When Death Cab for Cutie guitarist/producer Chris Walla woke up on Monday, his "To Do" list probably read something like this:
1. Call MTV News to discuss upcoming, long-delayed solo record.
2. Call U.S. Department of Homeland Security to discuss seizure of hard drive containing said long-delayed solo record.
3. Head into town for weekly tuque fitting.
Yes, it seems that recently, Walla's solo record (which has been scheduled to come out at various points over the past, well, four years) took another step toward oblivion when the master hard drive — containing all song files — was confiscated by Homeland Security at the Canadian border, for reasons not abundantly clear, and sent to the department's computer-forensics division for further inspection.
If it sounds like a huge joke, Walla ensures you it isn't.
Apparently they confiscated his computer as it was crossing the border from Canada, and he can't get it back!
And though his song files might have disappeared into a web of government bureaucracy, Walla does still have the tapes containing all his songs, which he's now trying to master and mix on his own in order to have the record out — Lord willin' — in January.
"Luckily, the tapes are Plan B, so while I'm bummed about the whole thing, it could be a whole lot worse," he laughed. "I still get to play music. I mean, I'm not at Guantánamo or anything like that. I mean, my drive might be. They could be water-boarding my drive for all I know."