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Death Cab for Cutie cover R.E.M., reveal new song on livestream – watch

Ben Gibbard brought the ‘Live from Home’ series full circle

By Joe Goggins

Death Cab for Cutie in the 'Here to Forever' video, 2022
'Asphalt Meadows' is out on Friday (September 16). (Photo: YouTube)

Death Cab for Cutie covered R.E.M. and unveiled a new song during a livestream on Monday night (September 12).

During the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020, frontman Ben Gibbard began his ‘Live from Home’ series, streaming nightly from his home studio and performing tracks from across his 25-year back catalogue, including classics and deep cuts from Death Cab and The Postal Service, as well as solo songs.

On Monday, with Death Cab set to release their tenth studio album on Friday (September 16), Gibbard returned to the series for a final instalment, this time joined by bandmates Dave Depper (guitar), Zac Rae (piano), Nick Harmer (bass) and Jason McGerr (drums), thus bringing ‘Live from Home’ full circle.

Opening with the lead single from Asphalt Meadows, ‘Roman Candles’, the veteran indie rockers rattled through a nine-song set that featured an acoustic take on ‘Pepper’, a previously unaired new song from the upcoming LP, as well as a cover of R.E.M.‘s ‘Near Wild Heaven’, the first time the band have taken it on since 2012. You can see the full setlist below.

Meanwhile, in a new interview with Stereogum, Gibbard discussed the impact of pandemic lockdowns on Asphalt Meadows. “There’s moments in the record and songs that are related to that period, but they weren’t written during that period,” he explained. “The first song on the record, ‘I Don’t Know How I Survive’, to me is about this crippling anxiety and fear that was deep within me during that time. I mean, we were all there, right? I’m realising that we were living a lot closer to the bone than we thought we were as far as the tendrils that hold society together.”

Next year, Death Cab will bring the Asphalt Meadows tour to the UK – see the full dates below.

Death Cab for Cutie – ‘Live from Home’:

‘Roman Candles’
‘Here to Forever’
‘Near Wild Heaven’
‘Your Heart Is an Empty Room’
‘Title Track’
‘A Movie Script Ending’
‘Soul Meets Body’

Death Cab for Cutie, March 2023:

18 – Nottingham, Rock City

21 – Birmingham, O2 Institute

22 – Edinburgh, Usher Hall

23 – Glasgow, Barrowlands

25 – Manchester, Apollo

27 – Brighton, Dome

29 – London, Royal Albert Hall