Death Cab For Cutie / Maritime

Death Cab For Cutie / Maritime: live in Milwaukeelive in Milwaukee (2005)
Warner Music Group

Reviewer Rating: 3.5
User Rating:

Contributed by: blaubs21blaubs21
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The world's largest music festival occurs for 10 days every summer in the heart of downtown Milwaukee, Wisconsin. All the clichés you have heard about Milwaukee ring true during the week and a half: beer is aplenty, fattening food is everywhere, and Green Bay Packer jerseys are still found in exces.

The world's largest music festival occurs for 10 days every summer in the heart of downtown Milwaukee, Wisconsin. All the clich├ęs you have heard about Milwaukee ring true during the week and a half: beer is aplenty, fattening food is everywhere, and Green Bay Packer jerseys are still found in excess. Ladies and gentlemen, I am talking about none other than Summerfest. The annual celebration features about 7 or 8 ground stages' worth of music beginning at noon and going until midnight, and one headliner that plays in the Marcus Amphitheatre located on the grounds. Diversity is pivotal as well, to keep the throngs of attendees satisfied and happy: For instance, one night this year featured Story Of the Year, Ben Folds, Robert Randolph And The Family Band, Bret Michaels of Poison, and Lewis Black. The other essential aspect to Summerfest is indeed the alcohol; the beer flows like water, and drunken festival-goers consistently remind you of it. Attendees often flock to the band name they recognize, regardless of how much they may actually enjoy the band. And this, ladies and gentlemen, set the stage for indie rock darlings Death Cab For Cutie to invade the Harley Davidson Road House on a gorgeous Thursday evening.

Guitar-pop master Devin Davis took the stage with his backing band and immediately tore into his set. Playing selections from his recently released Lonely People of the World, Unite!!, Davis captured the crowd's attention by sounding close to the cover bands prior to him. Alas, the flowing acoustics that made Davis' album tracks sound like a work of pop beauty were instead replaced by electric guitar. As a result of this, Davis' set probably did not accurately represent the indie pop beauty this man is capable of composing. Regardless of these factors, the set was still entertaining. The musicianship made up for the lack of energy put forth by the band members, but with such songs, a high energy performance is not exactly expected. The half-hour of music was highly enjoyable, as a nice toe-tapping selection of songs was chosen for this set. If Davis comes to your town, check him out, for it will be a good night of rock music.

Following Devin Davis was supposed to be New Line Records signees Paris, Texas. Since early June, word had been flying around the Milwaukee streets that the boys had called it a day. Despite pulling out of a few local shows in the weeks prior, Paris, TX was still listed on the Summerfest website...until two days before the show. Disappointed, I wondered if Summerfest could find a suitable replacement for the high energy pop-rockers.

Filling the void was Madison's Sunspot. Pardon my French, but, this band fucking sucked. Allow me to paint this portrait: Two fat upper 20 something's sharing vocal duties, with a chick on drums that made Meg White resemble Josh Freeze. You know those pop-punk bands that played every local talent show possible in 2000 while Blink-182 was hitting it big? Well, Sunspot sounded exactly like those bands. The following crimes were committed: (1) Asking the audience if they had ever "felt left out" and dedicating the song to all those who ever had, (2) inserting completely unnecessary guitar solos in the vein of AC/DC, and (3) writing a song about Scott Bakula from "Quantum Leap." This song was so stupid lyrically, it made these fucks look like these guys. Having these two old guys preach to me about my 13-year-old problems made me want to stab my eyes out with a diseased spork instead of listening to more of this band's set.

The night got back on track as supergroup Maritime adorned the stage. Featuring two members of the Promise Ring, one member of the Dismemberment Plan, and I believe (don't shoot me if I'm wrong) one member of the Benjamins (at least for that night), the stage was a wealth of indie rock history. After opening to a very disenchanted Dashboard Confessional crowd last year, Maritime decided to give the Summerfest scene another go-around. Davey von Bohlen even made it clear that the Fest was not really their ideal venue, with this quote: "I'm not really politically minded enough to get a festival crowd pumped up. I could stand on the PA and yell, or we could synchronize jumps, but that's not really our thing. We're just going to keep playing our songs." No complaints here. Maritime played a very tight 45 minutes of catchy pop tunes, pulling songs from 2004's Glass Floor and a wealth of new songs from their upcoming album, due out on Halloween. The band exerted as much energy as possible, and overall just looked like they were having a good time. The songs appeared to catch the ears of the Death Cab crowd, and hopefully will turn a bunch of the young "OC" watchers onto a very talented band. Then maybe I won't be the only one laughing at the jokes Maritime was making, such as when Davey said "You should've caught me 5 years ago, I was fucking funny back then." I wish I could have, Davey, but for the meantime, the catchy and earnest pop of Maritime will have to suffice.

As the night sky had finally taken full shape over Lake Michigan, Death Cab For Cutie took the stage. The band launched into the haunting guitar line of "Title Track" and proceeded to draw the crowd in with their atmospheric melodies. The band held the crowd in its grasp for the duration of the song, let the closing notes ring out, and then launched into "The New Year." At this point, the crowd lit up, and the singing along increased tremendously. Death Cab For Cutie had fully reeled in every pair of ears surrounding the Roadhouse, and proceeded to hold them at attention for the rest of the set. Drawing evenly from the DCFC discography, all fans of the band appeared to be satisfied with the selections, as the band tore through "Title And Registration," "For What Reason," "The Sound Of Settling," "Photobooth," "Expo 86," "Tiny Vessels," "We Laugh Indoors," and a few other songs I can't recall. They also played one new song from the upcoming major label release Plans entitled "Crooked Teeth." The song sounded like a more upbeat rock number, with lyrics such as "You're cute when you're slurring the speech, but the bar is closing and they're asking us to leave." The encore consisted of "We Looked Like Giants," and one more song. I ducked out so as to avoid the mass of people exiting the stage at one time. Death Cab For Cutie had a stage presence all their own, playing their guitars with intensity and fervor, yet delicately enough to compliment Ben Gibbard's signature vocals. The captivating and often soothing sound that is Gibbard's voice was in full effect, as the listener was drawn into the performance easily. In short, Death Cab gave a stunning performance, and hopefully will convince the mass of kids who showed up at the stage simply to hear "The Sound Of Settling" inspiration to delve into the back catalogue of this talented band.

Although I despise the Summerfest scene and would have much rather experienced Death Cab in a club setting, it was definitely worth the $12 admission. And was definitely better than seeing the night's other headliners: Skid Row, Night Ranger, and the Ohio Players. If you live near one of the select Death Cab dates occurring this summer, find yourself a nice comfy spot and let the band enchant you. It's easier to give in than it is to fight.


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Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
Anonymous (July 16, 2005)

The other headliner that night was Weezer/Pixies. The fact that every individual wasn't there to see the Pixies and would rather see DCFC or Skid Row is truely sad.

Anonymous (July 13, 2005)

I read that Night Ranger was going to be on that show where 80s bands reunite and play an old song and then a cover to win a cash prize, but they sucked in the back stage rehearsal and didn't end up playing. That's right, Night Ranger gossip.

i really can't imagine night ranger sucking. i've seen them twice in the last few years and both times were awesome. i've also seen that bands reunite show and a lot of those bands just don't sound good without all the studio effects. night ranger can bring it though!

Anonymous (July 13, 2005)

i thought the new lows also played this show. they are giving away an amazing EP on their website www.thenewlows.net

Anonymous (July 13, 2005)

what happend to the post ripping jones a new asshole? god that kid sucks!

Anonymous (July 12, 2005)

I read that Night Ranger was going to be on that show where 80s bands reunite and play an old song and then a cover to win a cash prize, but they sucked in the back stage rehearsal and didn't end up playing. That's right, Night Ranger gossip.

Anonymous (July 12, 2005)

If I hear "The Sound Of Settling" one more time...


Crookedsuperhero (July 12, 2005)

Woo, go bones.

rkl (July 12, 2005)

i cant figure out if aimee is a troll acct or not. dont have anything to say about dcfc that hasnt already been said.

Kenjamin (July 12, 2005)

maritime has to be the most dissapointing band ever.

aimee (July 12, 2005)

who is one of the best bands ever??? death cab for cutie is hellooo!!

stevejonestherealbones (July 12, 2005)

actually...i used that on like every review one day....but that was the first time i did it...and this is the only time afterwards...so if anything...i killed it before it could have meaning..which is a really special thing to do

- jones the bones

- stevejones8770@yahoo.com

Anonymous (July 12, 2005)

Whats wrong with Night Ranger?

Anonymous (July 12, 2005)

Scott Bakula was great in Neccessary Roughness

best cast ever...Sinbad, Scott Bakula, Kathy Ireland, and Rob Schnieder

Score is for Death Cab...but i'm a pussy

LevitateMe (July 12, 2005)

"WHOA whoa...whoa.....

i am not gonna read all that

- jones the bones"

You say that so often it's lost all meaning

Anonymous (July 12, 2005)

there's nothing wrong with songs about scott bakula and quantum leap.

and night ranger were the best band of the night, including the pixies and weezer, who i caught most of.

Anonymous (July 12, 2005)

Josh Freeze

Woah, thats a fucking awesome name!

secret_superstar (July 12, 2005)

i really wanted to see maritime, but i was watching the pixies slay in the ampitheater. oh yeah, weezer were no slouches either. i did get to catch the end of skid row's show on the way out. all i have to say is: no sabastian bach = no skid row. youth gone wild, indeed.


Anonymous (July 12, 2005)

where's the fucking the draft premier show review with rise against and death by stereo?

stevejonestherealbones (July 12, 2005)

WHOA whoa...whoa.....

i am not gonna read all that

- jones the bones

- stevejones8770@yahoo.com

crazytoledo (July 12, 2005)

All those bands suck.

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