Review Summary: This is pretty good for the most part, but is inconsistent, and frankly, is a throwaway release just for fanboys waiting for the next Death Cab.
I’m trying to write this review, but I can’t think of a god damn thing for the introduction. Nope, nada, not a damn thing, so you know what? I am just going to blabber on until I find something that will introduce me to The Open Door EP
, and hey, then I can get this hunk of junk done. Oh wait, this little tidbit just managed to get the album name spat out, so might as well introduce what I know here. Well okay, one tidbit you should know about this EP is that, for one thing, it seems a bit oddly released, like there’s no purpose for its release. It’s not anything new for Death Cab, there’s no change in ideas, they are going in the same syrupy pop direction of the least ambitious songs on Narrow Stairs
, which is sometimes a good thing, because at least we are getting really boring songs like “Pity and Fear” and “You Can Do Better Than Me”, but also terri-bad because we are losing songs like the magnificent opener of “Bixby Canyon Bridge” or the purely awesome “I Will Possess Your Heart”.
However, this EP does have its good songs. The opener “Little Bribes” halts back to good old blues and a certain Beatles-esqe bounce. The song thrives on how simple it is, it doesn’t have the driving and thumping bass of most of the songs on recent Death Cab, but the band manages to work without it, making for an smooth, cool indie blues track. Despite this great opening, this little EP is plagued by filler material, in the form of the over-long, unforgettable “A Diamond and a Tether”. The song is a bit country-tinged, which is an interesting combination for Death Cab, but drags and drones on and on to the point of mass skippery. The EP never really recovers from this gigantic blunder, with the two following tracks being generic poppy Death Cab tracks, with absolutely drowning bass lines and semi-pleasant and easy going indie songwriting.
The EP ends off on a high note with “Talking Bird (Demo)”. The track is incredibly straight forward, and better than the original on the album Narrow Stairs
. The song is stripped from the grand, waltzing mannerisms of the album version, and instead, relies on simplicity of merely an ukulele and warming vocals of Ben Gibbard. And then that same fluttering ukulele flows seamlessly into silence, where it stops and this tiny, probably useless but none the less enjoyable EP ends. It’s got 2 excellent songs (the opener and the closer), two okay songs (the third and fourth song), and one really boring song (numbero dos). If you’re looking for some Transatlanticism material, then you’ll be incredibly disappointed, as usual. It’s really just as inconsistent as Death Cab’s last two albums have been, and if you like those albums, well, you’ll like this HIGHLY unnecessary EP.