Published Jul 25, 2014Via Satellite is Planet Asia's sixth full-length collaboration in as many years; this go 'round sees the Fresno, CA bred-MC teaming up with Orlando, FL-based producer/artist TzariZM for a more than inspired pairing. If his soundtrack work for lame TV fare like Jersey Shore or L.A. Ink had some heads worrying that he might be losing his underground credentials, the sonic backdrop on Via Satellite is a strong assertion of TzariZM's oft-described "new age boom-bap": dusty yet melodic soul samples laid over aggressive, slamming beats that form a watertight union with Asia.
Although he doesn't offer any new lyrical innovations, Planet Asia remains a devastating MC with a flow to back up the braggadocio on cuts like "Nobody Close" and the cinematic "Satellite Channels," which switches gears from an uptempo 1960s soul sample into a menacing downtempo slither. MidaZ The Beast and Rockness Monsta (a.k.a. Rock of Heltah Skeltah) are the standout guests on "100 Mill" and epic banger "Powerful," respectively. There's not a duff cut out of the 20 tracks that comprise the nearly 70 minutes of Via Satellite and while it doesn't break any new ground, it captures Planet Asia and TzariZM at the top of their respective games. (Doxside)