The Delgados

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The Delgados
Background information
OriginGlasgow, Scotland
GenresIndie rock
Symphonic pop
Years active1994–2005, 2022–present
LabelsChemikal Underground
Past membersAlun Woodward
Emma Pollock
Stewart Henderson
Paul Savage

The Delgados are a Scottish indie rock band from Glasgow. The band is composed of Alun Woodward (vocals, guitar), Emma Pollock (vocals, guitar), Stewart Henderson (bass), and Paul Savage (drums).[1]


The band was formed after friends Woodward, Henderson and Savage were ejected from the band Bubblegum. Joined by Savage's then-girlfriend Pollock, the band named themselves after Tour de France winning cyclist, Pedro Delgado.

Their first commercial release came with the inclusion of their track "Liquidation Girl" on the compilation album Skookum Chief Powered Teenage Zit Rock Angst from Nardwuar the Human Serviette. Instead of signing to a record label, the band started their own, Chemikal Underground, on which they released their own records and also some from other local bands, among them Mogwai and Arab Strap. Chemikal Underground's first release was the Delgados first single "Monica Webster / Brand New Car". The single caught the attention of BBC Radio 1 DJ John Peel,[1] and the band quickly became one of his favourites, going on to record seven sessions for his show.

The cost of Chemikal Underground's second release, the single "Disco Nation 45" by Bis, left the cash-strapped label unable to afford another release by the Delgados, so their next release "Lazarwalker" came from the London-based Radar Records. Tempted by Radar to a five-album deal, the band declined, instead poaching their A&R contact, Graeme Beattie, for work at Chemikal Underground.

Another single, "Cinecentre" followed in early 1996 as the band juggled work at the label with several tours, and recorded their debut album. The band released two more singles, this time taken from their album Domestiques released in November 1996.[1] The song "Under Canvas, Under Wraps" being voted number three in John Peel's Festive Fifty that year.[2]

The band released their second album in 1998. Peloton – also a cycling reference. The single "Pull the Wires From the Wall" gave the Delgados their first hit single in the UK Singles Chart, reaching number 69.[3] The band's close relationship with Peel continued, with "Pull the Wires From the Wall" voted to number one in the Festive Fifty (it would also make the all time chart made in 2000).

The Delgados' evolution continued with The Great Eastern in 2000. The record was produced by Dave Fridmann. Their next single, "American Trilogy", reached number 61 in the UK chart.[3] The record was nominated for the Mercury Music Prize.[4]

Their fourth album, Hate, was released on Mantra rather than the band's own label. The song "The Light Before We Land" was used as the opening theme for the anime Gunslinger Girl, while the song "Woke From Dreaming" is played at the beginning of episode 7.

The band returned to their own label for 2004's Universal Audio.

The band announced they were splitting up in April 2005 due to the departure of Henderson who found it difficult "to pour so much of my energy and time into something that never quite seemed to get the attention or respect [he] felt it deserved." The four will continue to run Chemikal Underground together. Songwriters Pollock and Woodward are pursuing individual projects, while Savage will continue production duties at the band's Chem19 in a new studio.[5]

Since the band's separation, the track "I Fought the Angels" from Universal Audio has been used in the fourth episode in the second season of the Golden Globe-winning medical drama Grey's Anatomy in 2006, and in the opening scene in the series premiere of BBC Three's Lip Service in 2010.

A double disc containing 29 tracks, The Complete BBC Peel Sessions, was released on 12 June 2006 in Europe, and later in the year in the United States. Woodward released his debut solo album in June 2009 under the name Lord Cut-Glass.[6] Savage also played on the album.

In June 2022, the band announced that they had reformed and would play together for the first time in 17 years. A UK tour of five gigs, ending in their home city of Glasgow, is scheduled for January 2023.[7]


Studio albums[edit]

Title Album details Peak chart positions

Domestiques 97
  • Released: 8 June 1998
  • Label: Chemikal Underground (#CHEM024)
  • Formats: LP, CD, Download
52 56 6
The Great Eastern
  • Released: 17 April 2000
  • Label: Chemikal Underground (#CHEM040)
  • Formats: LP, CD, Download
31 72 12
  • Released: 14 October 2002
  • Label: Mantra (#MNT1031)
  • Formats: LP, CD
27 57 5
Universal Audio
  • Released: 20 September 2004
  • Label: Chemikal Underground (#CHEM075)
  • Formats: LP, CD, Download
49 105 14
"–" denotes items that did not chart or were not released in that territory.

Live albums[edit]

Title Album details Peak chart positions Notes

BBC Sessions
Live at the Fruitmarket
  • Released: 2001
  • Label: Chemikal Underground
  • Formats: CD
  • Recorded on 20 January 2001 at the Fruitmarket, Glasgow
  • The final show of The Delgados' Great Eastern tour
  • 14-track, card case, live compilation album
The Complete
BBC Peel Sessions
  • Released: 12 June 2006
  • Label: Chemikal Underground (#CHEM088)
  • Formats: CD, Download
"–" denotes items that did not chart or were not released in that territory.

Extended plays[edit]

Year Title Tracks
1995 Lazarwalker
  • Primary Alternative
  • Lazarwalker
  • Buttonhole
  • Blackwell


Year Title Peak chart positions Album

1995 "Monica Webster" Non-album singles
1996 "Cinecentre"
"Under Canvas Under Wraps" 186 Domestiques
"Sucrose" 100 155
1998 "Everything Goes Around the Water" 62 77 11 Peloton
"Pull the Wires From the Wall" 57 69 15
"The Weaker Argument Defeats the Stronger" 92 98 19
2000 "American Trilogy" 43 61 11 The Great Eastern
"No Danger" 68 77 11
2002 "Coming in From the Cold" 55 82 19 Hate
2003 "All You Need is Hate" 73 72 11
2004 "Everybody Come Down" 56 67 13 Universal Audio
2005 "Girls of Valour" 98 29
"–" denotes items that did not chart or were not released in that territory.


  1. ^ a b c Strong, Martin C. (2000). The Great Rock Discography (5th ed.). Edinburgh: Mojo Books. p. 258. ISBN 1-84195-017-3.
  2. ^ "John Peel Festive 50s". BBC. Retrieved 21 September 2015.
  3. ^ a b Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 149. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
  4. ^ "Delgados on top post-Mercury form". The Guardian. 3 October 2000. Retrieved 14 September 2014.
  5. ^ "Delgados Amicable Breakup". Retrieved 14 September 2014.
  6. ^ ""Lord Cut Glass" by Lord Cut Glass". Archived from the original on 17 February 2012. Retrieved 11 June 2009.
  7. ^ Deville, Chris (8 June 2022). "The Delgados Announce First Shows In 18 Years". Stereogum. Retrieved 8 June 2022.
  8. ^ Scottish studio albums chart peaks:
  9. ^ a b UK chart peaks:
  10. ^ UK independent studio albums chart peaks:
  11. ^ UK independent studio albums chart peaks:
  12. ^ Scottish singles chart peaks:
  13. ^ UK independent singles chart peaks:

External links[edit]