New Death Cab For Cutie – “I Was Once A Loyal Lover” (Stereogum Premiere)

It is Thursday, which means it is The Open Door’s Track 4 day. In announcing this new EP, Death Cab said these Narrow Stairs-session songs weren’t “castoffs,” but simply that they didn’t fit the mood and temperament of the LP’s 11-song set. True enough, the past three days have proven The Open Door’s mood separate from Stairs. But it’s been more interesting to hear the band shift gears from song to song within the EP. And “I Was Once A Loyal Lover,” the EP’s last brand new track (tomorrow’s cut is a Gibbard-solo ukulele demo version of “Talking Bird”) rounds out the mood-span with a straightforward pop tune given some kitchen sink Death Cab arrangement.

Count the tics: strummed fuzz-box guitars also miked up close for naturally occurring sounds, airy keyboard tones in back, jaunty and distant Spoony pianos set to punchy walking basslines, arty guitars and crashing cymbals. Walla was busy on this one. Meanwhile Ben is worrying about himself vis a vis his buddies: “All my friends are forward thinking / getting hitched and quitting drinking.” Don’t worry Ben, you’re halfway there.

The Open Door EP is available digitally on 3/31, physical release to follow, via Atlantic. You’ll be able to buy it on deathcabforcutie.com or pre-order now at iTunes.

The songs:
01 “Little Bribes
02 “A Diamond And A Tether
03 “My Mirror Speaks
04 “I Was Once a Loyal Lover”
05 “Talking Bird” (demo)

The tour dates:
04/05 – Toronto, Ontario @ The Sound Academy
04/07 – Upper Darby, PA @ Tower Theatre *#
04/08 – Washington, DC @ DAR Constitution Hall *#
04/09 – Davidson, NC @ John Belk Arena/Davidson College *#
04/10 – Louisville, KY @ Louisville Palace *#
04/11 – Memphis, TN @ Orpheum Theatre *#
04/12 – Tulsa, OK @ The Brady Theater *#
04/13 – Omaha, NE @ Holland Theatre *
04/15 – St. Paul, MN @ Roy Wilkings Auditorium *#
04/17 – Chicago, IL @ Aragon Ballroom *#
04/18 – East Lansing, MI @ Breslin Events Center/Michigan State University *#
04/19 – Waukesha, WI @ Van Male Fieldhouse/Carroll College *#
04/22 – Bellingham, WA @ Mount Baker Theatre #
04/24 – Spokane, WA @ McCarthey Athletic Center/Gonzaga University *#
04/25 – Boise, ID @ The Morrison Center *#
04/27 – Sacramento, CA @ Memorial Auditorium *#
04/29 – La Jolla, CA @ RIMAC Arena/UC San Diego *
05/01 – Austin, TX @ Austin Music Hall #!
05/02 – New Orleans, LA @ Contemporary Arts Center !
05/04 – Nashville, TN @ Ryman Auditorium #!
05/05 – Birmingham, AL @ BJCC Concert Hall #!
05/06 – Atlanta, GA @ Fox Theatre #!
05/07 – Orlando, FL @ Hard Rock Live
07/05 – Los Angeles, CA @ Hollywood Bowl ^%
07/11 – Berkeley, CA @ Greek Theatre @#
07/14 – Morrison, CO @ Red Rocks Amphitheatre @#
07/16 – Vancouver, British Columbia @ Pacific Coliseum %#
07/17 – Troutdale, Oregon @ Edgefield Amphitheatre %#
07/18 – Redmond, WA @ Marymoor Park %#

* with Cold War Kids
# with Ra Ra Riot
! with Matt Costa
^ with Tegan and Sara
% with New Pornographers
@ with Andrew Bird

[Gibbard photo from Death Cab For Cutie @ Coachella ’08 by Amrit Singh