Death Cab For Cutie brought their West-coast melancholy to Northern Ireland for the first time with a well-chosen set focused primarily on their latest album "Narrow Stairs". Opening with the medium-paced "Bixby Canyon Bridge", its ending riffs led into fan favourite "The New Year" from their seminal 2003 album "Transatlanticism".
They didnt speak much, Ben Gibbard in stoic mood all night, save for one slightly worrisome moment (for us in the audience at least) when he addressed a random scumbag in the crowd who threw something at him. They quickly stormed through their set which, although impressive and cd-perfect, felt slightly empty as though nerves had taken over. It was afterall, the first date on their European tour.
The band played all the big hitters such as "I Will Follow You Into The Dark", played by Gibbard alone on an acoustic guitar, and finished with the epic, lighters-in-the-air "Transatlanticism".
All in all, a perfectly fine show but its hard not to feel slightly cheated by the lack of interaction. Maybe they'll feel more comfortable next time.
Verdict: *** (3/5)