American Country singer-songwriter Travis Denning has made a couple of trips to the UK so far, his most recent as part of the Introducing Nashville tour in October alongside Rachel Wammack, Walker Hayes and Danielle Bradbery. To date Travis has officially released three singles – Ready for Tonight, David Ashley Parker from Powder Springs and After a Few – along with a handful of tracks. Now he’s gearing up for the release of his debut EP, Beer’s Better Cold.
The 6-song EP includes three songs that have already been released – After a Few, ABBY and Tank of Gas and a Radio Song – and three new ones. Opening with Where That Beer’s Been, a song whose intro sounds a lot like Blondie’s One Way or Another, Travis showcases his tendency to combine Country sensibilities with rock rhythms. It’s a sound that works for him and it suits his gravelly voice really well. The upbeat track makes you long for a nice summer day in a beer garden and it’s sure to soundtrack a fair share of BBQs while we’re all stuck at home.
The three already released tracks follow. The stirring After a Few, Travis’ breakthrough hit in the US, features a driving beat with shimmering guitars while the quirky ABBY turns out to be a breakout anthem that packs a real sting as Travis dumps a girl and tells her he’d rather be with ‘anybody but you’. Ouch! Tank of Gas and a Radio Song is a breezy mid-tempo number that is geared towards radio play and it’s one of the songs you’ll find yourself returning to from this collection.
Title track Beer’s Better Cold is a list song where Travis reels off things he considers to be facts before revealing that a girlfriend isn’t coming back. It’s a staple of the Country genre so it’s not new territory lyrically but it’s a solid song. The EP comes to a close with Sittin’ By a Fire, the gentlest track on the collection. It’s nice to hear Travis’ voice away from heavier production and for me, it’s one of the strongest songs on here.
Beer’s Better Cold is a solid EP from an artist who is rightly creating plenty of buzz. It stays away from the pop-dominated Country that’s making up much of the charts right now and it’s sure to please fans of traditional Country and those who like their Country with a little bit of a rock edge. Travis is an artist to keep an eye on and I wouldn’t be surprised if the next 12 months are breakout ones for him.
Track listing: 1. Where That Beer’s Been 2. After a Few 3. ABBY 4. Tank of Gas and a Radio Song 5. Beer’s Better Cold 6. Sittin’ By A Fire Record label: Spinefarm Release date: 15th May 2020