The Delgados

From Academic Kids

The Delgados were a Scottish indie rock band who formed in Glasgow in 1994 after friends Alun Woodward (vocals/guitar), Stewart Henderson (bass) and Paul Savage (drums) were forcibly ejected from the band Bubblegum. Joined by Paul's then-girlfriend Emma Pollock (vocals/guitar), the band chose to name themselves after Tour de France winning cyclist Pedro Delgado.

Their first commercial release came with the inclusion of their track "Liquidation Girl" on the compilation album Skookum Chief Powered Teenage Zit Rock Angst from Nardwuar the Human Serviette. Neglecting to go the traditional route of signing to a record label, the band instead started their own, Chemikal Underground, with which to release not only their records but also other local bands. Chemikal Underground's first release was naturally The Delgados first single Monica Webster / Brand New Car. Despite being greatly overshadowed by the Blur/Oasis race, the single caught the attention of veteran BBC Radio 1 DJ John Peel and the band quickly became one of his favourites.

The cost of Chemikal Underground's second release, the single Disco Nation 45 by Bis, left the cash-strapped label unable to afford another release by The Delgados, so their next release Lazarwalker came from the London based Radar Records. Tempted by Radar to a five album deal, the band declined, instead poaching their A&R contact, Graeme Beattie, for work at Chemikal Underground.

Another single, Cinecentre followed in early 1996 as the band juggled work at the label (made all the more hectic with Bis's appearance on Top of the Pops) with several tours, and recording their debut album. The band released two more singles, this time taken from their album Domestiques released on October 28 1996. Both singles and the album were critically lauded, with the song "Under Canvas, Under Wraps" being voted #3 in John Peel's Festive Fifty.

Over the course of 4 albums the band's sound has broadened from a lo-fi / indie template to songs with a wider, almost epic feel. Their 2000 album The Great Eastern, produced by Mercury Rev's Dave Fridmann was nominated for the Mercury Music Prize.

After a brief sojourn on Mantra which saw the release of 'Hate' the band returned to their own label for 2004's 'Universal Audio' - which marked something of a move away from the orchestrated sounds of its two predecessors, towards a simpler, poppier approach.

The band announced they were disbanding in April 2005 due to the departure of bass player Stewart Henderson. The four friends will continue to run Chemikal Underground together. Songwriters Emma Pollock and Alun Woodward are pursuing individual projects, while drummer Paul Savage will continue production duties at the band's Chem19 Studios in Hamilton.

Contents

Discography

All records on Chemikal Underground unless otherwise stated.

Albums

  • Domestiques (1996, LP / CD )
  • Peel Sessions (Strange Fruit CD)
  • Peloton (1998, LP / CD)
  • The Great Eastern (2000, LP / CD)
  • Hate (2002, Mantra LP / CD)
  • Universal Audio (2004, LP / CD)

Singles and EPs

  • Monika Webster / Brand New Car (1995, 7”)
  • I've Only Just Started to Breathe (Chι, 2x7", split with Bis, Merzbow and The Golden Mile)
  • Cinecentre (1996, 7”)
  • Under Canvas Under Wraps (1996, 7”)
  • Sucrose (1996, 7”)
  • Everything Goes Around the Water (1998, 7”)
  • Pull the Wires From the Wall (1998, 7”)
  • The Weaker Argument Defeats the Stronger (1998, 7”)
  • Coming in From the Cold (2002, Mantra 7" /CD)

References

  • Delgados split (http://www.nme.com/news/111981.htm) (Apr. 8, 2005). NME.com

External Links

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