Cardboard Sailors is holding a release party Thursday at The Union, 18 W. Union St., with well-known openers Gorilla Party of Athens and Cousin Simple of Columbus in celebration of its first EP, Dreams or Something.
Cardboard Sailors is a local band that began in August 2019 with singer and songwriter Max Pelletier and guitarist Ted Wharton. Eventually, three more members filtered in, including drummer Ethan Hamilton, bassist Collin Spens and backup vocalist Kaycie Wissman.
Cardboard Sailors labels its genre as alternative or “dreamy” rock. Spens believes the band’s personal connection and love for music reflects through the music they make. To Hamilton, every member brings a different musical genre into the mix.
“We each bring our own personal flair while keeping it a coherent band,” Hamilton said. “For example, I’m a jazz and funk kind of guy, and Ted is more classic rock.”
All five members are students at Ohio University. Pelletier is a senior studying electrical engineering; Wharton is a junior studying finance; Hamilton is a freshman studying civil engineering; Spens is a freshman studying film; and Wissman is a freshman studying pre-med.
The band’s first EP consists of four songs: “Ghosted,” “Love Cage,” “Assisted Suicide” and “We Fall.” Cardboard Sailors plans to play all four songs at the release party, along with a few new songs not included on the EP.
“A lot of our songs are romantic,” Pelletier said. “Getting the girl, losing the girl, the girl is crazy … you know.”
Despite being a fairly new band, Cardboard Sailors has already had its fair share of performances around Athens. The band won first place at Smiling Skull Saloon’s Battle of the Bands and runner-up at The Union’s Battle of the Bands in the fall.
“Anytime we perform, whether it’s to 10 or 100 people, it’s always the time of my life,” Spens said.
Cardboard Sailors plans to write several new songs after the release of its first EP. The band hopes to move its presence to bigger crowds, such as Columbus, Ohio, Pittsburgh and Cincinnati.
“We’re pretty proud of this EP,” Pelletier said. “We recorded it in my living room, we put up sound blankets, we all saved up for microphones and then sent our songs to a young professional, Andy Lenart, to mix and master them.”
Pelletier said the band has grown show to show quite quickly, and although it is one of the newest bands in Athens, it has about the same amount of following on Instagram as some that have been around longer.
“We hope the EP helps us gain more name recognition on campus,” Hamilton said.
Cardboard Sailors’ first EP, Dreams or Something, will be available Thursday, Jan. 16, on streaming platforms.