Inspired by John Lennon, Elliot Smith, Bob Dylan and Bon Iver, Travis Shaw is a UK-based singer-songwriter. He began playing music at age 10 and in 2018 he released his debut single ‘Moving Parts’. Known for intimate lyrics over moving melodies, Shaw has featured on BBC Introducing, Narc Magazine, It’s All Indie and several online radio stations. Now he is trying to reach listeners on a deeper level with the cathartic ‘Refuge’.
With a knack for exploring innermost emotions, Travis Shaw creates a soundscape for the grittiness of the human spirit. Nodding at the alternative rock bands of the early-2000s, Shaw embraces a heavier, grungier melody. Elements of Creed, Hoobastank and Matchbox Twenty can be felt in the pounding drums and dynamic guitars; however, there is a slight inclination to British indie-rock with the obscure English-inflexion of Shaw’s vocals.
Reminding me of Three Days Grace with the guitar introduction, ‘Refuge’ quickly draws you into a heart-wrenching swirl of sound. Sliding delicately down your back, the soothing sounds harmonically merge with throaty vocals. Thing is, while the sound is flowing and the lyricism meaningful, it is the true intimacy and intensity of lyricism that makes the song provocative.
Showcasing the depth of content, ‘Refuge’ has a complexity to it looking at the fragility of individuals. Filled with vulnerability, Shaw touches on insecurities, fear, frustration and isolation in modern-day life. Yet, while the concept has a melancholic feel, it is Shaw’s elegant execution of lyricism that prompts empowerment and sentimentality.
“This single is basically about going inside yourself to find peace and heal… We as humans all look for external pleasure to try and fill some kind of void like a quick fix band-aid but it never hits. When it comes down to it you are the only person who can pull yourself out of that situation.” – Travis Shaw on ‘Refuge’
Engaging, intense and slightly beguiling, ‘Refuge’ oozes poignancy atop an infectious melody. Listening to ‘Refuge’ is like finding yourself walking through a mire of despair but noticing the glimmering light in the distance.