DCFC’s Dave Depper reflects on 20th anniversary of ‘Transatlanticism’: “I can’t believe I’m playing this guitar riff”

Barsuk Records

Death Cab for Cutie‘s 2003 album Transatlanticism turns 20 on Saturday, October 7. The record was a staple of the 2000s indie rock scene and had a big influence on guitarist Dave Depper, who had no idea he’d be playing those songs as a member of Death Cab in a decade’s time.

“There’s points each night where I’m playing songs like the song ‘Transatlanticism’ where I’m playing that riff,” Depper tells ABC Audio. “It takes me right back to 2014 and being like, ‘I can’t believe I’m playing this guitar riff, this is crazy.'”

Depper joined Death Cab following the 2014 departure of original guitarist and producer Chris Walla, whose tone and style helped define the band’s early sound.

“Just stepping into Chris Walla’s shoes was very intimidating,” Depper says. “These are songs that not only meant a lot to me but obviously mean a lot to millions of people around the world.”

“I just wanted to not screw up at first, and so I worked really hard to play these songs accurately,” he continues. “That went well, and as the years have gone on, I’ve kinda added a bit of my own spin to them.”

You can hear that during Death Cab’s current 20th anniversary Transatlanticism tour, during which they’re playing the album in full.

“I obviously don’t wanna change what people love about [Transatlanticism‘s songs], but I do think that we’re playing them in a way that kinda fits the lineup of the band now in a very copacetic way,” Depper shares.

Death Cab’s tour continues Friday, October 6, in Seattle. The run is co-headlined by frontman Ben Gibbard‘s other band, The Postal Service, which is celebrating the 20th anniversary of their 2003 album, Give Up.

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