Monday, February 14, 2011

Sing Me to Sleep

Song: Sing Me to Sleep
Artist: Fran Healy
Album: Wreckorder

I've been meaning to write about this record for several months now.  It got lost in the shuffle before the end of last year, the holidays, and then year-end best of lists.  Travis frontman Fran Healy released his first solo album last October to very little fanfare... though about the same was given to the last Travis album, 2008's "Ode to J. Smith."

I was a pretty big Travis fan back in the day despite the band's range being very limited.  They were Keane before Keane was Keane, they pre-date Coldplay, and released two truly amazing piano/soft-rock albums; 1999's "The Man Who," and 2001's "The Invisible Band."  There are great moments on every Travis album truth be told, and with Healy acting as the chief songwriter, it's no surprise that "Wreckorder" sounds very much like another Travis record.

Once of the things I've always liked most about Travis' music was Healy's voice, which on "Wreckorder" comes in like an old friend.  "Pretty" would be the best way to describe it, and the music follows suit.  Lead single "Buttercups," is a sweet love-over-money jangly ballad, but the song that stood out to me upon listening was a duet with Neko Case, "Sing Me to Sleep."  It has a dark, desert-at-night vibe to it, and Neko's vocals give it this haunting, beautiful quality... very nice song.

Fran Healy makes nice, pretty music in an age where nice pretty music doesn't get much attention.  Shame really... but here I am talking about the album some five-months later while I'm hung up on attention grabbing pop music.  Oh well.  This is a good record, take a listen to some of the tracks below.


Sing Me to Sleep



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