Ships Have Sailed is the brainchild of vocalist and guitarist Will Carpenter. The band materialized in the waning days of his previous project –a band he had been an integral part of ever since moving to Los Angeles.
His decision to individually focus on new music again was initially daunting, but the risk proved to be invigorating and refreshing. Ships Have Sailed is known for their uplifting melodies, thoughtful lyrics, and a sincere sound touching on Indie Rock with an unabashed Pop structure. After sharing this concept with fellow musicians, Will Carpenter recruited a lineup that now permanently includes drummer Art Andranikyan.
Commencing their most recent single, “Breathe,” with the raspy reverberations of a saturated vocal highlighting the texture and vitality of raw emotion, Ships Have Sailed begins a journey of a luscious, slow-tempo ballad radiating harmonic excellence. Delving into meticulous themes of paying no attention to the demons we encounter in our lives, the special message of breathing through it all remains the lyrical motif of the poignantly balanced arrangement.
Continuously embracing their buoyantly authentic selves, we sink into our seats as we fully invite the immersive grooves to infiltrate our minds in a prevailing manner. There is beauty in the way that Ships Have Sailed transitions through triumphant soundscapes incorporating enormous drum hits to the stripped-down minimalistic ambiance that has you focusing on the finer sentiments shared.
“Breathe” is genuinely the sonic expedition that we have set our sights on as we board everything that is Ships Have Sailed. Their tone is authentic, they embody a realism that draws you towards their brilliantly structured compositions, and they do so with poise. With their fluent offerings of music that moves the audience, you hear the sincerity in the intoxicating melodies they perform. Intricately crafted pieces are their signature staple, and we wouldn’t expect any less from Ships Have Sailed.
Congratulations on the release of, “Breathe.” We hear so many crucial sounds bolstering this track. Could you please share an in-depth description of who makes up Ships Have Sailed, and how this band came to be?
Thank you so much! My name is Will Carpenter and I sing, write our songs, do our production and on stage I play guitar, in the studio I play many instruments. My partner in crime is Art Andranikyan, who is not only an amazing human being and a good friend, but he's an incredible drummer. Ships Have Sailed began as a small collection of songs that weren't a fit for my main project at the time, but I felt a connection to them and wanted to create something around them. As I was busy developing them, my other band started showing signs of a decline for various reasons, which was disappointing at first, but I soon realized that the new music was building momentum, and thus what I originally saw as a missed opportunity had turned into the right situation after all. Hence the name Ships Have Sailed, which is a more positive spin on the phrase "that ship has sailed."
In your own words, what does, “Breathe,” mean to you? What are you hoping that listeners take away from this song?
"Breathe" is the exploration of what our traumas, our secrets, and our inner demons can do to us over time...how they can isolate us from those we need the most, and how they ultimately have the potential to be our biggest downfall. Last year was largely one of isolation, loss, and grief, literally for those of us who lost loved ones, but also for everyone in one way or another, and it's for that reason that this song was calling to me to breathe its first breath in the new year. As far as a listener's response, all I can hope is that the music finds some sort of personal meaning for them. The beauty of music is how everyone perceives it differently, so for each person, the same song can take on a whole new meaning. We're all 'breathing through' something, especially in these times, so I'm inviting folks to reach out to me online and let me know how the song is making them feel and what memories or emotions it's evoking in them, and it's quite beautiful to read the responses to this prompt...I'm hoping to begin sharing some of them soon!
Could you please take us into what the creative and recording process looked like when bringing, “Breathe,” to life?
"Breathe" was a bit of a sneaky one - the idea (and most of the first verse) just snuck into my head one night and wouldn't leave me alone. The verses and choruses came fairly naturally, but I got stuck on the bridge, so I used this as an opportunity to bring in a new co-writer - my friend Kelsey Mira - whose vocals you can also hear in the song. I worked on the production on and off for about a year before I was happy with it. I really wanted to capture both minimal and also epic vibes, which is a hard balance to find and I wanted it to be dark and mysterious, but also uplifting, so I gathered all the elements, built out the form, and then I would take breaks to work on other things and keep coming back to reabsorb what it was becoming and make small adjustments. The mix was really challenging, but I couldn't be happier with the result!
How have Ships Have Sailed been able to stay inspired through the pandemic?
To be honest, I've been very fortunate in that way. I have a home studio, so continuing to create hasn't been a problem, and ideas and inspiration continue to flow. I've definitely spoken to some friends who are also artists who've become blocked, but I'm happy to say I haven't experienced that - quarantine has been rich with ideas and really quite productive.
What can we expect to see next?
I haven't completely planned out the year, but we are releasing a music video for 'Breathe' in the next couple of weeks (follow us on our socials so you don't miss it!) and there will be much more music this year!