The Pirate Ship Quintet
(Rope For No-Hopers)
Crank this to 9.5 of 11
|    Editor's Pick
Post rock, Math Rock
Sounds Like:
Explosions in the Sky, Grails
We don’t usually refer to an album as beautiful, but we’ll make an exception here for UK’s The Pirate Ship Quintet’s Rope For No-Hopers. The five tracks on this album are rich with layers of many different styles from post rock to math rock; as it’s dark, atmospheric, soft, heavy and even sad at times; some may even call their style minimalist rock.

Opening track "You’re Next" starts with some light airy guitar work leading towards the introduction to the somber sounds of a cello. The tight and compact drums will soon appear; making for a wonderful build-up. Within the midst of this 11:45 minute instrumental, the cello maintains the focal point here, as it does throughout the album. The use of the cello is never overstated or under used, as it’s placed perfectly into the song structures. "Horse Manifesto" is crafted with some soft ISIS-like elements as we hear some vocals being scattered around here. The vocals are dark-like emo screams set into the background; it’s a brilliant addition to the album, as they could have easily kept this as an instrumental record. As the song progresses; the pace picks up and in the final minute everything comes together in a powerful finish. The following track, "Dennis Many Times" is bleak and moody, with the continued faded agonizing vocal style. This track is 10 minutes of peaks and valleys, with exploration and more cello work, eventually finding itself in shoegaze territory.

The next two tracks "The Girl I used to Live In" and "Doldrums" are too involved to breakdown. Both tracks embody the same styles as mentioned earlier. Their sound is honed and controlled yet expansive as the heaviness is used sparingly, but extremely well placed amongst the soft, compositions. Rope for No-Hopers is full of melancholy and aggression while maintaining a somber feeling. The constantly changing pace keeps us coming back for more.

The Pirate Ship Quintet has clearly perfected their skills. Every note feels perfectly placed and the attention to detail is astonishing. This is definitely an album that will become more deeply rooted in your psyche the more listens you give it. Let this one be a mainstay in your heavy rotation as it percolates and rises over your expanding horizons. Aaaaaaaargh!!  -  1/12/2014

Standout Tracks: The Girl I used to Live In, Horse Manifesto
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