Dynamic ‘anti-Britpop’ Delphic debut 

It isn’t exactly a Three Stooges kind of setup, but there’s definitely something a little “nyuk-nyuk” nutty about UK techno-rock trio Delphic’s live-work space.

The members share a two-story flat in their native Manchester, with every room but the communal den cluttered with various keyboards and computers.

“We have a TV in the lounge, so we’ve tried to keep that room relatively instrument-free,” says band synth specialist Rick Boardman. “But last week, we couldn’t help ourselves. We bought a brand-new little piano, and now it’s in the lounge. So our TV is being encroached upon by yet another keyboard, which is OK, because we don’t really have any furniture.”

Pals rarely drop by, adds Boardman, who — along with guitarist Matt Cocksedge and bassist/vocalist James Cook — brings Delphic to The City on Wednesday.

“Why would they?” he asks, rhetorically. “Just so we could go, ‘Hey, have you seen this new keyboard?’”

And girlfriends? “Luckily, we all share one girl called Delphine,” he deadpans. And should he catch a roomie drinking milk from his carton, he adds, “I’d encourage it. It’d only help us bond and get closer. We’re not making out with each other or anything, but we’re very comfortable with each other’s saliva.”

Such close quarters led to some expansive, atmospheric vistas on Delphic’s debut CD “Acolyte,” with songs such as “Remain,” “Counterpoint” and “Red Lights” all clocking in at more than six minutes.

Long before recording, the musicians sit down and seriously discuss potential material, then agree on every last note and lyric.

They’re always ready to tackle new ideas when they unexpectedly hit. “When you’re looking for that 2 percent inspiration, out of 98 percent perspiration,” the 25-year-old says, “that 2 percent can come when you’re in the shower, or even when you’re drinking from someone else’s milk carton. So you can’t force it out.”

So much for that television room, says Boardman. “I’ll be trying to watch football on a night off,” he says. “But if James or Matt suddenly choose to be in that creative zone, then I’ll have to jump on board. So no one ever really gets to relax.”

Respectful of Mancunian elders such as The Smiths and New Order, Delphic started as an intellectual anti-Britpop exercise, Boardman says, “something besides lager-lout, sub-Oasis music.”

The housemates have already finished storyboarding their sophomore set. “We make it sound like we talk about things, everyone’s happy and it’s a perfect world,” Boardman says. “But it can be hell on earth in this flat a lot of the time. Probably more so than not.”


Popscene, Rickshaw Stop, 155 Fell St., San Francisco
When: 8 p.m. Wednesday
Tickets: $10
Contact: www.rickshawstop.com

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Staff Report

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A daily newspaper covering San Francisco, San Mateo County and serving Alameda, Marin and Santa Clara counties.
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