315 Reviews: Atkins Riot’s ‘Couch Potato’

Syracuse’s Atkins Riot has put an awful lot of rock into a short EP.  The record is very well produced and each song flows seamlessly into the next, while the band experiments with different sounds. This tight band consists of Anthony Saturno, Rob Zaccaria, Sam Roux, and Byron Cage.

‘Couch Potato’ EP. Cover Art by Evan Bujold.

The title track “Couch Potato” kicks off the EP with some sneaky synth lines, heavy bass drops, and fades into some weaving dreamy guitar through the solid backline.  It’s a very funky tune and the lyrics are spot-on for a pandemic release.  The end of the tune really showcases Arkins Riot’s incredible musicianship.

The second track “The News” feels like a whole new band as one could imagine The White Stripes and Led Zeppelin birthing a new heavy blues track.  This tune is fun and catchy and has an ending that really smokes with super catchy melodic hooks throughout.

“Staggered Ladders” also has a different feel to it.  Despite the song almost feeling more like a jam band, it all fits in nicely with ‘Couch Potato.’ 

“Big Teeth” comes in really hard right after this tune and will easily bowl the listener over.  One can see why the Syracuse New Times called Atkins Riot perfect for a listener “looking for a  great headbanging hook.”  They certainly have captured that and again the band seems tightest when they let it rip, allowing each other space.

“Again and Again” is the fifth track and in the slightest of shifts, one could reminisce about the ’90s grunge of Stone Temple Pilots or the ’80s hard bands of Guns & Roses or yet again some miraculous new sound twisted around this band’s own unique voice.  Atkins Riot here has created another incredible tune that rips along as the heaviest tunes on the EP while holding the whole piece together. 

The final track of this outstanding EP is “Amongst the Stars” which while departing from the heavier noise, still works, almost as a lullaby after having your face melted off. The tune is dreamy and jazzy and sets up Saturno for a beautiful, soaring guitar solo halfway through. Overall this is a great record and a must-listen.  As music venues begin to re-open it will be a real treat to hear this band play live and explore these awesome songs with their fans.

‘Couch Potato’ is nominated for a 2021 Syracuse Area Music Award in the Best Rock category. The ceremony will be live-streamed from SubCat Studios in Syracuse through the SAMMYS Facebook page beginning at 7 P.M on Friday, March 5.

315 Music is a sponsor of the 2021 Syracuse Area Music Awards.

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