I have gotten used to getting random packages full of CD’s and even LP’s for review but I was a little taken aback when I opened one of my latest packages to find a cassette tape. I was intrigued and also excited to have a reason to dig up my old cassette player so here I am, after an hour of digging up my cassette player, hooking it up to my stereo, and my fifth cup of coffee, I’m finally ready to check out this bright green cassette.
As soon as “I’m Never Going Back To Texas” started playing, I understood the cassette thing. Sunshine Satellite has a very garage punk sound that lends nicely to the scratchiness of cassette tapes. I’ll be honest, it took me a little bit of time to warm up to the vocals. They are a little bit like Tsnumai Bomb’s vocals but a little less steady. I won’t say that this is a bad element and the way it fits the garage punk style of the instrumentation is perfect but I’ve just never been a huge fan of vocals like this.
Although I felt a bit unsure about this group on the first song, “Date Night” started playing and I was sold. Any hesitation I had about this band went out the window. There’s something a little pop-punk about this track while still being very garage-punk with a very raw and unfinished sound. The vocals on this one seem to be a bit more up my alley and a bit more confident than in the first track. Maybe that was my issue with that first song. Regardless, I loved this track, and “Date Night” was an instant favorite of mine.
Things get a bit more aggressive for “Nothing Good Happens After 8pm” and I loved it. The beat is a little faster, the drums a little harder and the vocals a bit screamier. Sunshine Satellite definitely has a sound all of their own but, within that sound, there are a million variations and this track is proof of that. Even though this little cassette is only four tracks, the four tracks each have a different vibe and feeling and I really like the vibe that “Nothing Good Happens After 8pm” was giving off.
“Fire Pretty” closes off this cassette with a perfect ending. The beginning of this track made me stop in my tracks and thoughts. There’s something about the guitar tone of the intro that I just couldn’t get enough of. Even when the tone switched to a more classic pop-punk infused sound, there was still something infectious about this track that I just couldn’t get enough of. This may have been the last track on this cassette but it got a couple of listens before I turned off my tape deck and started to unhook it from my stereo and get it ready to be stored back in my basement until the next cassette comes around.
Cassettes never reached the popularity I think they should have. Much like vinyl records, cassettes bring a sound and feel to their music that CDs and streaming just can’t bring. Sunshine Satellite uses this element to their advantage and made this a release that caught both my eyes and ears.
My Favorite Track(s): “Date Night”
For Fans Of: Cassettes; Garage Rock; Imperfect perfection
Mosh-ability: 6 out of 10
What My Cats Thought Of It: Artie sniffed around the cassette player looking for new cords to chew on; Autumn slept on the couch
How Badly I Want To See This Performed Live: 6 out of 10
My Overall Rating: 6.5 out of 10
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