The Delays – Faded Seaside Glamour (Rough Trade)

June 11, 2008

The Delays

Faded Seaside Glamour

http://www.divshare.com/download/4710547-d03

I cannot begin to count the ways I hated this album at first listen. An esteemed colleague pulled me aside during a happy hour or a drunken visit to the nearby record store a few blocks from the selfsame happy hour. It doesn’t really matter other than to suggest that I was resistant to his statement that “You need to hear this Delays album, it sounds like Stevie Nicks except it’s a dude singing.” Bryan, I apologize if I muddled the mixture as usual. However, I distinctly remember my defiance to the idea of a fellow putting on the guise of the ultimate gypsy, Stevie Nicks.

I have been indoctrinated to the gypsy supremacy of Stevie Nicks by more than a few ex-girlfirends. However, those same ex-girlfriends also attempted to convince me that Annie Lennox’s solo albums were masterpieces. (Editors note: I only believe them to be enjoyable albums in the company of a lovely woman.) When they brought up Sarah McLachlan as a feminine icon, I felt dirty, but said no. Tori Amos was a coin-toss, but I picked heads and I find the coin landing on tails much too often. I am getting carried away with myself, let’s get to The Delays, whom I love in a conditional way.

Lead singer Greg Gilbert has perfected the throaty magic of Ms. Nicks and wields it effectively and does sound like a fellow who can imitate Stevie Nicks after a whiskey and a few cigs. There is no mockery in this statement. I love this about his vocal acrobatics. I don’t even wince when the slow numbers happen and I think I am listening to The Wild Heart on my headphones.

Honestly, Isome of this is sheer mimicry while other moments really knock my socks off. The opener, “Wanderlust” opens with some well-placed steel drum as Gilbert swoons over every note of lyrics like “Can You hear that knocking in your soul/No, you don’t listen.” It is the theatrical qualities of his voice that make such lines work, just like a chorus of “Stand Back, Stand Back” worked. My parallels are drawn too closely since this band also delves into folk and Brit-pop. The other albums blow. This one offers an intriguing glimpse of what might have been.

3 Responses to “The Delays – Faded Seaside Glamour (Rough Trade)”

  1. greg Says:

    nice… they’re like a shoegaze version of the three o’clock.

  2. Marco polanski Says:

    Delays are imo one of the greatest bands of the last 10 years. The quality of songs is incredible. Also listen to ‘You See Colours’ and their latest ‘Everything’s The Rush’ If you haven’t checked them out yet then what are you waiting for? http://www.myspace.com/delays

  3. sandrar Says:

    Hi! I was surfing and found your blog post… nice! I love your blog. 🙂 Cheers! Sandra. R.

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