During the gig at the ABC on Friday, Fran Healy did his fair share of chatting between songs - as he always does.

Of course, he mentioned that their new ablum Ode to J Smith was up for release this week and hoped we would like the new material as much as the band did.  They seem really excited about this new record which is good to see, and it’s a shame that due to fashions and trends it’s unlikely to be heard by any large number of people due to a lack of airplay.

One word - Wow!!

I’ve seen Travis quite a few times now and in venues of varying sizes, and for my money they are simply unbeatable live.

They may not be the most fashionable band, in fact I’d go as far as saying it’s now strictly unfashionable to admit you are a Travis fan but I would gladly go and see them play every night of the week.

The criticism normally levied at their albums is that their music is too soft, too safe and too samey.  Anyone thinking like that should go see them live, they will rock your socks off!

Everyone has a talent or two, some are pretty mediocre at best such as being able to remember certain “entertaining” facts which they can bring up at every available opportunity while others may be good at sports which enables them to entertain others and earn a fortune in the process.

This ability must rank pretty high on the list of best talents to have, but for me the best gift to have must be the ability to write songs and music.

KeaneAs a fan of the band Keane, I was looking out for their performance at the recent VH1 Honors show appearing on the internet - and now that it has, I’m a big fan of what they have done on their cover of the Genesis song That’s All. Okay, it’s not exactly a big departure from the original but that’s not always a bad thing - and it may help introduce Genesis to a new generation of listeners.

Travis - The Boy With No NameThe first album from Fran Healy and the boys in quite a while - and thankfully it’s been worth the wait!

With most albums, after a couple of listens in quick succession then there are one or two tracks which you want to skip - then with further listens you find another couple until you basically end up listening to just the handful of songs which have eventually been released as singles! Since buying this album a couple of days ago, I’ve listened to it right through 7 or 8 times and haven’t skipped a track yet.