Friday, September 24, 2010

Death Cab for Cutie, Zach Braff and Going the Distance

I was watching Death Cab for Cutie in Coney Island (one of the three times I saw them play and this was circa Transatlanticism) and I can't remember the crowd being so quiet. Maybe it was the underlying sadness of the songs but everyone watched as if mesmerized. The one time a huge cheer went up was when they played -- what else -- "Coney Island" from the Photo Album but that was an aberration. After their long set, I was walking around checking out the various booths and sites, there was the small line at a booth. I was curious so I checked it out and there was a bunch of people handing over free CDs and some giveaways. I got in line but by the time I was at the front, they had run out of CDs. I wasn't that disappointed after all, I was late. "Dude, I'm so sorry but that was the last CD we have," said the guy in a baseball-type of shirt. "But... I can give you this, this, and this." He handed over a bush hat, a magazine that had a Robert Smith on the cover, and a pin. The blue hat had "Garden State" sewn on it and it took me about a minute to realize that it was Zach Braff in front of me. I still have the mag and the pin but the hat a gave away to my ex-girlfriend. We shook hands and I must have sprouted out a thousand words in the next minute. He asked if I went to watch Death Cab at which I nodded like I was having an epileptic attack. We chatted for a few more minutes before he excused himself because he said he spotted this girl with huge tits and he wanted to see if he could hook up with her. 

Whenever I watch Garden State or listen to Death Cab's Transatlanticism I think of that chance encounter with Braff. 

Garden State remains one of my favorite movies not just for its quirkiness but also its cool soundtrack. Prior to that I thought the OSTs to The Crow (the first film), Singles, and Almost Famous were the best ever. Add Garden State to that (500) Days of Summer and Lost In Translation.

It seems that movies (like Juno) have decided to use that indie cred to bolster their hip factor. With some time to kill before my radio show, I went to watch Going the Distance. Romantic comedy? An older Drew Barrymore and Justin Long (who can't seem to let go of these frat boy roles. And how can you take Long's role of a guy who falls in love when he has a face like he'd rather be playing pranks? Well, it's okay; a new millennium version of About Last Night (yes, a young Demi Moore and Rob Lowe). In case you don't know, About Last Night was based on a book titled "Sexual Perversity in Chicago" so... I learned that from tirelessly watching the credits when the film came out (who didn't fall for Demi Moore in that movie?). And Going the Distance is just like that. Lots of open discussion about sex and more sex. I won't be getting the DVD of the movie but the soundtrack is something else. Albert Hammond Jr. (of the Strokes), Airborne Toxic Event (I love their debut album), London's indie version of the Gaslight Anthem -- the Boxer Rebellion, and the Band of Skulls? And the Cure performing "Just Like Heaven?" I gotta get me the soundtrack.

My fave Death Cab songs: We Laugh Indoors (from the Photo Album), Company Calls (from We Have the Facts and We're Voting Yes), Cath (from Narrow Stairs), Crooked Teeth (from Plans), and Tiny Vessels (from Transatlanticism).

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