Words by William Woodward
Air Traffic – ‘No More Running Away’
Release – 24th September 2007
Air Traffic was the combination of lead singer Chris Wall and David Ryan Jordan, Jim Maddock and Tom Pritchard. The band formed in Bournemouth in 2003.
They appeared at exactly the wrong time. With Keane and other piano led ‘poppier’ acts topping the charts, Air Traffic were bundled into this group. Whilst this may have shifted a few extra albums off the shelves, it did nothing but totally allow for the disregard of the band’s uniqueness and their more traditional indie roots. The album was criminally over-compared and listed with its contemporaries, with reviews of the album widely referring the same non-associated bands. The BBC described them as having ‘a knack of writing songs that remind you just a little bit of something you have heard before’.
I always thought (and still do) that Air Traffic were actually very good.
Whilst ‘’Shooting Star’ was a powerful and emotive radio friendly hit, the variation in styles and themes on the album really demonstrated a band with a lot more to offer. ‘No More Running Away’ revealed all of the hallmarks of a classic indie anthem.
Whilst the steady drums and taps create a fantastic rhythm base, the piano adds an almost spectral sense of subtlety. The ghostly repetitive chorus lyrics ‘No More Running Away’ are superb, anthemic and deeply memorable. There is plenty of opportunity for Chris Wall to show off his vocal range, but also for the band to take the track from a piano based almost ballad to a powerful alt guitar track, with notable solos and strong riffs.
The Times seemed to be on the ball which its 5/5 rating for the album Your Fractured Life – ‘Performed with precision, conviction, and, best of all, a poppy conciseness, this album is that often mentioned, rarely sighted thing: an emotional rollercoaster ride’.
Perhaps even NME may have got their review right for once, ending with the phrase ‘Air Traffic are frivolous, fun and far better than Maroon 5’.
Verdict – 9/10 cracking anthem credentials
Fact – Air Traffic were one of ten nominees for the 2007 Xfm New Music Award.