Codes and Keys

Death Cab for Cutie

Codes and Keys

Atlantic Records

Death Cab for Cutie has long been a staple member of my list of favorite musicians.  Ever since their kick-ass Transatlanticism I’ve pretty much loved these guys.  Death Cab is a band that takes their dear time between each release, perfecting every song in both production and melody until it hits their own high standards.  But when I opened Codes and Keys it seems to be lacking that mode of authenticity that so permeated all of their earliest releases.  Don’t misunderstand what I’m saying though, this is an excellent album and any lover of Death Cab won’t be disappointed.  It  just feels a little bit more sold-out and a little less real.  But what I do appreciate about these giants newest release is this new welcome direction.  Moving away from the heavy, guitar driven stylings of Narrow Stairs, the band has shifted their focus to a softer, piano driven sound.  A sound that bears a striking (in a good way) reference to Brian Eno’s greatest.  Codes and Keys is still certainly classic Death Cab, but this new twist shows an expansion in influence and experimentation for a band that has gotten far too close to becoming stale.  But now I have to go back to what I opened with, I am for the most part unimpressed with Codes and Keys.  As a self-proclaimed pop-music aficionado, I miss their sing-along songs and catchy melodies.  But hey, don’t let me turn you away.  If you like Death Cab for Cutie, you will like Codes and Keys.

Released:  5/31/2011


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