A Silverback. While the urban definition is typically applied to a dude with a high ego that lifts weights, this insult holds a deeper meaning that derives from our ancient predecessors: Gorillas. For those who aren’t an expert with their primate species, a Silverback is “a mature male mountain gorilla, distinguished by an area of white or silvery hair across the back, and the dominant member of its social group” (Cheers Google). Combine this comical idea with a guy that pissed you off at the gym and some angry grunge hooks and you’ve got the devilish new drop from Saint Henry – appropriately titled Silverback.
A lashing of the inflated male ego, Silverback is an all-out sonic assault from Melbourne thrashers Saint Henry. Arrogance has no chance.
Plucked from the heart of Melbourne, the post-punk, garage-grunge duo is the musical endeavour of Hayden Manassa (guitar/vocals) and David Lo (drums). In the trailing success of their debut single Lunatic Asylum, the explosive 2-piece have been swelling up a storm of riotous rock, and Silverback has been unleashed at the perfect time.
If you’re in a tranquil mood, Saint Henry aren’t a sound to save for a rainy day with a cup of chai – they instead provoke entire bodily devotion to causing ruckus and getting ferocious. Present day comparatives are go-to grunge counterparts Violent Soho and DZ Deathrays, with other influences like Black Sabbath and Wolfmother emanating from the duo.
If you aren’t paying attention, this track could easily be disregarded as merely a thrashing of instruments, however when you excavate the meaning underneath, a poetic realisation transforms your first impressions to gather some serious lyrical appreciation.
Saint Henry reaffirmed this in describing the meaning: “Silverback plays upon the notion of the male ego and its primitive nature. The song itself is aggressive and fast paced, and as a result the song aligns itself with these observations of the chauvinistic ‘macho’ persona that is very animalistic and very visible in society.”
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The sound is incessantly aggressive in such a haunting manner that compares to waking up from a nightmare, particularly relevant in the chorus line: “Waking up in the night all he sees/is a man he’s trying to be.”
The vigorous sonic overtones in the uninterrupted clutter of a guitar/drum alliance epitomises the angst of a disillusioned adolescent, with the cliché ‘ENTER AT OWN RISK’ sign outside their bedroom door. Hopefully, for the sake of cringing, that is a platitude most of us have now moved on from, however there is definitely a cheeky correlation between our present and former lives that all of our post-pubescent selves love to reminisce on, and even embrace.
For a vicious yet satisfying critique on the Alpha male, or even just as a backdrop of sound to release any built up stress, tune in to this grungy jam and expand your appreciations of modern post-punk.
Saint Henry are soon to commence their first national tour with dates and venues locked in around the country:
Fri 29 April, The Music Man Megastore-Bendigo, VIC
Sun 8 May, Bar Open- Melbourne, VIC
Fri 13 May, The Barwon Club- Geelon, VIC
Fri 27 May, The Brisbane Hotel- Hobart, TAS
Sat 28 May, Club 54- Launceston, TAS
Sat 4 Jun, Exeter Hotel- Adelaide, SA
Sat 11 Jun, Trainspotters- Brisbane, QLD
Sat 18 Jun, The Eastern, Ballarat, VIC
Thur 23 Jun, The Hamilton, Newcastle, NSW
Sat 25th June, VIC on the Park, Sydney, NSW