Universal Audio - The Delgados
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Metascore
82

Universal acclaim - based on 17 Critics What's this?

User Score
9.3

Universal acclaim- based on 8 Ratings

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  • Summary: The fifth and final album from The Delgados (released on the band's own Chemikal Underground label) was co-produced with Tony Doogan. It ditches the strings of its orchestral predecessor, 'Hate,' to take a much poppier approach.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 16 out of 17
  2. Negative: 0 out of 17
  1. They've truly hit their stride on Universal Audio.
  2. It all sounds nice enough to start with, but as you hear it more and more you love it more and more, the simple charms showing themselves to be more and more complicated but no less delightful.
  3. The listener gets acoustic ballads, guitar-driven rock exercises, poppy refrains, and jazz-inflected asides in a single package, and at no point does it really feel that the Scottish quartet is overextending itself or sacrificing the vitality of its work for the ability to slap the name of another sonic digression on the board.
  4. If you like your indie rock sweet and sophisticated with undertones of despair, you'll want to cuddle up with Universal Audio.
  5. Other than the minor quibble that there's not as many immediately bracing hooks as on past efforts, Universal Audio has very little to apologize for.
  6. What remains is pure, unspoilt guitar-pop genius that demands to be marvelled at. [18 Sep 2004, p.65]
  7. Melodies are practically nonexistent, leaving the music almost completely ignorable.

See all 17 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 7
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 7
  3. Negative: 0 out of 7
  1. RyanH
    Mar 3, 2005
    10
    I didn't think they could top Hate, but they may have done it. The Delgados are the masters of dark, melodic music. While this album is less dark than Hate, it still retains a that bleak, almost spooky feeling that sets the Delgados apart from other top notch pop artists. The two exceptions to this, Everybody Come Down and Girls of Valour, are so catchy and well-written that their unremarkable style is easily forgivable. Despite being a relatively straight up pop record (the strings that lent Hate such sweeping grandeur are mostly missing) repeated listens richly reward. This band is severely underrated. Expand
  2. angelag
    Feb 19, 2005
    10
    UNIVERSAL AUDIO an album of true understated beauty. GENIUS
  3. [Anonymous]
    Oct 2, 2004
    9
    A substantial departure from The Great Eastern and Hate, but undoubtedly a fantastic album. The Delgados have acheived the elegant and pulsing orchestrations from their previous two albums but with the more raw instrumentation from Peloton. If this album has a downside, it's that it comes off as poppy and unmemorable upon first listen, while subsequent listenings reveal its depth. Expand
  4. DanielP
    Sep 29, 2004
    9
    A departure from their last two albums. It may seem like a simple pop album, but it's far from that. There is amazing depth here. The Delgados are a tremendously underated group, who with this album have shown how talented they really are. A very good record that will hold up quite nicely. Expand
  5. DanB.
    May 5, 2005
    9
    I've listened to it six times in a row now and it's getting better each time.
  6. AliC
    Jul 14, 2005
    9
    Predicatably, The Delgados, one of Britains most consistently brilliant (and consistently underrated) bands strike gold once again. The Great Eastern remains my favourite record by a British group, but this comes damn close. What's so great about the Delgados is the way each new album strikes off in a new direction, whilst retaining they're amazing song writing abilities and superb arrangements. They've even got a killer guitar solo (well, almost) on 'Everyone Come Down' my favourite summer song of 2004. Best track, though, is 'Sink or Swim'. If they're ever in your town, see them live: Emma Pollock, for such a wee lass, belts them out, and they are incredibly tight. Expand
  7. DavidG
    Sep 28, 2004
    8
    The Delgados make excellent pop records. This, their fifth if memory serves me correctly, is a breath of fresh air after their recent string-laden epic releases. Although not immediately obvious the songs collected together here have wonderfully subtle arrangements which grow with time - especially the beautiful second half of the album. Like your pop with a dash of intelligence, a whole heap of tune and lyrics so bleak it makes Morrissey sound like a kids party entertainer? Yes? Well this album is highly recommended. Expand