Thing of the Day
The TALL SHIPS paint more lines on your glasses
January 11th 2011
ALBUM: THE TALL SHIPS – On Tariffs & Discovery (Minority) – The Tall Ships' beauty is in their uncluttered simplicity, their breezy space that masks the complex details that have gone into making this second album so refreshingly uncluttered. Simple songs that have more than enough in them to have them more than stand up to lots of exploring and unwrapping.
The Tall Ships' sound is a very warm, inviting North American sound, a very honest open-hearted sound, just the honest pleasure of songs and all the things you might have forgotten to say, the things we take for granted. Some of it is very acoustic or quiet electric, almost folk in that alternative North American way, that beautifully simple way. It all sounds so unrushed and at ease, like they were making an album for no one but themselves - no schedules, no marketing plan or career curve, just a group of friends coming together and making music. They do threaten to get a little proggy at times, still in that oh-so-easy uncluttered way though, that we have all the time in the world – actually, they're very prog flavoured at times, always uncluttered and breathing in that Stateside way of people like Rob Crowe though. If there are little early Genesis or King Crimson references then they are mild ones somewhere in the detail of the construction and song writing, in there along with the touches of Codeine or Elliott Smith or the radiance of Rodan. And then Sharks Teeth Under Glass goes all cleverly complex and offers another dimension as they invite us down to their level and take it towards the delights of classic Battles or Don Caballero. The Tall Ships have a rich sound, a varied sound that always has the Tall Ships fingerprint on it, that always sounds like no one but The Tall Ships, they are just three people and they sound like three people really sharing a joy. Newborn Window is a beautiful song (whatever they may or may not be singing about).
say they’re “exploring the beauty of Sixties amplifier technology,
discovering what fifteen watts, a volume knob, a gain knob and a well
placed microphone can do”, that and some very simple, very warm, very
clever songwriting that will invite you in again and again… Come look
at the stars once more, paint lines of your glasses and play them as
notes; The Tall Ships have a glorious sound, beautiful songs, a
deceptively simple sound that has so much going on in it. We like these
Tall Ships lots and lots… Beautiful album, highly recommended
On Tariffs & Discovery is out on Minority Records in Europe and Third Sound Recordings in the US, release date in Feb 7th