Written by Lisa Melograno
Travis, Scotland’s Brit-pop/rock band, released a simply titled album called 10 Songs today, via BMG. It’s been 25 years since they recorded their first album and their lineup has remained the same throughout the life of the band.
Travis is Fran Healy on vocals, Dougie Payne on bass, Andy Dunlap on lead guitar and Neil Primrose on drums. They have won the Brit Award for Best Album twice, sold millions of albums, and Healy was awarded the Ivor Novella, the highest honor given for songwriting.
10 Songs, the band’s ninth album is a collection of 10 tracks that take you on a nostalgic journey with piano-driven ballads and classic rock with a hint of alternative and folk/blues songs about life and love and their challenges.
“Waiting At The Window,” the first track, is a mid-tempo somber but pleasant tale about a break up that one doesn’t wish to happen. “The Only Thing,” a duet featuring Susannah Hoff of the Bangles, follows suit yet more melancholy. The harmonizing and creative lyrics make this the best track on the album. “You are the record in the record shop nobody wants to buy” is cleverly memorable and a perfect example of Healy‘s songwriting gift.
“Valentine” and “Ghost” are more energetic and reflective of Travis’ earlier days. “Valentine” begins with a slow-tempo acoustic and builds up to a rock tune with guitar riffs and a heavy beat. “Ghost” is an up-tempo number and is equally vibrant with catchy lyrics and a great chorus. The first single comes with an animated video produced by Healy and hand-drawn by him and his son that was completed during isolation.
“A Million Hearts” and “Nina’s Song” are both ballads whereas “A Million Hearts” is sincere and contemplative with piano melodies. “Nina’s Song” is a bit more upbeat with a charming melody and chorus. “No Love Lost”, the last track, finishes 10 Songs. It’s a song about depression and loneliness. Although it opens with the line “I woke up feeling shit this morning,” “No Love Lost” is a soothing consolatory with its pleasant piano melody and Healy‘s comforting voice.
Longtime fans listening to 10 Songs will feel a sense of sentiment, while those who have never heard of Travis will enjoy the timelessness of 10 Songs with its classic rock guitar, drums, piano melodies and introspective lyrics. 10 Songs is an impressive compilation reflective of Travis’ thirty years together.
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