The story of The Silvertones started in 1964, when Delroy Denton, Keith Coley, and Gilmore Grant came together to form a harmony group. Their first hit, True Confession, was released by Duke Reid in 1965, which was followed by massive ska, rocksteady, and reggae hits. They recorded for producers like Sonia Pottinger, Clancy Eccles, and Coxsone Dodd. After Delroy Denton had emigrated to the US, Joel ‘Kush’ Brown adequately filled the spot. In the late 1960s and early 1970s they worked with Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry, who produced their debut album Silver Bullets, voiced at King Tubby’s Studio in one night and released on Lee Perry’s Black Art label. This was the first album from Perry’s Black Arc studio (not called Ark yet) in 1973 and was released on Trojan Records that same year.
The Silvertones always thrived with cover tunes and were adept at inspired originals too, and this approach is reflected on this album. In addition to covers of pop and soul songs, the original set of 12 songs also contains six original songs. Thematically, the album only deals with matters of the heart, except for the masterful song Rejoice Jah Jah Children, followed by the equally good dub version. Noteworthy is track 12, Are You Sure, which is the Lee Perry dub version of Dave Barker’s take of the Staple Singers’ hit of the same name. Denton’s expressive baritone shines on the covers of the soul tunes Souvenir Of Mexico and That’s When It Hurts. We can also appreciate their version of Jerry Butler’s hit He’ll Break Your Heart, and even Sugar Sugar, the bubblegum pop tune from The Archies, is being revived by Denton. The tune Soul Sister written by Perry is a catchy tune, lyrically overloaded with clichés, but no less enjoyable for that.