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Faded Seaside Glamour - Delays
Member Name: Andy.mack
Faded Seaside Glamour - Delays
Advantages: A nice Summer pop album
Disadvantages: The high pitched vocals in places may be too much for some people
While Southampton is probably better known from a musical perspective for the likes of Craig David, 2004 seen the Delays arrive to try and change that. This debut album was, however released on the quiet and the band were left to forge a reputation in any way they could. So rather than use the Pete Doherty method of attracting attention to yourselves they hit the road and supported other bands. This saw them gain support slots with the Manic Street Preachers and slowly their reputation has spread through the Indie music community.
I first came across the four piece around about a month after they released their debut album. Iíd bought NME for some reason and they were featured on the free CD attached to the front. So having listened to the CD a couple of times I decided to give the album a try. The album and the sound in general has been likened to the Cocteau Twins and they seem to have quite clear influences from the Byrds, The Laís and even the previously mentioned Manic Street Preachers.
The album is produced by a friend of the band, Duncan Lewis, with all 4 members of Delays also taking an active roll in the production side of things. While it doesnít seem to have the raw edge that debut albums would have had around 5 or 6 years ago the production values seem to add a little something to The Delays. The end result is a very Summer sounding album that really shows the band can turn out decent pop music. Of course while the production is good it isnít what really appeals about The Delays. For all the benefits it adds to their music it is quite clear that the bands musical ability is what really gives them their edge.
Whilst they seem to really draw on their influences The Delays have also started to forge a new, unique sound of their own. For the majority of the album the guitars take the lead but there are moments where the Keyboards are a lot more prominent and the album appears to have a darker side. It is quite a mellow sounding album and the guitars really give it a slightly bubbly feel that makes it ideal for those sunny summer days. The drums arenít particularly apparent throughout but they provide a nice backbone for the guitars and keyboards to use as an accompaniment. The sound works for The Delays and it is the musical side of things that really won me over after only a few listens.
While it is musically that The Delays really shine through I think that Greg Gilbertís vocals also add a little something to the bands appeal. At times they sound a little stretched but on the whole his vocals are pretty solid and really suit the mood of each track. At times you think his vocals are going to give way but he just seems to pull off the right notes to keep the track flowing. The lyrics donít seem to have any real significance to any major events but they all work well and provide a sort of dream like, non stressful state.
Like most albums Faded Seaside Glamour isnít perfect there are a few weaker tracks on it and there are a couple I could happily listen to over and over again. It did take me quite a few listens to really get properly into the album but once I did Iíd certainly say it was worth it. In particular the more upbeat ďLong Time ComingĒ really stands out for me. Gregís vocals seem to reach some pretty high notes and the vocals are really complimented well by the guitars. It has a nice pace about it that really helps to keep it moving and breaks up the mellower tracks just a little.
There are a lot of decent tracks on the album but I did feel that ďThereís Water HereĒ didnít really fit into the overall feel of the album. Itís quite a slow song with no real musical feel to it at all. The track seems to be almost spoken and although Gregís vocals do sound pretty good it feels like it is really lacking something and it takes a lot longer to get into than a lot of the other tracks on the album. On the whole though the album is quite good, there is room for improvement but as far as debuts go itís a decent effort.
The band have since returned with their second album, You See Colours, and that is inevitably going to increase the fan base. I would happily recommend The Delays to anyone into Indie music and in particular the more recent Manic Street Preachers albums. It is a decent album and one that has seen The Delays create a small loyal fan base to work on increasing. It has a real Summer feel to it and if your looking for some decent pop songs with a speckling of Indie feel to them then I would suggest buying this album!
Amazon Marketplace: £4.75
Summary: A decent summer album blending Indie with solid pop songs