In 2003, Polish neo-prog band Satellite released their debut album. I always considered A Street Between Sunrise And Sunset as a real masterpiece, so the album ended as my favourite one that year. Former Collage-drummer Wojtek Szadkowski wrote - unlike Collage with Safe, after their masterpiece Moonshine - a strong follow-up album with Evening Games. The album even reached the number 8 position in the album top-100 of best selling records in Poland. Thatís not bad at all for an album based on the legacy of the great seventies progressive rock bands. Into The Night, the final chapter in the trilogy, was a strong record as well.
In 2009, Satellite released their fourth album Nostalgia. It is obvious that the compositions on this album are moving in a different direction. After listening to Nostalgia for the first time, I felt rather disappointed. I couldnít get in the same mood as with the other releases. In order to avoid repeating himself Mr. Szadkowski added more elements of other musical styles to the Satellite-music. Maybe I must get used to it; some albums need more spins in order to grow and indeed, it helped a bit. It is evident that good musicians always developing their music and as a result they cannot always satisfy all their fans.
The opening tune Every Desert Got Itís Ocean turns out to be a fine progressive rock tune. Is has everything to become a live classic. The last two pieces of the album are also high quality compositions with approximately the same sound they produced on their first three albums. The string synthesizer sound returns from the Moonshine-days, b ut as far as my musical taste is concerned, the other tracks move too much in the direction of Wojtekís other bands Strawberry Fields and Peter Pan. Maybe he tries to sell more albums by using more radio-friendly elements in the songs. However, their best selling album Evening Games proved that there is no need for those commercial tricks in order to get a bigger audience.
The record company that released Nostalgia labeled this fourth Satellite release as neo-prog rock. Maybe they should rewrite their info sheet, because modern melodic progressive rock would be a better term for the musical style on Nostalgia. I hope that the two bonus tracks on the limited edition move more toward neo-prog. I donít know, because I only heard the standard version.
In my opinion, Satellite made a moderate album with Nostalgia, just as Collage did several years ago with Safe. Nevertheless, I have both albums in my collection and occasionally I put them in my CD-player, because they still contain a couple of fine progressive rock tunes.
***- Henri Strik (edited by Peter Willemsen)
Where to buy?
All Rights Reserved Background Magazine 2013