Friday, December 03, 2010

Album Review: Fran Healy - Wreckorder

Fran Healy is the principle songwriter of the Scottish band Travis, so it's no surprise that the songs his debut solo album sound as though they could have easily been included on a new album from the band.

The difference is the lack of the supporting players in Travis, notably the shimmering guitars Andy Dunlop, which leaves the arrangements on Wreckorder sparser, warmer and very moody.

Healy pulled some famous friends in to contribute to the album. "Sing Me To Sleep" is a stunning duet with Neko Case. The truly big guns come out on "As It Comes," which features a groovy bass line by none other than Sir Paul McCartney.

The bare bones, haunting song "Rocking Chair" features only an acoustic guitar, Healy's voice, a lone violin and a healthy dose of reverb to create a heavy mood.

The album isn't completely heavy though. Healy let's brighter tones shine on the song "Buttercup" as well as the funky, string groove led closing track "Moonshine."

As a whole, Wreckorder is another excellent batch of songs from Healy which display his knack for simple songs with phenomenal melodies, accompanied by his exceptionally emotive voice, will stick with you.

Fran Healy will perform at the Cat's Cradle on Tuesday, December 7. Tickets are available via etix for $20. The show has been canceled. More details are available HERE.

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