Travis is one of the few successful bands that have been releasing records for a long time, but have never delivered a really bad record. This is also the case here: the four musicians, active since 1990 and from 1997 with their first work "good feeling" on the way, let the time it takes for an album to develop to the full satisfaction of all the musicians.
The fact that you waited five years, became a father, live in liverpool, berlin, lancaster or commute between glasgow and new york, doesn't detract from the matter at hand. They take the space to be able – away from the tour business – to gain life experience as individuals again, which can be reported on as a band. The moment they come together, the old magic is back and travis do what they do best: write finely chiseled songs with ingratiating melodies on an acoustic basis.
They come from rock, but let it go from the first song "mother" approached in a leisurely manner. They are quiet numbers, now and then enriched with keyboards, which draw a clear picture of where they themselves stand. This album features compositions by bassist dougie payne and guitarist andy dunlop, who contributed equally to the eleven songs along with sanger fran healy. There is no change in song structure, on the contrary, additional aspects become noticeable, which the former sole writer fran healy probably would not have thought of.
For example, the record captivates with interesting observations like the one of andy dunlop in the song "boxes": in it dunlop tells how he watches his little son playing and realizes that life is actually spent in boxes all the time. Life for him is an ascending line that goes from sleeping in little beds to playing in cardboard boxes to houses, then bigger houses, until finally one day you are carried out of there in a coffin.
They have survived the britpop-hype
To single out songs musically is impossible with this record, because it comes across as if it were cast from one mould. From the first to the last piece, the disc runs at a consistently high level. Here are four people at work, who know how to write songs. And travis have survived all britpop-hype and all music-fashions over the years and deliver exactly the quality you expect from them.
"Where you stand" has been released by rough trade. The CD costs around 13 euros, the LP around 19 euros, the album costs around 7.50 euros as an MP3 download and around 15 euros as a CD-DVD combination.