Saturday, 1 October 2011

Belated Ships A Tall, True Discovery

I received On Tariffs & Discovery, the second LP from San Diego trio The Tall Ships, last week. I initially thought it was from the UK band of the same name, who we have mentioned on Sonic Masala before and are pretty great. It wasnt, obviously (the THE at the front should have given it away...), and the fact that this was initially released back in March filled me with trepidation. I wasn't disappointed when I sat down to listen to it though - far from it. Whilst distinctly American indie in composition and general structure, it is the interesting, moody instrumental breakdowns that add the guts and gristle to this tracks and makes them incessantly listenable. To hear that they have shared the stage with instrumental behemoths Sleeping People explains a lot there. The rhythms inherent in tracks like 'D Is For Dogs' is an exemplary example of this, understated yet insistent, and the precise guitar compositions are such a strong ethereal influence throughout that when it combines with Steve Kuhn and Kyle Conwell's hushed, often urgent vocals it becomes an organic entity. Part Constantines, part Parts & Labor, part Sleeping People, On Tariffs & Discovery (out on Minority Records)is an impressive release from an impressive act.

The Tall Ships - D Is For Dogs
The Tall Ships - Freight Train Riders Of America

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