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So I guess it was worth perstering them about?
February 11, 2013 10:36 AM   Subscribe

Forget Saturday delivery: The Postal Service is back! (site)
posted by anotherpanacea (46 comments total) 14 users marked this as a favorite

 
I'm trying to figure out the metric here, since I haven't had to do anything, so "worth" is not really it, but if we get one song even a quarter as good as Such Great Heights out of this then I will be very happy indeed. That song is among the perfect pop songs.
posted by OmieWise at 10:40 AM on February 11, 2013 [6 favorites]


(It's worth mentioning that there are currently only two new songs slated for release: "Tatterered Line of String" and the unheard "Turn Around" which seems potentially related to Against All Odds.)
posted by anotherpanacea at 10:41 AM on February 11, 2013


I hope they keep releasing new tunes.
posted by Evernix at 10:43 AM on February 11, 2013


Cover of John Lennon's Grow Old With Me
posted by anotherpanacea at 10:44 AM on February 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


Man, Kevin Shields has been busy lately.
posted by asterix at 10:47 AM on February 11, 2013 [2 favorites]


Best news in forever! I know we kinda just went through this with MBV (which, really, mostly just made me dig out Loveless and remember what a lovely album it is) but this is so much more exciting to me. Give Up is an album I adore and consider perfect through and through, and I've always loved the idea behind the band--Ben and Jimmy collaborating on songs through the US Postal Service. The two created a really unique flavor of sound with Give Up that I've always preferred over Death Cab or Dntel; their particular style of textured melancholy dance pop was something that got completely tangled with a particular period of my life and I waited with bated breath for a new album after odds and ends singles like like "Grow Old With Me" (and maybe these). If the odds and ends singles just keep slowly piling up, eventually we'll have that new album anyway, I suppose, but an official full new release would be fantastic.

The District Sleeps Alone Tonight and Sleeping In are still my favorite tracks from the album. They're both so sleepy, so dreamy, surreal and strangely sullenly optimistic. Give Up is great "drifting off after a long day music." Sigh.
posted by byanyothername at 10:57 AM on February 11, 2013 [4 favorites]


This is awesome. As has already been said, I think that the Postal Service meshed in a way that made them superior to to either Death Cab for Cutie or Dntel.

As much as the Postal Service was a bit of a side project for Ben and Jimmy, it's much better than either of their primary projects, IMO.
posted by asnider at 11:03 AM on February 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


Does anyone know if they plan to add more east coast tour dates? Seven on the west coast, only one on the east, and none in the middle. Ugh.
posted by troika at 11:09 AM on February 11, 2013


i'm pretty sure i am TOUCHED BY MAGIC. just a couple weeks ago, i was talking about how much we wanted the postal service to reunite. the next day, they announce they're going to play coachella. and JUST YESTERDAY, i was lamenting about how the postal service talked their big talk and haven't delivered any new material and then BAM, today we get a new song. you're welcome, everyone.

i know not what to do with my newfound powers.
posted by kerning at 11:10 AM on February 11, 2013 [2 favorites]


The pre-Postal Service track is still my fave from the Tamborello/Gibbard collaborations.

What was so great about Give Up was Tamborello's glitchy dream pop, which doesn't show up in "Tattered Line of String." If it's a track cut from Give Up, I can see why. If it's a newer track, then it's not selling me on a second record.

Also, Give Up was sort of a break off point for me for Dntel and DCFC. Nothing either did afterwards was better than the stuff that came before it. (Holy crap, The Photo Album and Life is Full of Possibilities are both 12 years old.)
posted by eyeballkid at 11:11 AM on February 11, 2013 [4 favorites]


"There are no plans to make a second record," Gibbard told Spinner in a recent interview. "I can't say that enough." - Ben Gibbard, Oct 24th 2012

Booooo
posted by mullingitover at 11:13 AM on February 11, 2013


but this is so much more exciting to me.

Seriously, two old bonus tracks on a 10-year reissue of an album you presumbly already own is more exciting? m b v must have really bored the shit out of you.
posted by anazgnos at 11:13 AM on February 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


I'm not really much of a Postal Service fan to be honest but I nonetheless think that "Clark Gable" is one of the most perfect pop gems ever recorded.
posted by invitapriore at 11:24 AM on February 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


Aw, man, I have to go to Reno to see a show? Hm.
posted by purpleclover at 11:24 AM on February 11, 2013


I've had several delightful arguments about this statement so why not here too?

I think the Postal Service's record is the most influential record of the 21st Century so far--just in terms of sheer imitators and wide-spread effect on the culture.

So there.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 11:32 AM on February 11, 2013 [5 favorites]


I like Death Cab still but Give Up is simply a perfect record and I kind of see why Jimmy and Ben have been hesitant to try to make lightning strike twice.
posted by Navelgazer at 11:38 AM on February 11, 2013 [3 favorites]


I think the Postal Service's record is the most influential record of the 21st Century so far--just in terms of sheer imitators and wide-spread effect on the culture.

I think you're right. It's perfect. It's not the best album of all time, but it's absolutely, 100% perfect at being what it is. I'd love to hear new music from them, but on the other hand why try to top something that can't be topped?
posted by drjimmy11 at 11:52 AM on February 11, 2013


I think the Postal Service's record is the most influential record of the 21st Century so far--just in terms of sheer imitators and wide-spread effect on the culture.

I've never really considered this, but I think you're right - it defined the way a lot of pop and indie music would sound moving forward in the 2000's.
posted by windbox at 12:25 PM on February 11, 2013


I can't believe I've never heard this album. It's like The Notwist's Neon Golden without the crippling depression.
posted by slogger at 12:40 PM on February 11, 2013 [3 favorites]


People like to go on and on about the dreamy glitchy dancy synth-pop and "perfect pop song" (which to me always sounds like damning with faint praise or a backhanded compliment "Oh yeah it's perfect...for a pop song.").

I feel like The Postal Service doesn't get enough credit for it's sweet descriptive narratives that it pulls off without getting labeled "novelty" like The Decemberists. They're great songs for distracting yourself on long walks and long drives. Pop songs usually don't have that kind of lyrical complexity. Or more than 2 verses and then we repeat the chorus 17 times.
posted by bleep at 12:50 PM on February 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


But it is pop music. There's nothing wrong with that. Pop music can be really great sometimes.
posted by exogenous at 1:10 PM on February 11, 2013 [4 favorites]


the unheard "Turn Around" which seems potentially related to Against All Odds.

Not a They Might Be Giants cover, then? Dammit.
posted by clavicle at 1:12 PM on February 11, 2013


People like to go on and on about the dreamy glitchy dancy synth-pop and "perfect pop song" (which to me always sounds like damning with faint praise or a backhanded compliment "Oh yeah it's perfect...for a pop song.").

For me, calling something pop is a more a (admittedly vague) statement about its scale, its use of certain genre markers, and its engagement with established tropes. It doesn't have to be a rhetorical catch-all for "music that I think sucks."
posted by invitapriore at 1:16 PM on February 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


It might be true it just always sounds reductive and not very descriptive to me. I don't mean in this thread but any time that phrase is used in music criticism and especially when applied to The Postal Service.
posted by bleep at 1:28 PM on February 11, 2013


Wait just a minute- there are people who use the term 'pop' to describe music they don't like? What a sad life they must lead.
posted by potch at 1:30 PM on February 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


is it so bad that I just want The Photo Album -era Death Cab back?
posted by ninjew at 1:35 PM on February 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


It seems to me like there's not enough difference between current DCFC and this to warrant having two separate bands for.

Dear Ben Gibbard: Just make the best music you want to make and don't be afraid to throw it all under one umbrella.
posted by jimmythefish at 1:39 PM on February 11, 2013


With 10 years' perspective now, I think it's probably safe to say that Give Up is one of the greats. Such Great Heights is right up there with Love Me Tender and Unchained Melody among all time greatest love songs and I don't think I'm being hyperbolic.
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 1:43 PM on February 11, 2013


Death Cab might be my go-to answer for "favourite band" (yes yes, my favourite band sucks), but I still think that Give Up is an utterly perfect piece of work beyond anything DCFC did on their own. The District Sleeps Alone Tonight is like a warm and comforting blanket turned into audio form.

I'd say this track sounds more like 2012 Death Cab than 2003 Postal Service, but hey, I'm not complaining.
posted by Phire at 1:45 PM on February 11, 2013 [2 favorites]


Honestly, Postal Service is exactly the sort of thing that doesn't do it for me (and Gibbard's voice drives me just shy of around-the-bend), but Give Up really is one of my most favorite albums. I can't explain why, and I'm okay with that. It's just practically-perfect.
posted by uncleozzy at 1:45 PM on February 11, 2013


Also, I could care less about new stuff because Give Up and the various EPs were enough for me, and also Ben Gibbard is forever tainted by his association with Zoey Fucking Deschanel.

Interestingly, M. Ward's greatness is powerful enough to withstand the Deschanel taint.
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 1:46 PM on February 11, 2013


Dear Ben Gibbard: Just make the best music you want to make and don't be afraid to throw it all under one umbrella.

Ben Gibbard can't music this good alone. The other members of the Postal Service are integral to this sound. Listen to Figurine.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 1:50 PM on February 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


I like DCFC and the Postal Service, but I find this track pretty meh. I do like the synth lead patch though.
posted by nowhere man at 1:56 PM on February 11, 2013


Ben Gibbard can't music this good alone.

Fair point.
posted by jimmythefish at 1:57 PM on February 11, 2013


I wish I meant to verb that noun.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 2:08 PM on February 11, 2013 [6 favorites]



"There are no plans to make a second record," Gibbard told Spinner in a recent interview. "I can't say that enough." - Ben Gibbard, Oct 24th 2012


The track list for the Give Up reissue seems to mostly be gathering up all of the odds 'n ends of the Postal Service EPs issued by Sub Pop in the past. So no hope, say, for this Mushaboom remix.

The pre-Postal Service track is still my fave from the Tamborello/Gibbard collaborations. yt

Ben Gibbard did a nice acoustic version of it. Not saying it tops the original, but once I got sick of the first version it was a pleasant change.
posted by Going To Maine at 2:10 PM on February 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


Bathe in the bliss.
posted by Evernix at 2:14 PM on February 11, 2013


That was rather disappointing... "A Tattered Line of String". meh. I think its pretty obvious why they never bothered to finish it in 2006. Its not very good.
posted by mary8nne at 2:50 PM on February 11, 2013


I like that people can't agree which song from Give Up is the perfect pop song. It's quite an album.

The originals are better, but I'm kinda fond of acoustic covers.
The Shins: We Will Become Silhouettes
Iron and Wine: Such Great Heights
posted by justsomebodythatyouusedtoknow at 3:27 PM on February 11, 2013


For me Give Up will always be about "The District Sleeps Alone Tonight," "Brand New Colony" and "Natural Anthem," but again there's not a weak moment on there.
posted by Navelgazer at 3:38 PM on February 11, 2013


squee!
posted by MikeKD at 5:29 PM on February 11, 2013


"Give Up" is easily in my Rob Gordon top five favorite albums. It truly is bliss from start to finish.
posted by Jeff Morris at 6:03 PM on February 11, 2013


Improving on Life is Full of Possibilities, and in particular "(This Is) The Dream of Evan and Chan" was impossible. They tried. The Remix EP is really fun if you want a bunch of different takes on a perfect song.

NB: Holy shit album searches on google are awesome! Woh...
posted by stratastar at 6:10 PM on February 11, 2013


Hilariously the best thing Tamborello has done since Such Great Heights is re-release the early Dntel albums Something Always Goes Wrong and Early Works For Me If It Works For You with a bonus disc EWFMIIWFY II.
posted by carsonb at 10:30 PM on February 11, 2013


Also, I have the (This Is) The Dream of Evan and Chan EP and this Postal Service remix of the song isn't on it. 's good.
posted by carsonb at 10:32 PM on February 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


Found on YouTube: The Postal Service live on Morning Becomes Eclectic.
posted by Lexica at 9:13 PM on February 13, 2013


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