Retrospective | Tall Ships EP
Tall Ships have come far since the release of their debut EP…
By the time you read this, you’ve probably enjoyed listening to their debut album, Everything Touching. Some of you may have seen them perform live at Leeds or Reading. In what seems like such a short amount of time and still manages to feel like forever, they’ve risen to become one of the best bands, both live and on record, in Britain.
Their debut EP sold out its first run before it was even officially released during their 2010 tour with Tubelord. It’s no wonder as they enchanted new fans with their enthusiastically idiosyncratic live performances. The EP itself is a great collection of distinctive tracks that are as playful as they are well-crafted.
‘Books’ is the perfect introduction to Tall Ships. It starts off slow, with the synth progressing at a steady pace before it kicks into fifth gear. This is a common theme amongst Tall Ships songs. The musicianship is impressive and there’s no denying that a large part of you wants to dance, sway and nod your head. ‘Words Are Pegs Upon Which We Hang Ideas’ uses samples of dialogue to get across the idea of words meaning different things. ‘Beanie and Dodger’, named after two dogs, is a whirlwind and a half.
My favourite song off the EP, ‘Vessels’, lends itself amazingly well to sing-a-longs, and as such has become the go-to gig closer for these Falmouth-originated, Brighton-based heroes. The lyrics speak of a doomed vessel, and it’s a poignant yet inspiring send-off. Death becomes birth. The artificial has become the natural.
While their second EP, There Is Nothing But Chemistry Here, showcased a breathtaking maturity in their approach to songwriting, their self-titled debut introduced them to the underground music world in emphatic fashion.