"The New Year" as written by Christopher Walla, Benjamin Gibbard, Jason Mcgerr and Nicholas Harmer....
So this is the new year.
And I don't feel any different.
The clanking of crystal
Explosions off in the distance (in the distance).

So this is the new year
And I have no resolutions
For self assigned penance
For problems with easy solutions

So everybody put your best suit or dress on
Let's make believe that we are wealthy for just this once
Lighting firecrackers off on the front lawn
As thirty dialogues bleed into one

I wish the world was flat like the old days
Then I could travel just by folding a map
No more airplanes, or speed trains, or freeways
There'd be no distance that can hold us back.

There'd be no distance that could hold us back [Repeat: x2]

So this is the new year [Repeat: x4]


Lyrics submitted by heartattack

"The New Year" as written by Christopher Walla Benjamin Gibbard

Lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC

Lyrics powered by LyricFind

The New Year song meanings
Add your thoughts

93 Comments

sort form View by:
  • +4
    General CommentSince it's the new year, I'll give this a shot:

    I think many people are wrong about the "no distance that can hold us back" lines being about a romantic relationship. The song is consistently referring to more than one person ("clanking of crystal", "thirty dialogues bleed into one", the whole part about resolutions). Gibbard himself revealed that he spends so much time figuring out WHO to spend time with, that I think the "distance" is simply referring to his closest friends, and possibly family.

    I know the overwhelming majority of this PERFECT album is about a relationship, but this song seems much more about his own alienation from society as a whole.
    aidenlipperon January 01, 2011   Link
  • +1
    General CommentThis song is mostly about the lies people tell themselves in times where you're obligated to be happy, like the New Year. The first two lines "So this is the new year/and I don't feel any different" sums a lot of the song up. The perception that things change and start over and get better after the New Year is a false perception. "The clanking of crystal/Explosions of in the distance" I believe is talking about fireworks, but the "explosions of in the distance" could also be about the horrible events to come.

    The part where Gibbard talks about resolutions, and calls them "self asssigned penance/for problems with easy solutions" is about how everything everyone wants to solve with their resolutions is so easy to solve but instead we have to condemn ourselves to these BS resolutions that we're never going to follow through on.

    "So everybody put your best suit or dress on/Let's make believe that we are wealthy for just this once" is about how people are pretending that things are going to get better but they're all sort of fake. At the same time, it doesn't sound like they're being condemned for their fakeness, in fact, it sounds as though the singer is joining in. The song is more a sad acknowledgement of the way we have to celebrate as opposed to a cynical barrage on people's happiness.

    The next stanza is a musing about how the singer wants closeness with people and that modern advances meant to bring people together just make them feel farther apart. This is very similar to what Gibbard talks about in the album's title song "Transatlanticism."
    epicandy5on April 09, 2014   Link
  • 0
    General Commenti can't believe no one has commented on this song.
    great lyrics and the music to match it..its got it all
    evlpenguinon April 16, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthis song is amazing
    taylor8285on April 17, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI saw them at club laga her in Pittsbhurgh a few weeks back. i never heard of them before that but i love them now and this is my favorite song, along witht the sound of settling, DCFC puts on one of the best live shows ive ever seen. This song is so pure and enjoyable, if you get a chance watch the video.
    l0ki86on April 21, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI saw that last show at Pittsburgh where they opened with this song- it was amazing. It is very uplifting musically. The basic idea is in the first two lines.
    "so this is the new year.
    and i don't feel any different."
    He sees past the crap about the new year being a time for change, to make yourself a better person. It is just an excuse to party.
    Chameleonicaon April 22, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentOh man. Death Cab are stunning!!

    Love this one.
    Andaahon April 23, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthis is the song that got me into death cab.

    "there'd be no distance that could hold us back"
    the karaoke cupidon April 28, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthe song is a little repetitive, not one of those songs that I could listen to over and over again and get addicted too, i love the lyrics though, i really hate New Years. It just makes me feel like crap, whether I party or not.
    noschoolspirit7on May 24, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentAy. . .where have these people been all my life?
    LoveMeMoreThanToaston May 27, 2004   Link

Add your thoughts

Log in now to tell us what you think this song means.

Don’t have an account? Create an account with SongMeanings to post comments, submit lyrics, and more. It’s super easy, we promise!

Back to top
explain