I guess this is the first post of the new year! So, before we begin, happy new year folks! 2018 was a wild ride and I look forward to what 2019 has in store. So, off we go and today we have some Travis for you.
Years ago a good friend of mine went to an Oasis concert, his favorite band at the time. As with any concert there was an opening band and, although my friend found the Oasis part outstanding, it was the opening band that he could not stop talking about. The band was Travis and it is because of this friend that they soon became a band I would get to know and love.
Why This Album?
The first album I had ever heard of Tavis was the 1999 release, The Man Who. This album immediately impressed me was the clean and well produced style the band had. The songs were straight forward, unassuming and just presented you with a very strong collection of songs. At the time, I had been singing in a band off and this was a band that kinda made me jealous of how good they were.
Right or wrong, I typically judge a band by their lead vocalist and this is where Travis really stood out to me. Lead singer, Fran Healy had something unique and comforting about his tone of voice, an earnest and almost caring tone that made you feel as if he was talking directly to anyone who listened.
It would be a few more years until 12 Memories hit the record shops but by then, I was hooked. This was a band that I could get behind, one that wasn’t trying to be anything but themselves, one that clearly just enjoyed making music. 12 Memories stands out to me because, including being a great album on it’s own, it also happened to coincide with a major change in my life, me moving on from an abusive relationship to a new place where I started my life over, fresh and from the ground floor. I was lucky enough to have some good friends who took me in and helped to get the remains of my broken life from off the floor, along with music from my favorite bands to help provide a soundtrack to that period of my past.
At the time, the songs had a very different connotation to them, most of them felt sorrowful and full of deep angst. At the time it felt like me against the world but in reality it was me against myself. Over time, the songs have taken on a different meaning, telling me of a past that made me a stronger person, one that can (and has) made it through some pretty tough times. It is rare for songs to evolve with you over time and space but this album is full of songs that did. To me now, even the sad songs are full of hope for a time to come, for that certain something you are looking for. This is an album that will help you get through tough times and the provide you with a safe corner for which you can curl up and cast your fears away.
On a technical side, this album is immensely well produced with every instrument and sound working together perfectly. Travis, the band, is at their best here without a single bad song in the lineup. It is an album of pure sonic bliss, leaving you wanting to take it for one spin after another.
The opening track, Quicksand, is one that is, to me, one of the finest opening tracks I have heard. It is a song about how a one tends to drown yourself in sorrow only to keep sinking the more depressed you get. It is a reminder than this path is like quicksand, and will suck you in if you are not careful.
How Many Hearts. This is a song about searching for love, something that I did for years not understanding that sometimes you should stop searching in order to find what you are after.
Mid Life Krysis. Wow, now that I am there, this song means so much more than it did all those years ago.
Ok, Where do I get it?
No matter how you listen to it, give it a go. I think you might find something in 12 Memories.
Late to the Game 1/1/2019
Thanks for reading, If you would like to read more reviews I have a weekly series called Key Movies Of My Life that comes out every Thursday and also check out some retro tv goodness with the ongoing series Retro TV Reviews here. You can also find a few of my other Music Reviews Here.
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