Ships Have Sailed

February 15, 2021

Ships Have Sailed is the brainchild of vocalist/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. The music is uplifting and buoyant. The lyrics are thoughtful and conscientious. The sound is sincere indie rock with an unabashed pop structure. And after initially sharing it with fellow musicians, Carpenter recruited a lineup that now permanently includes drummer Art Andranikyan.

Ships Have Sailed recorded their debut EP, Someday (2013), with Carpenter acting as main producer in his home studio. The diverse six-song collection includes arena-ready singles (“Midnight”), acoustic serenades (“Clouds”), and explosive alt-rock bangers (“Better Off”). The release led the band to go on tour, play impressive industry showcases (SXSW, CMJ Music Marathon), and win awards honoring their independence. The promising buzz quickly propelled them to inevitably create a debut full-length album.

Moodswings (2015) is a cohesive release with epic ambitions. Every track emotes an unrestrained desire to be heard and enjoyed in the heart. With crescendoing ballads (“Drive”) and indie rock alacrity (“Boomerang”), there’s a uniform sense of sanguine sensibility. Certain tracks were remixed with an electronic edge by DJs (such as Dimond Saints and Mike Vincent) and collected onto the EP Re: MIX (2015). The following year, the band recorded acoustic versions of select songs and released them on an EP, Whispers (2016), along with two new originals. Praise of their next single, “Up” (2017), encouraged the band to tour overseas in the U.K. and Ireland. Their follow-up single, “Let’s Just Dance” (2018), was a superb collaborative effort with songwriter Robert Gillies (X Ambassadors, Bebe Rexha) and producer Wally Gagel (Best Coast, Family of the Year) of recording studio WAX LTD.

Carpenter describes the band’s moniker not as a pessimistic reference to the renowned idiom “that ship has sailed,” but instead a fresh, positive perspective on the unexpected outcomes of unforeseen circumstances. It’s an adage that can be applied to his own life of growing up in poverty in rural Vermont and being kicked out of his home as a teenager. He made ends meet by working as a dishwasher and eventually put himself through college as a security guard on the graveyard shift. And it’s from this period of his life that Carpenter recently reflected on to draw introspective inspiration. Thus, the band’s series of singles released in 2019, (“Escape”, “Stay” and “Skin”) leaned into emotive honesty and expressed a deeper level of sentiment than ever before.

Having dedicated 2019 largely to studio work, Ships Have Sailed planned to prioritize touring in 2020, and set out on their first leg (a 10-show run across the southwest with another duo from LA) on March 11th. Unfortunately, their tour was interrupted by the COVID-19 epidemic, which escalated quickly while they were far from home, and Will and Art were forced to reassess their plans for the year, resulting in their decision to release two singles ‘Rise’ in April, and ‘Low’ in July. In addition to the two singles, Will was excited to find that creativity was still flowing despite the events of the year – leaning into those instincts, 2020 became a fruitful year in the studio, resulting in a body of work that the duo is excited to begin releasing in early 2021.

“Between the pandemic, a polarized political climate and a brutal election season, along with many personal struggles, 2020 actually turned into a year rich in new ideas and introspection, which lent itself quite well to the creative process” says Carpenter. “I’m so grateful to have tapped into a vein of inspiration, and that I have the tools at my disposal to create music from my home studio. These songs have broken new ground for us, and reached into deep (sometimes dark) places that I don’t think I knew existed…and I can’t wait to share them with the world”.

Their first single ‘Breathe’, with moody sonics and a distinct air of mystery, is scheduled to be released on January 27th and will be available everywhere digital music is sold or streamed.

Official Website: 

Apple Music | Spotify Music | Soundcloud 

Video Credits: Ben Panfil

The official music video for our 2020 single 'Low'!

Fun fact: we actually created this video long before quarantine became a thing. We happened to meet a super talented new friend randomly at a conference...he loved our tunes and was looking for an animated music video project to help out with...the world has a fun sense of irony sometimes...