Burn a Little Brighter
Their current iteration sees The Satellites as a six-piece alt. Country folk band, whose sound, in transposing the pastoral Americana of their influences onto the bleak but beautiful cityscapes of their native South Wales, is at once melancholy and affirming. Jimi Alexander's songwriting identity, however, can be traced back to a childhood spent in expatriation - themes of searching and rootlessness emerge strongly in his lyrics, and Lucy's mournful cello echo these sentiments strongly in songs that betray a saddening vulnerability, even whilst the explosive combination of percussion and bass that Tim and Robert produce drive their sound towards aggressive excursions in rock n roll. Brief but formative childhood experiences in Australia compelled Jimi to return there in 2002, and it is perhaps significant to this band's output that a year was spent developing the voice that would come to focus prominently on ideas surrounding the road, travel, expatriation, and the desert expanses that were to become familiar to him during his years on the tiny Middle-Eastern island of Bahrain. These seemingly disparate elements were aggregated when the musicians that are now mainstays of the Satellites added their own dimensions to his sound, and with the addition of Matthew on lead guitar, the line-up was completed and their sound was made their own - dense and rich and melodious, Lucy's harmonies accentuating perfectly the rueful but often optimistic lyrical content, and Matthew's guitar skirting light and playful the over the sheer volume of Robert and Tim's composite strength. And so The Satellites began to surface as an exciting new addition to Cardiff's diverse sound, and were quickly noticed by local promoters as a shockingly ingenuous emotive ensemble; the dichotomy between their powerful country rhythms and the subdued beauty of their ballads engenders a response that is as rich and full as the sound they create. Of late, this sound has been further developed by the addition of the classically trained Bernard, whose viola increased the power of the strings to such an effect that he has become an indispensable accompanist during the band's live sets.