Release Date: Feb 10, 2017
Record label: FatCat Records
Tall Ships have never seemed like a band to rush things. For all its moments of arse-kicking euphoria, their debut album Everything Touching felt for the most part like something which was subtly crafted rather than borne of pure sweat and entrails. It's not entirely surprising, then, that it's taken four-and-a-half years for its follow-up Impressions to emerge.
Everyone has rare bands that tunnel deep into your core. Universally respected and lionised acts might break the crust of your emotional faculty, yet stall and break before they reach its epicentre; but there are bands - often innocuous, covert and personal - with the nous and sensitivity to drill precisely the right sweetspot, bestowing a collage of sound and theme which… click. Tall Ships, with Impressions as their second LP, are one of mine.
For Tall Ships fans it feels like an eternity since the release of 2012's 'Everything Touching', while debut EP 'There Is Nothing But Chemistry Here' is but a footnote in history at this point. It's not just time though that distances Tall Ships from these past releases; like the gutsy underdog in a 80s action flick, Tall Ships have spent the last five years in a perpetual training montage, emerging as a stronger, more evolved group. The twiddly, sample heavy math-rock of 'There Is Nothing…' turned heads in 2011. The delicately layered, heavily textured 'Everything Touching' temporarily cemented the band as leaders of their, admittedly niche, scene in 2012.
Life without a doubt provides its own difficulties; some greater than others but nevertheless we find a way to face those battles head on. Tall Ships' journey is no exception. Following the group's initial rise in publicity after the release of their debut, 'Everything Touching' (2012) and sold-out headline slots at venues like Scala the rollercoaster ground to a swift halt.