Name: Silver Ships
Members: Chazz Bessette
Live Performance: Chazz Bessette (lead vocals, guitar), Phil Ajjarapu (bass, vocals), Various Friends (drums)
From: Portland, OR (formerly Austin, TX)
Genre: Psychedelic Folk Pop
RIYL: Harry Nilsson, The Band, Neil Young, Dr. Dog, Coconut Records, Hacienda
Silver Ships’ Songs From A Room That Never Moves is a fluid debut etched with pleasant crackles and intricately frayed edges. Silver Ships is Austin songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Chazz Bessette, whose analog home recordings on reclaimed and modified thrift-store devices belie a bedroom wizardry of the organic, a mastery of instruments that require breath or strums, plucks or strikes, with his own sturdy voice weaving harmonies throughout the tracks. Built on folk structures gleaned through a nostalgic rock and roll haze, brimming with pop infectiousness, laced with sing-a-long harmonies, and soaked in psychedelic warmth, Silver Ships’ debut release couples the sunny disposition of early Beatles with a Harry Nilssonic melancholy, and punctuates it with brooding Taxi Driver woodwinds rendered doe-eyed by fanciful vintage organ tones.
Bessette recorded nearly every instrument himself, including drums, bass, organ, electric and acoustic piano, acoustic and electric guitar, percussion and clarinet. Teaming up with co-mastering engineer Eric Martinez and assistant producer Kat Hernandez, recording to tape and painstakingly mixing sans computers, Bessette describes “wires strung over the mixer to different guitar pedals and outdated fx units and a lot of busy hands manipulating everything. This usually took 5 to 20 takes to get it right.” The result is the forthcoming 10-song debut album Songs From A Room That Never Moves, available September 30th as a double vinyl release.
Silver Ships performs live as a 6-piece band, with appearances at SXSW this past March in the unofficial Lucy the Poodle presents: Ice Cream Dreamz showcase with Zoe Boekbinder, Foxtails Brigade, & Young Girls, and at last year’s Texas VegFest (pics by Brooklyn Vegan), in addition to performing with many of Austin’s standout musicians, including Megafauna and Dana Falconberry.
Brooklyn Vegan captures pics of Silver Ships at Texas VegFest 2013