fri 19/08/2022

CD: Travis - Where You Stand | reviews, news & interviews

CD: Travis - Where You Stand

CD: Travis - Where You Stand

Mega-strummy-indie tedium from the men who nice-ified rock

Travis, blots on the horizon

It's a lottery. There are writers who’d see something in the return, after five years away, of this multi-million-selling Scottish four-piece. These writers, however, didn’t step in so Travis have been thrown to the dogs, a non-starter for both of us. Sooooo… there’s a song here called “New Shoes” that I wouldn’t turn off on the radio, a loping, pleasant groove, and another jangly thing called “Boxes”… no, this isn’t working, that last one is just mawkish, reminds me of early Sting.

No, no, no, not bloody Travis.

At the close of the last century Travis opened the door for Coldplay, Keane and the billion cut-price Jeff Buckley-ites who imagine falsetto voice-breaking demonstrates emotional heft. I wish that whole trend would fuck right off, wholesale. Also Travis made it OK for rock bands to wear fleeces, to be blokes next door, to be mistakable for someone in your local post office. They were nice guys. BORING! They undoubtedly are NICE but their existence makes me recall something Martin Gore said recently: “That's the sad thing today. Most people who get involved in music are so normal. It's supposed to be full of weirdos.”

Where You Stand is emotional button-pressing that requires no investment, stadium indie, a bit U2, a bit New Order, a bit Boomtown Rats (weirdly) and, of course that fucking Buckley thing going on. It makes me wish I was sitting shivering, crying, swearing at passersby, sat in a pool of sick by a bassbin at an industrial metal gig.

We music journos access bands and their new music via PR companies. Travis are PR-ed by MBCPR – a company co-founded by Barbara Charone, an ex-music journalist who was operating back when the Stones were in their pomp. She hung out with bands who’d have eaten Travis for elevensies. In my world her company are gatekeepers with significant power. Now I’ve probably buggered up my chances with Robert Plant, Madonna, Ray Davies and God knows who else, all because of Travis. Still, the truth must be told. This is dull, predictable music for squares.

Watch the video for "Moving" overleaf

Emotional button-pressing that requires no investment


Editor Rating: 
Average: 1 (1 vote)

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Why does the sub-head have to be assy? Sounds childish and not like something I would expect from a site called artsdesk. Sounds like an angry hipster with a bad mustache. It's not like we are talking about Nickelback. Some of us don't want to listen to balls-driven rock all of the time.

What a predictable putrid review, from what can be described as a middle aged man, most likely having a mid life crisis considering he reviews dance music and wears a cowboy hat just to 'get down with the kids'. Travis make perfectly good music. Not ambitious by any means, but very pleasant and somehow irresistable despite them (unfortunately) being lumped in with the likes of Keane and Snow Patrol. Some of us need a break from hard rock, and its always a pleasure, and a nice breather, to listen to the soothing tones of Travis.

What a nonsense review.

Obviously you hate Travis..but your review is just full of your MUSICAL opinion so yeah better listen to metal and yes music is for weirdos like you.Does that make you feel better? The band is a really NICE band as you said quite the opposite of your bloke cynical review.So go listen to TRASH now hahaha!

Why was he asked to review this album in the first place: "Thomas writes regularly for the Daily Telegraph and Mixmag. He has been a consistent presence in the UK dance music media since the mid-Nineties and has also written more broadly about music and the arts elsewhere. He has written one book, Rock Shrines, with another on the way. An ageing raver, he’s still occasionally to be found in nightclubs as dawn approaches"

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