Former Dance Gavin Dance and current A Lot Like Birds vocalist Kurt Travis‘ debut solo venture sees him go in a completely different direction to what we are familiar with. Following in the footsteps of artists such as Anthony Green (Circa Survive) and Dallas Green (ex-Alexisonfire), he’s thrown caution into the wind by casting his known musical roots aside to surprise us all, and ‘Wha Happen?’ is definitely a pleasant surprise for anyone willing to give it a go.
Opening track ’25 New Ways To Regress’ is very reminiscent of a lot of Anthony Green‘s ‘Beautiful Things’ material – mellow, uplifting, and it just sounds simply beautiful. So much about this track alone sounds unique; Travis‘ vocals, complimented by maracas and a pretty pace-setting pause mid-song just sets up the rest of the EP perfectly.
The title-rack follows this, and it’s just a piece of acoustic perfection, everything about this is pleasing to the ears, as well as being probably the most conventional track on this album. However, the sound is still very much unexpected for anyone who has listened to Travis in any other act of which he’s been involved in.
The rest of this release hits a mellower note, as ‘How Are Things’ and ‘Let’s Remember Time’ take the pace down a notch and add a much more poignant spin on the overall tone of this EP, but they are no less brilliant than the previous tracks, with a pretty consistent – but never boring – sound. Vocal overlays aplenty give this releasen a full other dimension. ‘My Favourite Thing’ seems to veer off slightly by the intro, catching us by surprise with a bit of The Cure-esque synthesizers. However, it soon fits fluently with the Kurt Travis style, and sounds pretty incredible.
No matter how he has gotten to this point, and the history with leaving whatever bands he was in before this, I truly think anyone who hears this album will be glad of Travis‘ musical progression. Without any shadow of a doubt, he clearly has a firm grasp of his own musical talent here, and this is a truly beautiful debut offering.
Written by Gary Cassidy