Georgia Snow respects The Overtones' talent but fears they miss their mark

  • The Overtones
  • Higher
  • Rhino Entertainment

Discovered by a Warner Brothers talent scout while they were working as decorators in a shop near London’s Oxford Street, The Overtones’ route to stardom is like the kind of movie whose plot you would scoff at for its implausibility.

Their most recent album Higher is a veritable time warp of doo-wop inspired 1950s toe tappers like Runaround Sue and Reet Petite, vocal gymnastics, sickly-sweet pop and easy listening, including a sugar-coated cover of Fairground Attraction’s classic Perfect.

It’s the kind of inoffensive easy-listening music you wouldn’t be nervous about playing to your granny, but it’s not game-changing. The five-piece vocal harmony group took off after the release of their first album in 2010 and quickly began frequenting the daytime TV circuit.

It is easy to praise the group’s rock solid vocals and musical technicality which is the stand-out quality of the record, however. The title track, Higher, is a deceptively cheesy number that does in fact have a surprising amount of complexity, while Unforgettable is pure Nat King Cole. Michael Bublé-style big band instrumentation sits side by side with the kind of finger-clicking stool singing the album art suggests.

It is a creative hybrid with some catchy tunes and smooth vocals but it doesn’t set the world alight and I can’t help but feel it slightly misses the mark.