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Click here for a slideshow. All photos by Laura Musselman.

Live Review: Death Cab for Cutie

Where: Admiral Theatre, Bremerton

When: April 18

Note: Set

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Last Night: Death Cab Possesses Bremerton

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Click here for a slideshow. All photos by Laura Musselman.

Live Review: Death Cab for Cutie

Where: Admiral Theatre, Bremerton

When: April 18

Note: Set list after the jump.

Multimedia: Watch an audio slideshow of the journey from Seattle to DCFC's show in Bremerton.

Returning for an encore, solo, in pitch black, Ben Gibbard received the loudest applause of the evening during his first hometown show in well over a decade, and his first with Death Cab for Cutie.

Before playing a note, he put the question that had been rippling through the audience to rest: “How many of you are West Siders?” Half the capacity crowd in the 1,000-person Admiral Theater lost their shit. Gibbard launched into an all-too-familiar story: growing up a teenager in Bremerton, he missed the end of every good show he'd ever seen because he had to be home by midnight, which meant the 10:30 p.m. boat home. The story rings true for area youth today. He dedicated the next song, “I Will Follow You Into the Dark,” to those of us who, for once, didn't have to worry about skipping the encore.

Even before DCFC took the stage, the band's show had already done more for the City of Bremerton than any other cultural event in recent memory, poignantly illustrated by pre-show comments made by our own John Roderick: “Bremerton's changed a lot,” he told me, with more than a hint of surprise.

That's right, things have changed. Few businesses downtown are boarded up, there's new construction on every block, and there's a string of glitzy, if not full, condos on the water, which locals see as progress, not the degradation of the neighborhood as they may be seen in other communities around the Puget Sound. Friday night, DCFC brought in a whole new audience for the city to show off to.

The band's set was a mix of favorites and new material from their forthcoming album, Narrow Stairs, due in stores May 13. And although the new single, and only song released from the record thus far, “I Will Possess Your Heart,” received one of the warmest welcomes of the evening, we were comparably cool to cuts we were hearing for the first time, like “No Sunlight” and “Talking Bird.” By the time the band makes it to Sasquatch! and we've all had a chance to absorb the new record, our sentiments will undoubtedly have changed.

It's too early for me to pass judgment on any of the new music after one listen, but I completely support the band's decision to road-test this material weeks before marquee gigs like Coachella and a summer tour that will take them from Pemberton B.C. (Pemberton Fest) to the fields of Tennessee (Bonnaroo). The songs will no doubt find their own life live. I particularly see potential in “I Will Possess Your Heart,” which I am convinced will become a show-stopping romp of Biblical proportions by the time the band wraps up support of the record.

And if that support is culminated with another show on the West Side, we won't complain. And maybe there's hope.

Before leaving the stage, grinnin' Gibb thanked the crowd and the city for the homecoming, promising he wouldn't stay away for so long next time. We're gonna hold him to it.

Set List (this is NOT COMPLETE, but it's the best I could scribble during the show. I'm sure I'm missing songs. If you were there, tell me which ones I omitted, please.)

Opener(???)

New Year

Photobooth

Crooked Teeth

No Sunlight

Talking Bird

When Soul Meets Body

I Will Possess Your Heart

??????

Marching Bands of Manhattan

(Encore)

I Will Follow You Into the Dark

405

Transatlanticism

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