The Silvertones

The Silvertones were founded by the three friends, Jens Staar (guitar & lead vocals), Peter Ohnsorge (double bass) and Sven Oehlmann (drums) in 1991. After practising hard, the three guys played their first gigs in 1995 and rapidly became a popular act on the German Rockabilly scene. Then there was a temporary change in the line-up, when a fourth man joined the band on the rhythm guitar, and Sven took a time-out from his job on the skins. In 1997, however, the guys got together in the original line-up as a trio. With this line-up they have played numerous shows in clubs and at major German festivals such as the Bottrop Custom Culture since then.

After performing live on stage for more than a decade, there was a growing demand for an own album. Some of their songs had already been released on a number of compilation CDs in the past few years, such as the Hot & Wild Vol. 1 compilation on Cherokee Records or the EP of the German "Dynamite" magazine. So the Silvertones felt that is was time for their first own CD and went to the studio in 2008 to record the songs for the album. The tracks were mastered at the beginning of 2009 and then released on the CD entitled "Hi-Ho-Silver Radio“. It features a powerful mixture of 50s-style Rockabilly and Neo Rockabilly.

The Silvertones' sound is influenced both by the early 80s Rock 'n' Roll Revival with artists such as the Stray Cats, Restless, etc. and by the more authentic style of the early 90s as played, for example, by Wildfire Willie & The Ramblers. As a result, their music is a balanced mixture of 50s-style Rockabilly and Neo Rockabilly with the individual tracks having varying emphasis on these two styles, however, without one of them taking priority on the whole. So the CD features a varied, but nevertheless harmonious overall concept with which the band ingeniously merges the two styles to form their own sound, which is likely to appeal to both the Authentic audience and the fans of Modern Rockabilly.  The tunes are given the special Silvertones treatment with which the careful arrangement of instruments imparts the desired atmosphere to each of the songs. An example for this is Diddley Daddy, a Bo Diddley original, which the band - inspired by a Chris Isaak version of this song - presents as a real dance floor rocker. With the rest of the cover songs the three guys also go full throttle, so that their versions of well-known classics can easily compete with the originals. The Silvertones' version of Jerry Lee Lewis's "Breathless", for example, is as energetic and ferocious as the "master's" original, and clearly distinguishes itself from the innumerous - and in many cases rather weak - interpretations of this song.

Apart from the excellently interpreted cover versions, the CD of course contains a number of self-penned originals. Besides "Silvertone Boogie", a rather traditional Rockabilly tune, it is above all "Don't Go Away" - which has been the favourite of many Silvertones fans for quite some time -  that should be mentioned as an outstanding example. At its core, this song is a Neo Rockabilly tune which has the appearance of a Desperate Rock 'n' Roll song played in the best 50s tradition. As "Don't Go Away" was released on the EP of the German Dynamite Magazine so time ago, the CD contains a previously unreleased re-mix of this song.

When recording the songs at the studio, the band's main objective was to reproduce the atmosphere and the sound of their live shows. And they have accomplished this with enthusiasm and an incredible joy of playing, keeping to their band motto:

"It grabs you and makes your bum and hair dangerously moving before it takes you with a strong kick to the Rock 'n' Roll Nirvana…c Hi Ho Silver!!" (Johnny Tremor, R.I.P.)

Discography:

Dynamite EP  (Dynamite No. 26)
Dynamite Verlag (2000)

VA - “Hot & Wild Vol. 1” CD (CHER-CD 107108)
Cherokee Records (2001)

“Hi-Ho-Silver Radio” CD (CHER-CD 902116)
Cherokee Records (2009)

VA - “Psychobilly Ratpack - Lesson 3” CD (HALB 55-2)
Halb 7 Records (2009)

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