FunnyOrDie.com It's been 10 years since the Postal Service released their…
- Posted on Feb 28th 2011 3:47AM by Benjy Eisen
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That means that Gibbard performed his greatest hits, covered other people's hits, dusted off songs that should've been hits, and even brought out a surprise special guest. He also debuted several new tunes, including the title track from Death Cab for Cutie's upcoming album, 'Codes and Keys' -- which, incidentally, sounded exactly like a Death Cab for Cutie song. And while much of the evening did seem to focus on material from his main band, Gibbard broke out tracks from several of his lesser-heralded collaborations as well, including true gems from his respective partnerships with Jay Farrar (Son Volt) and Andrew Kenny (American Analog Set).
Perhaps the biggest surprise of the evening occurred when Gibbard welcomed alt-rock icon Bob Mould to the stage, nervously announcing him as a longtime hero. When Gibbard introduced their duet by saying, "We're gonna try a song that we rehearsed," Mould called him out, admitting to the audience that they've actually performed the track -- 'If I Can't Change Your Mind' from Mould's Sugar -- once before.
But Gibbard did treat the audience to a genuine first-time -- and apparently last-time -- cover, explaining that he performs solo acoustic shows so rarely, he likes to learn one-offs as a special bonus. When that prompted someone to yell out for Avril Lavigne's 'Complicated,' Gibbard shot it down: "No, I played that once already man, ten years ago," he said. "That's what happens when you play ironic covers ... I liked that song, I really did ... but I don't think that song's awesome anymore. I think this song's awesome." Hunched over a baby grand piano, Gibbard launched into a breathtaking version of Buck Owens' 'Love's Gonna Live Here.'
After reaching across Death Cab's hit parade -- from 'Title and Registration' to 'Soul Meets Body' -- Gibbard closed out his set with the crowd-pleasing 'Such Great Heights.' Ironically, the acoustic rendition mirrored Iron & Wine's version more than the arrangement that Gibbard originally wrote and recorded for Postal Service's near-legendary 'Give Up' album.
All in all, despite the very name of the festival (Noise Pop), closing it out with a solo acoustic set from Ben Gibbard proved genius. And, given the age of many in the audience, it also bodes well for future editions of the event.