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4.2 out of 5 stars
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on 11 January 2010
The recent resurgence of electronic music has been an interesting one to observe. It has manifested itself in a variety of forms. Initially a few years ago there were artists like Klaxons, Shiny Toy Guns and CSS who balanced the use of guitars, synths and various effects and samples. Then more recently Friendly Fires and Late of the Pier continued the trend before it was overtaken by a plethora of female vocalists to varrying degrees of success. Now though Delphic are taking it back for the bands.

Their debut album, `Acolyte', has been heralded as "the first great album of the decade" and has been compared to early New Order. I am as of yet unconvinced by both of these statements, but it is none the less a good offering. The whole album does run on an almost constant high from start to finish with glittering synths and crisp vocal harmonies. But if you peel off this glossy pop film there is actually something quite interesting underneath. They haven't just confined themselves to making radio friendly chart fillers that could have been oh so simple. Instead there is more focus on the actual music that drives the whole the beast. `Red Lights' and the title track are both prime examples of this where the clicking and bouncing rhythms take centre stage for much of the track and the vocals are used more as an instrument. Obviously there are also moments of pure pop with tracks like `Doubt' but because of the quality of the music underneath these also stand up to scrutiny.

Delphic then have produced an intriguing album with many very nice moments of both pop, and intelligent dance. It is well worth a listen as gems can be found within.
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on 13 January 2010
Too much has been made of Delphic's supposed debt to New Order . Sure their are echoes, but which British dance act of the past ten years hasn't been influenced by our most criminally under rated dance band? On 'Acolyte' Delphic show that they've got much more to offer than mere pastiche. Their debut rattles, shakes and pulsates to its own internal logic. Played loud it's a party on its own, played quiet it has the depth and subtely to keep bringing you back time and again. There's a real emotional pull to songs such as 'Submission' and the more upbeat songs like 'Acolyte' and 'This Momentary' get you on your feet.

Get yourself a big PA system, flick on the lasers and lose yourself in the euphoria.
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on 1 August 2014
Someone lent me this a few years ago and I thought it was a fabulous album. It reminded me of a modern New Order and there's some really decent tracks on there. At £3 to own it's a bargain and something that's still in my top 10 car CD player.
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I needed little convincing about this very fine album.
One listen and I was hooked. It's addictive stuff!

The ten compositions in this collection form a
coherently uplifting sonic experience.

Messrs Boardman, Cocksedge, Cook and Hadley have
concocted a strong musical identity which manages
to combine the best of what they have learned from
the past with their own uniquely imaginative hallmark.

A dense but sharply-focussed amagamation of sparkling,
luminescent synths, driving dance-friendly rhythms and
intelligently constructed vocal melodies and harmonies.

The marvellous 'Red Lights' positively glows with
incandescent energy. Rushing along like a boisterous
puppy on a lead, it can barely contain itself!

The spirit of Pet Shop Boys occasionally smiles from the wings.
Both 'This Momentary' and the beautiful 'Acolyte' owe a
not insignificant debt to Mr Tennant and Mr Lowe's legacy
but the influence in worn lightly and with obvious affection.

'Counterpoint' is arguably the project's highpoint.
Each time I have listened to it my heart beats faster!
The raucous enthusiasm generated by this music is truly uplifting.
Chiming guitar, wildly clattering percussion, a madly spiraling
synth ostinato and the ecstatic central vocal performance catapault
this momentous composition out into the spaces between the stars!

Coming in at less that two minutes the dreamlike 'Ephemera' is,
none-the-less, a haunting and affecting little miniature.

Final track 'Remain' delivers yet another big tune and
winds up this terrific debut album in very fine style.

'Acolyte' is a startling achievement by any standards.
Delphic are to be warmly congratulated for their labours!

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on 11 January 2010
This album I have being looking forward to for an absolute age. I am certainly in the majority who think this will be one of the greatest bands and album of the year, and what a great start to the new decade. This album has rekindled the passionate love affair of indie and dance superbly, which has being tragically undermined and unrecognised in the previous decade.

Not only does this album sit well with me, I would certainly urge the masses to go and see these lads live. The first band I saw at Leeds festival 09 and certainly up there as one of the best. The passion and talent for music in their live gigs is without doubt portrayed within this album. Certainly an album to buy.
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on 29 January 2010
The chances are most people have bought this album on the strength of singles Doubt, Counterpoint and This Momentary. The albums good, but some of the songs around these three feel like filler. Submission for example, is just begging to be released as a single. The minute I heard it on the radio I liked it, though I didn't expect it to be Delphic, and to be honest when I found out it was Delphic I was a bit disappointed - it could in all honesty be any other band, and isn't consistent with the totally unique nature of the previous Delphic singles, or in fact the rest of the album. It's a good album, though calling it album of the year is a tad premature, and if nothing better arises in the next 11 months, 2010 will have been a distinctly average year for British music.
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on 5 February 2010
I've been listening to a lot of very blistering music recently (Husker Du, Outkast mainly) so coming to this album was a bit like eating a cold egg and tomato salad after a week tucking into a succession of hot, flavoursome dishes.

It's all quite competently done; in fact, the synth arrangements are really quite clever in places. But the vocalist (I won't say singer) has one of those annoyingly weedy indie voices which sounds like it should be discussing homework over the telephone with a friend. There are no proper bass-lines to speak of, and lap-top drums clatter harmlessly along as the largely forgettable songs do their best to billow and bluster.
How anyone can compare this to New Order is beyond me; it's middling indie-pop fare with a slick producer/engineer at the controls.
To anyone thinking of shelling out on the strength of the various 4 and 5 star reviews on this site, do yourself a favour and Spotify it first as I've just done. If you still fancy a bit of tomato and cold egg after that, fair enough, place your one-click order. Myself, I'll do what the chorus of the final song 'Remain' advises and "wait for something better."
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on 31 January 2010
I go along with bernards two star review on this one about over hype , i dont think it does bands any favours for promoters to over hype their musical output as it can lead to disapointment when your expectations are dashed by good but mediocre music , also i dont see the new order or orbital comparison with acolyte , i think delphic are a band in their own right capable of standing on their own two feet . going by what iv'e heard on this cd i really like and will play over again . nothing stands out so far as memorable but thats not to say its negative as this a great cd but i think it could be improved upon as you get the feeling delphic have real potential , acolyte is perhaps a little too safe and not unique .
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on 28 January 2010
Sorry not to join the gushing praise for this album, which seems to put me in a minority of one, but I'm really, really struggling to grasp what the fuss is about. The spectre of New Order certainly does hang over Delphic, but not in a good way. Too many of these songs sound like B-sides from NO's Low Life/Brotherhood era. Actually, scrap that. Some of New Order's B-sides were incredible.

It's a perfectly serviceable debut, but somehow for me it fails to ignite. It ticks all the current 80s indie influenced boxes (Bunnymen, New Order, Cure), but the songs just aren't strong enough. I'm on my sixth or seventh listen and I'm still struggling to tell most of the songs apart.

I do worry that there is a tendency in the British media to hype up bands or artists who just aren't there yet. That isn't to say they won't make it eventually, but let's cut down on the hyperbole and call a spade a spade. This is a so-so debut from a band who might grow into something better. I doubt very much whether any of us will be listening to it in 5 years time.

Personally, what I'd like to see is a bit more ambition from the current crop of next big things and a little less playing it safe. Compared to the American music scene at present, we're producing pretty small fry. They give us Animal Collective and Grizzly Bear. We give them Delphic and Florence & The Machine. Not really a fair swap, is it?
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on 1 May 2013
In a musical world where electronic guitary music seems to merge one song/band into the next, it's refreshingly and genuinely different from anything of the last couple of years. Thoroughly recommend.
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