# A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

Travelling Band - The Big Defreeze

  by Benjamin Howarth

published: 15 / 9 / 2014

Travelling Band - The Big Defreeze
Label: The Sideways Saloon
Format: CD X2


Upbeat and harmonic rock-influenced third studio album from Manchester-based alternative folk outfit, the Travelling Band

The Travelling Band enjoyed their own little bit of 'hype' before the release of their first record in 2008, winning a prominent slot at Glastonbury before they released an album. Early records were never a failure, but the widespread perception was that they didn't capture the experience of their live show (indeed, their live album tends to be most people's favourite). Fifteen years ago, in the dying days of the dominance of the 'NME' and its 'build 'em up and knock 'em down syndrome', this would probably be when everyone stopped paying attention. Instead, 'The Big Defreeze' is the point where a loyal live following is rewarded. A mutual interest in US folk and country was what what brought the band together in the first place, but 'The Big Defreeze' sees them toning down the Americana. In its place come perky harmonies, big hearted guitar solos and sing-a-long choruses. Yes, there are nods to other bands. Songwriter Jo Dudderidge is happy to admit that, on 'Quicksand' “our love for Television and Teenage Fanclub is obvious”, while the open, untreated guitar sound is often a dead ringer for the Manics' James Dean Bradfield. So, despite the band having two main songwriters (Dudderidge and Adam P. Gordon), there is a cohesive ebb and flow to 'The Big Defreeze' that simply wasn't there on earlier efforts. 'Making Eyes' has the kind of radio friendly chorus that feels like you've known it for years on the first listen, while album closer 'Hand's Up' is purpose built for festival audiences. But, in between, '78.8%' is a carefully crafted slow-burner, as guitars are gently layered around a lilting melody and 'Borrowed and Blue' harks back to the group's early days as a folk/country band. Of course, there are lots of bands doing pop/rock with harmonies. So what makes the 'Travelling Band' stand out? Well, for one thing, they tour a lot – and clearly use their live shows as a chance to push themselves. That means they never seem lost for that certain something, be it a chord change or a guitar break, that turns a good idea into a good song. Second, and more importantly, they don't repeat themselves. Each of these eleven songs has something to offer for its own sake. That makes 'The Big Defreeze' a joy to listen to.

Track Listing:-
1 Passing Ships
2 Garbo
3 25 Hours
4 Quicksand
5 78.8%
6 Making Eyes
7 Borrowed and Blue
8 Sticks and Stones
9 For All the Fallen
10 Pinholes
11 Hands Up
12 Took My Soul
13 Pure Driven Chaos (Demo)
14 Race from the Start (Demo)
15 Hands Up (Acoustic)

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