We Were Dead Before the Ship Even Sank is a Concept Album from the American indie rock band Modest Mouse. The album was released in 2007 after a 3-year hiatus after their previous album, Good News For People Who Love Bad News, was released in 2004.
The album contains an over-arching nautical theme. Most notable in the songs "March into the Sea," "Missed the Boat," and "Little Motel."
The album is also notable as the first album where guitarist Johnny Marr (of The Smiths) joined as a member of the band. The band also teamed up with James Mercer of The Shins, who provided backup vocals for several songs, most notable "Missed the Boat."
- "March into the Sea" (3:30)
- "Dashboard" (4:06)
- "Fire It Up" (4:34)
- "Florida" (2:57)
- "Parting of the Sensory" (5:34)
- "Missed the Boat" (4:24)
- "We've Got Everything" (3:40)
- "Fly Trapped in a Jar" (4:29)
- "Education" (3:56)
- "Little Motel" (4:44)
- "Steam Engenius" (4:26)
- "Spitting Venom" (8:27)
- "People as Places as People" (3:42)
- "Invisible" (3:59)
Troping of the Sensory:
- Alliterative Title: "People as Places as People"
- And I Must Scream: "Steam Engenius"
- Anti-Advice: In "Parting of the Sensory":Who the hell made you the boss?
If you say what to do, I know what not to stop
- Concept Album: As explained in the introduction.
- Drone of Dread: The music drones a lot.
- Epic Rocking: "Spitting Venom" and "Missed the Boat"
- Four More Measures: "Missed the Boat"
- Indecipherable Lyrics: A little bit
- Last-Second Word Swap: Inverted? It's played with a little here by taking an innocent line, and adding to it to make it double as a curse.We didn't need the waterBut we still built that good Goddamn!
- Looped Lyrics: "Dashboard"
- Mohs Scale of Rock and Metal Hardness: Mostly a 4 or 5. Though "March Into The Sea" is a pretty solid 6, while "Little Motel" is about a 2.
- Motor Mouth: Some parts of the album, but most notably in "Steam Engenius"
- Neoclassical Punk Zydeco Rockabilly
- Precision F-Strike: From "Education"All this dog and ponyStill monkeys the whole time!We could not help from flinging shitIn our modern suit-and-ties!
- School Is for Losers: "Education"
- Subdued Section: "Little Motel" and parts of "Missed the Boat"
- "March into the Sea" features some very soft-spoken lyrics and quiet instrumentals inbetween the incredibly violent, and loud, sections.
- Surprisingly Gentle Song: "Little Motel"
- Word Salad Lyrics: Some lyrics are difficult to make out.