Album: The Boy With No Name – Travis

Album: The Boy with No Name
Band: Travis
Genre: Alternative Rock, Britpop, Indie

  1. 3 Times and You Lose
  2. Selfish Jean
  3. Closer
  4. Big Chair
  5. Battleships
  6. Eyes Wide Open
  7. My Eyes
  8. One Night
  9. Under the Moonlight
  10. Out in Space
  11. Colder
  12. New Amsterdam
  13. Sailing Away (hidden track)

I first discovered Travis when I heard their single ‘Closer’ on the radio one night, and subsequently found hilarity in their Closer music video ala Ben Stiller. After also watching the Selfish Jean MV on their MySpace, I started to get a bit obsessed with Travis, which culminated into a purchase of their latest album recently after visiting the dentist.

I’m satisfied with my purchase after plugging them into my ears for two weeks. Travis has a sound pretty reminiscent of other Brit/alt rock bands like Coldplay and Keane. Although it’s supposedly the other way around. According to Chris Martin, before singing ‘Big Chair’, “Travis invented my band and lots of others.”

Most of the songs feature the light, lilting falsettos of Fran Healy and/or Andy Dunlop, and are perfect for those quiet moments on the bus, or in bed. Although I won’t say all the songs are like that; some of them, like ‘Selfish Jean’ and ‘Eyes Wide Open’ keep your eyes, well, wide open.

Some songs are lyric-genius, such as the metaphorical/literal verse in Selfish Jean, “Hey Jean don’t rock the boat/When you can’t swim” and also one that speaks of the absurdity of the titular heroine, “You’re a perfect combination of etiquette and charm/You keep the chocolate biscuits wired to a car alarm”. Although lyrics from other songs can be a bit hard to comprehend.

Surprisingly, ‘Closer’ isn’t my favourite song in that album, although it’s the most well-known single; I’ll have to say my favourite songs in the album are ‘Big Chair’, ‘Battleships’, ‘My Eyes’, and ‘Sailing Away’; the last song is hidden in Track 12 with ‘New Amsterdam’. I only discovered it when I was listening to the CD during my afternoon nap.

If you’re looking for gentle music that could still be called rock and not pop, or an old band that sounds new, this is probably it.

Rating: 7.5/10
For: People who like alternative rock, Coldplay, Keane, British bands, and relaxing music.
Not For: People into hard rock, heavy metal, mainstream formulaic pop music, rap.
Recommended Songs: ‘Closer’, ‘Selfish Jean’, ‘Big Chair’, ‘Battleships’, ‘My Eyes’ and ‘Sailing Away’.

Links: – Official Travis website
Travis on Myspace (some songs available for listening)
Travis on Wikipedia

Featured MV: Closer


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