DELAYS – Valentine (2x CD & 7″ Single)

Valentine CoverRough Trade RTRADCDS265 / RTRADSCDX265 / RTRADS265: 20th February 2006
1. Valentine
“New Orleans ‘ll tremble tonight, with bleeding hearts and swaying lights”
2. Someday Soon You’re Gonna Happen
“The trees are, my cathedral”
3. Shadows On Our School
“Speak in tongues, background noise, cracking up”
4. Talking Me Down
“I’m listing slowly, no peace in this heat”
5. Valentine (Freeform Five Remix)
“Just tell me the truth, it makes me feel better”

Delays had already ditched the partly successful rock sound with the one off single ‘Lost In A Melody’. It had a new pumping dance orientated sound with lush production. However it lacked the emotional depth of earlier stuff like ‘Long Time Coming’.

With ‘Valentine’ they have broken through to the disco sound that they’ve been trying for. It kicks off with a thumping synth bass line, then the drums come in and this is soon joined by Greg Gilbert’s soaring falsetto. It’s got hand claps, a guitar solo and everything. On the lyrics side, it tackles lovers separated by the hurricane in New Orleans. I’d listened to it about twenty times without the full meaning of the lyrics becoming apparent. It’s great when a song you already love reveals it has hidden depths.

‘Someday Soon You’re Gonna Happen’ and ‘Shadows On Our School’ are written by Greg’s brother Aaron and have a more conventional sound. They’re quiet, introspective and paranoid affairs that are overshadowed by the A-Side, but they’re well worth a listen. ‘Talking Me Down’ is a mostly acoustic number by Greg. It’s nice to hear Geg’s sublime voice tackling a quieter number.

Freeform Five have also turned in a brilliant almost nine minute remix of ‘Valentine’. It’s all pulsating bass and electronics and uses Greg’s graceful vocals sparingly, to great effect.

‘Valentine’ has Trevor Horn at the mixing desk and he’s also at the helm of the Pet Shop Boys’ new album. On this evidence the future looks bright for Tennant and Lowe.

Delays Website / Delays MySpace Page

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