Band: The Silencers.
Personnel: Jimme O'Neill, guitar, vocals; Cha Burns, guitar; Joe Donnelly, bass; Martin Hanlin, drums.
History: O'Neill and Burns were the core of Fingerprintz, a Scottish quartet that first gained attention backing American new-wave singer Rachel Sweet on tour before making three excellent but largely overlooked albums on its own. "The Very Dab" (1979) matched O'Neill's bleak vision of the world with dark, new-wave musical tones, culminating with "Beam Me Up Scotty," in which O'Neill wishes he could believe that UFOs were on the way to rescue him from earthly torment. Nonetheless, the album avoids succumbing to the gloom, thanks largely to O'Neill's clever melodies. 1980's "Distinguishing Marks" had cheerier music but the same obsessions in the lyrics. In 1981, "Beat Noir" brought in heavy bass lines for a bottom-heavy funk/rock blend that emphasized O'Neill's lyrics, but was countered by relatively bright melodies. Soon thereafter the group broke up, but three years ago O'Neill and Burns teamed up with fellow Scots Donnelly and Hanlin to form the Silencers, who resettled in London to write and record their recently released debut album, "A Letter From St. Paul."