The Waterboys’ seventh album, Universal Hall, was released in 2003.
It was a return to the band’s folk rock sound. The album also saw the return of Steve Wickham to the band for the first time since Room To Roam. Richard Naiff also joined on keyboards.
It contains the song, The Dance at the Crossroads. Scott described the album as a ”record containing one Irish reel and eleven spiritual songs that articulate – to the best of my ability – the vision that drives, challenges, sustains and transforms me”.
However, the album wasn’t well received by critics and only reached number 74 in the UK and number 54 in Ireland.
Karma to Burn and Book of Lightning
The band released a live album, Karma to Burn in 2005, The album featured many of the band’s biggest hits and also some songs from Scott’s solo career. It was recorded at several different gigs and venues across Ireland and the UK in 2003-04.
Their ninth studio album, Book Of Lightning was released in 2007. It was a rock album and was very well received by critics.
It gained numerous glowing reviews and reached number 19 in the Irish charts and but only number 51 in the UK.
An Appointment With Mr Yeats
Their 10th album, An Appointment With Mr Yeats was released in 2011 and was their first album for 18 years to make it into the UK top 40. It reached number 30 in the UK and number 13 in Ireland, making it their highest placed album ever in Irish charts.
It featured the poetry of W.B. Yeats put to music. The album started life as a show which was put on for a five night run at Yeats own theatre, The Abbey in Dublin in March 2010. The show was given rave reviews.
Scott described the music as “psychedelic, intense, kaleidoscopic, a mix of rock, folk and faery music”.
Mike Scott and The Waterboys continue to record and tour.