As a reviewer I’m always on the look out for things that are a little different or might be interesting, and this project most definitely falls into that category. As well as blending a load of different genres to create their own sound the band take their name from the notion of a city where people communicate thoughts through their satellite minds. I mean, how can that not intrigue you?
The band in question are Satellite Citi and ‘Negative Space’ is the L.A based duos debut EP.
The first thing that you really notice about opening track ‘Pyramid’ and something that is a feature throughout, is that the vocal from Anna Gevorkian is not your typical rock/metal vocal. Rather than seeking to dominate the track and drive it, she has this way of floating over the instrumental below and becoming part of it. It’s something different, it feels fresh, so I must commend the band for that. As for the song itself, it’s a terrific way to kick things off. I love the soaring chorus, the guitar work and just the whole feel of the thing.
By contrast ‘Slow Kill’ is a much mellower affair and chugging riff aside it feels a little flat and one paced. It lacks the pulling power of some of the other tracks on the EP; it’s perfectly fine without giving you anything to get excited about.
However, I’d like to quickly move on to ‘Undead’ which gives you more than enough to get excited about. This is one of the best songs that I’ve heard this year. Bar none. Not only has my love of this track tested my neighbour’s patience, but you’ll be hard pressed to find something that makes you this happy while you’re fully clothed. My God ladies and gentlemen it’s good. Gevorkian abandons her usual vocal style and grabs the track immediately by the unmentionables. The results are staggering. Up to this point the guitars have been pretty understated by rock and metal standards but here Shaunta Sulahian goes absolutely balls to the wall. The riffs, the solos, the energy… I know it’s my job to put these things into words, but I’m struggling. It’s an absolutely magnificent tune. I need a cigarette after just listening to that; and I don’t even smoke.
There was bound to be a drop-in quality and intensity after such a high point, but on ‘Ghost’ it’s not by as much as you’d think. The combination and crashing drums and crunching riffs does more than enough to hold your attention, as the vocal soothes more than sears. There’s an underlying defiance to the song writing on ‘Negative Space’ and really comes to the fore here.
‘Collide’ sees the band return to mellower territory, but much like ‘Slow Kill’ earlier it all feels a little safe. The song’s a tad long but I couldn’t help but feel like the band were holding something back, as it’s only in the final third when they really let go that the song comes to life. The final offering from this musical box of tricks is rather ominously titled ‘The Reckoning’. It’s probably the heaviest track on the record and is another solid effort. The band’s metal influence really shines through here, and that’s never a bad thing in my book. Again, it’s probably a smidge long, but nothing to get worked up about.
Convention dictates that I’m supposed to put together a summary of my thoughts at this point but I’m not entirely sure where to start. On one hand ‘Undead’ is absolutely out of this world and ‘Pyramid’ is also a real high point. While ‘Ghost’ is another good track but ‘Slow Kill’ and ‘Collide’ fall a little flat.
When Satellite Citi hit their stride they have the potential to become a seriously impressive outfit, just look at ‘Undead’, but they aren’t quite there yet. Although it’s important to stress that none of that makes ‘Negative Space’ anything less than a damn good debut by any measure. The best is yet to come from this duo and I can’t wait to hear it.
Negative Space track listing:
Satellite Citi are:
Anna Gevorkian – Vocals/drums
Shant Sulahian – Guitar/backing vocals
To find out more from the band check them out at the following: