It's been a hectic two years for the Delays - splitting with Rough Trade and self funding a tour, before signing a new deal and gearing up for the release of third album, 'Everything's The Rush'.
"We were put in this period of being, basically, an unsigned band." reminisces Greg. "We weren't writing with any deadlines in mind, or with any definition of the band at that point, so we wrote about a hundred songs and funded our own tours. We got such a great reaction from the festivals and it just totally inspired us."
We were put in this period of being, basically, an unsigned band.
The new deal with Fiction (home to Snow Patrol and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs) was just one of the influences on the record, explains Greg. "There's a lot of lyrical transition, not just in terms of label stuff, but personally - there was a lot of change going on and relationships ending. One of the tracks is about dealing with OCD. But, I think that there definitely was an element of joy and an element of being freed up. We were writing from an encumbered, unblocked viewpoint and the melody has always been the thing that we were happiest with."
Recorded in Spain with producer Youth, the 10-track mixes epic keyboards and strings with guitar hooks and pop melodies. "The backdrop went from trying to create an atmosphere to having a readymade one." adds Aaron. "The record just sounds fucking huge and I think that's because of the mountains. We want to be as big as them, but I don't think we ever could be, because we're humans... but it just sounds ridiculously big - there's goosebumps all over it!"
"I think you're always affected by your environment no matter what you're doing", continues Greg. "If the first album is recorded in a studio in Wales with no windows, but the next is recorded up in the mountains with a panoramic view of Grenada, everything becomes epic, and we're a band made for the big stages and the open air."
The recording process has changed since earlier releases 'Faded Seaside Glamour' and 'You See Colours'. "In twenty days, we had eighteen tracks done, whereas before, I would sit at home and work out my guitar parts. This time I had to come up with them on the spot, so there was a certain amount of, erm, flying by the seat of your..." He laughs and Aaron takes over, "We never really plan on a direction anyway, it's literally just done on a basic primal level, the same as when we first started playing guitars or instruments. We never plan a direction, we just look at each other and smile, that's it, and that's what it's based on."
Greg considers the motivation behind self-funding their tours while unsigned. "I think the thing is, as proud as we are of all the albums, we still feel that playing live, we're our own best advert. I just feel that we can hold our own in any situation, anywhere and it's just getting better and better and better, so it would have been a travesty if we just sat around waiting to find this record deal. We just had to get out and play to people and that was one of the things that completely spurred us on, like I say, the reaction we would get. We went out to Mexico and did a great gig out there and that spurred it on even further." Aaron continues, "7000 people came to see us, so we were just chucking beer on each other and moshing for an hour and it was unbelievable. We were only there for two days though."
We just had to get out and play to people and that was one of the things that completely spurred us on
"If you write a good song and a melody, it resonate with people", declares Aaron, considering why the band have had such success outside of their home country. "So often, the reason why bands are successful over here is not always to do with the actual songs. It's quite Anglo-centric and boring and it doesn't translate anywhere else. Theres no bullshit with what we're doing, it's just the songs." agrees Greg. Looking ahead to the upcoming tour, he states, "I think this will be the best one so far because we're at that point now where we have so much material to choose from. On the first album, you're just playing your first album and it expresses such a certain point in your life but now we can, sort of, dip in to different places. I'm really excited to do what is essentially the best of the band because that's what it comes down to, as boring and dull as it may seem. Your opinions can date over time and controvesy can date over time and your fashion and sound, but the thing that stands up forever is the songs - even if it sounds a bit boring on paper."
"We've just accepted that we're never going to be bored and there's always going to be parties going on in our heads" confesses Aaron, on whether the band are in a more settled place now that the album is complete. Greg continues, "I think there's also a nomadic coil that comes hand in hand with being in a band, it goes right the way back forever and ever and ever, people with interest need to travel around and I'm not going to complain about it. It could be worse, people might not be interested. Things are getting more and more hectic, but I never want to feel settled in that regard, certainly creatively I never want to feel settled, I'd hate to feel like I've said everything I''ve got to say." Looking to the future, Greg states "it's just about this album really, it's about building it and getting everyone to hear it, it'll make people's lives better." Aaron concludes, "We believe that we're a fucking unbelievable band that everyone should hear".
Delays new album 'Everything's The Rush' is out Monday 5th May on Fiction Records.