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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Give Up - Something I Would NOT Do to This Music!
Recently, my older sister has adopted an I-pod Mini and in turn has given me her CD/MP3 player. To put it simply, all my time spent on that player has been on Give Up.
Before you raise an eyebrow, I have to say that in NO ONE'S mind ( not even someone who is foreign to electronica or indie ) there is doubt that Tambarello and Gibbard's collaboration has failed...
Published on March 19 2005 by Tsuppi

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The Postal Service -- Give Up | Junkmedia.org Review
...
Dntel's Jimmy Tamborello and Death Cab For Cutie's Ben Gibbard knew they were on to something good as soon as they finished collaborating on the track "(This is) the Dream of Evan and Chan." That compelling combination of Tamborello's melodic knob-twiddling and Gibbard's literate vocals and forlorn delivery was the triumph of Dntel's acclaimed 2001 release Life...
Published on May 20 2003


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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Give Up - Something I Would NOT Do to This Music!, March 19 2005
By 
Tsuppi (O Canada...) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Give Up (Audio CD)
Recently, my older sister has adopted an I-pod Mini and in turn has given me her CD/MP3 player. To put it simply, all my time spent on that player has been on Give Up.
Before you raise an eyebrow, I have to say that in NO ONE'S mind ( not even someone who is foreign to electronica or indie ) there is doubt that Tambarello and Gibbard's collaboration has failed whatsoever in Give Up. Each song contains bits of pieces of some everyday noise ( clinking of a cereal bowl in Sleeping In, subway screeches in Natural Anthem ) and layers upon layers of beats, tunes, and uplifting voices. If you listen very closely, you can set apart the hundred layers in one song ( even counted once...past 5 layers at the least ) and even pick up the soft vocals of the women who sang for Give Up, as well ( found in The District Sleeps Alone Tonight's mid-instrumental is a repeating of "hello", or is it "alone?", that disturbs one for a moment ).
In conclusion, amazing vocals and addictive beats and lines keeps Give Up in heavy rotation in my second-hand CD player. Only absolute nit-picks will be _slightly_ disappointed ( "iffy" lyrics? I disagree! ). Get it or...um...don't.. and miss out. ^_^
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The Postal Service -- Give Up | Junkmedia.org Review, May 20 2003
By A Customer
This review is from: Give Up (Audio CD)
...
Dntel's Jimmy Tamborello and Death Cab For Cutie's Ben Gibbard knew they were on to something good as soon as they finished collaborating on the track "(This is) the Dream of Evan and Chan." That compelling combination of Tamborello's melodic knob-twiddling and Gibbard's literate vocals and forlorn delivery was the triumph of Dntel's acclaimed 2001 release Life Is Full of Possibilities. Not long after that first collaboration, The Postal Service was born. The relative strangers began recording in December 2001, swapping tracks on CD-Rs through the mail.
Listening to the act's debut brings back the same sort of giddiness inspired in me by New Order's Low Life when I first picked it up a decade-and-a-half ago. The Postal Service expertly channels that adolescent spirit with an awkward blend of dance beats and melodic songwriting. However, the duo has updated the sound for the millennial set, pleasantly mixing Depeche Mode beats and bass lines, Pet Shop Boys melodies and Warp Records-styled twinkling tones and clicks. Orchestral samples and pseudo horns add an unusual flavor to "Clark Gable." Chunky, monophonic Casio-sounding keys tie the vocals to the beat in "Nothing Better."
Two of the album's highlights appear right at the front end of the record. The first song, "The District Sleeps Alone Tonight," leads with brooding organ, before beats saunter in and steadily cruise through the first verse and chorus to a clean, ringing guitar riff. A second chorus pumps even harder and defies you to not sing along. This despite a characteristically bumming realization repeated by Gibbard: "I am finally seeing why I was the one worth leaving" (Christ, Benny, just stick a fork through my heart, why don't you?). Track two, "Such Great Heights," has already been released as a single. The catchy number apes Rod Stewart's "Young Turks," especially the beat and understated arrangement, albeit in an electro fashion.
The remainder of Give Up is solid, though Gibbard's lyrics are less potent by the middle of the record, and Tamborello burrows perhaps a little too deeply into some of the thinner sounds of the cold '80s era that inspires him. "Sleeping In" stumbles a bit with Gibbard's trite invocation of the JFK assassination, but the murmured chorus, "Don't wake me, I plan on sleeping in," that drapes over a quiet acoustic guitar phrase is strong enough to carry the entire song.
Perhaps the only shortcoming of Give Up is that the adherence to pop shuts out some of the more interesting electronic elements explored on Life Is Full of Possibilities. "Natural Anthem" is probably the most adventurous Postal Service tune, utilizing a relatively heavy break-beat, a looping string sample and more aggressive production, but clearly the duo's strengths are geared more toward hit-making than trailblazing. So, while the record isn't necessarily an instant classic, the unabashed embrace of simple pop sensibilities, both old and new, make it a record that is hard to stop listening to.
Jay Breitling
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect Balance, July 13 2004
By 
Kate H "sweetpea1182001" (Neenah, WI United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Give Up (Audio CD)
I have never been a fan of electronic music... and to be quite honest I probably won't convert anytime soon. I've always felt that the music never had an heart or substance to it; it was just too cold. So when one of my friends gave me this CD to listen to, I was worried and immediately the electronic bleeps and blurps made me tune out. But then I listened a bit more, to the lyrics and the melody and how perfectly they combined. This CD is amazing because you take the amazing emo-esque lyrics (honest, heart breaking... I love "I am finally seeing why I was the one worth leaving") and combine it with the most peppy and catchy music ever. I actually got to see them in concert (lucky me!!!) and I was worried how the album would translate but it was even better than the cd. This amazing little project is must for anyone, period; no matter what style of music you like.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gorgeous in every aspect, July 11 2004
By 
brennan (Augusta, MA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Give Up (Audio CD)
Wow what a great album. Benjamin Gibbard is one of my favorite artists of all time, so I bought this with high hopes. I had never heard of Tamborello, but hey, my focus was Gibbard. When I first listened to it, i really did try to keep an open mind, and then I ended up hating it. About a month later, I popped it in again after listening to every single Death Cab for Cutie album, and all of a sudden i was tapping my feet and flipping through the lyric book rapidly. How could i have ever thought this bad??!!
As always Gibbard delivers with sharp, smart, and epic lyrics, turning what is obviously small events into the most important thing the world. The electronica takes some getting used to, but by the time you get past it, you see how perfect with the melancholic perfection of Gibbard.
The standout tracks are #2, Such Great Heights, all for its lyrics, "i am thinking its a sign that the freckles in our eyes are mirror images and when we kiss they're perfectly aligned; #4, which is a duet played out like a tense and pleading conversation between Gibbard and a girl who is leaving him; and #8, This Place is a Prison, which is an extremely mournful song rife with touching lyrics.
All in all a brilliant and lasting album.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent album!, May 9 2006
This review is from: Give Up (Audio CD)
"Give Up" is quite simply a great album. It's a refreshing change from mainstream music, but it's not "too indie" to sound, well, terrible. The electronic beats are almost retro for us 80s kids who grew up on 8-bit video game systems, and to top it off, the music's great too!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars an amazing album., July 12 2004
By 
malloreigh suicide (victoria, bc, canada) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Give Up (Audio CD)
"give up" was the album that started me listening to not only the postal service, and not only death cab for cutie, but to this entire genre of music. i love it. every song is touched with sadness and intuition.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Electronica redeemed...?, July 14 2004
By 
C. Gardner (Washington D.C., D.C. United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Give Up (Audio CD)
This album of dancy electronic pop hasn't left my MP3 player since I bought it. It's like finding a lost and prescient New Order album circa 1985, filled with compelling and instantly memorable melodies. The lyrics are quite wordy, but they are also quite good, like on the melancholic opener, a guy going to visit his ex in a new city:
"Smeared black ink...Your palms are sweaty and I'm barely listening to last demands...I'm staring at the asphalt wondering what's buried underneath: There I am. Wear my badge--a vinyl sticker with big black letters adhering to my chest. Tells your new friends I am a visitor here, I am not permanent..And the only thing keeping me dry is: You seem so out of context in this gaudy apartment complex/I'm a stranger with a doorkey explaining that I'm just visiting/I am finally seeing why I was the one worth leaving."
"Give Up" is an excellent, warm and human example of a genre in which one's connection can sometimes get lost amongst the bleeps and blips of synths and Casios. One of last year's best!
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3.0 out of 5 stars Though it may appeal to some, it didn't to me, June 28 2004
By A Customer
This review is from: Give Up (Audio CD)
I'm a big Death Cab for Cutie fan (along with a lot of other indie-rock bands), and I also like electronica music, so when I heard "Such Great Heights" on the radio, I immediately recognized Ben Gibbard's sweet vocals and decided I had to buy the CD (as it was also being trumpeted by many magazines and websites as the next CD to own).
Maybe my expectations for an interesting, inventive album were too high, but I was pretty disappointed with what I found with "Give Up"---the songs are a little too long for their own good (almost all are over 4 minutes, bordering on 5) and the faux drum-beats, blip-blips, and general song-structures are nothing edgy in the electronica genre, though they may seem fresh to indie-rockers. I was surprised how cut-and-paste most seemed.
Songs that do fare reasonably well are "Clark Gable", "We Will Become Sillhouettes" and "Nothing Better" ("Such Great Heights" will wear out its welcome on the radio and CD after awhile).
The rest is nothing memorable, unfortunately.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Electronica for Indie-Rock Fans, June 28 2004
By 
This review is from: Give Up (Audio CD)
Allow me to start our by saying that I usually don't get too into Electronica. I, like some of you, generally prefer the raw sound of more conventional intruments. However, when I heard that Ben Gibbard (Death Cab For Cutie) was the Vocals for this Duo, I had to check it out. That is a decision I am so very thankful for.
This Album is perfection. From track to track you are taken through a dreamy ride of brilliantly-crafted songs. You get it all, from the pop-perfection of "Such Great Heights" To the thumb-tapping, magic of "Sleeping In" (that you just can't help but sing along).
If you are a fan of contemporay Seattle bands such as Death Cab and The Long Winters; or salivate over the greatness that is The Shins, then you will be more than pleased. If you long for catchy and creative pop songs that you just can't get out of your head (and don't want to!), then you will be thrilled. If you desire amazing songs, with an abundance of originality, and with powerful, meaningful, and beautiful lyrics, then you must buy this album.
Enjoy.
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5.0 out of 5 stars "Give Up" might save electronica from itself., June 21 2004
By 
This review is from: Give Up (Audio CD)
If there's anything to the clever adage that, "Talking about music is like dancing about architecture," then trying to describe The Postal Service's "Give Up" would be more along the lines of pantomiming Stonehenge: to do so would be incomprehensible, over-ambitious, and ultimately unsuccessful. However, to not review this disc would be the greater crime, so here goes.
To begin with, the new listener must dispense with all the tired comparisons to other artists we've seen in the 200 previous reviews of this CD. Those reviewers, well-meaning as they all are, have only managed to parallel one flavor of genius with another (Radiohead, for example). Searching for traces of Radiohead, U2, or even Beck in "Give Up" will be about as fruitful as looking for the Seattle sound in a Blondie record. The Postal Service sound represents that unique, unmatchable byproduct that can only come from a beautiful mistake (the Gibbard and Tamborello hybrid). Forgive my arrogance here, but I think this album will do for the ever-widening and accessible world of electronica what the Beatles did for rock and roll. That is, "Give Up" will save electronica from itself, bringing a much needed sense of vision to a brand of music which, as of late, has aspired to no greater purpose than that of moving bodies and disengaging minds (a disappointing trend being followed by a lot of the new Trance produced lately).
"Give Up" is the impossibly optimistic answer to all the question marks left in the wake of the last thirty years, a confusing, sometimes hopeless smattering of everything from the revolutionary, but tiring Kraftwerk, and the dead-on New Order to the vapid one-trick ponies like Ace of Base. At a time during electronic music's short history when some may already be tempted to assume we've seen it all (and certainly the Vengaboys were proof enough of that), now come the likes of The Postal Service...which, by the way, should not be considered a strictly "electronic" duo. To the contrary, these two have simply used the digital medium as a tool in their grander endeavor: good music.
Ben's words fit Jimmy's sounds like a glove, though never predictable and frequently addictive. Songs like the masterful "Brand New Colony" redefine the love song the way Brian Wilson helped reinvent the pop song; it's a tale of devotion and adoration--minus the pomp--rivalled by nothing else out there today. The first single, "Such Great Heights" and it's commercial follow-up, "The District Sleeps Alone Tonight," show off the Gibbard-Tamborello craft in all of its glimmering majesty, neither of them running a single second longer than they should.
"Sleeping In" and "Recycled Air" are equally devastating in their atmospheric melodies, while still painting emotive portraits using Gibbard's economy of words.
The Postal Service, as evidenced in this their uncanny debut, is a sonic miracle, equally comprised of unfettered art and deft science. If this is any indication of things to come, electronica--and the broader spectrum of pop, for that matter--may still have a fighting chance at life.
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Give Up by Postal Service (Audio CD - 2003)
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