Sometimes pop just "works" on a different level than expected. Not saying there is anything wrong with pop music in and of itself, but every now and then an artist, song or album reaches beyond the scope of its usual fare. Someday by LA's Ships Have Sailed is one such project. Assembled by hip-hop guitarist, Will Carpenter, the six track EP is a step away from what he does with his band 7Lion, and shows that Carpenter has other things to say that just don't fit into his other act. Will, we thank you for stretching your musical muscle.
Someday plays like a collective release, with each passing song acting as a weight lifting off of the chest of Carpenter and company. Most of the songs have a positive and uplifting feel to them, but they still pack a cathartic emotion that is missing from most pop. The use of synth and melodic lyrics that aren't typically found in hip hop gave Ships Have Sailed a more diverse pallet than they may use in their other bands. Each song feels wholly different from the last, and that diversity makes Someday tonally interesting throughout its twenty minute run time.
The opening track, "Midnight" is a soul-cry from a voice that is finally set free. The layered vocals and sequencing makes for an almost epic experience. The song could have easily closed out the EP with a flourish, but instead opens it up and locks you in for the rest of the album. It has "mainstream dreams" but still carries the indie elements that got them a following in the first place.
"Bring You Down" is another stand out as it takes the cliche song about a break up and turns the attention to the singer who knows getting back together would be the worst possible thing to do for the former significant other. Think "Moder Leper" by Frightened Rabbit. The use of harmonic guitar and crashing drums makes it almost sound like an Explosions in the Sky song with vocals laid on top. Something i've personally longed to hear for some time, and if this is the closest we'll get to the real thing, then it's a fine consolation prize.
Someday is twenty minutes of pent up exploration. Like a kid who knows recess is ending soon and wants to squeeze in as much as possible before going back inside. Ships Have Sailed has a lot of promise, and could very well break out as the next indie darling. Let's just hope they keep the raw emotion and feel that get them there. It's an honesty that's seldom found in music today.
Available July, 15