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Vessel

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Vessel is the third album released by the American musical duo Twenty One Pilots, which was released on January 8, 2013. It is the band's first studio album released via Fueled by Ramen, and their major-label debut album.

Track listing

All songs produced by Greg Wells.

No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. Ode To Sleep Tyler Joseph 5:08
2. Holding On To You Joseph, Maurice Gleaton, Charles Hammond, Robert Hill, Deangelo Hunt, Bernard Leverette, Gerald Tiller and Jamall Willingham 4:23
3. Migraine Joseph 3:59
4. House of Gold Joseph 2:43
5. Car Radio Joseph 4:27
6. Semi-Automatic Joseph 4:13
7. Screen Joseph 3:49
8. The Run And Go Joseph 3:49
9. Fake You Out Joseph 3:51
10. Guns for Hands Joseph 4:33
11. Trees Joseph 4:27
12. Truce Joseph 2:22
Europe bonus edition
No. Title Writer(s) Length
13. Glowing Eyes (from Regional at Best) Joseph 4:26
14. Kitchen Sink (from Regional at Best) Joseph 5:34
15. Lovely (re-recorded version; from Regional at Best) Joseph 4:18
16. Forest (from Regional at Best) Joseph 4:06
Japanese bonus tracks
No. Title Writer(s) Length
13. Holding On To You (live at LC Pavilion) Joseph 5:36
14. Car Radio (live at LC Pavilion) Joseph 4:30
15. Trees (live at LC Pavilion) Joseph 6:10
16. Guns for Hands (live at LC Pavilion) Joseph 6:01
17. Ode To Sleep (live at Newport Music Hall) Joseph 5:32
18. Forest (live at Newport Music Hall) Joseph 4:50

Background

High-school colleagues Tyler Joseph, Nick Thomas, and Chris Salih formed Twenty One Pilots in 2009. The group released their debut album Twenty One Pilots. Both Thomas and Salih parted ways with the band in 2011. Soon afterwards Josh Dun joined the band; Joseph had been friends with Dun for around a year. Joseph first saw Dun when he was playing a show with House of Heroes. Joseph said that he "loved" the performance. The band released Regional at Best later that year. In June, the duo played their first out-of-state show to a group of 12 people. The pair soon gained popularity through a series of videos made by friend Mark Eshelman. The band played their last show as an unsigned band at the Newport Music Hall in Columbus, Ohio to a crowd of 1,800 in attendance. The band signed with Fueled by Ramen in 2012.

In an exclusive commentary made for Spotify, Joseph revealed details behind many songs and the album. Whilst talking about the song Migraine, Joseph expands on what it's like to put out songs with meaning to him, and how they connect with other people.

...as a songwriter, I like to kind of just emit some sort of message, almost like a ripple in the water and when I feel that ripple bounce off of someone else who resonates with what it is I’m going through and it starts coming back at me it’s just a really cool feeling of you know, I’m not alone in what I’m going through. —Tyler Joseph on song writing
Whilst discussing Semi-Automatic, Joseph noted that the album explores what it's like at night for him and goes on to explain this theme which runs through the album.
It’s very introspective, and I know I talk about the night time a lot. I feel like I listen to a lot of pop music today that talks about the night in a completely different way than I talk about the night. There’s a lot of writers that talk about the night as in like it’s [an] awesome time, that everyone’s partying or whatever, and usually night time for me is like the worst—that’s when everything comes out for me. That’s when I realize that I don’t really understand why I’m here or what I’m doing and it’s when the doubts happen. So a lot of these songs are kind of showing you the things that I’m thinking at night. —Tyler Joseph on the album's themes
Discussing Truce, Joseph explains one of the messages he wants the album to give to its listeners.
I just wanted to tell people; “hang in there, you know, there’s someone out there who does know what you’re going through.” I know that there’s a lot of bands that say they want to use music to help people and I know a lot of that might be full of crap. But if someone is encouraged, at all, by the music that I write, then my whole life will be justified, so I mean I would be crazy not to try. —Tyler Joseph on the album's message

Production

Joseph composed the album "not knowing whether or not people were going to hear it".

Recording for Vessel took place at Rocket Carousel Studio, located in Los Angeles, California with Greg Wells producing. Wells provided additional synths, keyboards and programming. Wells mixed the album, while Ian McGregor helped with recording. Mastering was performed by Howie Weinberg and Dan Gerbarg at Howie Weinberg Mastering, also in Los Angeles.

Release

In the summer of 2012, Twenty One Pilots released the Three Songs EP, which featured the tracks "Guns for Hands", "Migraine", and "Ode to Sleep". On September 11, "Holding On to You" was released as a single. On December 18, the album was made available for streaming via Entertainment Weekly. Vessel was released through Fueled by Ramen on January 8, 2013. The two elderly men pictured on the album cover are Joseph and Dun's grandfathers. The pair did it to see what the label's reaction was and when the label said yes the group said "Okay, maybe this is going to work!" In an interview, Joseph spoke on the meaning behind the album's name, saying that a vessel (our body) is an object carrying something far more important than the outer shell, and when we die, that is set free and lives on.

To help support the album, the band toured internationally throughout the year. "House of Gold" was released as a radio single on August 6, 2013. On September 15, "Fake You Out" was released as a single. On October 4, the music video for "House of Gold" was released. The video was directed by Warren Kommers and filmed on Will Smith's ranch outside of Los Angeles, California. "Car Radio" was released as a radio single on March 18, 2014.

Artwork

The album's cover features both Dun and Joseph's grandfathers on the left and right respectively. Photography for this album was done by Reel Bear Media. Art Direction and Design was done by Reel Bear Media and Virgilio Tzaj.

Reception

In May 2015, it was announced the album had sold 265,000 copies in the United States. The album has consistently sold more than 1,000 copies a week since its release. By December, the album's U.S. sales stood at 375,000. By July 2016, the album had sold over 569,000 copies in the U.S.

Credits

Credits per booklet.

Written and Produced by Tyler Joseph and Greg Wells
Drums and Auxiliary Percussion Josh Dun
Programming, Piano, Keys, Vocals and Ukulele Tyler Joseph
Additional Synths and Programming Greg Wells
Production and Mixing Greg Wells
Additional Production Tyler Joseph
Additional Keyboards and Programming Greg Wells
Recording Ian MacGregor
Executive Producers John Janick and Chris Woltman
A&R Pete Ganbarg
Art Direction and Design Reel Bear Media and Virgilio Tzaj
Photography Reel Bear Media
Marketing Direction Katie Robinson and Thom Skarzynski
Digital Marketing Adam Samiljan
A&R Administration Anne DeClemente
Management Chris Woltman at Element 1 Music
Legal Martin F. Frascogna of Frascogna Entertainment Law, PLLC
Booking Andrew Simon and Jeff Krones at CAA
International Booking Mark Ngui at CAA
Business Affairs Erica Bellarosa at Atlantic Records
Art Manager Rob Gold
Packaging Production Josh Skubel
Parents Mr. and Mrs. Joseph; Mr. and Mrs. Dun
Publishing
  • Warner-Tamerlane Publishing Corp (BMI) / Fueled By Music (BMI) / Stryker Joseph Music (BMI)
  • All rights on behalf of itself and Stryker Joseph Music
  • Administered by Warner-Tamerlane Publishing Corp
Twenty One Pilots
About Twenty One PilotsTyler JosephJosh Dun
Albums Twenty One Pilots (album)Regional at BestVesselBlurryface
EPs Three Songs (EP)Migraine (EP)Holding On To You (EP)Quiet Is Violent (EP)The LC LPDouble Sided
Singles Holding On To YouGuns for HandsHouse of GoldCar RadioFairly LocalTear In My HeartStressed OutLane BoyRideHeathensHeavydirtysoul
Tours Mostly November TourBlurryface World TourEmotional Roadshow World Tour

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