Tall Ships - Voyages (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review

Tall Ships

Voyages (2009)

Veritas Et Aequitas

Tall Ships' Voyages sounds a lot like a compilation of song parts from Another Breath and Sick of It All -- something that can probably be chalked up to them having staple modern hardcore influences. Familiarity can be a warm selling point for bands but in Tall Ships' case it's only detrimental.

The songwriting on their debut full-length is competent enough and the riffs are creative enough, seeming to take nods from technical skatepunk (of all bands, Slick Shoes is named in the band's influence pool, and it actually makes sense on tracks like "Light It Up," "The Outcome" and "A Change of Heart"). But it feels like bands both new and old (see above) are already doing this more powerfully, both musically and lyrically. In particular, "HCP" seems a sincere ode to the hardcore scene, but it practically sounds identical to SOIA and it's still pretty cheesy ("From east coast to west coast, from Bad Brains to Germs. Circle pits, stagedives, singing every word.").

More promising bits come in moments like on "Pouring Down" and "Not Letting Go," where glimpses of epic melody and compassion á la mid-era With Honor poke through, the title track, which has some swift structure changes and the decent-enough close-out of "Where We Left Off."

Unfortunately, however, Tall Ships have nothing on Voyages that really jumps out and, barring marked work on their sound and songwriting, they may get lost in the shuffle because of it.

Light It Up
Pouring Down