Travis hit the road across the UK in celebration of the milestone 20th anniversary of their seminal album The Man Who.
Tonight Travis makes a welcome return to the North East of England for a sold-out show at the Newcastle City Hall. This being a venue which the band has played many times throughout the career. Frontman Fran Healy, who is sporting a black kilt this evening, has a fondness for Newcastle as it reminds him a lot of his native Glasgow in that the locals are not afraid to have a good time, and that’s certainly the case this evening.
Of course, The Man Who was the second studio album to be released by the Scottish indie-rock outfit. Their sophomore release is one of the most successful British albums of the last 20 years achieving platinum certification as well as an astonishing 11 weeks at Number 1, selling nearly 3 million copies.
Back in 1999 when The Man Who was released there was still a real romanticism about going to your local record store, picking up a copy of your favourite band’s latest album, taking it home and playing it none stop whilst at the same time pouring over the album artwork, lyrics and sleeve notes.
In this day and age and with the advent of streaming music fans appear to consume songs rather than albums; a rather sad state of affairs indeed. This evening Travis transports their fans back to those simpler times by giving them the opportunity to hear this classic album performed in full and as the artist intended.
From the moment Travis takes to the stage with “Writing To Reach You”, it’s obvious just how much this album means to those in attendance. The fans sing every word wholeheartedly from the off, almost acting like an army of backing vocalists as the band carry the crowd through hit singles such as “Driftwood”, “Turn” and “Why Does It Always Rain On Me”.
The beauty of tonight’s show is not just the music, but also the insightful onstage banter. Who would have thought that “Why Does It Always Rain On Me” was about the inclement weather encountered by Fran whilst on a summer holiday, or whilst touring with Oasis in ’97 that an impromptu dressing room performance of “Luv” would move Liam Gallagher to tears.
Performing the album in its original running order results in the almost 50-minute The Man Who segment of the show concluding with an incredible airing of “Slide Show” with the addition of bonus track “Blue Flashing Light”.
However, the band aren’t done just quite yet. The cherry on the top of tonight’s musical feast being a nine-song encore featuring a whole host of the band’s greatest hits. This includes a spellbinding rendition of “Love Will Come Through”, fan favourite “Good Feeling” along with the classic “All I Want To Do Is Rock”. Before the latter of which, Fran declares that if Travis was a country, that song would be their national anthem, and who could argue with that.
The approach taken by Travis to this tour is certainly refreshing, nostalgic and most importantly incredibly enjoyable. The Man Who has aged just like a fine wine and tonight once again the British quartet lifts the roof off Newcastle’s most beloved concert hall.
Event Date: 15-Dec-2018