The Overtones’ debut album ‘Good Ol’ Fashioned Love’ proved to be a surprise smash hit when it was released late in 2010.
Having accumulated over 500,000 sales to date, it peaked at #4 on the UK album chart and prompted a chain of accomplishments which saw them tour the world and sell-out numerous dates including major venues such as the London Palladium and the HMV Hammersmith Apollo.
Recently seen performing in front of 250,000 people at the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Concert, The Overtones are set to return with the October 1st release of their second album ‘Higher’ (Warner Music Entertainment) which raises the stakes for the much-loved gambling men.
The album finds the boys – Lachie Chapman, Mike Crawshaw, Darren Everest, Mark Franks and Timmy Matley – pushing the boundaries of their music with a collection that blends a variety of contemporary pop influences into the uplifting, soulful sounds of the defining male vocal groups of the 50s and 60s. It captures the essence of everything people loved about The Overtones the first time around, but it also finds the group brimming with confidence as they explore new territory.
Assisting in the group’s progression was an array of some of music’s most respected producers. Renowned for his ability to capture masterly vocal performances from some of the world’s most successful artists, Walter Afanasieff (Mariah Carey, Celine Dion, Boyz II Men) was an obvious choice of collaborator for a group which is resolutely proud of their determination and work ethic in ensuring that their music lives up to its full potential.
As a veteran of the big band circuit, Trevor Horn could easily identify with The Overtones’ roots, but his famously accomplished production techniques also allowed the music to evolve in a direction in which the sound forged ahead rather than wallowed in the past. Pop curators Future Cut (Olly Murs, Lily Allen) also contributed to the sessions by utilising their renowned ability to craft commercially successful songs built for repeated plays which exude The Overtones’ cheeky, effervescent personalities.
“We were so happy that people like Walter, Trevor and Future Cut wanted to work with us, because they’ve got the ability to help us make our music as strong as it can possibly be,” explains Crawshaw. “Throughout the album, you can really tell that the level has been raised.”
The Overtones’ own songwriting credits, which include collaborations with Steve Booker (Duffy) and fast rising writing team Electric (Cheryl Cole), are central to the success of ‘Higher’. The album’s title track is a prime example. “lt’s uplifting, gritty and almost like a classic dance track. I love that we’re bending the rules a little bit regarding what vocal harmony groups can do,” enthuses Matley.
Other highlights include ‘Love Song’ (Chapman: “It’s a modern version of an old teen heartthrob anthem that’s designed to be danced to today”), ‘Call Me Up’ (Matley: “It’s like a mod version of a song from Footloose”) and ‘When You Say My Name’, on which they worked with Steve Robson (Take That, James Morrison) and Wayne Hector (JLS, The Wanted). The first single to be taken from the album will be ‘Loving The Sound’, which was written with Phil Thornally (Pixie Lott) and Jon Green. “It’s got an upbeat soul vibe, but it’s about picking yourself up and moving on,” says Everest.
The album also includes fresh interpretations of established classics, such as Fairground Attraction’s 1988 chart-topper ‘Perfect’ and Chapman’s lead vocal on a soulful rendition of ‘Unforgettable’, both of which highlight The Overtones’ strength as a modern vocal group built on the tradition of powerful performances and finely crafted harmonisation.
‘Higher’ will be launched with the help of two major TV appearances on BBC 2’s The Rob Brydon Show and the final of ITV’s Red Or Black. The Overtones will then embark upon a twenty-eight date UK and Ireland tour which commences in early November and concludes just before Christmas. Please turn over for the full tour schedule.
UK AND IRELAND TOUR DATES
9th – Cork, Opera House
10th – Cork, Opera House
11th – Dublin, Grand Canal Theatre
13th – Belfast, The Waterfront
18th – Carlisle, Sands Centre
19th – Glasgow, Royal Concert Hall
20th – Aberdeen, Music Hall
22nd – Edinburgh, Usher Hall
23rd – Newcastle, City Hall
24th – York, Barbican
26th – London, HMV Hammersmith Apollo
29th – Manchester, Bridgewater Hotel
30th – Leicester, De Montford Hall
1st – Southend, Cliffs Pavilion
3rd – Cardiff, St. David’s Hall
4th – Guildford, G Live
5th – Ipswich, Regent
7th – Brighton, Dome
8th – Portsmouth, Guildhall
10th – Birmingham, Symphony Hall
11th – Nottingham, Royal Concert Hall
12th – Scunthorpe, Baths Hall
14th – Liverpool, Philharmonic Hall
15th – Blackpool, Opera House
16th – Sheffield, City Hall
18th – Stoke-on-Trent, Victoria Hall
19th – Bristol, Colston Hall
20th – Plymouth, Pavilions