On their second full-band album, Death Cab For Cutie find their voice, even as their singer/songwriter is still finding his. We Have the Facts… sees the blossoming of Chris Walla's production talent, one that has proven experimental and adventurous enough to keep some of the band's more discerning listeners engaged, while never alienating the one's that just show up for the tunes.
Walla's embellishments and the band's increasingly assured playing elevates We Have the Facts more meandering tracks, wrapping a warm atmosphere around occasionally aimless songs.
The album starts slowly, occasionally falls out of focus, but picks up in a big way with "Lowell, MA," "405" and "Company Calls" — all songs that would be staples of Death Cab's live set and something of templates for them for the next few years.
Ultimately though, the pleasures of We Have the Facts… are found in its slowcore indulgences. Fans of Bedhead, Low and Codeine will recognize their beloved bands' dynamics and melodic dialects lovingly appropriated for the purposes of what are still, ostensibly, pop songs. But the quietness wouldn't last for very long.