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Last Updated: 07/01/2007 20:59:04
Delta - The Life and Times of Jim Vallie and Sweet Rosalyn
By Michelle Dee

Naomi and Grainger, have known each other since they were seven years old and now they are both twenty five, are busy promoting their first album. They play their own take on the soul pop sound with heart and feeling.

Naomi's voice on opener Ten years in Harlem is powerful, soulful at times warm and invites the listener in. The song has strong lines with a standout guitar hook from Grainger and a roving bass line that shines out rich and deep; kind of jazzy.
Ten years in Harlem makes you want to move, shimmy and shake where as Boy from nowhere has more of a gentle somber quality but just as engaging.
Recently the pair traveled up north to play at the acclaimed (by moi anyhow) Sunday Sesh night on Princes Ave. Delta turned many a head and many were coming up to me afterwards and saying how amazing Naomi's voice was and commenting on Grainger's guitar playing.

The usual hubbub of the Sunday pub was hushed watching the mesmerizing performance on stage.
A couple of covers were dropped into the set including a reworking of My Generation; it's so smooth it! Have a listen to Naomi's vocal power and deft dynamics and witness for yourself, this startlingly good vocalist.
Before this illustrious night of high quality acoustic sounds, the Delta duo had a date with the Raw Talent radio show. They played another track from the new release called Silver and Gold and blew the listeners away with the highly listenable engaging minimalist sounds. Not only was the music entertaining but the interview with the duo highlighted the rapport the two have and the essential understanding of each other necessary for such an act to work.
The highlight on the album, for me anyway, is the sensuous Nothing's As It Seems. This song has a beautiful piano intro and all though is probably the gentlest track on the album is immensely powerful and lingers in your head for days after.
What is so refreshing in this time of bands and egos was the complete openness and warmth in Delta's attitude and approach. Naomi commented several times on what a unique and special thing Sunday Sesh was. She pointed out that in Brierley Hill and the Stourbridge area -where they reside- such a thing would be unheard of.

She expressed genuine enthusiasm and joy at being able to sing amidst such an array of talented yet very different musicians.
It would seem that we in Hull, all too often, take for granted what we have.
The opportunity for the artist and audience alike provided by the Sesh and other nights just doesn't happen in many other areas of the country; which is why we have to hold on to what we have. We should value these nights, savour and support them, so that more musicians can experience what we have.

Back to Delta. Along with the usual myspace site the band have a website on which you can view the video for Ten Years.
It features the public house in which they admit to spending a lot of time.
They rehearse in the upstairs room and a large portion of the video is filmed in this open space. The video is stylized and subtle, using aging sepia tones, is an effective way to convey the music, without being too flashy. Look out for Delta's return visit to Hull early 2007 where they will be showcasing more of their unique Delta sound.

Check for release date and more info.

Album Reviews - Liv Kristine Enter My Religion on (Road Runner Records) By Michelle Dee
Since receiving this disc from it has lain on my desk at home on top of the ever growing pile of demos and promos. I have played it on a number of times in order to absorb what she and her music are about. I came up with synth led moody pop intermittently good. The first track Over the Moon was catchy enough for Read more...

Album Reviews - CrackTown - There Must And Shall Be Midgets (an appraisal) By Michelle Dee
A consumer of CrackTown am I, with songs irrepressible and wry. You would be mistaken, for the thought they'd forsaken, here's the second album we cry. Music to bring you out of your gloom, an antidote by the shovel not a spoon. They might well be misfits, there must and shall be midgets, hark the piper, calls a different tune. When CrackTown recorded their first Read more...

Album Reviews - Last Gang - Beat of Blue (48 Crash Records - Limited edition 7" vinyl and download) - Reviewed By Nick Quantrill Release Date : 30th October 06
If you like your guitar-pop with a bit of kick and bite, then you could do a lot worse than to check out one of Yorkshire's best kept secrets. It's taken a while for this debut release to materialize, but the slow and steady approach looks set to pay dividends, especially now that influential figures in the music industry such as Steve Lamacq are beginning to Read more...

Album Reviews - Delta (A.KA.) Naomi and Grainger E.P. By Michelle Dee
I received this EP early summer just as the days were getting hotter. I played it through and wrote some notes on the back of an envelope and then what happens, I put the envelope down in a pile and promptly lose it. It turns up, well half of it some weeks later and I spend the next few days staring at half of the words trying to remember what else was there. Read more...

Album Reviews - Screaming Tarts Volume 3 (20-track compilation album) Reviewed By Steve Rudd
Already it's the third album in the series, and Screaming Tarts: Volume 3 is both sounding better and looking sleeker than ever. Once again the creator and webmaster of the hugely popular music e-zine (that long-haired, good-looking fellow called Mr Martyn from Driffield, East Yorkshire) Read more...

Album Reviews - Mogwai - Mr Beast (PIAS)
Reviewed By Steve Rudd
While this ten-track affair might not be as exhilarating as Mogwai's 'Come On Die Young' masterpiece of an album, this new long-player - which is the band's fifth - is still an epic and emotional joy to behold. With a running time of almost three quarters of an hour, their Auto Rock tune kicks affairs off, being a subtly enthralling piano melody, before Read more...

Single Reviews - Ricky We Are England (Beatcrazy Records) By Nick Quantrill
This unofficial World Cup 2006 track was going to be the record that propelled Ricky into the big time, and kick-started a career for the band that already had promised much. Add in that the band clocked up in excess of 25,000 miles traveling the length and breadth of the country recording over 50,000 school children chanting the popular Easy Read more...

Album Reviews - How Long Have You Got? By Andy Stocks Reviewed by DJ Chris Plant
I sat down today and listened to Andy Stocks new album How Long Have You Got? Andy is a Hull born artist who writes his own material along with close friend Matthew Davidson. The music is special and the lyrics have a lot of meaning. None of this crap we are hearing in the charts (i.e. Who do you think you are kidding Jurgen Klinsmann) sung by 1966 legend Geoff Hurst. Read more...

Album Reviews - They Died Too Young - D.N.A Neglects Demo By Nick Cobley Pictures by Michelle Dee
Upon starting the D.N.A Neglects demo CD the first thing I noticed was the production quality which sounds excellent. With prices of recording being really high as always, it made me think they must have spent a lot of time and effort on this. The first track is Hanger Lane it starts with clean guitars, and I think I can even hear an acoustic in the build up Read more...

Album Reviews - Propaganda 625 by Phluid Skudakoi Reviewed By Steve Rudd
Following on from this Leed's quintet's previous album releases, Cynical Smile and Release, this EP is really more of a mini-album in that it's exhilaratingly comprised of three new studio tracks, three live tracks, one specially-recorded acoustic track, plus a secret bonus track that might surprise a lot of ardent fans - even if it's not a Phluid Read more...

Album Reviews - Chapter XIII - Dream Salvation (Level Sound) Reviewed By Steve Rudd
The debut single from this here Bristol quintet in the undeniably cool cut The Last Time understandably caught the attention of both aficionados of great music and A&R men in high places. Well, in theory such a single should have done, as should this full-length release that stunningly bears testament to just what this band is trying to achieve. Fronted by Gareth Marshall Read more...

Album Reviews - Lights By Brigade (Mighty Atom) Reviewed By Steve Rudd
Right from the swirling, tension-mounting intro of single-release Magneto, that proceeds to explode into a euphoric Emo-edged rock tune, through to the mighty closing track of this 11-song-strong album, there is one anthem after another after another after another - and not one of them is dull. Meet Me At My Funeral stampedes, Assemble/ Dissemble is a huge, Read more...

Album Reviews - The Voltaires - Anti-Love EP (This Is Art) Reviewed By Steve Rudd
Leeds lads The Voltaires sure know how to turn heads with their inspirational brand of indie-fuelled rock 'n' roll, with the three tunes that comprise this EP all being quirky, catchy and supremely cool in due course, right from the title track itself, Anti-Love, anchored by a rollicking riff, stand-out vocals and a classy chorus. Fronted by Gareth Williams Read more...

Album Reviews - The Leano - Steps To Leanoland (Colarj Records) Reviewed By Steve Rudd
The Leano is a one-man rapping machine with a social conscience and a hugely original approach to music-making. He might hail from London, but he wrote and produced this stunning thirteen-track debut album up in Hull of all places. The city is even immortalised in the acoustic guitar-accompanied Ganjaholic, a tongue-in-cheek ditty which wryly Read more...

Single Reviews - D'Ya Feel Lucky? by The Fondas (Levelsound Records) Reviewed By Steve Rudd
Swiped from their Dirty Kicks album, this storming anthem is one of the finest cuts from such a long-player, brimming with explosive energy, and locked and loaded with guitars naturally cranked to the max, resulting in a battering wall of sound off which the singer's voice-to-die-for valiantly bounces. D'ya Feel Lucky? is both inescapable Read more...

Single Reviews - Sunday International - So Calm (Future Butterfly) Reviewed By Steve Rudd
Should you be bored with the latest wave of rock 'n' roll bands that are currently dominating the airwaves, make a beeline for this hugely exciting band before the masses catch wind of them - for Sunday International sure can write some storming tunes. Their So Calm rock anthem, for starters, is a gloriously energetic tune that is fearlessly fuzzy, explosive and Read more...

Album Reviews - Waiting For Tomorrow by Soular Reviewed By Steve Rudd
Hailing from New Mexico, this top US band has been strutting its highly original stealth since 2002, with this release building on the reputation that their 2004 Time And Space record nurtured. Having opened gigs for the likes of Liz Phair and Longwave, they are already a pretty well known and hugely respected outfit, and now it's time for the good people of the UK to Read more...

Album Reviews - Under Attack by The Alarm (EMI) Reviewed By Steve Rudd
As with every song on every past Alarm album, every single one is a trail-blazing anthem. Welshman Mike Peters is, always has been, and always will be the voice of The Alarm. And what a soul-powered voice he has got, as opening tune Superchannel takes up where the previous Alarm long-player - In The Poppyfields - left off. Here we Read more...

Album Reviews - CD Reviews - Lorca (10-track demo) Reviewed By Steve Rudd
Every last one of these ten tracks is special in its own right, with opening tune Nothing Stays The Same paving the way for some grand emotions delivered courtesy of some beautiful music and extraordinarily touching vocals. Indeed, the opening track progresses from its lush acoustic guitar-based foundations into a majestic rock masterpiece, Read more...

Album Reviews - Dirty Days by Jaed on Instant Karma Records Reviewed By Steve Rudd
The Jaed entity is basically Vanessa Eve on vocals and guitar, backed by a bassist and drummer. It's primarily Vanessa's 'gig' as such, and she's clearly the driving force behind all of these eleven songs. Vanessa grew up in Melbourne, but her childhood wasn't a particularly rosy experience for her, especially when she found herself living Read more...

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