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Can your heart take this? Are you ready? Plans marks Death Cab for Cutie's major label debut. 11-tracks of pure indie pop that will further prove that Ben Gibbard and crew just can't do wrong. Atlantic. 2005.
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|Audio CD Release Date:||August 30, 2005|
|Studio:||Atlantic / Wea|
|Number Of Discs:||1|
|Average Customer Rating:|| based on 316 reviews|
|1. ||Marching Bands Of Manhattan|
|2. ||Soul Meets Baby|
|3. ||Summer Skin|
|4. ||Different Names For The Same Thing|
|5. ||I Will Follow You Into The Dark|
|6. ||Your Heart Is An Empty Room|
|7. ||Someday You Will Be Loved|
|8. ||Crooked Teeth|
|9. ||What Sarah Said|
|10. ||Brothers on a Hotel Bed|
|11. ||Stable Song|
DEATH CAB FOR CUTIE PLANS
|Average Customer Review: ( 316 customer reviews )
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
99 of 105 found the following review helpful:
I Will Follow You Into The Dark Jan 25, 2006
By Trevor Seigler
Normally I try to avoid the hype machine that surrounds a band referenced or namechecked on "The OC" or some other blisteringly popular and annoying teen show. But something about the first single off Death Cab for Cutie's album "Plans" spoke to me in a way that nothing on the radio has in quite a while. So I picked up the album (keeping in mind that they were supposedly "Seth Cohen's favorite band" and not hold it against them). I can say I was pleasantly surprised.
I'm not going to pretend that I know the history of DCFC or their indie-rock roots. This is their major-label debut, and it's pleasantly against what you'd normally expect from a legendary cult band trying to achieve pop immortality on their very first major record. The album starts quietly, and ends quietly. In between, there are a lot of quiet songs.
A snoozefest, right? Not so.
The best tracks, besides "Soul Meets Body" are Summer Skin, I Will Follow You Into The Dark (an aching acoustic ballad that makes the listener weep), Crooked Teeth, What Sarah Said...really, the entire album lives up to the heady expectations that some will bring to it. It's not for everyone per se, but it has certainly had an effect on me.
Again, I'm new to the whole DCFC mythology and mythios. But I know great music when I hear it, and you can't do much better than "Plans". Nevermind the hype, this is the real deal.
57 of 61 found the following review helpful:
Beautifully and classically constructed tour de force Nov 13, 2006
By Eddie Konczal
Every talented, original, innovative band that achieves success over a number of years inevitably reaches the point where a significant part of its fan base accuses the band of "selling out." This usually occurs when one or more of the following happens:
-the band receives major label backing
-the band gets a new producer and/or access to state-of the art production facilities
-the band members make a great leap forward in terms of musicianship and/or songwriting
-the band achieves commercial success and/or critical acclaim
For Death Cab for Cutie, all of the above occurred with "Plans." Studio gloss has sanded off Death Cab's rough edges, their songs have become tighter and more ambitious, and they have achieved nearly household name status. So naturally, their diehard fans who stuck with them through the lo-fi indie years have accused them of selling out.
While some call it "selling out," I call it "getting better." I have heard, and quite like, Death Cab's earlier work, particularly "We Have the Facts and We're Voting Yes" and "Transatlanticism." "Plans" does for Death Cab what "OK Computer" did for Radiohead: it marks their great leap from rock's best-kept secret to a band that's finally achieving the success they deserve through hard work and persistent innovation.
I began listening to "Plans" at the same time I was studying Baroque music at Rutgers. I was quite astonished at how classically constructed Death Cab's songs are. I won't elevate Ben Gibbard and company to Bach's level just yet, but many of their songs - particularly "Marching Bands of Manhattan" and "What Sarah Said" - exhibit the "motoric rhythm" found in Bach's concertos. These songs drive forward with active bass lines, articulate drumming and intertwining keyboard and guitar ostinatos. Also found in Death Cab's work are terraced dynamics - changes in volume level caused by instruments entering and exiting. A harmonic nod to early music is suggested by "Someday You Will Be Loved," with shifting dominant chord relationships found in Renaissance and Baroque dance music. I don't know if Death Cab for Cutie studied music history, but they have clearly evolved from songwriters into composers, and the result is extremely satisfying on a visceral level.
"Plans" is quite possibly the best rock album of 2005, and I believe its reputation will only grow with time. Death Cab diehards, don't begrudge the band's well-deserved success. Embrace it, and satisfy yourself with the knowledge that you recognized their greatness before the masses did.
166 of 195 found the following review helpful:
Plans expands on Postal Service Aug 30, 2005
By Matt Stephens
If you liked "Give Up" then buy this album immediately. If you think the move towards a more produced sound is going to piss you off, give you more major label woes, you might want to look elsewhere. I don't know, pick up an old Neutral Milk Hotel album and gripe about how everyone is selling out. Me, though, I think this is their best album in a few years. They didn't lose any edge when they jumped onto the label, they just got a better studio for Chris Walla to work his magic. My recommendation? Buy the album. Then again, I just like music, and if I can hear it better, more crisp, more produced, and hence, a better listen? All the better. As long as Atlantic doesn't try to change the whole thing Death Cab has going for them in their sound, then they're still one of the best groups around.
7 of 7 found the following review helpful:
Plan on Buying It! Feb 27, 2006
Death Cab for Cutie's Plans is an important album in their career in two ways: the first being that it is their first album on a major label and its the first album they have released since Gibbard finished his work with his side project, The Postal Service. The first plus that this CD has to offer is that long time DCfC fans will not be disappointed, the record label changed but the music did not. The band is simply doing the same type of music that they did before, they have not sold out and gone commercial to appeal to the masses. The band produces solid, deep and mature music that washes over the listener over and over again. Gibbard's lyrics are as powerful as ever. His rhyming differs from the norm and the images he evokes are extremely powerful (my personal favorite being on the first cut where he wishes to open his mouth wide enough for a marching band to march out and call out the name of a far away loved one). The lyrics stand alone as poetry without the music, and the music justly complements the beautiful words Gibbard has written. As a follow up from the Postal Service, much of the musical writing relies far more on intricate interwoven textures than it does on swelling guitar chords. Sometimes the music even takes on the persona of Postal Service-esque electro-pop. The most song that has this element the strongest is "Soul Meets Body." It's quite interesting to hear a electronica inspired groove played on live instruments with a band. The best of many worlds have been incorporated with this album making another very strong release for Death Cab for Cutie.
7 of 7 found the following review helpful:
Fitting Follow Up to 'Trans' Feb 04, 2006
Plans is probably the first time in a very long time that a band has been able to pull off another consistent, fine album after hopping to a mainstream label. We should all be thanking somebody for getting it right.
First -- Since the favorite topic of review here seems to be 'Plans vs. Transatlanticism', I will only say this, DCFC has done the right thing by writing an album that doesn't even attempt to follow in its footsteps -- and although it would have been nice to hear a little more heavier guitar work, its absence on this album is more fitting than audacious. I'm rather suprised that Atlantic didn't persuade these guys to delve deeper into the same pattern that eventually resulted in Trans., and it has definately worked out for the better.
Second -- "Sold Out" is clearly missing from DCFC's vocabulary. Not too long ago, all of us were [mostly] sickened and disheartened to see that they gained a little more attention from The OC...I can now say (being that it's been a considerable amount of time since they've made that appearance), that it didn't damage nor catapult their career. What's most appreciative is that they're also not riding on that mainstream exposure to the bank. All in all, DCFC is doing a pretty good job flying under the radar despite network TV references and album plugs.
So alright, with all that said, 'Plans' is both impressive and lacklustre, but there is a considerable balance between the two, and that is where we find the album to be more promising than deteriorating.
'Marching Bands of Manhattan', 'Soul Meets Body', 'Summer Skin', 'Different Names For The Same Thing', 'Brothers On A Hotel Bed' and 'Your Heart Is An Empty Room' embody a good chunk of what makes 'Plans' above average. If anything, I'm sure old and new fans alike will find something worth hearing.
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