Melodica Deathship are a unique band and not ‘unique’ meaning rare or special. Unique in the truest sense of the word. They are literally (and I use that word literally too) one of a kind. There is no other band like them.
That may seem a rather trite description of a band, but there really is no one else like this band. Their debut album – 2010’s ‘Doom Your Cities, Doom Your Towns’ (available for free download here) – was an album of rare quality and rarer invention. The tales of piracy (meaning ‘being a pirate’, not illegal music downloading) were set to an atmosphere of a ghost ship. Then, of course, you have the melodica, an instrument that doesn’t fall within the cannon of most bands, the melodica creates the perfect sound for this band’s stories. You can almost see the pirate ship emerging through the mist without even needing to listen to the lyrics.
Melodica Deathship’s new EP ‘Sunken Path’ is more of the same, but with a few changes thrown into the mix. Opener Standing on a Hill for example introduces singing (as opposed to rap or spoken word as filled ‘Doom Your Cities…’) for the first time. Electronic beats and loops are more prevalent as the more traditional instruments (guitars and even a harp) are moved aside. Yes, there are still pirate-centric spoken word tracks, but the overall effect is something different. They handle the change perfectly and the five tracks on ‘Sunken Path’ are all of a great quality. For those who are already Melodica Deathship fans, the similar yet different sound to ‘Sunken Path’ is a good thing and they will likely enjoy this EP. For those who found ‘Doom Your Cities…’ too obscure, there is probably nothing new for you in these five tracks.
This could be the problem for Melodica Deathship. Their sound is, at the moment anyway, too niche to appeal to a wide audience and unless they change their sound considerably, they will always be doomed to obscurity. Fortunately, obscurity and quality aren’t mutually exclusive.