Concert Preview: Death Cab for Cutie at The Anthem DC 9/27

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Samantha Merar-Osborne

Death Cab for Cutie is an indie pop and rock group based out of Washington state, currently featuring members Ben Gibbard, Nick Harmer, Dave Depper, Zac Rae, and Jason McGerr. Using vocals, guitar, piano, bass, keyboards, and drums, Death Cab for Cutie has continued to make innovative music that skillfully combines upbeat indie pop with alternative rock for over two decades.

The band truly shot into the mainstream in 2005 following their release of the album Plans, which was laced with existentialist themes pondering death and love. Initially released as a single and then on Plans, Death Cab’s “I Will Follow You Into The Dark” remains the band’s best-selling single and the band’s most iconic anthem.

Death Cab for Cutie released their 10th and latest album, Asphalt Meadows, a mere 10 days ago on September 16, 2022. Asphalt Meadows features reflections of life during the pandemic, as well as themes around death and growing older. Songs like “I Don’t Know How I Survive” and “Roman Candles” feature heavy drums and buzzing guitar riffs, reflecting the band’s musical versatility and ability to produce both acoustic ballads and harder, borderline rock sound. 

Overall, the 42 minute, 11 track album is an energetic yet nostalgic listen that offers a fresh sound while still being reminiscent of the songs that made Death Cab for Cutie a household name. Throughout the album, the appearances of distorted guitar, spoken word, and soft keyboard work together musically to reflect feelings of anxiety, calm, and passing time experienced by many people throughout the pandemic and changing political sphere.

Death Cab for Cutie will be in Washington, DC alongside their opener, Thao, on September 27th at The Anthem, located at 901 Wharf St SW. Doors open at 8:00 pm and tickets are $55. There is currently no requirement to show proof of COVID-19 vaccination or wear a mask at the venue, however this could be subject to change based on local COVID trends. The show is open to all ages and those over 21 who plan on drinking alcohol will need to show a valid photo ID.


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