Manila has long been a destination for international musicians of all shapes and sizes, from current chart-toppers to near-forgotten one-hit wonders.

Once in a blue moon, however, we are lucky enough to be graced by true talent, the kind that does not rely on arena pageantry or blings-and-babes gimmickry. Such is the case with Death Cab for Cutie, those kings of pain from Bellingham, Washington, who once lorded over indie and is now slowly taking over the world (if they haven’t already). The band—known for their self-aware, straight-faced confessionals, such as “The Sound of Settling” (from 2004’s Transatlanticism), “I Will Follow You into the Dark” (from 2005’s Plans) and “I Will Possess Your Heart” (from 2008’s Narrow Stairs)—is slated to perform for Filipino fans this March.

Perhaps Rolling Stone said it best when it described the band’s last independent outing as having “melodic, melancholy songs about feeling both smart and confused, hopelessly romantic but wary of love.”

The group’s underground successes soon made way to mainstream nods. TV shows (The O.C., Six Feet Under, Californication) and movies (Wedding Crashers, Twilight: New Moon) started carrying their material.

In some odd way, singer-songwriter Ben Gibbard, bassist Nick Harmer, guitarist Chris Walla, and drummer Jason McGerr are lending their credibility to these ventures, rather than openly milking whatever exposure they could get from them. Their newest release, 2011’s Codes and Keys, was written during a time of radical changes in Gibbard’s personal life. But, contrary to their previous material, fans can openly embrace this new record without shedding buckets of tears. “I feel like if there is a theme of home throughout [Codes and Keys], it has as much to do because of the changes that have happened in my life,” the songwriter said some time ago in a press statement. “I’ve rediscovered what the definition of home is,” the low-key musician further shared.

Death Cab for Cutie plays the NBC Tent in Taguig on March 5, 2012, 8PM. VIP tickets are at P3,800, while Gold tickets are at P2,800. Discounted “early bird” tickets are running  out fast, so it would be wise not to dilly-dally any longer. Visit TicketNet outlets to purchase. DCFC’s music is distributed locally by Warner Music Philippines.  For tickets call 911-5555 or visit

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