Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

Ben Gibbard + guitar + piano = purty

Ben Gibbard, singer of Death Cab For Cutie and The Postal Service, is in the midst of a solo-acoustic tour, and let me tell you this: The guy has written some amazing songs, and they stand up incredibly, even when naked. He plucked songs from both of his bands at the first of two sold-out Chicago shows on Friday night (May 4), plus added a solid new song ("Cath") and a pleasing array of covers, from Donovan, Kirsty MacColl, and, strangely, Nirvana's "All Apologies."

The kids loved it, and the adults probably did, too. If you're in Somerville tonight or New York tomorrow, well, I hope you already have tickets. I'm guessing the rest of the tour is sold out, too. Anyway, here's a YouTube clip of "Such Great Heights," which Gibbard jokingly introduced as a "Sam Beam cover"–Beam, of Iron & Wine, took the electro-pop track and made it work as a Will Oldham-esque folk song, and that's the version Gibbard played. This isn't from the Chicago show, but you get the point.

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