Silverchair Up From Down Under

Silverchair, those fifteen year old surf imps from Australia who got

their first recording contract by winning a contest sponsored by an

Australian TV show called Nomad, are coming to our sunny shores for a

week (a school break). The explosive trio from the beach town of

Newcastle are unabashedly grunge, and proud of it, even in the face

of the current Seattle backlash. Described by their very own publicist

as alternately "Silver High Chair," "Nirvana In Pajamas," and "Not

Soundgarden­­Kindergarten," they could have a easily been born and

bred in the chilly Pacific Northwest.

Singer Daniel Johns is an eerie Eddie Vedder sound-alike, only if

Vedder were fronting Soundgarden. Courtney Love had a slightly

different take on them when she met the trio at Big Day Out. She stuck

her head into their dressing "tent" and told Johns that "you look like

my fucking husband." No word what he said to her. Their debut album on

Epic titled Frogstomp debuted at number one in Australia, and

has already broken the triple platinum mark. The trouble is the

band­­which in addition to Daniels is made up of Chris Joannou on bass

and Ben Gillies on drums­­doesn't tour. Something about their mothers

not letting them quit school. Still, they're managing to get outside

the house for a brief US jaunt. On June 21, Silverchair will make

their American debut, playing Atlanta's Roxy, followed by an appearance on June 23 at

The Metro in Chicago, and finishing up their mini-tour in Detroit at

the 6,000 capacity Phoenix Plaza. Oh yeah, they have a "thing" about

llamas (check out their CD), and are pledging some of their record

royalties to the plight of the llamas. Not the Tibetan kind, the

Michael Jackson variety. But then they are part of that Pepsi

Generation, aren't they?