Travis Allison Band

Independent release, 2001



As a supporter of independent music, has been promoting artists who send us their music. [Ed.'s note: WSVN Radio is Eric's Internet radio station.] For every 20 artists, WSVNRadio creates a compilation CD. One of those compilations recently featured the Travis Allison Band, described by Mike Joyce of The Washington Post as "Like a young Springsteen... and has something that sets it apart from most of the bar-band competition -- songs. Real songs. Not just party anthems or thinly disguised cover tunes, but fully realized and often ambitious songs."my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

Allison's fourth album, Color, features the song "Long Time Gone," which was personally selected by Allison for the WSVNRadio Volume 5 compilation. An excellent choice, but really, there isn't a bad song on this release, as Allison and band create a great blend of rock that will easily find favor with music fans.

The first cut, "Drivin,'" could be called Americana music, comparable to the likes of John Mellencamp or maybe Bruce Springsteen. On a much better note, "Grey Skies" is very soulful, an easy hit for Top 40 Radio and Americana-formatted radio stations, given the chance. "Blue" is another entertaining song, and could be another popular hit.

"Maybe Later" has a rougher, harder-edged sound, almost bluesy; it's a great rock song, and also very impressive. Like "Grey Skies," "Let Me Down Easy" is another soulful song, very pleasant on the ears, and a great song to listen to over and over. "Incident On 29th St." agains draws Mellencamp/Americana comparisons, yet Allison has a style of his own with his guitar playing and vocals.

"King Stanley Chester" is quite different, having an almost-jazzy sound, with some progressive rock piano riffs, and Allison's vocals are rough-edged in some places, almost like Tom Waits. All in all, it's another entertaining tune that can easily grow on the listener. Another soulful, easy tune is "Black Hole," and the album's closing tune, "Ghosts Of My Town" may have a slight resemblance to Springsteen, though it's Travis Allison's very own style.

Being compared to the likes of Mellencamp and Springsteen is an honor, yet the Travis Allison Band has a style and sound of their own, very different than those they're compared to. With a unique voice and a truly remarkable band behind it, Travis Allison Band's Color displays a great color of sound that should get a lot of attention from the major labels. It's also interesting to hear their previous releases. Color and other albums by the Travis Allison Band can be located at their Web site.

Rating: A

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