Ben Gibbard: Bandwagonesque (Turntable Kitchen) Review | Under the Radar Magazine Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
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Ben Gibbard


Turntable Kitchen

Aug 17, 2017 Ben Gibbard Bookmark and Share

Let’s be honest here. For most listeners, covers albums are often trite at worst and at best, are faithful reproductions of the work of the artists that they intend to pay tribute to. This applies as well as to many works like these, where an artist covers an album from start to finish. Thankfully, though, this is a rare exception to the rule and thus an absolute joy to listen to. It’s clear that Ben Gibbard loves Bandwagonesque, the 1991 sophomore album by Teenage Fanclub that was named SPIN‘s album of the year over Nirvana’s Nevermind, The Smashing Pumpkins’ Gish, My Bloody Valentine’s Loveless, and other seminal albums from that year, a lot. He’s identified it as his favorite album of all-time by his favorite band of all-time. This much is clear from the very first song, the 8-minute plus “The Concept” (which gained attention in more recent years for its use in the Charlize Theron/Patton Oswalt film Young Adult), stretched out from its original 6-minute plus length.

Over the course of the album’s 12 songs, while its arrangements don’t differ strongly (or really at all) from the ones used on the original work, it’s Gibbard’s warm, empathetic, and instantly recognizable voice (as the leader of the long-running Death Cab for Cutie and the one-off The Postal Service, two of the most beloved indie acts of the last 20 years) that immediately identifies this as not only his work but one that can stand up to and be differentiated from the original. From the speedy U.S. alternative rock hit “Star Sign” (one of Gerard Love’s greatest songs) to more mid-tempo, Big Star-influenced tracks like “Metal Baby” and “What You Do to Me” and the closing instrumental (the cheekily-titled “Is This Music?”), this is a fun, listenable, and original take on a classic. Now if only someone would cover Songs from Northern Britain in full to remind everyone what a brilliant album that is as well. Now there’s an idea for a sequel!
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Jack William
August 19th 2017

Ben Gibbard have good experience in writing and he write lot’s of books. I follow him from resume world where he share lot’s of stuff related to education. Specially, he focus on history of education.

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This is a great little post with some valuable tips

February 14th 2019

This is one hell of a cover art! Props for the artist.

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