He’s been making music since the mid-Nineties, which makes it most surprising that Former Lives, out last month, is his first bona fide solo record.
Gibbard started Death Cab as a solo project, and didn’t sign up full-time band members until after the release of his first LP under this name, You Can Play These Songs With Chords (1997).
Their sweet, melodic and sincere indie rock earned a steady fan base, and the fourth album, Transatlanticism, mainstream success, before the band developed into a Grammy-nominated outfit with seven albums to their name.
Gibbard, arguably, found greater success, though, with the electronic-tinged side-project The Postal Service.
Created with Jimmy Tamborello, also known as Dntel, their album Give Up was label Sub Pop’s best-selling release since Nirvana’s Bleach.
Former Lives though is more like Gibbard’s former work (guitars lead the way), albeit one that shows the breadth and diversity of his musical tastes.
“These songs span eight years, three relationships, living in two different places, drinking then not drinking,” Gibbard says of the album. “They’re a side story not a new chapter.”
As a snapshot of his life, the album’s considered and reflective, and dips in and out of many different musical genres – pop, indie, folk, acoustic and even country.
It maintains his trademark lyrical traits and unmistakable way with a melody. There’s no finer London venue to catch him.
Union Chapel, N1 2HD
mon, Dec 3 | Doors at 7.30pm | £21+
Tube | Highbury & Islington