitarist Ben Gibbard, and his friend, guitarist Chris Walla, workedalone on the latter's new eight-track recorder in their home Bellingham,Washington, near the Canadian border. The results were so striking that theynot only released the aforementioned cassette LP, but it also inspired theirrelocation to Seattle and the formation of the regular quartet we recognizetoday, one new drummer later.

And though in his comments here, Gibbard condemns the lyrics he wrote when hewas 19—they're not that bad—he and Walla were clearly on to something.Consider a more crashing Death Cab, louder, clunkier, heavier, and more ingenuous.Heck, this is worth it for the loopy keyboard and darting guitar opener, "Presidentof What?" It's not as mannered as, say, some modern Cab fare, butit's every bit as dogged emotionally and full of their trademark buildingbits. So now that you have the facts, you can go ahead and vote "yes"for this revamped and augmented release as—along with their three LPs since—anessential part of their catalog.
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