Satellites – Black Dog EP
Released: September 29th, 2017
Mitch Chamberlain // Vocals
Dan Goodwin // Bass & Vocals
Riley Boyce // Drums
Brisbane band Satellites and I have had a very tumultuous relationship over the years. I have loved them from the first second I knew they existed, but with an ever changing lineup, delayed music releases and who knows what else getting in the way, it makes it hard to stay up to date with what the boys are doing and the direction they’re heading, BUT none of that mattered the first time I heard their new Black Dog EP which (FINALLLY) made it’s way into my ear holes after a few impatient years of waiting and here’s why you need to get amongst it.
Opening track ‘Home Sweet Home‘ isn’t a new song, but one the band released back in October 2016 and the first time I heard it, I remember thinking this was the song that’ll put them out there for the country to see, and I was right, it scored them spins on Triple J and all the feedback was positive. It has a very Four Year Strong/The Wonder Years feel to it, but with that unique Australian new age pop-punk style. There’s something so genuine and raw about our country’s style of music writing and this one is no different, focusing on a deadbeat dad through the eyes of someone else, with this, Sateez have proved they are potential key players upcoming in the Australian music scene. Frontman Mitch Chamberlain and bassist Dan Goodwin bounce off each other with precision and the evidence of this is in their live shows. I’m yet to hear this song during a show, but I can’t wait to get amongst all the action now.
‘Thank You‘ continues the upbeat tone with it’s riff heavy intro and party jam sing-along bridge, ever increasing build up and soft breakdown prior to the song’s climax. I couldn’t picture anyone but Dan on backup vocals for this song, let along this band, there’s just something about him that really brings the song around full circle. New single ‘Thread‘ is up next and immediately, it’s riff city through my headphones, but it’s a also great to hear throwbacks and nods to similar styles from the band’s earlier work on their In Vein EP. Mitch also proving his singing ability isn’t just limited to yelling in time with the rest of the band. ‘Glassjaw‘ is up next and from my recollection, was one of the last songs Scott Eckel wrote drums for before he departed to join US band Makeout, hearing it again after so long reminds me of the time I heard it last, when the band opened for The Wonder Years on their Australian tour in Brisbane and it sounds just as good now as it did back then. With lyrics that hit you face and make you want to scream them back like:
“Fuck your opinion, my ambition’s dead/I’m fuelled by the fire that you lit in my head.
I’ve sold my soul, or so the story goes/With the wind at my back and the world at my toes”
It’s guaranteed to get you moving in any situation when you’re listening to it. Now the older songs are out of the way, it’s time for two unheard Satellites songs to wrap your teeth around with the first of which being ‘Through Gritted Teeth‘ which I can see as the band’s new circle pit inducing song that doubles as a stand tall for what you believe anthem. It’s punky. It’s confronting. It’s fantastic and another banger from these Brissie boys. ‘Johnny Ray‘ rounds up the 6 track EP but keeps the momentum flowing from start to finish and Riley Boyce is a gun on the drums in this one, however it’s the additional guest screams from Stepson‘s Brock Conry that offer a new element previously missing from the album until now, clean screaming. Vocalist Mitch Chamberlain has a unique style of rugged yelling that works well for the boys, but Brock’s screams are a fresh spin on what the band could sound like if they employed a full time screamer and headed in that punk/hardcore direction.
There we go, while short and sweet, the band’s Black Dog EP is a step up and forward for the band musically and it’s great to see their progression along the way. My only gripes would be the use of group vox because a little excessive (for my liking) and three of two/three of the songs had already been released decreasing hype for the end result, but what we have here are three blokes, proving that no matter how many times life pushed you down or throws a spanner in the works, just get back up, punch it in the face and keep walking.
Satellites – Black Dog EP tracklisting
- Home Sweet Home
- Thank You
- Through Gritted Teeth
- Johnny Ray
Catch Satellites frontman Mitch Chamberlain co-hosting on Wall of Sound: Up Against The Wall Episode #12 here