Album of the Week: The Postal Service, 'Everything Will Change'

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The Postal Service, 'Everything Will Change'
The Postal Service, 'Everything Will Change' (Courtesy of SubPop)
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It was a perfectly pleasant summer evening in 2013 when I put on a red dress and headed to Roy Wilkins Auditorium to see The Postal Service. I came early for the openers, Mates of State, since they were both: a band from Lawrence, Kansas (where I went to college - Rock Chalk) and the duo's drummer Jason Hammel is a MN native. The floor was already sticky, the concrete venue hot even with the recycled air pumping, and the lines for the bar were loud with chatter about seeing a band that hadn't played in the Twin Cities in 10 years (those who had been at the show at 7th Street Entry clearly having bragging rights). By the end of the night my hair was sticking to my sweating face, my voice was nearly gone from screaming the lyrics with the crowd, and a gentle hum followed me as I walked back to my car from a night standing too close to the amps.

What I'm saying is it was a great live show. And in the year that live music died (I know, I know we have the virtual shows)it was wonderful to be briefly transported back to a time when we didn't know any better as I listened to The Postal Services' live album, Everything Will Change.

According to a TC Daily Planet article, at the time of the 2013 show "Give Up reached the status of the 2nd biggest album to date for Sub Pop, with Nirvana's first album, Bleach still holding the record for most albums sold on the label." The new live album recording of that 2013 10th Anniversary show finds the band has grown into slick and practiced pros. Kicking off the show with a trio of hits "The District Sleeps Alone Tonight," "We Will Become Silhouettes," and "Sleeping In". The energy and joy to be celebrating the anniversary comes across with the exuberance of the drums (front man Ben Gibbard jumping behind the kit on the second song to the cheers of the crowd), the pop and grind of the synths, and the harmonies of Jenny Lewis and Gibbard -- sweet and novel after going so long without.

The intensity builds as they work thru songs from the debut, there's a raucous cover of Beat Happening's "Our Secret" thrown in the middle of the set, and it's balanced by songs off the deluxe reissue celebrating the anniversary. The pulse of the live show beats and throbs like a perfectly managed workout. Gibbard has always written songs that feel nostalgic for a time that's yet to come, and maybe it's because I've gone so long without that live show feeling, but while listening to that 2013 concert I felt hopeful. Ready for the next time we can all ruin our eardrums and lose our voices and sweat next to stranger.

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