There’s always something good about the introspective nature of Americana. Part rock, part folk and sometimes veering into the raw, emotional fields of country, it is a genre that touches several fibres.
Possibly the one that’s always been there is the delicate, thin fibre of nostalgia. Indeed, introspection feels like the name of the game. Whether for a place, a significant other or simply a bygone era, nostalgia feeds the inspiration of many a person who decided to pick up an acoustic and sing their hearts out, major and minor chord intertwining everywhere.
Daniel Pearson‘s Satellites is quite the heartfelt look back. From the very introspective cover, the remembrance of a summer long gone, the album is great serving of Americana. ‘Masquerade’ is sweet, a lovingly tender invitation. ‘Black and blue’ crosses the line and even feels like a tribute to a certain Mr. Adams I suspect both Daniel Pearson and me admire.
‘Waves in the sea’, now, that’s a very interesting track. Starts with a very atmospheric sound (ebow? swell? love it) and then goes for an expanding nature (like the sea, double love it). Again, it is Americana rock, but with added layers of ambience that make it a more enjoyable experience.
It’s not all wistful acoustic ditties. There is some distortion and good ol’ rock and roll here for your listenin’ and drinkin’ and hollerin’ activities (just avoid Coors, that thing gives you heartburn). ‘Wishing well’ goes for just the right amount of distortion with a clear cut message that sometimes you need to obey: “Get busy living”. ‘Tracks’ feels a very gospel-like, very uplifting and happy go lucky. ‘4th July’ is an all out rocker (harmonica on tow too) that’s gone too quickly, like the memories of those quarter of a mile races you’d surreptitiously do in junior high (much to the chagrin of the local authorities).
‘I’m swimming through the ashes of the bridges I’ve burned’. Wow. Just from the title it got my attention. Really enjoy the lyrics here, very honest and raw. Alienation and spitefulness , building that impassé of a wall created when all goes awry (“and if your secretary would take my calls / maybe we could talk about the flames”). It’s a hard one to listen to if you’re filling a bit down in the dumps, but sometimes you gotta confront what’s troubling you and kick it in the shins (but a friendly kick).
Don’t think that Daniel Pearson‘s Satellites is a one man and guitar thing. That description is true in some songs, but for the rest of the album, you get a very decent offering of Americana and all it entails: honesty (brutal, of course), light distortions that make a point (remember: talking softly but firm > shouting) and lyrics acting like pyre where all those things troubling you will become ashes and fire.