"Our new album, The Overtones, is dedicated to the friend and brother we've lost," says the group's Mike Crawshaw. "In the past we've often come up with album concepts with our producer Julian Hinton, like the cinema-themed Saturday Night at the Movies or the soul album Sweet Soul Music, but, ultimately, this time the concept is The Overtones themselves."
"The album is honouring Timmy as opposed to paying tribute," says bass singer Lockie Chapman. "The song You To Me Are Everything is on because he always said that when he was young he used to think the lyrics were 'You, Timmy, are everything'. And Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow is especially poignant to us. We originally recorded it a while ago, but when we re-recorded our vocals recently it was very emotional. We were stood around the microphone, reached the last notes we sing as a group, and then let Timmy finish the song. There was a realisation of all the times we're not going to have a beer with him, not going to tour with him, not going to record a song with him anymore."
"I think we gave people a slightly false sense of what we were on all those TV and radio shows, singing acapella," admits Lockie, "If you listen to the album, it's heavily orchestral, and we've always had instrumentation in much the same way that doo-wop spread its wings and organically developed into music such as Motown."
Their second album used producers such as Trevor Horn and Future Cut to add a modern pop polish. They have toured regularly but have also played massive events such as to 250,000 outside Buckingham Palace for the Queen's Diamond Jubilee and to a million at the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin on New Year's Eve.
"We manage ourselves and our label and it's given us a freedom we've never experienced before," Darren enthuses, "It's given us the space to explore how we want to shape what we're doing. We're masters of our own destiny now. This is a new era for music and that can be frightening and nerve-wracking but now, more than ever, we know what The Overtones are, what we're about, so who better than The Overtones themselves to manage that!"
The Overtones' pre-Christmas UK tour dates:
Dec 7: Southend Cliffs Pavilion (matinee & evening);
Dec 8: Birmingham Symphony Hall (matinee & evening);
Dec 10: Manchester Bridgewater Hall;
Dec 11: Glasgow Royal Concert Hall;
Dec 13: Gateshead Sage 1;
Dec 14: York Barbican;
Dec 15: Nottingham Royal Concert Hall;
Dec 17: Liverpool Philharmonic Hall;
Dec 18: Salisbury City Hall;
Dec 19: Guildford G Live;
Dec 20: London Indigo O2.