Exclusive Premiere: The Star Department – “This Ship Won’t Sail”


I am privileged to have been asked to premiere the next release by independant Australian label Hidden Shoal, here on Crackling Vinyl.

‘This Ship Won’t Sail’ is the latest single from Hidden Shoal’s most recent signings, Irish outfit The Star Department.

The group, compromised of multi-instrumentalists Justin Commins (Kill Krinkle Club) and Michael Orange (Feather Beds/Soft Bones), formed in Dublin in 2006 and released their Flickering Lights EP that same year.

Following a short hiatus the duo are only now getting around to dropping their debut full-length record Pea Green Boat via Hidden Shoal, on July 7th next.

With its haunting opening chords ‘This Ship Won’t Sail’ sets out it’s melanchonic stall right from the get go. There is an obvious atmospheric element to the track, while the rather prominent organ notes gives off quite a pyschedelic yet brooding feel to proceedings.

At times the song recalls the dourness of Hope of the States, while at the same time still managing to contain the chiming angular guitar and indie-pop sensibilities of the likes of Field Music and XTC.The latter of which is more than apparent, when at the two minute mark the organ solo, plucked guitar strings and wistful vocal delivery combine in a way that highlight The Star Department’s penchant for writing catchy yet downbeat ramblings.

Have a listen to ‘This Ship Won’t Sail’ below:

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