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The Good Ship Is A Very Bad Ship

Written by Jason Strange on June 28, 2010

The Good Ship, hailing from that musical playground that is Brisbane, are a unique musical experience. Dressing like pirates and delivering songs like they were old sea tales, the seven come nine piece have built a solid underground following. This year sees the band release their debut album Avast! Wretched Sea: Tales Of Woe And Intrigue.

Co-founder John Meyer describes the bands sound as a “porno country pirate folk pop rock cabaret extravaganza, writing songs about whores, cocks, vagabonds, losers and bad lovers. We recently got reviewed as an illiterate version of the Decemberists, which isn’t far off the mark. Some of the more obvious connections are folk like Nick Cave, Bruce Springsteen’s Seeger Sessions, Tom Waits and Weddings Parties Anything, but then we consumed a lot of sugary pop growing up so there’s hints of Stock, Aitken & Waterman under the surface if you dare lift the veil.”

The songs themselves play out like old tales told in seedy seaside bars on a dark and stormy night where plenty of ale and whisky has been consumed. And while most of them are fictitious, there is a couple of tracks that come from real life accounts. “There’s true stories like ‘6000 Cocks’ which is about [co-founder Daz’s] friend who‘s a former prostitute, and ’18 When You’re 44′ about his mum.”

When asked about The Good Ships’ live show, John himself isn’t sure what to expect: “we don’t even know what to expect from a Good Ship show and that’s half the beauty of it. With so many nut jobs on stage and a sort of revolving door of members we’re lucky to know who’s performing on any given night let alone how it’s gonna sound. If nothing else it’s always fun and anarchic, and sometimes we actually all play the same song at the same time!”

What The Good Ship do provide is something different to the majority of modern bands; clever crafted songs that border on black humour with toe tapping, thigh slapping fiddles and guitars.

The album Avast! Wretched Sea is available now. You can download the first single ‘Harbour Fair’ for free here.

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