DELPHIC – ‘Collections’

delphicDELPHIC – ‘Collections’
You have to give Manc trio Delphic credit, they are nothing if not ambitious. They arrived onto the scene in 2010 with Acolyte, not a massive commercial success but critically praised, bringing comparisons with New Order (errr…not quite).  They return with Collections – not a greatest hits despite the title – and in their own words, ‘We get very angry about the state of popular music and we want to bloody change it. And why shouldn’t we?’  The thing is, after a few listens I’m still not quite sure how to get my head around it. There’s a hell of a lot to take in, with echoes of any number of genres; indie dance meets electronica for starters, with some breakbeats thrown in for good measure.  The best moments are the latest single ‘Baiya’, with Asian influenced beats and multi layered synths that stick with the formula that worked for Friendly Fires, Klaxons et al a few years back.  Another highlight is ‘Tears Before Bedtime’, a slow piano melody with a looping voicemail sample; its as close as they get to R&B.  The 6 minute epic of ‘Atlas’ brings to mind Empire Of The Sun, starting slowly until the guitar distortion drifts in half way through.  ‘Don’t Let The Dreamers Take You Away’ is a complete miss, a dreary ballad that shouldn’t have made the final cut.  Closing with an attempt at hip hop with ‘Exotic’ – well it was a brave choice and let’s leave it at that.  The dance scene here in Blighty is in fine form at the moment, the likes of Bastille and Disclosure are bringing electro synth-pop to the higher reaches of the charts, so it feels like Delphic have missed an opportunity.  Collections undoubtedly has some innovative moments but just doesn’t do it for me, the tracks feel too overproduced with a lack of any distinctive hooks or remotely memorable lyrics; which is a disappointment as Acolyte was a promising (if a fair bit over hyped) debut.  Insert ‘difficult second album cliché’ here… (6)
MICHAEL ALBERTO

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