it's really an album about what we went through after the last album, and just getting back on our feet, getting ready to go through it again...     Adam Duritz

Released on the 15th of October 1996, Recovering the Satellites is the Counting Crows second album, the follow up to their highly successful debut August and Everything After. After August sold over six million copies, it was always going to be difficult to meet the expectations of fans and critics alike with this effort. Recovering the Satellites is an album that displays the maturing of the band, both musically, and emotionally, over the years since August was released. August's themes of love and loss, dreams and hopes, have been expanded upon, with the new themes of dealing with fame and stardom making an apperance.

gonna get back to basics, guess i'll start it up again...     Recovering the Satellites

Recovering the Satellites is an album with a harder edge, feeling somewhat dirtier than August and Everything after. This isn't to say that it it's a heavy album - far from it - however the guitars have a voice of their own on certain tracks, and some songs rock out a little more. If August was the sound of a wounded heart, softly weeping, Recovering the Satellites is that heart with the power to scream. Rather than being content to look inwards, and speak of love and pain gently, the songs from Recovering growl, and sometimes bite back. This attitude is particularly evident on the songs written regarding new found fame, such as Have you Seen Me Lately?

get away from me, get away from me, this isn't gonna be easy, but i don't need you, believe me...    Have You Seen Me Lately?

These themes were always going to be covered on this album. After years of grueling touring for August and Everything After, the band, and particularly singer/songwriter Adam Duritz were burnt out. Adam Duritz suffered a type of breakdown, and found that writing was part of the problem. In 1994 and 1995, he didn't actually write anything. After the completion of touring and promoting August, the band took six months off before beginning to write Recovering the Satellites. Adam Duritz spent some time working as a bar tender in LA's famous Viper Room.

"What saved my life was Sal at the Viper Room."     Adam Duritz

This time taken to rediscover himself obviously worked, Adam was able to begin writing again, and Recovering the Satellites took shape. Again, Counting Crows have shunned the studio, choosing to rent out a house on a hill in Hollywood. The prefer to record in a big house on a hill, a tradition beginning with the recording of August and Everything after. The band says that it feels less like work recording in this way, not having the pressures of a dedicated studio, and being able to take their time.

Recovering the Satellites - released 15 October 1996, Geffen

Tidbits:


  • Monkey is said to have been inspired by Adam Duritz's then girlfriend, Courtney Cox. These days, he can't stand her.


  • In the CD insert for the album, drummer Ben Mize is credited with playing a zippo lighter (Goodnight Elisabeth), and lightbulbs (I'm Not Sleeping).


  • The songs are listed on the back of the album as four parts, although Adam has said the album is really split into two. The first half deals with suffering, a cathartic release of everything felt after the release of August and Everything After. The second half is about recovery - reclaiming what was lost in those early years.


  • The band learned Mercury, rehearsed it, then recorded it - in one day.

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