Chris Walla Exiting Death Cab for Cutie After Tour


Guitarist and producer Chris Walla has announced that he is leaving Death Cab for Cutie, the band he started with Ben Gibbard in 1997. He Death Cab for Cutie; photo by Ryan Russellwill appear on the group’s completed, yet-to-be-titled eighth studio album, while his last live performance will occur September 13 at the Rifflandia Festival in Victoria, BC.

During Walla’s time with Death Cab for Cutie, the band has been nominated for seven Grammys; the recipients of sizeable critical praise; and the creators of such classics as “The Sound of Settling,” and “Marching Bands of Manhattan.” (Editor’s note: 2008’s Narrow Stairs is still a pleasure to listen to).

In a press release issued by Atlantic Recording Group, the remaining members of the band commented on Walla’s departure:  “We’ve had an incredible 17 years of making music with Chris and are very proud of what we’ve accomplished together, including our 8th studio album which we have just put the finishing touches on. We will miss Chris and wish him all the best in the next chapter of his career. We’re excited about sharing new music, and seeing all of you very soon.”

Walla, meanwhile, issued a statement through Seattle publication, The Stranger. It reads:

“Short version: I’m leaving Death Cab for Cutie. My last show with the band will be September 13, 2014, at the Rifflandia Festival in Victoria, BC. I hope you guys can make it.

“Longer version: I think I long for the unknown. It might be that simple.

“I will miss being a quarter of this band, and will support whatever course Death Cab for Cutie chooses from here. I am profoundly grateful to Ben, Nick, and Jason, for the experiences that define my adult life. Truly grateful, beyond words. Thank you.

“I am also grateful to, and deeply humbled by, all of our fans. Without you, music would be mere ‘content’, and nothing could possibly be sadder than that. Thank you all, so dearly.

“We’ve just finished our eighth album, which is our first with an outside producer. That producer is a fellow named Rich Costey, and working with him in this capacity is one of the greatest joys of my professional life. Thank you, as well.

“There are so many others to whom I am grateful—our crew, our management, our families, the Atlantic, Barsuk and Elsinor labels, the Billions team. Thank you all.

“Deciding to leave the band was not, and is not, easy. It’s really, really sad. I love my bandmates, and I’m proud of what we’ve done, and mercifully, those things don’t change with my departure. “Moving forward, my plans are simply to continue making music, producing records, and erring on the side of benevolence and beauty whenever possible. Darkness may find me, but I shall never choose it.”

-Adam Grant

Here are Walla’s remaining Death Cab for Cutie tour dates:

August 15: KXT’s Summer Cut – The Happy Funtime Fest, Dallas, TX
August 16: Maha Music Festival, Omaha, NE
August 29: Sonic Boom 2014, Edmonton, AB
August 30: X-Fest 2014, Calgary, AB
September 5: The Hideout Block Party & Onion AV Fest, Chicago, IL
September 7: Riot Fest, Toronto, ON (win tickets here!)
September 11-14: Rifflandia, Victoria, BC

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