The collaboration between Death Cab For Cutie's Ben Gibbard and Dntel's Jimmy Tamborello is an album of breezy electronic pop that updates classic 80s synth-pop with contemporary beats.
, the debut release by this indie supergroup composed of Ben Gibbard from Death Cab for Cutie
and Jimmy Tamborello from Dntel, is a smart, quaint, and often transcendent little pop record. The roots of the album lie in "(This Is) The Dream of Evan and Chan
," a woozy, gorgeous song recorded for the rad 2001 Dntel album Life Is Full of Possibilities
. With Jimmy in L.A. and Ben in Seattle, the two simply mailed tracks back and forth, collaborating via (you guessed it) the United States Post Office. Lyrically its far breezier and happier (though not too
happy) than anything Gibbard had written up to this point for Death Cab. The music is an elastic, very smart update of synth-pop and the melodies crystal clear, while the backing vocals courtesy of Jen Wood and Jenny Lewis are spartan and pretty. The songs stick in your head for days at a time. Forget the tags that have been thrown up against this music--Poptronica? New new new order? Please
just enjoy this album. It just might be a classic--but of what exactly, were not quite sure. --Mike McGonigal