How Finnish band Satellite Stories conquered the world online

Satellite Stories

Satellite Stories - Credit: Archant

Operating just a few hundred kilometres short of Lapland, Satellite Stories hail from a town so remote they might as well be in deep space. Over the last year however, this indie four-piece have begun to make waves far beyond their native Finland.

It’s quite a claim to suggest your band is the most talked about on the internet, but Satellite Stories had a convincing case in September. According to reliable aggregator website The Hype Machine, their single Campfire became the most blogged about song on the web, reaching no.1 on their monthly charts.

“It was quite overwhelming,” says lead singer Esa Mankinen. “It’s really hard to know what will happen when you release a single, so to hear normal people’s honest opinion and that bloggers really liked the song was very encouraging.”

What does he think the reason for Campfire’s success was? “The song is all about remembering and thinking about past summers, so it fit well with an early autumn release. We’d planned to do it around that time. I think it has that vibe of something ending and perhaps that’s what people picked up on.”

Having first bonded over their love of bands like Vampire Weekend, Mankinen formed Satellite Stories with drummer Olli-Pekka Ervasti in 2008 at Oulu University. They soon picked up guitarist Marko Heikkinen and bassist Jyri Pesonen and in 2012 they released their first album, Phrases To Break The Ice. The band’s second record, Pine Trails, came out last month in the UK and on February 11 they will be playing at the Old Blue Last in Hackney for a rare free show.

Many of their favourite bands come from these shores and the band have played here three times. “British people are really focused on the music, really into the songs when they watch a band live, but they’re also really honest – if they don’t like it they’ll let you know,” Mankinen laughs. “But there have been a lot of people in the UK who’ve supported us and it’s good to know we have so many fans from a country with such a musical history and so many clued up listeners.”

Satellite Stories play the Old Blue Last in Hackney on February 11.

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